10 Tactical Tips to Survive a Home Invasion


Suffering a home invasion can be traumatic, not only while you’re physically being attacked, but also for the shaky and unsafe feelings that will follow it. Unfortunately, these occurrences happen all too often; between 2003 and 2007, an estimated 3.7 million burglaries happened each year. Of those incidences, a household member was home 1/3 of the time, and nearly a quarter of a million people were victims of violent crime.

It can, and might, happen to you. So, what can you do to decrease your chances of being a victim in these instances?


Since you never know when or how a burglary will occur, you must be ready at all times to face down an intruder, which means stockpiling resources, having a plan, utilizing available training options, and drill, drill, drill. Being prepared for a burglary can make the difference between being a survivor and being a statistic, so make sure you are as prepared as possible before that day comes. Below are ten tactical tips that you can take to ensure you are ready for a burglary.

1. Have a Safe Place

It doesn’t matter where in the house that you designate this place to be, but have a specific location that everyone in the house can run to whenever this event occurs. Make sure that it is also stocked with everything you need to survive, such as weapons, emergency kit, and especially a phone. When you’re looking for the best home defense shotgun to place in this room, make sure it can be easy to use, but powerful enough to drop an enemy.

2. Have a Code Word

If an invasion occurs through the front door, anyone that is in the back may not know until the intruder is in their part of the house. For that reason, having a code word that makes the entire household spring up and take action is vital. Try to pick something easy to remember and is associated with the event, like “RUN” or “HIDE.” The less people have to think about what’s happening and the more they can simply react, the better.

3. Do Not Leave

If armed, it can be tempting to leave your safe room and face the attackers head-on. This is extremely unwise for several reasons: you don’t know how many attackers there are, where they are, and what they’re carrying. Not to mention that they now have a distinct tactical advantage. Stay in your room, call the police, and defend yourself and your family when necessary.

4. Position Yourself Strategically

When you reach the safe room, position yourself on the opposite side of the room from where the attacker will enter. The key here is to eliminate all possible decisions on your part, save one: whether or not to shoot. When the attacker enters the room, they will be faced with assessing the room, identifying targets, and then reacting. By holding your eyes on the one location and minimizing decision making, you will be able to react quicker than they will.

5. Use a Siren

It may sound hokey, but having a siren in your safe room may just save your life. Burglars are attracted to locations that give the most reward with the least amount of work, which is why simply having a security system sticker in the front yard is a great first step in home defense; it’s not the only step, but it’s a start. Once the burglar enters your house though, sounding a police siren can signal their time is up, sending them scampering out the door.

6. Get a Dog

Service dogs are an all-around great idea, not only because they can deter a burglar in the first instance, but because they can usually sense danger and react fiercely to protect their master. Their bark is usually enough to drive off most home intruders before they even enter, but if a burglar does decide to proceed, an initial dog attack can give you just enough time to get you and your loved ones to safety.

7. Run Drills

It’s not enough to simply have a safe room, have a safe word, have a plan; you also have to be ready to use it when the time comes. Run your household through regular drills (every six months or so), and make sure everyone knows exactly what to do in every possible scenario. They may be annoyed at first, but in the event of a home invasion, a few seconds of hesitation can mean the difference between life and death.

8. Consider Extra Training

Besides being a fantastic bonding experience for the whole family, a trip to the local gun range will help your family become comfortable with the very weapons they may be using someday to save their life. Many ranges also offer close combat or urban style training, which not only includes guns but also hand-to-hand combat. Whatever you can do to make your family less of a target will make that burglar think twice before attacking your home.

9. Secure Your Castle

Your home should be your sanctuary, so fortify it as much as necessary to protect yourself and the ones you love. That means planting thorn bushes around the windows, installing a security system, hanging cameras everywhere, etc. Not only will the thorn bushes harm the burglar on his way inside, but it could also provide DNA samples for the police to analyse later. Whatever you have to do to make your home a fortress, do it.

10. Escape Through a Window

When all else fails, it may simply be time to retreat. The absolute last position you want to be in during a home invasion is in a room with no escape, so make sure that your room has an exit point. Though most thieves are after your belongings, it is possible that they may simply be after a hostage, namely you, so put as much distance between your attacker and you and run to a house or safe place as far away as you can safely get to.


Jeremy Hopper is a home & safe defense specialist. He was always fascinated by guns and he has chosen this career path to share his knowledge with other gun enthusiasts in order to help them stay safe and make the best choice when buying a firearm. He has a project called BestHomeDefenseGun that specializes in comprehensive gun reviews.