How To Prepare Your House Against Looters

How To Prepare Your House Against Looters

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We are seeing a lot of looting in our cities presently. Once the stores are out of food and supplies, it is almost inevitable that looting will start happening in homes. Keep in mind that this could be out of necessity or it could just be out of pure anger and rebellion. No matter the reason, it is important to know how to prepare your house against looters. 

Related: Non-Lethal Ways to Defend Your Home When SHTF

What Do Looters Want?

You may find yourself wondering why looters loot or what they may want? Why would they want to loot your home? These are questions that really don’t have an easy answer. Sometimes looting happens out of necessity because there is a lack of resources. However, sometimes it happens because there are just bad people in the world. 

Looting is also referred to as sacking, ransacking, plundering, despoiling, despoliation, and pillaging. It is the theft of goods by force either by the military, political victory, or during a catastrophe such as war or uprising. Looters want whatever they can get their hands on: food, water, things they can sell, resources, and any supplies you have. 

Related: Sneaky Places to Hide Your Valuables

Will Showing the World You Will Fight Put You in More Danger?

This is another question that is really hard to answer. But, the bottom line is, you are going to be able to more successfully defend your home if you have been prepared to do so. In some circumstances knowing how to defend your home can draw attention and make an attack more likely if you are too showy about it.

If people know you’re defending something of value, that may prompt them to be attracted to your home and try to get what it is you’re trying to defend.

If you live out in the boonies, you can turn your home into a fortress and nobody will know. And, anyone that happens to stumble upon it could be in for a nasty surprise. 

But, if you live in a very populated area, you have to be a little more careful. Giving your house a Stalingrad look will both annoy your neighbors and draw attention to looters. So you need to prepare your home for looters without too many visible changes. 

How to Prepare Your House Against Looters

I want to educate you on how to prepare your home against looters, but I also DO NOT want to generate a political stance on this. The bottom line is that at any time or any point in our lives this kind of thing can and does happen. I want you to know what to do and how to prevent it and protect your home. 

Secure the Area Around Your Home

If it looks easy to get into, your home is going to be a target. You can’t protect yourself or your home if you can’t secure the area around it. The trick is to secure the area around your home without it being obvious to your neighbors or to looters.

Get an Alarm System

I know a lot of people are getting devices that “film” people coming to the front door. Well, that’s fine but what about the sides of your yard and people jumping a fence to get to your backyard where they would not be seen by your neighbors? You may want to put in a REAL Security System with a battery backup if the looters cut the wires to your wired security system. The doorbell device may slow down looters but may not protect your property.

Read More of My Articles  15 Ways To Get To Know Your Neighbors


Nothing scares off people more than a LOT of lighting around a home. Keep your front porch and back porch lights on whenever possible every night.

Your Windows

The first thing you want to do is work out the dead ground around your home. So, anywhere you can’t see from at least one of your windows is a vulnerable spot. These are the locations looters can try their assault. So, you need to shore up these areas.

Let the areas between windows grow up with brambles. Place a low wire entanglement with short stakes and barbed wire where you let the grass grow to conceal it. 

You can also buy a window covering that’s actually pretty inexpensive to “help” prevent your windows from being broken with say a chair or large object. It’s called a window security film. Now, let’s be clear here, it’s not an armored car set up, so to speak.

I did hear from a reader who uses it on all of her windows because it helped during an earthquake, whereas, less of the glass shattered everywhere. It still broke but it was easier to clean up. In other words, it may stop the glass from becoming projectiles. I highly recommend getting the higher 8-12 mil thick safety film.

Keep in mind, it is a security safety film and not a window as you see at your local bank drive-through. Most of those are bullet-proof. This security safety film is not bullet-proof, BUT it may discourage a looter from trying to get into your home because it may take longer to break through your windows.

Time is critical if we are trying to slow the looters down. They may move on to another home down the street that is easier to access if your home is too difficult to get into. Here is the 8 mil: BDF S8MC Window Film Security and Safety Clear 8 Mil

An Alert

The next thing you want to do is be alerted when there is an intruder. These things may not be obvious but can deter looters and make sure you know when you need to be on the defense. You need a noisemaker, whether it’s a flock of geese, a dog, or just some old cans strung on a wire.

