Did you know that in the UK a burglary happens every 40 seconds and according to uSwitch, there are 400,000 domestic burglaries each year?
Given these statistics, home security should be high on your priority list – not just for peace of mind but also for the costs it can save you in the long run.
A few simple steps can make all the difference and in some cases bring down the cost of your insurance premium.
To help, here are our top tips on how to get your home security up to scratch.
1. Get the basics right
If the worst happens and you are the victim of a break-in, without having basic security measures in place, your insurance claim could be compromised.
So, start with the essentials and get the basics right. Door and window locks are the first thing you should think about as this is how most criminals enter properties. When taking out your insurance, be sure to read the terms of your policy and be honest about the type of locks you have.
Some insurers may offer lower rates for more secure locks but always disclose the correct information. If you fail to do so, it could invalidate your policy.
A few other basics:
Never leave keys hidden outside. Yes, you may think the ‘second gnome from the right’ is a foolproof place to hide the key for the cleaner. However, you never know when prying eyes are watching, so just don’t leave any means of entry outside – your insurance company may fail to compensate your claim too.
Keep your gadgets and valuables out of sight. Leaving the iPad on the sofa or your handbag on the side in the kitchen may seem harmless. However, valuables like this give thieves more of an incentive to break in.
Keep tools and garden items locked up when out of use. Anything valuable in your garden is easy to steal so don’t provide the opportunity and lock them up in the shed.
Be wary of storing large amounts of cash at home. Not only is this a security risk but you may not be covered if a criminal was to take it.
2. Be discreet when travelling
We all like to post the odd holiday snap on social media but this could compromise your insurance in the event of a break-in.
The way insurance providers see it is that, when posting about being abroad on Facebook (for example), you’re basically telling everyone you know that your house is vacant.
It may seem a little strong, but with more criminals using online means to target victims, it’s important to think before you post.
3. Invest in an intelligent CCTV system
When you are away, burglaries are difficult to prevent. With no dogs or people in the property to deter criminals, a break-in can be easy for opportunistic thieves.
Whilst standard CCTV cameras can be useful for prosecuting criminals, they don’t always prevent crime from happening in the first place.
However, using innovative technology, we have developed monitored CCTV cameras which provide homeowners with a virtual security guard 24/7. The cameras are programmed to detect unusual activity and when this happens our specialist security team intervenes. Using audio commands and alerting the authorities, they help to prevent crime before it happens.
4. Lock up your bikes
You may think they’re safe in your back garden but savvy thieves wouldn’t have too much of an issue stealing a bike that isn’t locked up.
Bikes are becoming more expensive, making them a key target for criminals. If you don’t have a shed to lock them in securely, invest in a sturdy lockup system.
5. Install security lights
Motion detector lights can put some criminals off and also alert you to any unusual activity. Just ensure they’re pointing away from your neighbour’s windows!
To sum up
Getting your home security up to scratch is not just important for your peace of mind, it’s also key for your insurance. Silly mistakes like leaving the key under a plant pot outside can end up costing you when your insurance is compromised.
We always advise that proactive crime prevention systems like our monitored CCTV cameras are best. This helps to prevent crime before it happens so you don’t have to go through the trauma and general inconvenience of a break in.
To find out more about how we can provide a bespoke, monitored CCTV solution for your home, contact us whichever way you prefer we’ll be happy to help.