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Security Advice from The Lock Whisperer

Burglary can have a long-lasting emotional impact on victims, leaving them feeling isolated and vulnerable. However, by taking just a few simple measures you can reduce the chances of it happening to you. This section gives you a wealth of simple and practical advice on how to deter thieves, so you feel more secure in your home.
 

General Security Advice & Tips

Security was shown to be the most significant determining factor in whether a household experiences a burglary or not. Households with no security have been shown to be far more likely to become victims.

The majority of home security measures are common sense and low cost, and can result in reduced insurance premiums.

For a relatively small outlay you could make your home more secure and buy a piece of mind into the bargain.
When you leave your home it’s important to ensure you leave it as secure as possible.
Getting into an ‘exit routine’ can help ensure that you don’t forget obvious, but important things, like not leaving your valuables near windows. Here’s our quick reminder on what to do when you leave your home.

What to Do before You leave Your Home:
 

  • Close and lock all your doors and windows, even if you are only going out for a few minutes.
  • Set your burglar alarm.
  • Make sure the side and/or back gate is locked.
  • Lock your shed or garage.
  • Make sure that any valuables are not in sight.
  • Put keys out of reach of letterboxes.
  • In the evening, shut the curtains and leave some lights on.
  • Never leave car documents or ID in obvious places such as kitchens or hallways.

If you are going to be away for days or weeks at a time, you will need to take additional action, such as cancelling newspaper and milk deliveries. Consider asking your neighbours to close curtains, or park on your drive. Use a timer device to automatically turn lights and a radio on at night.

The majority of burglars can be deterred by simple security measures.

Statistics prove that by taking quite simple precautions you can deter a would be intruder, the majority of whom are opportunistic. It is of course necessary to take extra precautions to keep out the professional burglar but remember that security buys you time, something the intruder does not have. The list below will help you to identify any steps you may need to take to protect your premises and your personal property.
 

Improve the security of your doors and windows
  • Main entrance door - This should have a 5 lever mortise lock or cylinder mortise lock conforming to British Standard BS3621, not just a simple night latch.
  • Other external doors - Should be fitted with either a 5 lever BS3621 mortise lock or with top and bottom mortise security bolts.
  • Windows - Windows on the ground floor are vulnerable to forced entry, especially at the rear of the premises. These should be fitted with key operated window locks. Above ground floor any window that can be easily reached via a roof or drain pipe should be fitted with a key operated window lock.
  • Double French doors & patio doors should be fitted with top and bottom mortise security bolts and a mortise lock in the centre if possible.
  • Outbuildings & Garages usually contain garden equipment etc that would be help an intruder to force entry to your premises, you should secure these by fitting a suitable 5 lever mortise lock or good quality padlocks.
  • Car and Van manufacturers have made giant steps in recent years to combat vehicle theft by the fitting of immobilisers - however this has exercised the minds of thieves to develop other ways of stealing new vehicles. Car theft of new cars is now predominantly achieved by stealing the car keys! According to a government survey a staggering 85% of cars registered after 1997 were stolen using the keys. Thieves now take the route 1 option by breaking into homes to obtain just the car keys, in order to steal the expensive new car standing in the driveway. Leaving your car keys near your front door, window or on the kitchen table is an easy option for the brazen criminal.
  • Remember to remove keys from locked windows and keep them out of sight.
  • High priced items such as jewellery, car keys and credit cards should be kept out of sight - Do not tempt the thief.
  • Most burglaries happen when a house or flat is empty - Look in, when you're out.
  • Easily visible locks may deter some thieves as they force the thief to break the glass and risk attracting attention.
  • Spare keys should never be left in a convenient hiding place such as under the door mat or in a flower pot - A thief will look there first.
  • Consider looking at your house through the burglar's eyes, are there places where they could break in unseen ? Foliage needs to be cut back to remove hiding places.
  • Light up your house during the night. Fit low energy lights around your home. Thieves don't like being seen and this will put offenders off - (also read the 'Lighten Up' page).
  • Use time switches to turn the lights on inside your home when you are out.
So don’t delay, Pop my number in your phone today!