If you’ve looked outside recently, you’ll have noticed that the summertime is upon us. The weather is nice and the nights are lighter but it also means it’s holiday time for many. 1000s of people across the UK will already have their flights booked and be planning 1, 2 or maybe even 3 weeks away. If you are one of the lucky few, then you should read on because you need to think about your home security before you go.
We wrote an article a few weeks ago pointing out the current burglary stats in Liverpool. Now we are here to help you avoid becoming a statistic when your home is left unattended. So if you know someone going abroad this year then please share this after reading our top 5 tips.
1. Do Your Chores
This may seem silly but don’t underestimate the appearance of your house. This is all about making your home look less of a target to potential thieves.
Your simple house chores involve cleaning the gutters, mowing the lawn and making sure your doors and windows are clean. If you have time, even steam clean your driveway and make sure your home looks well maintained.
Thieves drive around different areas looking for houses that are easy to target. If your house looks like the grass hasn’t been mowed or maintained in quite a while, they may believe no one is home. This is a good tip even if you’re not on holiday, appearances can be very deceiving to bungling thieves. So before you go away make sure you complete the following list.
Mow the lawn
Clean the windows
Trim the bushes
Make sure the bins are empty and stored properly
Water the plants
and anything else you do on a regular basis…
2. Make it Look Like Your Home
You may have immediately thought of home alone, cardboard cutouts and dancing around on a string. We are not expecting you to do this because you’ll be away on holiday. However, there are a few steps you can carry out to make it look like you’re home.
Timers are very reasonably priced now. You can pick one up for less than a tenner but it’s also possible to purchase timers that connect to your wifi and you can control them from anywhere in the world.
Setting the timer correctly is also very important. If you set all lights to come on at the same time and off at the same time, it starts to look obvious. We would recommend setting a couple of lights downstairs to come on first. Later on, in the evening set the upstairs ones to come on but the downstairs ones must go off first. You need to make sure it looks like you’ve gone to bed so don’t forget to set them to go off again shortly after that.
One last tip for the lights, make sure you check what time the sunsets. If your lights come on too late or too early then it could look very obvious to the people that could be spying on your house.
3. Fitting a Doorbell With a Camera
This is more of an indulgence than a necessity. We know it could be a big purchase with costs ranging from £50 to £200. However, they can be a fantastic tool to keep your home secure.
As you may have seen on the advert, burglars often ring the bell and see if anyone answers. If no one answers, this is a sign that no one is home and they can enter your house and start damaging locks. You may be thinking about the data this app might use. Don’t worry, there has recently been an addition to the law that stops phone networks charging extra to use your phone while in Europe.
If you can’t afford one of these doorbells don’t worry but it’s definitely you should think about to help increase your home security.
4. Lock Your Doors, Windows and Set The Alarm.
This again may seem very basic. It’s often the most basic of things that let you down in the rush of leaving for sunnier climates.
Unlocked Door: Even if your door cannot be opened from the outside locked or not then you are still at risk. Thieves use tools such as a crowbar or even as simple as a coat hanger to reach inside your letterbox and open the door from the inside.
Unlocked Window: The window not being locked just makes for an easier and quicker entry into your home. If they are going to try then it’s worth trying everything you can to slow them down.
Unset Alarm: When/if someone gained entry to your home you want to alert other people in your street of a potential problem. The sirens of your alarm can scare the thieves off but some alarm systems also alert the police and despatch them to your address.
If you are missing a combination of these items then you could be at serious risk of losing valuable possessions while you’re away. If you are still reading here then stay with us as our last tip is the most important and rarely followed by holidaymakers.
5. DON’T SHARE YOUR PLANS ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Now if you don’t know someone who’s fell at this hurdle then are you even human? I’m convinced we’ve all seen someone checking in at the airport. They may even have posted photos where Facebook or Twitter has added a location to it on the Costa Del Sol.
This is literally asking to be robbed as you never know who is watching your account. All it takes is for someone you know to mention it in passing comment to the wrong person. They then know your house is totally empty and potentially for exactly how long it will remain like that.
If these have opened your eyes to how thieves see your home and made you think you need a security survey then please don’t hesitate to contact us to make the most of our 100% free security survey. Even worse, if you have fallen foul of burglars and need your locks changing then we are a full DBS checked locksmith based in Liverpool. We don’t charge a call-out fee and will come to you anywhere in the city 24-hours a day.
If this article has touched a nerve with you then please share it with your friends.