Barking Dogs and CCTV are best deterrents, say ex burglars!

According to a panel of former criminals interviewed by Co-op Insurance, burglars are most likely to be put off breaking into homes by CCTV cameras and barking dogs.

Nearly half of the 12 former burglars asked said most thieves were opportunists simply wandering the streets. They would therefore avoid any difficult break-ins or ones which might attract attention.

For that reason, installing CTV cameras are a good deterrent for home burglaries and car theft, while loud barking dogs, strong heavy doors, a switched-on TV and locked UPVC windows would also put off potential thieves. (more…)

Safety In Spring: As The Clocks Spring Forward, Thieves Follow Suit

Lawnmowers and ladders targeted as garden crime rises by 25% when clocks go forward. Green-fingered homeowners are being warned to secure their sheds and garages as the long-awaited British Summertime also brings a spike in theft from the great outdoors.

Analysis of 10 years of claims data from Aviva reveals that thefts from gardens and outbuildings shoot up by over a quarter (25%)* when the clocks go forward with the average haul totalling around £850.

Children’s toys, bikes and garden tools – from the swankiest lawnmower to the basic rake – are the thieves favourite:

Garden equipment stolen each year on average:

  • 42% of thefts involve power tools, like electric drills, planers and saws
  • 39% involve tools like spades, shovels, rakes and forks
  • 19% involve electric and petrol lawnmowers, chainsaws and ladders

Statistics show that thefts from outside the home start to increase as evenings get lighter at the beginning of March with a 10% increase compared to the dark nights of January. (more…)

10 Ways To Make Your Home More Secure

  1. Lock up. Many burglaries are opportunistic. So keep doors and windows locked when you’re asleep or out – even if you’re just popping next door for a few minutes.
  2. Keep your keys safe.Store keys out of sight – and don’t hide a spare key outside, particularly somewhere obvious such as under the doormat or in a plant pot by the back door.
  3. Watch out for prying eyes.Keep valuables away from windows and out of sight and discreetly dispose of boxes containing new items such as TVs and computers.
  4. Install an alarm.Today’s burglar alarms range from motion-triggered systems to ones that transmit a CCTV image of the intruder to a computer or mobile phone. Choose one that is insurer-approved so you can get a discount on your home insurance.
  5. Going away? Be discreet.Don’t advertise the fact that your home will be empty on social media sites. And ask a friend or neighbour to park on the driveway to deter potential thieves.
  6. Light up.Timer switches that turn your lights on and off give the impression you’re home are highly effective.
  7. Secure your shed.Outbuildings such as sheds and garages are often home to lots of valuable gardening and DIY equipment – some of which can be used by burglars to break into your home. So make sure they are locked at all times.
  8. Illuminate your home.Security lights that come on as anyone approaches your property are a deterrent for anyone who is up to no good. They can also help you feel safer when you get home after dark.
  9. Log it.Taking photos of your valuables makes it easier to claim on your insurance, while security marking them with your postcode and house number can both make thieves think twice and help the police to recover them if they are stolen.
  10. Get covered.Make sure your insurance is up to date and offers enough protection to cover all your belongings.


Don’t Give Burglars A Festive Opportunity

The Christmas shopping season is now in full swing which means hiding all the enticing goodies around the house. Unfortunately, this can make you vulnerable to the opportunistic burglars who might be looking to take advantage.

According to a recent survey taken out by The Co-Operative Insurance, 42% of people surveyed said that they planned to have finished all their gift-buying by 22nd November – which means that many households will already have finished the big Christmas shop! A further 33% are planning to hit the shops between now and 6th December, which tells us the majority of people won’t be leaving it until the last minute. Furthermore, the average amount consumers will spend on gifts is said to be £437, while 6% expect to spend over £1,000 – this tells us that people will be hiding some pricey gifts away in their households. (more…)