Signs of Marking or Forced Entry at Your Home

Signs That Your Home Has Been Marked or Forced Entry

December 7, 2022

Perhaps something has happened to make you suspicious. You might be trapped in the idea that someone is watching your house right now, waiting for a chance to break in and steal your belongings. Since burglaries happen more frequently than most people realize.

In any case, a good burglar doesn’t leave any evidence that they entered a house. Despite this, many burglars are not proficient thieves. But as long as there is at least one house that is susceptible to your tactics, burglars don’t need to be particularly skilled. Therefore, it is common for thieves to leave behind some evidence of their actions and intentions.

There are numerous indications that your home has been marked. If you suspect something has happened, you can also watch out for indications of forced entry. Rest assured that there are methods to determine whether or not your anxiety is justified and what to do if you decide it is.

Here are some telltale signs that your home has been marked as well as other efficient ways to tell if a thief has already broken in.

Your Lock Isn’t Working Correctly

If your key doesn’t turn as easily as usual, that’s a warning sign even if you don’t immediately notice any signs of tampering. When you notice that your lock isn’t operating normally, search the area for any obvious signs of damage. In the best case scenario, the broken lock is caused by another factor, and you are simply being cautious.

Warping or Visible Bending of Your Lock, Door, or Frame

If you notice obvious signs of damage or unusual wear, it’s likely that a potential intruder tried to enter your home using only force. If someone attempted to kick down your door, drill through your deadbolt, or damage your lock, you might notice one or more of the following:

  • Metal deadbolts or latches that are twisted or bent

  • Wood that has warped on doorframes or doors

  • Wood fragments on the ground near the doorway.

  • The lock fixture is surrounded by circles of paint that appear to have been loosening, moving, or retightening.

Small Scratches Near the Keyhole

Lock picking is probably a skill that you are familiar with if you’ve ever watched a heist film. This traditional lock picking technique is delicate and virtually undetectable. The pin tumblers in your lock are typically raked until they all catch and the lock turns by a burglar using a small pick or flat screwdriver.

These tiny tools could cut into edges and leave marks as they move around inside your lock. If you notice that turning your key is more difficult than usual, look for fresh, shiny metal marks or tiny scratch marks that are smaller than those your key left behind. Although difficult to see, these could be indications that someone attempted to pick your lock.

Fresh Nicks or Shiny Metal Edges Around the Keyhole

Similar to picking, the burglary technique known as bumping can leave minute clues or even none at all. Bumping is a technique that was created by locksmiths in the early 1900s and uses a standard key with teeth that have been filed down into saw-like points. This "dummy key" is carefully hammered to catch all pin tumblers after being fully inserted into a lock that is compatible with it.

If done correctly, this method can leave no trace, similar to picking. However, if bumping is done too firmly, it may leave brand-new nicks and shiny metal edges around the keyhole that appear to have recently been struck.

You can more accurately determine whether someone has tried to break into your home once you know what to look for. There are several actions you can take to increase your safety if you do suspect an attempted can contact a qualified residential locksmith who will examine your lock. They will determine whether it appears to have been tampered with and, if necessary, make repairs. In order to increase security, they can also provide advice on how to upgrade your locks.