I live in a high crime area of a rust belt city. It is good to promote your property as difficult to break into. Security company signs and no trespass sign are posted and the property is fended with closed gates at the drives. Vintage cars are always garaged, doors and boots closed and locked and keys are placed in another building. I keep one or two cars parked in the way of the overhead door. Garage doors are locked and windows covered. All of that is aimed at slowing down the thief.
Trail cams covering the entry points of the property and garage as well as the inside of the buildings are helpful once the crime is done and you are trying to catch the thief. Good neighbors who keep an eye out for each other are most helpful. Neighbors have not only alerted me to a break-in in progress but have provided police with photos and eye witness accounts.
Prosecute those that do the crime. Word will get around.
Summer of 16 a professional crew of 4 showed up at 4:15 AM with masks on, bolt cutters and a long roll back expecting to get a Bentley R Type and a Jaguar XJ6. By 4:20 they had opened the gate, popped the locks and rolled a pickup truck and car out of the way and gained entry to the garage. It was at that point that the other security measures kicked in. By 4:22 One masked man was on the floor donating biological samples with a little help from a 165 lb Anatolia Shepard’s Dog, the roll back was immobilized with a 9mm slug in the battery. The police were on the way. They arrived at 5:03, 43 minutes after they were called. By that time the dog had flushed out a second masked thief hiding on the property, a few more biological samples were surrendered.
The incident became a bit of a story around the hood. The word is that you don’t want to mess with that property because the crazy old white man or the huge dog will get you. I’m ok with that. Since then none of the locals have tried to swipe anything, and the scrappers from out of town who have tried to remove things from the property without permission have ben successful 1 out 5 times.
You can do a lot to protect yourself and property but you can not stop a determined thief every time. Keep good insurance with reasonable replacement cost and remember in the end it is only stuff and the memories and experiences will live on even when the object is gone.