There are few things in life more distressing than arriving home and discovering you’ve been a victim of a break in. In addition to the loss of meaningful items and the overall distress caused, you have to deal with your insurers and make a claim.
Thieves love homes that are unprotected and easy to break into as well as homes that have many valuables. The following steps might seem obvious but still…
Lock the doors
Even though this seems apparent, many people still fail to do this. This makes it simple for a criminal to steal items without difficulty of getting them out of the home and without leaving visible evidence of the theft that a neighbour can see from the outside of the home. On a standard mass market policy leaving the door unlocked can affect your ability to make a claim, a high end policy will protect you regardless.
Close and lock windows
Windows are left unlocked and open more frequently than doors. An open window, visible from the street, may be the sole reason for your home to be selected by a burglar. Ground floor windows are more susceptible to break-ins for obvious reasons and upper floor windows become attractive if they can be accessed from a stairway, tree, fence, or by climbing on balconies.
Don’t advertise valuables
Placing your valuables (such as a large TV or sound system) in plain sight behind the large front windows of your home can act as a free advertisement for potential thieves. A burglar in search of valuables such as jewellery and cash will make the main bedroom their first stop as this is where they are most commonly stored. Try to keep valuables outside the bedroom.
Having a safe in your home is a wise investment and often an insurance policy requirement.
Home safes are designed to keep the smash and grab burglar from gaining access to important documents and personal property. Home safes need to be anchored into the floor or permanent shelving.
Be aware of who is knowledgeable of your valuables. There are many ways a criminal can determine what valuables you have in your home
With bicycle theft remaining ripe in the UK, they should be securely locked up or kept in a garage, if possible.
Get an alarm
Alarms can provide additional security to your home and are very effective if used correctly. Alarm systems are effective deterrents with visible signage. Your insurance company will need to know if the alarm is simply audible or if it is monitored.
Remove hiding locations
Burglars prefer to target homes that have hiding spots and escape routes in the gardens as well as abundant bushes and trees which provide good cover. Burglars would think twice about targeting a home which is open and relatively exposed.
To remember: making a claim affects your insurance premium. Know your policy excess and try to avoid making too many small/ unnecessary claims as you will find it harder to insure your property and valuables.