We hear many stories when we visit Surrey homes about Burglaries they have experienced or know of locally.
Offering advice on security in regards to Blinds and Shutters is part of our job, and as one of the team has worked for a company who sells other security products, we thought we would share some top tips picked up at briefings by the local crime prevention officer.
Firstly, Burglars want to have an easy time as possible, so the important thing is to make your home an unattractive target.
You are 5x more likely to be Burgled with no security measures in place.
What valuables are they looking for ?
If they are going to take the time and effort to break into your home that want to ensure a payoff.
Ensure they can not see any valuables that you have in your home, but they may not just be the normal items you would feel have value.
Data – A laptop hard drive may have more value than the laptop as it may give access to data that can be sold on and yet can fit in a Jacket pocket.
Pictures – By taking personal items that have unique memories and cannot be replaced they may be able to demand a ransom.
ID – Paperwork sitting on the top of a cabinet can be a real find, particularly if a passport or credit card can be obtained at the same time.
Jewellery – Small portable wealth is easy to conceal and has a high value.
Large items – They are not so interested in these as much as they are more obvious when leaving the area and more difficult to sell unless they are brand new.
Concealing your real Valuables
Hide all keys, including car keys, don’t hang these up on a key hook or use a lock box as they may just steel the box and open it at their convenience.
Ensure side gates are in good order and kept locked to prevent access to the back where they may not be able to be seen.
Make sure rear fencing is in good repair, often if the home backs on to unused common land it makes accessing your property much more discreet.
Keep documents in a secure place and most importantly don’t leave items such as Credit cards and passports with them, the whole set is far more valuable than the individual items.
Jewellery and passports should be properly stored in a safe or bank vault, definitely not in a shoebox in the bottom of the wardrobe.
Put laptops out of site no matter its age, its not the laptop, its the data that has the real value.
Blinds & Shutters – Fitting Blinds or Shutters that can be used to prevent burglars from being able to see into your home will help secure your valuables. If they can’t see anything of value then they may move onto another house where valuables are easily visible.
Close Blinds and Shutters or at least adjust the slats so a clear view into your home can not be achieved to see if you, or your dog, are at home.
Make their life difficult if they choose you !
Lock doors and windows when you leave the house, these should locks with comply with BS 3621 and EN 1303:2005
Leave radios or lights on when you are out, preferably with a timer, dim-out blinds downstairs are ideal for this as its the glow of the light can be seen through the blinds, but you can’t see into your home.
Install good outside lighting with movement sensors to highlight when someone is present.
Keep ladders stored away or alternatively use a ladder storage bracket and a lock to prevent its use.
Secure bikes by locking them in a shed or to a secure fixing point on your home, they are becoming increasingly valuable for parts and make a good way to getaway quickly.
Tools should also be stored securely, there is no point in assisting them with equipment.
Plants with thorns planted near low fences increase the difficulty of making over.
Burglar alarms are a great idea but ensure their always set, a dusty alarm box can give the game away as they imply that it isn’t really used. Again these should be British Standards approved and alert the authorities.
Remember, prevent them from picking you !
The feeling of violation when you return home to a ransacked house and the loss of sentiment items that you cherish is far more of an issue for most people than the cost of the items stolen, cost of repairing damage and the cost of time securing your financial affairs.