You need something that tells you someone is there. Keep it normal and don’t draw attention to it. 

Related: Camera Security Alert System


Many people have privacy fences, too, so this won’t be anything too obvious. Fences can deter people from trying to enter because it makes it more difficult. Obviously, it will not stop them, but it will be another obstacle and a perfect place to hide your alert.

If you can fence your property, this is another way to hide what you have, what you are doing, and any other preparations you don’t want your neighbors to see. 

Prepare for a Fire

Here are some interesting facts about regular fire extinguishers we have at home, in the garage, or the car. All fire extinguishers are labeled with special labels to identify the classification of fuel the extinguisher will be effective:

1. Class A Fires: Ordinary combustibles like paper, cloth, wood, rubber, and many plastics.

2. Class B Fires: Flammable liquids like oil, and gasoline, charcoal lighter, kerosene.

3. Class C Fires: Energized electrical equipment like wiring or motors. Once the electricity to those is turned off the becomes a Class A.

4. Class D Fires: Combustible metals like aluminum, magnesium or titanium.

So when you purchase a fire extinguisher it is extremely important to identify the type of fuel to defend against so you select the correct extinguisher you think may be best for your personal situation to do the job correctly.

Read More of My Articles  Story From A Hurricane Survivor
How To Prepare Your House Against Looters

Many preppers will screen their windows with chicken wire to reduce the risk of someone burning their house down with a Molotov cocktail, but this approach is going to be obvious. So, to keep things discreet, you may want to accept the risk of fires. This means being ready to put them out! Here is what you need to stock:

Related: CERT to Help Your Community

Prepare Your Home for a Seige 

A siege is where either looters or even military personnel surround your home for an extended period of time. At this time, you can’t leave the four walls of your home to get supplies without the possibility of getting shot at. 

Historically, sieges end with a fortress being surrendered or successfully stormed. With looters, this doesn’t apply. Anyone attacking you when SHTF is after your supplies or control of your home.

So, if you make it a tough target, the looters will eventually move on to look for easier pickings, but it could last several days. During these days, you need supplies in your home NOT in your garage or outside your home. 

The key to holding out during a siege is to be able to hold out for that vital couple of days. You need to add up your supplies and figure out what counts inside your defense perimeter.

This is what you will have to rely on while you wait out the siege. So, it doesn’t matter if you have a well in your yard with unlimited clean water; if you can’t reach it without getting shot at, you have lost your fortress. 

Water is your main priority. You can live a number of days without food, but you need water. Here are the most important things to have as close to you as possible:

Related: How to Store Water for Drinking and Cooking

Related: Canned Foods I Highly recommend You Store

Weapons and Protection

I know preppers who are all for guns and weapons, and I know others who are completely against it. This is not something I have ever talked about on my blog, but I feel like it is a necessary topic at this crazy time. 

We all know good people who have weapons, it’s a fact of life. The truth of the matter is that the bad people will have weapons of some kind as well. So, in many cases, you will also need weapons to defend yourself. If there is any chance of your home becoming a target, you are going to want to have the inside of your home protected. 

This preparation doesn’t only include having the weapons, but knowing how to use them. This includes knowing what windows you would use as firing positions if using a gun, and where non-combatant family members should go for protection and safety.

Sandbags are good protection for windows, but you can also use heavy furniture and stacks of books to give protection from looters shooting into your home. 

If you want to protect your home with guns, be sure you know how to shoot. Take gun classes, go to a shooting range, and have someone teach you gun safety. Teach everyone in your home gun safety. 

Weapons you can have available include:

Final Thoughts:How to Prepare Your House Against Looters

Sometimes, desperate times call for desperate measures. You can prepare your home physically all you want, but at the end of the day, you may have to use weapons to protect yourself and your supplies. Be prepared. Be vigilant. Be ready. Know How to Prepare Your House Against Looters.

