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Simple steps to make your home safer

One of the biggest concerns for homeowners and property searchers is owning and buying a property in a safe area, and ensuring their homes are not subject to unwanted guests.

Whilst the lockdown has imposed strict restrictions, one positive has been that domestic burglaries according to the Office for National Statistics has fell in England & Wales by around 70% during mid-2020. There has therefore been concerns that there may be a rise as the restrictions ease.

Here are some top tips from our experts to prevent burglars entering your home.

1. Burglar alarm and security cameras

It is time to invest in an efficient alarm or upgrade your existing one and making sure everything is working as it should – testing it before using it for the first time. 

Some systems are connectable to your phone so you will be alerted on the go and ensure to conceal any wirings to prevent the system being disconnected.

Having cameras that cover all the angles of the exterior of the building that are clearly displayed for intruders to see is an easy way to deter people from breaking in. Even if the intruder is masked, they will be weary of triggering the audio alarms so ensure your system has both. 

2. Doorbells

It may be time to utilise technology and install video doorbells so you can know who is at your door. What is even better is some even connect to your mobile phone so you can answer the door from your phone and act like you are at home when you are actually 100 miles away so it always seems like someone is at home.

3. Motion floodlights

Many burglaries occur during odd hours at night so the burglar cannot be seen in the act. By installing floodlights with motion sensors, any burglars will find themselves in the spotlight and will often be very clear to any residents in the property if someone is trespassing, such as through the garden. It would be ideal to have these installed on the driveway and all entrances to the property. 

4. Put your valuables away and cover up

With large television displays and expensive gaming systems on show, it only leads to attracting burglars to your home. Close your blinds to stop people peaking in and do not showboat that you have recently purchased expensive goods by disposing of the packing and box properly. 

5. Spiky fence time

If you have a garden and fences around the premises, it may be a good idea to invest in some spikes which can be easily attached to pretty much anything to prevent intruders jumping over as a way to access your property. These can be found in many DIY stores or even ordered online. 

6. A doggy-deterrent

Dogs are a major deterrent for burglars. You do not need to necessarily have a dog yourself, but putting up a warning sign at the door or gate can be helpful. Sometimes we just got to play it smart to keep burglars out.

7. Invest in a safe

If you have valuable possessions left when you are not around like jewellery or cash, these are often the first target of burglars. Place a small safe in a concealed space which is hard to access such as in the loft room and place it so it is not very noticeable and as hidden as you can. 

8. Be-keyful & use locks

Lock your doors and windows at all time, be it at day or night time. Simply shutting the door will not prevent burglaries, double-lock the door every single time you leave the house and every night. Your front door is important whether you live in a flat or a house, as it will always tell a thief the levels of security surrounding your home.

You should always make sure the door and window frames, as well as the locks and hinges are as secure as possible.

Move any bins or garden furniture that could be used to reach windows.

Having a spare key handy under the doormat or flowerpot may seem like a good idea to prevent being locked out of your own house, but at some point you will need to retrieve your key from the hiding place so there is a chance people will see. It will just be an indirect invitation for a burglar to access your property without even needing to break in. You can instead just leave an extra key with someone you trust.