Reducing The Personal Cost Of Burglary

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Despite the threat of prosecution, British homeowners are prepared to protect their homes and family from burglars using extreme measures. A recent survey has shown that 8 out of 10 people would use anything to hand to protect their homes if faced with an unwanted intruder. Men would go even further – 1 in 10 men would use a gun and 1 in 8 would use a knife.

There is clear support for some homeowners who take the law into their own hands: an amazing 83% of respondents think it’s unfair to prosecute people who protect their property with a weapon.

This dangerous and high-risk approach is not to be condoned, and shows that more needs to be done to increase awareness of the effective preventative measures that can be taken to reduce the risk of intruders gaining entry in the first place.

The Home Office reports the cost of burglary to the nation to be £2.8 billion each year. Official figures put the number of burglaries anywhere between 645,000 and 880,000 – or up to 100 burglaries every hour of the day and night.

Further Home Office research shows burglar alarms and CCTV to be the greatest burglary deterrents – over 80% of burglars are put off by these. However only a very small number of homes have them: less than 1 in 5 victims had an alarm system and only 1 in 30 had CCTV.

For many victims of break-ins it’s a case of being wise after the event. 65% added security to their property after being burgled with 1 in 4 people adding an alarm and the same number installing window locks. Only 1 in 13 added CCTV – a surprisingly low figure, given that previous research has shown that 67% of burglars avoid properties with CCTV installed.

Tips to reduce the risk of burglary include:

  • Close and lock all doors and windows to deter opportunist thieves.
  • Use timers to switch on your table lamps, radio and TV whilst you are away so it looks like you are home.
  • Fit a burglar alarm and make sure you fit an alarm siren box at the front and back of your home so they act as a deterrent to intruders.
  • Install a spy-hole or home CCTV system.
  • Fit security lanterns to your porch and floodlights in your garden. Any unwanted visitors will trigger the sensors, flooding the area with light.
  • Plant thorny trees such as holly under vulnerable windows or low walls to deter entrance.
  • Remove keys from locked windows and doors and keep them out of sight in a safe place.
  • Check who is at your front door before opening it and use a safety chain for added security.
  • When you go away on holiday, ensure you cancel your newspapers and milk and ask trusted neighbours to push through any mail that is left in your letterbox.

Reducing the personal cost of burglary – such as the loss of irreplaceable sentimental items, stress and anxiety of the intrusion and the hassle of dealing with police, insurance companies and tradesmen – can only benefit everyone, as well as reducing the huge cost to the nation.

For more information on digital home CCTV systems, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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