Some of the worst days in the year for domestic break-ins and burglaries are coming up in the next few days and weeks. Is your domestic security system enough to prevent these problems from affecting you?
According to Churchill Home Insurance, the number of burglary claims relating to theft on New Years’ Eve is typically 28% higher than the December average.
Other peak days for break-ins include December 19th and December 20th, which see 12% more claims than the monthly average. However, there is a brief respite on Christmas Day, when the number of claims is typically 59% lower than the monthly average, suggesting that even thieves like to take some time off to deliver their loot and the benefits of their criminal gains to their loved ones, and that many of their crimes may be intended to gain cash in advance of the festive season.
New Year’s Eve is likely so lucrative for criminals because so many people are out of the house for an extended period of time, and – combined with the dark nights – this gives burglars the opportunity to steal from households without getting spotted.
How to improve your home’s security
So what can you do to avoid becoming a statistic? If you have security cover bundled into your 247 Home Rescue home emergency cover service plan, you can give us a call at any time of the year to receive prompt repairs for broken windows, faulty locks and other issues that make your household insecure.
There are a lot of other ways to keep the criminals at bay, too, including:
- Keep ladders and other garden tools locked up safely – these tools can be used to break into your home.
- If you store tools in your shed, use a secure and sturdy lock on the shed and keep the building in a good state of repair.
- Security mark all your expensive belongings, and photograph anything that cannot be marked, such as jewellery. This will make it easier for you to recover your property should it be discovered by the police.
- Use deadlocks and security bolts on outside doors, and lock them up securely at night or when you are out of the house.
- Fit a burglar alarm. If you can afford to do so, fit a CCTV system too. Opportunistic thieves will pass your house by if they notice it has good security measures.
- Don’t put keys under plant pots, under the mat or in any other ‘clever’ hiding places – burglars know these spots. If you must leave a key outside the house, give it to a trusted neighbour or friend.
- Use spyholes and chains so you can determine who an unexpected caller is before you open the door.
- Watch out for bogus callers, such as people who are from the ‘waterboard’ – they may well be distraction burglars, and utility companies will not knock on your door out-of-the-blue to inspect your gas and water supplies anyway.
- Burglar-proof your garden with spiky bushes, gravel driveways and spiked railings. These will make it harder for a burglar to break in.
- Keep your garden well-lit – consider trimming your hedges and investing in security lights. Burglars like the cover of darkness and being hidden from the street.
- Use a timer to switch your lights on and off when your home is unoccupied. Consider leaving a radio on, too.
- Wooden doors are far easier to break down than PVC doors, so fit a new PVC door to prevent strong-armed break-ins. This might also improve your energy efficiency!