Home Security over the Bank Holiday weekend
With the celebrated long bank holiday weekend for us to enjoy it is also great pickings for opportunist criminals.
Many of us may use the opportunity to visit family further afield or take advantage of the extra days off and head away for a break without having to use too many holiday days at work.
If you are heading away for the bank holiday, it’s worth remembering that thieves are unlikely to be taking the weekend off, and will be keeping their eyes open for signs of empty houses. Which? Magazine recently interviewed more than 100 ex-burglars to see what they looked for in properties when deciding whether or not to try and enter them. Take a look at some of their insights into the world of burglars, and help protect your home this Bank holidays weekends and any other holiday weekend.
71% of those interviewed claimed that homes with an alarm system put them off. Alarm systems can be tailored to your property and budget, so it could be worth considering one to deter those thieves. Other factors which discouraged burglars was having a dog in the house, people in the property, CCTV and outdoor/sensor lights. Of the sensor lights, one ex-thief explained, “Sensor lights outside would definitely put me off – they are a nightmare.”
When securing your home, ensure you don’t forget about your garage and shed! These are often overlooked as we check that our house doors and windows are secured. Unfortunately, they are not overlooked by thieves. “Breaking into sheds and garages is much less risk” commented one ex-burglar when being interviewed for the survey.
The ex-burglars were asked about how they established if a property was empty. 66% said that they would look to see if any lights were on, or if the television was on. With this result, it may be worth in investing in some timed devices so lights will come on, even if you are not home.
Another deterrent mentioned in the interviews was how overlooked the access was. Those interviewed looked for high hedges and fences and other things that would protect them from the prying eyes of neighbours.
Of the items burglars tended to be on the lookout for, the top five were: jewellery (84%); money (83%); laptops (55%); mobile phones (44%); watches (37%). Make sure your items are kept out of view of snooping burglars – if they can’t see what they are after, they are less likely to risk breaking into your home.
In the Which? Magazine study, one of the burglars explained, “You can always walk up to the door and knock, the just pretend you are from an energy company if someone is there.” Genuine people coming to your door will have their identification available for you to see. If you have any concerns about anyone who has knocked on your door, contact the police.