Top tips on protecting your home at this time of year
Don’t welcome them in
Keep your doors locked when you are at home and when you go out.
Don’t hand them your keys
Avoid leaving a spare key in an obvious place – burglars are better at hide and seek than you are. Common places include by the back door, under the doormat, or a flower pot.
Out of sight out of mind
Keep car keys and other valuables away from prying eyes by making sure that they are not visible from windows or doors.
Make sure your locks match British Standard* requirements.
Ensure your home looks lived in
Leave a light on, or even better: use a timer switch to turn on lights inside the house in the evenings.
Don’t make your living room a goldfish bowl
Draw your curtains at night. You may not be able to see outside when your lights are on, but you’re putting on a show for anyone outside in the dark.
Use your alarm
If you have a burglar alarm, use it! Alarms are both a preventative measure – a deterrent to burglars – and a reactive one.
Wait a minute Mr Postman
If you’re going to be away for more than a few days, make sure that post doesn’t pile up by the front door. An intruder could easily peek through the letter box to see your piles of unopened mail.
If it’s snowing, have a neighbour or friend clear the snow – or at least walk on it. Untrodden snow on your driveway or front path is a sure sign to burglars of an unoccupied property.
Beware of what you share
Don’t overshare on social media. Instagram, Facebook and Twitter may seem like light-hearted, fun ways to interact with friends, but you never know who else might be scrolling through your snaps.
Photos of the interior of your property could help a burglar map out your floor plan, while flashing expensive items will reassure them that your home is worth robbing. If you’re guilty of both these things and publicising your holiday (and indirectly, your empty home), you’ve put yourself at even greater risk of burglary.
*A British Standard sets a benchmark for quality of goods and services and is produced by the British Standards Institution (BSI). Products and services that the BSI certifies are awarded the BSI Kitemark™, which can be found on product packaging and the products themselves.