The best thing you can do is prepare for the worst and hope for the best! Do you know How to Prepare Your House Against Looters? What other ways have you prepared your house for this situation? Let us know in the comments below! Please keep prepping, we must. May God bless this world, Linda

Copyright Images: Looters AdobeStock_226202181 by AnimaFlora PicStock, Fire Extinguishers Deposit photos_165158282_s-2019

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  1. Good morning, Because of your help when the virus started I was already prepared for the times in not getting out of the house. I had a stock of water, food, toilet tissue and everything I needed. I am short on medical supplies But I have enough for what was needed, Now I do not know anything about if looters hit my house. I live on a lot of acreage and with my family out here also, plus there are 17 dogs in total between all families. Everyone else has firearms. All I have is a super duper water gun to get their attention. I have afraid of guns. But a cast iron skillet I am not afraid to use. I have stored extra supplies in our storm shelter for when there is a tornado. Blankets, cots, pillows etc. in totes. Gets to hot in there to store water. Thank you so much for your blog. I learn so much

    1. Hi Donna, oh my gosh, 17 dogs, I love it! That should be sufficient, plus family nearby. You have a community!!!!!! I love your comment. Thank you for your kind words, you can take care of yourself with your dogs, the super-duper water gun, and the cast iron pan! You got this girl! I LOVE LOVE LOVE your comment! Linda

    2. Golf clubs would work and give a 3 ft arm reach vs a casket iron skillet. Walking stick can whack the crap out of someone as well.

    3. Donna (and Linda)–one of the big fairs up this way actually has a ladies’ skillet throwing contest! Now that would be good preparation!

  2. Very sensible and timely article! Yesterday, I was thinking I should buy a fire extinguisher, however I didn’t know what kind. Now I know and I have additional uses for it, other than to put out my kitchen fire.

    Thank you so much for keeping us informed and prepped! I was in a bit of a muddle, with many preps unorganized and half done, but your guidance and suggestions have gotten my prepping in order! I am so grateful!

    I am moving all my recipes into the wonderful Better Binders from Staples! So exciting! I didn’t know they existed, even though I had been searching for replacements for my current, tattered junk binders. I even treated myself to the index dividers that you suggested! Wonderful!

    With the current situation, I would have been quite upset and scared. But I have been reading your blog, following your guidance, and have gotten my preps almost where I want them. I depend on your information, but your calm, reassuring attitude is my beacon in the gathering storm. Thank You. God Bless you!!

    1. Hi Judy, oh my gosh, thank you, it’s people like you who keep me going!! I’m glad to hear you like the binders and the dividers. Oh, my gosh, we made 12 sets so far. It’s been a BIG job but so worth it. I turned 70 this year and I wanted my family members to have the “family” recipes. I can almost picture your tattered cookbook because mine is tattered too! Keep up the good work, my friend, we are prepping to be prepared for the unexpected. May God bless you, Linda

  3. We are the same vintage!! I am preserving the family recipes too! Oh gosh! 12 sets! I will be lucky to get one done! Mine is a tattered mess, with no dividers. My poor brain can’t remember the recipe locations, like It used to. I am so excited for the upgrade and the dividers!

    My husband thought the fire extinguisher such a good idea, he directed me to get one for each of the kids too! You are touching so many lives for the better!

    Thanks again & God Bless!!

    1. Hi Judy, yay for vintage friends!! I love it! Every time a family member comes they are putting together the cookbooks with me. It’s a HUGE job, I could not do it myself. Yay for fire extinguishers!! Linda

  4. I wish you luck but hold no hope if your not willing to pick up a weapon and fight and don’t have training. If so read no further.

    You will question the legalities of this and as law enforcement I can tell you that you are correct however in a lawless environment there is only survival. We are being placed in the worst place possible by society, politicians and laws. HOAs further confine you but remember you chose it. You’ve hamstrung yourself with the rules of others. I would advise leaving it and going to a free area.

