As the clocks go back and the nights draw in, it’s sadly the case that the British public come to experience an increase in house crime. If you’ve recently moved into a new home, and aren’t quite up to speed with your local neighbourhood just yet, it’s important that for the first few months in your home, you stay extra vigilant. With the dark evenings here, homes become easier targets for burglars, especially if you don’t have a good level of security. We appreciate that having only just moved home, you might not have had time to turn your home into Fort Knox just yet, however with a 20 percent increase in home burglaries during winter months, now is the time to invest in more advanced security, to ensure the safety of your house. The average cost of a winter burglary is valued at £1,746; a significant loss, but one which can be prevented for just a small, preemptive outlay.
Holidaying over the festive season?
If you are looking to have a winter get away this year then ensure that you take the necessary precautions to prevent burglary. There’s nothing worse than coming back from a brilliant holiday to find that you have had your possessions stolen. Below are some great tips for when you’re away.
– At all times, avoid talking about holiday plans on social media platforms. Burglars can use any information on the net to their advantage when they’re planning homes to target.
– Ensure you temporarily suspend any ongoing deliveries you may have e.g milk and newspapers.
– Take advantage of the Royal Mail’s keep safe service. The Royal Mail can hold your post for up to two months while you’re away.
– Alternatively, use a trusted neighbour to collect your post, park their car on your driveway and sporadically open and close curtains.
– Use automatic timer switches to turn your lights and radios on when it gets dark.
Day to day
As many as 70 percent of home burglary incidents have occurred in terraced houses over the past 12 months, with the 5th November having a 22 percent higher theft rate than an average day of the year. However, there are still a variety of measures you can take to deter potential opportunistic thieves. Make sure that you hide all your keys out of sight and away vulnerable areas, such as windows and the letterbox. When you head out on an evening, try leaving a light on inside, or a radio to make background noise and give the impression that someone is occupying the house. Other valuable measures you could take include locking side gates, trim high hedges, keep fences in good condition, remove valuable items from windows, install good outside lighting and consider joining or forming a neighbourhood watch scheme.
Alarms and other safety devices
Alarm systems are one of the most effective ways at deterring potential thieves and it doesn’t have to cost too much! The first thing anyone should remember is to lock all your doors and windows every time you leave the house (even if you’re just doing a spot of gardening). A visual burglar alarm is a great way of deterring burglars from your property, and you’re also statistically 2-3 times less likely to be burgled with this sort of security device (for an in depth look at the benefits of alarm systems, check out the advice from Global Security Experts). Finally, if you’re feeling extra cautious now that you know this time of year is a theft hotspot, you can install a form of CCTV.
Do you get extra vigilant with your home security through the winter? Let us know how you keep your home safe in the comments section below.
Photo Credit: CC image via photobucket.co.uk