Our top safety tips for avoiding Christmas burglaries
With Christmas but a few weeks away you’ll doubtless be either planning, in the middle of, or, if you’re really organised, basking in the glory of having completed your Christmas shopping.
The festive season represents one of the business periods of the year for the high street, and it’s typically a time when we all stock our homes with valuable gifts that include the latest gadgets, expensive jewellery and countless toys.
Unfortunately, this provides thieves with more of an incentive to commit burglaries on the lead up to Christmas, and although the chances of this happening to you are still relatively small, it pays to be vigilant.
Here’s our top safety tips that will help you ensure a burglary doesn’t ruin your Christmas.
Add some deterrents
It’s often said that deterring would-be criminals is the most effective way to prevent them from committing their crimes.
A motion sensor flood light is always a smart investment for the front of your house (they’re most commonly placed above garage doorways), but a bright set of outdoor festive lights to illuminate the exterior of your home will kill two birds with one stone at this time of the year.
Registering your presents and possessions on Immobilise is also a great way to demonstrate to potential thieves that your goods are marked (you should be provided with a window decal to advertise the fact).
Lastly, make sure you continue to use the two most common burglary deterrents if you happen to be out: lights that automatically come on when it gets dark, and curtains or blinds fully closed.
Don’t feed lighting cables through the window
If you decide to display outdoor Christmas lights, avoid running the power cable for them through your window.
This is a common mistake. Unfortunately, even if the window is closed, the presence of a cable still provides a potential route in for burglars and could result in an electrical fire if the lead becomes damaged by the window.
Instead, opt for solar or battery powered lights or have a proper outdoor electrical outlet installed.
Don’t leave gift wrapping or packaging on display
Think about how many times you’ve walked past someone’s home on the lead up to Christmas and marvelled at the wonderful presents they’ve bought, thanks to the discarded product packaging and loose ends of gift wrapping overflowing in their recycling boxes.
Unfortunately, this is yet another indication of what might lie within your home for would-be thieves and is why you should dispose of gift wrapping and packaging carefully. Rather than leaving it in your home recycling boxes, make a trip to the local recycling centre instead and dispose of it there.
If you’re going away – plan ahead
If you’re spending Christmas with friends or family, make sure you take some time to plan your home security in advance. Cancel any newspaper subscriptions you have, and ask a neighbour with a second car if they can park on your drive.
Don’t leave notes on the door directing delivery drivers elsewhere, and try and avoid advertising to the world on social media the fact that you won’t be around during the Christmas period.
You’re highly unlikely to be burgled this Christmas, but our tips above will ensure you’re taking every precaution against such a crime.
If you’ve been a victim of burglary, Voice can offer emotional support, practical help for insurance claims, the process of recording stolen items and advice on security systems. Whenever you’re ready to talk to us, just give our friendly team a call.