11 Tips to protect your home from theft

Protecting your home is more than just locking the doors. You’ll need to protect yourself from the opportunist thieves, as well as the targeted and more organised ones. Here’s a list of steps that you can take to safeguard your humble abode.

1 Ensure mail, newspapers etc are collected daily

A letterbox overflowing with junk mail, and newspapers left uncollected are an obvious sign that no one is home to collect them – either that or the occupier is exceptionally lazy. Get someone to collect your mail and consider putting a “No Junk Mail” sign on the letterbox.

2 Install motion sensing lights that will activate when someone walks down your driveway

Thieves don’t like being seen of course, and if there’s a chance that someone is home when the light comes on then they will be deterred from going any further into the premises.

3 If you have an alarm, advertise it

Sure, this might not be as cool as laser beams between your walls but having stickers on your windows that mention that the home is alarmed are a great deterrent for anyone planning a break and enter.

4 Have a timer that turns lights on and off whilst you’re out

Again, if you can make it look like someone is home then you’ll deter the thieves that only like to break into empty homes. Some thieves are more brazen however and are still happy to break and enter whilst people are home.

5 Make the front of your home completely visible from the road (so that thieves have nowhere to hide)

High solid fences and shrubs etc make great hiding spots for thieves to shelter from anyone passing by. Whilst you might feel like you have more privacy, you have also provided privacy to any potential burglar too.

6 Ensure you have decent double keyed deadlocks

These are great not only for making it harder to enter the house, but also to get out. Thieves will often find a weak spot for their entry point and walk out of a door with larger items. It’s a lot harder to do this when they need a key to unlock the door from the inside however.

7 Don’t advertise your new purchases. Break down boxes discreetly to be put in recycling etc

This can be difficult over Christmas, but it pays to be careful when you put boxes out in the recycling. It’s essentially a shopping list for wannabe thieves if they can see empty boxes from your new purchases. Break them down, and bin them inside out so that there’s no labels showing. If you have a few, consider spreading them out over different recycling pick ups too.

8 Store valuables in a safe

Money and jewellery are the most commonly stolen items in break ins, so it makes sense to keep them in a secure spot, or even better, in a safe.

9 Get to know your neighbours

It’s a good old-fashioned way to have an extra set of eyes and ears on your home.

10 Be mindful of who has access to your keys

It’s easy to get keys cut, and a lot of break ins are conducted by people who have already been in your home. So be mindful of who you give your keys to. Also, be mindful of where you keep them in the house – same goes for car keys!

11 Keep items out of sight

Outside items like bikes etc, or inside items such as laptops visible through windows can attract opportunistic thieves.

With any luck, these steps will be all the prevention that you need. And if you are unlucky, your contents insurance policy will step in to help you recover from the loss.