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Beat the burglar

If you've ever been burgled, you don't need anyone to tell you how unpleasant the whole experience is and if you've never been burgled, you really don't want to find out. 

So how do you make sure that you keep intruders out, and your home insurance policy untouched? Let's look into some of the best hints and tips.

To start with, don't forget that the best ideas are the simplest. It might sound obvious, but if you keep your doors and windows open, when it's warm in the summer, or perhaps when you're enjoying a bit of gardening, make sure that you don’t leave them unattended. 

It's amazing how many burglaries in the UK don't actually involve forced entry – some thieves are pure opportunists who get in through open doors and windows, sometimes even while the owners are in the house. So make sure you don't give them the chance in the first place. burglar with stolen goods under his arm

Have a good look at all your doors and windows, because they're the point of entry for burglars. 

Doors and frames need to be in good condition, and ideally doors should be solid core construction and 44mm thick. A good door is especially important for flats above ground floor level, because that's usually the only place a burglar can get in.

As for windows, get easily-visible window locks fitted to all downstairs windows and hidden upstairs ones. It's cheap and easy – you can get them from all DIY stores – and they really do put thieves off.

Look beyond just your house as well. If you have a shed or garage, or any type of outbuilding, it could be targeted. Make sure buildings like that are properly secured, especially if you keep anything valuable in them. Even if you don't, it's a good idea to keep everything securely under lock and key – a burglar could still target them just on the off chance that there's something worth stealing in there. Make sure the security is obvious as well – it's a great deterrent to any would-be thieves.

burglar with torch Not surprisingly, most burglaries happen at night under the cover of darkness, which is why investing in security lighting is such a good idea. It's no coincidence that it's become a really popular security method – it's easy to install and, even if you pay somebody to do it, it'll cost you a lot less than a burglary could.

The worst thing that you can do is assume that being burgled is one of those things that could never happen to you. Everybody is potentially at risk from burglary and its unpleasant after-effects. So take a look at your home through the eyes of a burglar and see if anybody thinking of breaking in would be put off. 

  • Are there visible signs of security? 

  • Are there any hidden points of entry? 

  • Is forcing entry as difficult as it can possibly be? 

Finally, check out the Home Office's guide to home security – it's full of useful hints and tips for beating the burglar and enjoying a worry-free life, whether you're at home or not.

Other related pages 

General Home Security tips.

 More security tips for business and homes.

 Home Security - Windows, doors, garden.

 Home Security Systems - alarms, exterior lighting.





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