    Distance is your friend. Most people think in terms of their property line. That’s too close. Your property line is your FPL Final Protective Line in which anything and everything goes. If they are in your yard you literally will be in hand to hand combat in seconds. Complete medieval aggression. Most are not equipped for that.
    You need a rifle. Keeping them out starts at rifle distance. You need a team. A husband and wife that don’t “work in the business” will most likely not last long. Even just pulling 24hr guard duty while trying to do chores is almost impossible.
    Comms are important but these particular group of recent are using jammers and/or radios with the same frequency to disrupt. Have a plan B and be prepared to fight without a central command.
    You will need Force Multiplers. Things that do not take as many bodies to manipulate. Items such as wire, barricades, caltrops, hedgehogs etc.
    As wisely stated prepare for fire but also be willing to use it. If not directly then indirectly. People will not walk through fire. You can use it to route the crowd elsewhere. Those old tires no one wants to haul off and oil from the vehicle changes have use. I’d much rather clean up that mess, on my street, than our burned homes.
    We’ve always thought ourselves immune from this however it’s here. I wished it on no one and saw what it brings during my service across the pond. Stay safe

    1. Hi Matt, you know I love love love your comments. You are an expert in my eye as far as defense and whatnot. It’s interesting how we have to think outside the box when preparing for different life-threatening situations. Life is different now. Stay safe, Linda

    2. Great advice Matt and well written. Like it or not, firearms and firearms knowledge is the answer in home protection and personal protection as well, sorry folks, but it`s the sign of the times.
      Purchase a weapon, take firearm classes, and protect your self and your family. We gun owners are not looking for a fight, it is looking for us, stay safe, God Bless….

  5. I’ve thought long and hard about security, read alot of books, etc. I firmly believe the best defense is weapons. It pains me to say it but it’s true and thus, my husband and I have an arsenal along with the ammo to go with it. AND we are both well versed in how to use them. Growing up on a ranch in a hunting family definitely helped. Now, could I “actually” shoot a human being? I’m not so sure but I hope to never have to find out.

    I enjoyed this article of yours very much; it gave us even more information. As soon as I break quarantine (it’s only been 3 mos so far! LOL) I’m getting more fire extinguishers. We have sheets of plywood that can be screwed to all our downstairs windows and 2×4’s that can be screwed across the doors. Remember, if they can’t break through the door, the sheetrock right beside it is easy pickings! The second floor is a problem because looters can certainly climb (whereas zombies can’t) and I need plywood for the second floor too. Hmmm, haven’t figured out what to do about the skylights tho.

    There is definitely security in numbers but I don’t have the right kind of neighbors whom we could band together with. We have alot of motion sensor lights but what if the power goes out? Geez, there’s alot we need to do! This article woke me up to our complacency. You did a great job with this one, Linda!

    1. Hi Robbie, thank you for your kind words. Life is different now and we must be prepared for not only food, water, etc. but security. It makes me sad but we must be realistic as to what we can do to protect ourselves. Stay safe, Linda

  6. Thanks Linda ~
    I appreciate this post. With all of the unrest going on in the USA right now, self-protection is something I have been thinking about a lot. I know the areas I want to stay away with but that is not always possible.

    We all need to be aware and prepared for the unrest and possibilities of the ensuing damage that may come to our door steps. I still feel very safe when I am at home (apartment living has SOME upsides! I also live on the second floor so that gives some extra protection against looters but also poses some downsides as well – how do I get out if…

    In addition to fire extinguishers, if the home is multi-storied, I would also suggest emergency ladders for upper stories. There are a number of them listed on Amazon – 2 and 3 story ladders. I want to get one of these.

  7. It’s good you chose to do an article on this subject. As these protestors insist on being out there fighting the good fight when they should be working or at home and then we have the rioters who are only out there to assault people and destroy property both public and private, it’s nothing but chaos and mayhem all around us.

    And while our political leaders either refuse to work with others or refuse to work at all, nothing gets solved, so we must have supplies at home, be vigilant and aware and ever watchful of what is going on near us. I know you avoid politics and that’s fine, we can get that in another place, but we’re really enduring a big mess as people with specific and contradictory agendas propagandize and confuse, limit or restrict, and also excuse and ignore the behavior of trouble makers.

    I was wondering if the shortages have been alleviated? We began to open up shops and now some are closing early again. I have no idea of masks and gloves or even anti-bacterial gel are available or still in short supply. Seems like the outbreak is being over shadowed by other events. And in some places things are quiet, people are relaxed and other areas are in turmoil. It’s very confusing and kind of hard to know what we need to watch out for and prepare for as preppers.

