With lockdown restrictions beginning to ease over the coming months and some semblance of normality returning to the UK, a fresh set of challenges could well be on the horizon. Statistics from the home insurance company, Hiro, have shown that burglaries fell by over 20% in 2020 when compared with 2019 due to the lockdown and people spending the majority of their time at home. Once the country opens up and people begin to be out of the house and on holiday more, we are expecting to see a big spike in the number of home burglaries.
'Just as legitimate businesses are looking forward to a post-pandemic sales bounce, criminals will also be looking to recoup their losses, with burglars missing out on £103.2million worth of crime in 2020,' says Krystian Zajac, the chief executive of Hiro.
It is estimated that thieves have missed out on up to £13,000 worth of criminal earnings over the past year and that they may well be looking to make up for lost time once people’s homes are left empty.
With this in mind, we’ve put together a list of the best ways to secure your home to prevent burglaries.
The first line of defence against burglars is ensuring that the perimeter of your home is secure. This means ensuring that any external gates or entrances to your property have good quality locks or padlocks on them. You want to install a padlock that protects from sawing and drilling and the chances are if you’ve got a cheap padlock from the supermarket, it isn’t going to do much against burglars tools.
Another thing to keep in mind is wheely bins and any other objects that a burglar could use to go over your fence/wall or come down the other side. It is important to keep bins and things like chairs away from fences so that you make it as hard as possible for a burglar to climb over.
One final thing to mention is your hedges, if you keep your hedges high, blocking all external views of your property, you are also making it much safer for the burglar to try and break-in. If they know that they will be hidden from passers-by on the street, they can spend more time trying to gain entry. This is an important thing to keep in mind when choosing your hedges and at what height you have them.
When it comes to securing your home, one of, if not THE most important thing is making sure you have the best quality lock that you can afford. If you have a wooden door, then you want to ensure that you have a BS3621 Certified Mortice Lock in there to ensure that you are protected against sawing, drilling, and picking. The APECS LX5 is our BS3621 Certified Mortice Lock and is available on our website.
If you have a uPVC door, then you will need a cylinder lock in there and you can look no further than the APECS AP Euro Cylinder. The AP is Sold Secure Diamond approved, as well as TS007:2014 Kitemark 3 Star approved meaning that it is the most secure cylinder available on the UK market.
It safeguards from all forced methods of attack ranging from snapping, drilling, plug-extraction, picking and bumping.
The APECS AP cylinder is specifically designed to protect from unauthorised access by burglars. The AP cylinder is engineered with our Patented anti-snap protection system, which when tampered with externally sets an interlocking cam mechanism into action, preventing any further damage to the internal parts of the cylinder, whilst still keeping the lock operable from the inside.
We are so confident in the strength of our AP cylinder that it is protected by a 10-year guarantee.
It may sound stupid, but you would be surprised just how many people leave doors and windows open, especially during the summer months. If you’re not in a room, you should be keeping the window closed and locked, especially if it is a downstairs window. It only takes 20 seconds for someone to enter through a window and steal something valuable.
People often go to bed with their downstairs windows open, or even worse, leave the house with all of their windows open so that the house isn’t too hot when they return. Another big one in summer is people leaving their front door unlocked whilst they are sunbathing in the back garden, oblivious to what is going on inside!
All of these things make it incredibly easy for a burglar to enter your house though, so it is essential that you keep your doors and windows locked!
The cost of installing CCTV systems in your home have come down massively over the past few years with so many cost-effective options available now. If you’ve got a couple of cameras on the external part of your house, a burglar is likely to think twice about attempting to break in and will likely move on to a less secure home.
The deterrent of security cameras is two-fold, with burglars both not wanting to potentially be caught on camera and them also thinking that if you’ve got security cameras outside, you are probably well on top of your home security so it isn’t worth them risking it.
You don’t need to spend the earth to protect your home with a CCTV system, but it can make all the difference when it comes to preventing break-ins.
Another important thing to keep in mind is where your valuables are placed. If you have your car keys on view and the thief knows they only need to smash a window and grab them, then you are making it extremely easy for them.
We recommend keeping car keys well away from your front door and if possible in a drawer so they are completely out of sight. Burglars have developed ways to grab car keys using long hooks inserted through your letterbox, so never keep car keys on a table or hook next to your front door.
It’s a good idea to keep blinds closed if you’re not at home, or at least keep valuables out of view so that you don’t encourage a burglar.
These are just a few of our top tips to help secure your home once things re-open, but there’s plenty more you can do as well!
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"Working with APECS has been great. They are both friendly and professional to deal with and all of the products we have used have been of the highest quality."