Three Things That Graffiti "Artists" Look for When Scoping Out Your Home or Business

Posted on: 19 October 2016

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If the neighborhood that your home or business is situated in has recently become a target for graffiti "artists," it's paramount that you learn more about what makes these vandals tick so that you can be sure not to give them what they want. Here are three things that are likely to make graffiti artists want to come pay your building a visit. Try to avoid these things in order to protect your walls and windows from graffiti.

1. Large, blank, open spaces

If your building is a recent construction, or ifyou've just moved in recently, you may have some relatively blank, neutral-colored walls on the outside or even some wide, inviting windows. However, every smooth, light-colored (or glass) surface on the exterior of your home or business will be seen as an open invitation to graffiti "artists," who are usually not looking for a challenge and love to pick easy-to-deface surfaces that will show off their graffiti tags to advantage. Some quick and easy solutions for blank exterior walls include:

  • Covering the wall with textured paint
  • Using a dark color so graffiti wouldn't show up well
  • Decorating the wall yourself (perhaps with a mural painted by community volunteers)
  • Blocking the view to the wall with strategically placed vine trellises

For windows, you can either choose patterned or textured glass or place a sacrificial film on the outside of the glass to make it easier to repair any damage. (You could also do both.)

2. Lack of obvious "ownership"

Because many graffiti "artists" aren't on a personal revenge campaign but instead simply consider themselves artists looking for a blank canvas, impersonal spaces are one of their favorites, especially spaces that are or look like they could be public property. If you have your fingerprints all over the place, on the other hand (figuratively speaking, of course) they'll feel more uncomfortable about defacing the building. Use your personality to inform your decor, and be sure your style extends to the exterior as well to psychologically protect the entire outside of your home.  

3. Dark places where they can work unseen

Graffiti "artists" just want publicity for their work, not for themselves! Putting up lights and cameras, ideally in places where they can't be easily smashed or covered, will be one of the best ways to psychologically discourage this type of vandalism. Of course, these security measures will serve a dual purpose; they may actually help you catch vandals in the act and scare them off or help you pin charges on them if they do attempt to vandalize your facility.  

Use these three criteria to reverse-engineer the outside of your building until it's a place that no graffiti "artist" would be caught dead vandalizing. You could save hundreds of dollars in glass repairs, repainting, and other graffiti remediation. I you have already been targeted, see this page to learn about services such as glass services.