Opportunistic and deceptive thefts are more likely in the summer, but physical break-ins much more likely in the winter.
As the clocks go back and darker mornings and nights commence, keeping your house burglar-proof is more vital than ever. Darkness is often in full swing by 4pm and with many people still at work then, your house in more vulnerable than ever.
It was estimated that are 7.3million burglaries a year in the UK, so make a note of the best tips to minimise your chance of falling victim this fall:
While a pet doesn't compensate for an alarm, they are definitely an added security precaution. It's important, however, not to advertise that you own a pet using a sign/window sticker, as burglars could then be likely to assume you don't have an alarm and try to break in.
It's incredibly surprising the number of people who forget to close the bathroom window, or the window above a conservatory (you think cannot be reached). Do not leave any valuables near a window and in view of a potential burglar. If you have recently installed double glazed windows or are planning to do so, bear in mind where the locks are; if they are visible and look secure, a burglar is likely to move on very quickly. Likewise, don’t leave window keys in sight.
The same principle applies to both windows and doors - don't leave keys in direct sight and keep locked. Do not label them with your address or which room they open and if possible separate your car and house keys, so there is little risk of two break-ins. Many families have letterbox cages behind the door, preventing anyone from trying to reach through.
If you have a gate or door which leads to your back garden, always ensure this is firm shut and locked when not in use. You would be surprised by what burglars use to break into a home; garden tools are one of them! Do not leave them lying around as well as a ladder which can be used to access the top tiers of any property. Identity fraud is also extremely common nowadays, so when throwing away important letters into your bin which lives in your garden, ensure every single one has been shredded.
Recent years have shown a dramatic increase in break-ins that have occurred as a result of social media. People can share too much information on technology platforms, running the risk of the wrong people finding out about their whereabouts. Avoid announcing you're off on holiday or will be out of town for a few days. While you may be excited and want to tell everyone, it's safer to wait until you return home to share. If you buy a brand new expensive gadget - great, but don't post it on your social media pages. It’s really important to stay street smart in your home too!