You’ve saved and worked hard for what you own, whether it’s your dream vehicle or the contents inside your home, but unfortunately there’s unscrupulous people out there who’d rather steal from someone else rather than earn it themselves.
During the 2020/2021 period, 267,000 burglaries were reported in England & Wales, a period when most people were spending more time at home due to Covid-19 restrictions. The previous year had seen approximately 383,000 burglaries reported to the police in England & Wales.
Home security has never been more important, so we’ve put together a few tips on how to make your property as secure as possible to prevent a break-in.
Lock Your Doors and Windows
It is always important to keep your home safe and secure. One way to do this is by locking your doors and windows. This will help to deter burglars and keep your belongings safe. Make sure to keep your keys safe and out of reach of potential thieves. Do not leave your keys in the back of the door at night as thieves may use techniques to retrieve them from the inside lock, such as using a tool to retrieve them through the letter box.
If you have a door with a handle that you sometimes forget to lock, then you can have a certain type of lock fitted that prevents anyone outside from opening the door without the use of a key. The advantage of this is that even if you forget to lock the door, no-one from the outside will be able to enter without the key. The downside is if you close the door and have forgotten your key, you’ll find yourself locked out! Nevertheless, if you have a spare key stored safely with a relative, at least you’ll be able to get back inside your home.
Install a Security Camera
Installing a security camera can be a great way to help keep your home safe. By having a camera installed, you can keep an eye on what is happening at all times and help to deter any criminal activity.
The presence of a security camera can be enough to make any thief give your residence a wide berth. Some people even use dummy cameras to give the impression that criminals are being watched. However, it’s highly recommended to install working CCTV cameras so that footage of any dodgy characters trying to get into your property can be caught on camera and handed to the police if need be.
Get a Ring Doorbell
With an in-built camera to record whoever comes to your door, Ring doorbells are fast becoming a popular accessory for the home. Whilst some may use them for the purpose they were initially intended for, to see and communicate with whoever is at the front door, they’re increasingly being used to catch criminals in the act, trying door handles at the night to see if you’ve left your property unlocked or stealing property off your doorstep.
With high definition cameras used for the Ring doorbells, even in low light at night time you can get a clear picture of any wannabe thief who may be prowling outside your home. If the thief spots the doorbell, the fact they’re caught on camera may be enough of a deterrent.
Keep Your House Maintained
As some thieves will prey on older people, if your home looks dishevelled or unkempt, it could suggest that either no-one lives there or the person who does may not be able to maintain their property and may be vulnerable.
Keeping your home maintained and your front garden mowed gives an indication that someone lives there. If you have elderly relatives who’s property looks like an old person lives there, then help them make some changes to modernise it so it’s not as obvious.
Thieves prey on the vulnerable so making a home less conspicuous will help to keep it off a criminal’s radar.
Don’t Leave Valuables in Plain Sight
Leaving valuables in plain sight is an open invitation to thieves. If you must leave something valuable in your car, hide it in the glove compartment or under the seats. Even better, take it with you.
This also goes for valuables in your home. Put your rings and necklaces away in a jewellery box and make sure to keep car keys hidden from sight, preferrably in a drawer or perhaps even store them in your bedroom at night.
Install Motion-Activated Lights
Motion-activated lights are a great way to add security to your home. They are activated by movement and will turn on when someone walks by, which can deter burglars. They are also a great way to light up a dark area, like a garage or a back garden at night.
If a criminal’s activities are exposed by light shining upon them, especially in the gaze of neighbouring properties, this could be enough to panic and deter potential burglars from breaking into your property.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings
When you’re out and about, be aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye on who is around you and what they are doing. If something doesn’t seem right, take a detour to the nearest public place or a friend’s house and, if need be, phone the police.
If you regularly travel alone, then it’s recommended you purchase a personal security alarm that will emit a high-pitched sound if triggered in the event you fear for your safety. These are normally small enough to attach on your key chain.
Make Sure Your Alarm System Is Working
Many homeowners only test their alarm system when they first install it and then forget about it. However, it’s important to test your alarm system regularly to ensure that it’s working properly. One way to test your alarm system is to set it off manually. Another way to test your alarm system is to have a friend or family member try to break into your home. If your alarm system goes off, then you know it’s working as it should. If your alarm system doesn’t go off, then you need to have it checked by an accredited installer.
By following these tips, you can help reduce your chances of being the victim of a home break-in.