GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Police say they’re trying to help homeowners be more proactive about keeping their homes safe, especially during the summer when home break-ins increase.
Through security surveys, officers evaluate someone’s home and point out things that make their home an easy target for criminals.
Community Resource Officer Douglas Campbell says he thinks like a thief when he surveys someone’s home.
"Burglars kind of walk around, drive around, and they look for a good target," Campbell said.
He looks for easy ways to break in like gates left open or weak locks on front and back doors.
Home break-ins increase 18 percent during the summer in Greensboro.
In High Point, home break-ins increase about 15 percent in the summer.
"People leave their house for a few days to a week,” Campbell said. “It's good to be prepared ahead of time."
Greensboro, High Point and Winston-Salem police departments offer security surveys to residents.
A survey Melody Inglesby wishes she took two years ago.
Thieves broke into her home in 2012, stealing laptops, jewelry and her son's diaper bag.
"It's wrong,” Inglesby said. “It's wrong to take from people and it hurts."
She says protecting her home is a challenge. Inglesby is blind and can only hear when someone is on her property.
“It is a little difficult when someone comes to the door and I'm not expecting them,” she said. “I usually don't answer the door."
Besides standard advice like cutting her shrubs and keeping her windows shut, Campbell suggests Inglesby put gravel around her home and bushes which will make noise when someone approaches her home.
It’s the kind of advice Inglesby hopes will prevent her from being a victim again.
"If we need stuff changed, we'll make sure it gets done," she said.