Police and security companies can never underestimate the importance of keeping your home well-lit. Whether you're at home, away or asleep in bed, keeping your front light turned on is simple way to deter burglars.
Put yourself in the shoes of a burglar. You have two homes in front of you: one that looks like someone is home and possibly awake, or another home that looks completely dark. Which would you choose if you wanted to avoid detection?
Even just one light above your front door can illuminate your home enough to deter a burglar. A burglar doesn't have to be a genius to know that the light will make him more visible to neighbors or anybody inside your home. So the "safer" route for him is to look for home that is dark. To a burglar, a dark home is a good sign that no one is home, or the occupants are asleep – both ideal conditions for robbing you blind.
That doesn't mean you need to run up the electricity bill with 10 floodlights shining on your home. One energy-efficient, low-wattage CFL light bulb above your front door (and back door, ideally) will help your home appear well-lit.
Does it guarantee that burglars will stay away? Absolutely not.
In fact, more burglaries occur during the day than at night, according to the FBI, which is why a professional home security system is still so important. A security system ensures that your home is protected and monitored for disturbances 24 hours a day, regardless of whether you're home or not.
But by keeping your front light on at night, you could help prevent the bad guys from coming too close to your home in the first place.