One in five break-ins during August and September: Tips to protect your home
Alex Cross, insurance director at Tesco Bank said the warm summer weather can be an opportunistic burglar’s dream.
He said: “Doors and windows are often left ajar, garden furniture and equipment can be left out and it can all prove far too tempting. More often than you’d expect, burglaries are carried out by opportunists who manage to let themselves in. But there are some things you can do to make your home and garden contents seem less appealing.”
Here are Cross’ top 10 tips to make your home look less attractive to burglars:
Lock your windows and doors
On a warm day, it’s tempting to leave your windows open. However, if someone decides to take advantage of this, you might not be covered by your home or contents insurance for any damage or theft. Instead of leaving your windows and doors open when you’re out, close your curtains to block out the sun.
Double lock your doors
If you have two locks, make sure you use them. Burglars will be able to tell how many locks a door has by applying some pressure. One lock is much easier to break and will be a lot more appealing to a burglar.
Remove keys from locks
It’s quite common for people to keep the key in the lock, especially if you are double locking a door night, or it’s the backdoor. But you need to be careful the key is not easily accessible through a letter box or cat flap, for instance. The safest thing to do is remove keys from doors when they are locked.
Put valuables under lock and key
A door or window left open while you are out in the garden can be all it takes for someone to swipe your valuables from the sideboard. And they might be able to grab your phone, wallet and keys in one take too. Lock valuables if you can, or at least place them out of sight.
Calendars can be a give away
A lot of us will document the goings on of life on a calendar but if you do, make sure this can’t be easily seen through a window. It can show when the house is going to be empty either at specific times of the day or if you have a holiday planned.
Avoid advertising new purchases
Putting out empty boxes from new buys advertises what shiny new items you have in the house. Break down the boxes or take them to a recycling centre to cut down the temptation for a burglar to see what goods they can get their hands on.
Keep your garden furniture safe
Garden furniture can be worth thousands of pounds and needs to be safely stored. Lock away what you can at the end of the day and make sure that things like garden sofas, seats and BBQs are bolted down to prevent anyone making off with them.
Be aware of items around your property
Things like bins or water butts can easily give a burglar access to a first-floor window by acting as a ladder or leg up. Secure items like water butts so they can’t be moved, pop bins in a shed or away from the property where you can.
Light up your home
Motion sensitive lights can be a good deterrent. Burglars are less likely to attempt to break into a property if they could be easily spotted. However, make sure they don’t light up a lock or a window. Angle them away from the building and fit them around the different sides of your property.
Ensure you’re covered with home insurance
It’s important to protect your home and what’s inside it by getting insurance. As a homeowner, the biggest asset you have is probably your home, so you want to make sure you’re covered for any repairs that are required. Equally, having contents insurance means your belongings are covered if someone manages to make off with them.