It's everyone's worst nightmare to discover someone has broken in and stolen your most valued possessions. It is a horrible feeling that no one should go through. It's important to remember that there is no guarantee in stopping a burglar and therefore insurance is vital.
Burglars tend to choose properties where they deem to be easy. You can make it harder for them to break in and enter. Every second you delay them, there is a greater chance of them being caught. Look out for strange behaviour, such as people or cars and vans loitering. If it doesn't look right then, it most likely isn't.
- Beware of the Dog sign
Whether you have a dog or not, leave a dog bowl by the door and put a "Beware of the Dog" sign on the gate or by your front door.
- Making an Entrance
Install front gates so it's an obstacle they have to get through before they've even got to the property. Hang a bell on your door as it will be an unexpected noise that will help signal activity. An unexpected noise is also likely to scare the burglar off.
Try your best to not leave anything outside on show, for example bikes, garden tools and outdoor furniture should be locked away so you're not advertising your belongings to be stolen.
- Less is More
Don't have any valuables on show that could be seen easily to walkers passing your property. If burglars see into your property and see valuables you're inviting them in to steal. Always remember to close and lock windows when you go out.
- Smart Thinking
Don't provide cover, trim your bushes and install motion sensor lighting. Sturdy frames and sturdy doors that fit well will help too. Snap locks are harder to gain entry, slash jammers are an extra obstruction for the burglar.
Make sure keys are out of sight and out of reach. Don't leave them on show or near a letterbox. A letterbox protector inside the front door is sensible precaution to stop burglars putting their hand, or a stick to open the door.
- Going Away?
Think ahead before you go away. Try make it less noticeable that you're not at the property, have a neighbour go round and open and close your curtains. Have your lights on a timer so when it's dark they turn on and it appears like someone is home. If your bin is full and it needs putting out and away whilst your on holiday, ask someone to get it emptied and store the bin back away so the excess rubbish that hasn't been taken doesn't make the property appear neglected.
- Spare Keys
Never hide spare keys under a mat or plant pot as these are the first place a burglar will look as they won't have to break in if they have found a key. If you need a spare key someone people can get to, think about having a look safe somewhere only a select few people know.
There's a lot of useful tools you can invest in for security. From doorbells with a video tool so you can see who is there without being there to security lights and alarms.