    The one thing is certain and has been proven, we can’t rely on our educated, well paid leaders to fix anything in a speedy and timely manner. We really are on our own and yet we are restricted and often targeted by critics for trying to survive and be self-reliant when they should applaud our efforts.

    1. Frank ~
      I was at the grocery store the other day and they were pretty well supplied with hand sanitizer. They did have masks and gloves available but all were limited to 2 packages combined. So, if you wanted all three, you couldn’t get all three with the limits. As for other items that have had shortages such as TP, paper towels – they had a good supply; flour and sugar were OK; no yeast and very little baking powder or baking soda and cream of tartar! Pasta and pasta sauces were in short supply; there was plenty of meat but 1) limited to 2 combined and 2) outrageous prices! Other than that, everything seemed well stocked.

      My county is in Phase 2 of restarting. Means that some non-essential businesses are open with limited capacity. I am not ready to go eat at a restaurant or get my hair cut yet. I do then necessary things but some things I am just not ready to put myself at risk. Then to top off COVID-19 there are the protests and riots. So far, no riots in my area but a lot of businesses are covering their windows in preparation for damages from looting and vandalism. Our capital building was vandalized with spray paint the other day and our mall was on full lockdown due to protests. Both are WAY too close for my comfort right now. Unfortunately, I cannot move right now so I take precautions.

      1. HI Leanne, thanks for the update on the items in your area of the US. I will check the baking department the next time I go into a store. Crazy times! Stay safe, Linda

  8. Don’t under rate slingshots! You can even get them with sights now. Better than pitching rocks to chase critters out of the garden too. I’ve already given up the notion of protecting my place from baddies if anything serious goes on. Ground floor apartment with glass patio doors to an easily accessed balcony. I considered some kind of roll down shutters but if things are at the point where my place comes under attack it’s already too late to stay so it’s just not something I’m going to put too much worry into. Once baddies break into the building it’s only a matter of time until they go door to door in the corridors and the main entry is ridiculously easy to get into with all the glass there. Even if my apartment was on an upper floor it would only be a matter of time before the trouble arrived and my own exit would be more difficult. It’s more likely that an earthquake or fire will be the main emergency where I live so thanks for the timely reminder about fire blankets and extinguishers. Definitely not up to snuff on those!

    1. Hi Alice, we can only do what we can do right now. I’m prepared for whatever comes my way, but I will not sit and worry myself over the world we live in right now. My heart breaks for families getting murdered every day. I sometimes just have to turn off the news. Netflix brings me more joy and lets me step out of this crazy world, right now. Stay safe, Linda

  9. My daughter & son-in-law own a gun shop & firing range on their place. He is a gunsmith & she a nationally certified instructor . She is always driving home the point that if you’re going to have a weapon, GET TRAINING! She also urges women who have never handled a gun to find a female instructor if possible. Some women are intimidated by a male instructor & become very nervous. I guess it’t like having your husband teach you to drive. Lol For home protection she recommends a 12 gauge as you don’t have to be an excellent shot. She recommends a Glock 43 for women as it is easier handled by smaller hands. Not giving a commercial here, just suggestions. Thanks, Linda, for addressing what might be an uncomfortable subject for some. You rock! (And I’m older than all of you)

  10. If you plan to use plywood to protect easy access window, make sure you attach it inside the house. That way a scum bag has to go thru glass to even get near entering your home. Where you can welcome him with a fully loaded gun, or bat or golf club.

      1. The head of EMS in our area, taught a class at the college about a year and half ago. It was his idea not mine. He had a wealth of knowledge. He said they keep extra radios and things like that in a Faraday cage and Mylar bags, so I have an extra light/radio in a Mylar bag in a metal box. It’s not a Faraday cage but if there was an EMP it might work.

  11. no chicken wire on any windows reachable to an arsonist looter >> most want to just reach in a smashed in window and set fire to your curtains and nearby upholstered furniture >>> solid panel coverup well lagged to the outside frame of the window …

    need to defend from the outside – blocking off the entire street/subdivision along with your fellow neighbors >>> show determination & resolve to fight and the cowardly lazy miscreants will move on to eazier pickings ……

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