Home Crime Prevention

Protecting Yourself, Your Home, and Your Belongings

  • When leaving your residence for a long period of time, hide valuables or take them with you.
  • Keep bushes and shrubs around the house trimmed. That way, you always have a clear view of the area surrounding your home outside your windows.
  • Install deadbolt locks on all outside doors.
  • Install motion-sensor lights outside.
  • Change the locks on all exterior doors. It may be worth the investment to pay for this if your landlord won’t.

  • Record serial numbers for all of your important belongings. Print this information and store it somewhere safe.

  • Photograph the property and your important belongings.

  • Consider registering your property with Notre Dame Security Police.

  • Register your property with NDSP by calling the Crime Prevention Unit at (574) 235-9037 and asking for more information on “Project Marc”.

  • Keep your bike secured with a U-bolt-type lock. Register your bike with the Notre Dame Security Police.

  • Install a security system. Put multiple alarm signs in visible areas.

  • Get to know your neighbors.

Preventing Car Break-Ins

Practice “T.L.C.”…

Take Out Valuables: Leave them at home, take them with you, or—if you have to—put valuables in your trunk.
Common items stolen: Cameras, laptops, cell phones, stereos, mail, CDs, purses, vehicle registrations, money, jackets, gym bags, luggage, briefcases, and garage door openers

Lock Your Vehicle: Close doors and windows. Why give a person a quick and quiet way to break into your car?

Location: Thieves are looking for vehicles they can enter with the least possibility of someone watching and thereby alerting the police. Ideally, park in your own locked garage. If you can’€™t, do park in well-lit areas. Make sure the area is clearly visible from your house or apartment. Do not park where others cannot see your vehicles, or in an all-day, unattended parking area.

Consider joining a Neighborhood Watch program.


What to do When You Are Away

  • If you will be out after dark, be sure to leave a light on.
  • Always lock all doors and windows, and turn on your alarm.
  • When you are out, leave a radio or TV on.
  • Install timers on lights.

  • Don’€™t keep consistent hours, i.e.€“ vary your departure/arrival times.


  • When going on long breaks, contact the police. The South Bend Police Department offers a “€œHome Watch”€ program where they will drive by the property on a regular basis. Contact the South Bend Police Department Crime Prevention division at (574) 235-9037.
  • If you have a good relationship with neighbors, ask them to keep an eye on your apartment or house and to look for anything out of the ordinary while you are gone. Leave a contact number where they can reach you.
  • Do not leave valuables on the property.

  • Contact the appropriate agencies to hold your newspaper & mail.
    Newspaper (South Bend Tribune): Hold Newspaper
    Mail (U.S. Postal Service): Hold Mail

  • Let your landlord know you will be away. Ask if they can keep an eye on the property.
  • Consider buying randomized light timers that go off at odd hours, especially at night. It is a great way to give the impression that someone is in the house. These timers are inexpensive, easy to use, and available at any hardware store, Lowe’s, Home Depot, etc.