While no one chooses to become the victim of crime, Wagga residents can now feel more secure in their own homes after learning small tips and tricks to deter criminals.
Wagga Neighbourhood Watch president Wayne Deaner gave a presentation to members of the Wagga Women's Shed on Friday regarding crime prevention around the house, replacing their fears with confidence.
The tips, though, can apply to anyone seeking to up their home security measures.
"Having a protected home doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg," Mr Deaner said.
The first suggestion centred on a common stereotype featured in many movies.
"There's this general belief that you should keep a baseball bat or similar beside the front door in case an intruder tries to come inside, but there's a few problems with that," Mr Deaner said.
"Firstly, not everyone is strong enough to hit their target with any use, secondly, you could get yourself in trouble and also cause a lot of damage to your home if you swing and miss, but finally, it can also be turned on you fairly easy.
"So the better alternative is a dry chemical fire extinguisher - not to hit them with, but if you spray that at them even through the screen door before they get inside, it will stun them and deter them, but also leave that powder on them to help police identify the offender."
A fire extinguisher was also a general household staple, according to Mr Deaner, who said the item wouldn't hit residents' wallets too hard.
In other news:
As the weather heats up, Mr Deaner said people's homes tend to become more vulnerable to break-ins, too.
"Almost everyone in Wagga has evaporative cooling in their home, and to use that effectively, you have to leave a window or door open," he said.
"That makes it a lot easier to break in to a home, so the first step is to make sure all your windows have locks on them.
"But the easiest and safest way to stay cool and stay safe is to lift the man-hole cover up in the ceiling which gives the air a way of recycling and also cools the roof space to keep the home cooler overall at the same time, all without having to open windows and doors."
Mr Deaner said there were numerous CCTV options, solar lights, alarms and sensors that were also on the market in a range of prices.
"Even just having those extra lights outside to deter people helps, or making sure your hedges are kept trimmed so people can't hide behind them," he said.
Wagga Women's Shed secretary Helen Bell said the presentation was well-received.
"I think a lot of the women who came along and listened really learned valuable things, and they will go home feeling much safer and well-prepared now," she said.
"The issue is definitely something we need to know about, and I know a lot of the ladies missed out due to the heat so we'd love to have another presentation where more can attend."