Somewhere in the UK a home is broken into every 30 seconds, and it’s no surprise that criminals will always target those propertiess with the least protection.
You don’t have to dig a channel around your home or install missiles on your rooftop to keep the bad guys away. In fact, this might suggest you’ve got something very, very valuable inside.
But if anything the best way to keep your house secured is to disguise it.
Burglary on a whole is an opportunistic crime. So a house with fewer number of obstacles will usually be targeted first, with unoccupied or unsecured buildings having far more chance of forced entry than the one which is properly secured.
If you can take measures that suggest to the burglar that this building is too difficult or risky a target, then they would probably move on to an easier target. So take a careful look at your home and spot the weak points that may look like an opportunity for a burglar.
There is no fail proof way to keep a burglar out, but every little precaution helps.
1. Optimise lighting
Good lighting is an excellent way to deter a thief, so leave your light on so your home looks occupied, if you are going out. Or fitting an exterior light with dusk to dawn sensors is a good idea.
You can even use timer switches to turn your lights, TV or other appliances on at a set period of time before you come back from work. It gives the illusion that someone is at home.
2. Consider using a safe
Try not to keep anything valuables inside your home, but even if you do, don’t shout it from the rooftops. Most domestic safes are designed not to be seen, for instance wall safes and underfloor safes.
It’s a good idea to check with your insurance company first to see what they recommend.
3. Use locks
18% of homes don’t have adequate door locks, while 14% don’t have proper window locks and overall a third of burglaries result from insecure premises.
One third of burglars enter a property through a window, so it is important that the windows are fitted with key operated locks to prevent easy access. Doors can also be a quick and easy route for burglar, so make sure you up grade your lock with the one that is sturdier and less likely to open with an outside force.
4. Make the most of natural obstacles
It may sound simple, but strategically placed prickly shrubs and hedges can be extremely off putting for burglars, so putting these plants near walls, windows and gates can make it difficult for thieves to climb through or over them.
5. Install CCTV
CCTV is one of the best deterrents, even if it’s fake or not running. A burglar is not going to risk breaking in to a house if they believe they can easily get picked out from a CCTV tape.
If you do have a security system, don’t put one of those ‘Protected by ADT’ stickers on your door. Knowing the brand of your security system will give them they knowledge of how to disable it. Just get a Generic Sticker!
It’s worth noting that Insurance Companies offer discounts to houses with alarms and good quality locks. Check your insurance policy to know the level of security required for your house.
Remember, the goal isn’t to make you house completely break-in proof. It is simply to make sure your house is less attractive target than the other houses in your neighbourhood.