Is your home an attractive target for burglars? Read to find out five common mistakes homeowners make, and how to secure your property against them.
Falling victim to burglary can be incredibly stressful, regardless of whether the culprits actually steal anything or not. As a homeowner, there are many ways you can unintentionally make your property attractive to burglars.
Weigh up the cost of security grade products, i.e. doors, shutters, locks and garage doors against the financial and emotional cost of burglary. Most importantly, don’t make your property an easy target; tighten your security measures in these five areas.
Basic door and window locks
If your doors are only secured with a single lock, it’s likely to make a burglar’s job much easier. Unlike old doorknob-style locks, which can be easily picked and broken, there are plenty of far sturdier and safer locking systems on the market now. All of your exterior doors should be fully secured. It’s good practice to regularly check your locks – both on doors and windows – for any disrepair, such as rusting, loose-fitting screws and hinges, or damaged frames.
Where possible, all your windows should be lockable, and you should ensure that they are secured at night and when you are absent. Even the smallest windows can provide the perfect opportunity for burglars if left slightly ajar, unlocked or weakly secured.
Having strong locks is one thing, but avoid making the most common mistake of all – leaving keys within close proximity to doors and windows. You might have thought of the cleverest hiding place, but burglars will be quick to check everywhere for a spare key – not just under doormats and flowerpots.
As well as securing your doors and windows, don’t forget to add locks to any outbuildings, such as garages, sheds and greenhouses. If you have any tools stored in your outbuildings, this will give burglars a helping hand to break into your home. You’ll want to keep any valuables secure too; consider using padlocks for sheds and greenhouses, and an electronic locking system for garages.
Unkempt gardens and exterior
If you let your property and garden fall into disrepair, it can make your home look vacant and vulnerable. Neglecting your lawn, leaving the grass to grow tall and allowing weeds to sprout are all signals to burglars. In a similar sense, if the general exterior of your property looks aged and untidy – with crumbling brickwork, peeling paint, and discarded rubbish bags – it can suggest that you are just as lax with your security. This would also apply to your garage door. Ensure it is kept well maintained without dirt, rust or peeling paint.
Poorly lit exterior
Lighting is a simple but effective deterrent for burglars. Ensuring that the exterior of your property is well-lit can prevent burglars from even attempting to get close. Sensored lighting is great for front and back doors – you (and your neighbours) will be instantly alerted if someone is approaching your property. In addition to this, it’s important to pay attention to other areas – any shady alleyways around your property could make it easy for burglars to enter unseen. Solar-powered lighting is a good way to keep your garden well-lit too.
Valuables on display
Leaving expensive items in plain sight is practically an invitation to burglars. If you’re leaving your home unoccupied, whether for a long or short period of time, it’s a good idea to hide items such as jewellery, electronics and other valuable trinkets. If you’re unable to move things around in your home, consider adding blinds to obscure the view through your windows. For optimum security, you could have window bars fitted, which will both block the view in and prevent access.
Secure Your Home from Burglars
With advances in technology and more secure products on offer, it’s never been easier to keep your home safe from potential break-ins. Look out for weak spots and warning signs that could catch a burglar’s attention, both externally and internally.
At SWS we supply high-quality security features and systems for homes. From bespoke garage doors to sturdy window solutions, you can find a range of products to secure your home. If you want to find out more about our products, fill out our online enquiry form and a member of our team will be in touch.