6 things which make your home a break-in target
With 1 in 50 UK houses victim to burglaries, homeowners need to be careful when it comes to securing their properties. Especially seeing as if intruders leave no sign of forced entry it will invalidate your home insurance, leaving you to foot the bill.
Keys 4 Uhas put together some of the unexpected ways burglars can access properties to help you stay prepared and keep your home safe 24/7.
Look out above
Most burglaries take place via windows or doors, but these aren’t the only points of entry to your home – especially if you live in a flat.
Blocks of flats sometimes have loft spaces and areas above ceilings which aren’t compartmentalised to each home. Intruders may be able to access these areas and enter apartments through loft hatches.
While it’s not as easy to make large structural changes when living in a flat, you can still protect your home with proper hatch security, like padlocks.
Wall to wall risks
In homes or buildings that have been converted into flats, there are often simple separating walls between each home and the rest of the building, which aren’t as secure as typical external walls.
Again, there’s no simple fix in a flat, but you may be able to speak to your landlord or building owner about putting up an additional partitioning wall.
Installing CCTV and home alarm systems is also recommended to deter potential intruders.
With UK burglary crime on the rise, the last thing you want to do is give them a helping hand.
Many homeowners focus on securing their home and forget to check the rest of their property is protected. This includes gates, sheds, garages and other more.
Unlocked sheds give intruders access to tools which could make a break-in easier. Heavy objects can be used to smash windows, while crowbars, pliers and even blowtorches are among the other tools that have been used to force entry into homes.
Hiders outside the house
Burglars aren’t usually spontaneous. They’ll likely have scoped out your property for weeks before making a move. Many look for possible entry-points and make notes on the times you’re not around, so they can strike while you’re out.
Dark and overgrown gardens are the perfect spot for potential intruders to wait for an opportunity to strike.
Keep your front and back gardens neat and tidy and avoid overgrown shrubbery around your property to limit the number of potential hiding places. Invest in motion-sensor lights for your home, which will light up if any unwanted visitors turn up.
Too much information
These days everyone shares their lives on social media, but are we sharing too much?
With criminals waiting to strike on empty properties, tagging ourselves in locations and posting real-time pictures of ourselves on holidays may give them the nod your home’s empty.
A recent study found posting to social media on holiday or even boasting about new purchases puts you at risks of being robbed, so make sure to keep your profile private and restricted to friends and family only. Don’t post your holiday pics until you’re back.
If you’re heading away, make sure to book your cab to the airport through a recognised taxi firm, as paid ride apps aren’t as closely regulated.
Enter through the door
We don’t think of letterboxes as security risks, however, these seemingly harmless portals can give burglars easy access to your belongings.
A quick look through your letterbox will reveal anything valuable like keys lying close by and in some cases, intruders may even be able to open the latch via your letterbox using specialist tools.
Keep your letterbox secure by fitting draft excluders or a cage and keep all valuable items safely out of sight to prevent break-ins.