For burglars on the lookout for an easy target, a dark house is a sure sign that no-one is home. They can break in and scope out each room until they find what they’ve been searching for. A stash of the latest gadgets, sparkling jewellery and designer clothing… Don’t let your home be the target.
Burglary rates increase over the festive season, and it’s easy to see why
It can come as no surprise that criminal activity spikes over Christmas. With many of us coming and going as we head out to buy presents during late night shopping, visiting friends for festive get togethers, Christmas parties to attend, and splashing the cash on expensive gifts for the ones we love – criminals see this as the perfect opportunity to break in and take what they can.
A burglar’s dream come true
Securing your home may seem like a no-brainer, but over the busy period and when the early nights provide darkened cover for criminals, small mistakes can prove disastrous. Don’t fall prey to burglars this year, make sure you’ve covered the basics in home security.
Key security measures to make sure your home is safe:
- Set your burglar alarm system each time you leave the house – if you don’t have one, then consider getting one installed.
- Use a Smart Home app to keep an eye on your home and to automate lights and curtains. They can also monitor your home environment and send an alert to your mobile if something goes wrong.
- Double check windows and doors are locked when you leave the house.
- Keep valuable gifts out of sight – don’t leave purchases on display near windows.
- Ensure that packaging for expensive goods are hidden well, in an unmarked bin.
- Make your home look occupied – even if you’re only leaving the house for 30 minutes or popping to a neighbour’s for a festive drink and a mince pie leave, lights on to make it look like someone is home.
- Invest in timers to connect to lamps so they switch on and off periodically if you’re planning to be out for a while or going on holiday.
- Abandon social media – it’s a gateway for people knowing where you are and for how long.
- Ask trusted neighbours to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity. If you’re expecting a delivery, see if your neighbour wouldn’t mind signing for it to make sure it’s not left on the porch out in the open.
And if all preventative measures were to fail – make sure you’re fully covered with home insurance
Check your home insurance documents to make sure that the added gifts in your home during Christmas are covered. High-value items like jewellery and heirlooms may need extra insurance as they may not be covered under standard home insurance.
If you’re worried that some of your contents may be undervalued, then speak to your broker. They’ll be able to give you advice on whether you may need to increase your home insurance to remain fully covered.