Wed 13 December 2017

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TORRIDGE  DISTRICT  NEIGHBOURHOOD  WATCH  FORUM
 
SECURE YOUR HOME FROM BURGLARS
(Discourage burglars from visiting you).
 
Home Burglaries.
 
In Torridge burglaries to dwellings are rare but do occur and in too many incidents the property had been left insecure. Most burglars choose their targets carefully and are looking for easy targets and where the chances of getting caught are reduced.  In a lot of incidents the owners have left a window open or a door not locked and this is an invitation to the “Opportunity Burglar”.
 
In Devon and Cornwall the average cost of a burglary to a homeowner is over £1,000 pounds. 
 
Burglars are on the look-out for anything they can sell on quick and easily so they target the following:-
 
Computers                           Laptops                    Purses                       Electrical Equipment
             
Money                                  TV’s                         Jewellery                  Mobile Phones
 
Ipods                                     Credit Cards            Car Keys                   Photographic Equipment
 
These are only a few things that thieves target but of course everything has its value and if they have a market for it then it is viable.  Electrical tools are easily sold on over a pint in a pub with plenty of demand for them with few questions asked.
 
You may have taken out a good Home Contents Insurance but always read the small print has you have responsibilities and the Insurance Company will depend on you to take reasonable precautions or they may refuse to pay out.  The Insurance Company may state the type of locks you fit to external doors and windows and this will be part of the contract you sign.
 
House, Car and other keys should never be left on show or hanging up in your hallway or kitchen but put out of sight in a safe place.  Marking your property with your postcode, house number or house name makes your property traceable and deters criminals.  You can also register your property free of charge at www.immobolise.com and if you take a photo of your most valuable items it will help them to be traced together with a record of any serial numbers that are on them.
 
Main Points to Consider.
 
Doors.
 
Keep doors locked even when you are at home or in the back garden. Take keys out of locks as a burglar could reach through a letterbox or cat flap and retrieve them.  Always fit strong locks and bolts.
 
Alarms.
 
Install a burglar alarm from a reputable company and get it serviced regularly every year.  Make sure all household members know how to set it and turn it off and make sure it is used every time the property is not occupied.
 
Windows.
 
Close them and lock them when you leave the property unoccupied.  Use lights on timer switches when you are away to make your home appear occupied.
 
Paths.
 
Consider having a gravel path/driveway as it makes anyone approaching the house easier to hear.
 
Shed.
 
Lock the shed with an alarmed padlock and secure tools and ladders inside, ideally hidden from external view.  Any tools and ladders could be used to access your property so make sure your shed is of suitable construction to deter thieves.  If in doubt find another more secure home for them.
 
Fencing.
 
Put up high fences or plant prickly bushes that would be difficult to climb over.  You can paint them with an anti-climb paint and you can buy legal fencing top devices.
 
Gates.
 
Make sure gates cannot be easily climbed over and secure them with appropriate locks and maybe alarmed.
 
Mail while you are away.
 
When you go away even for a few days ask a trusted neighbour to keep an eye on your home, collect your mail, newspapers and milk so it does not pile up at your front door and draw your curtains at night.
 
Driveway.
 
Get a friend or neighbour to park their car on your driveway or in front of your house to give the impression you are at home while you are away.
 
Outside Lighting.
 
Install lights or security lights to pathways at night and consider if your shed or garage is situated in an isolated position have a security light at the entrance to it.
 
General Tips and facts.
 
  • Do not advertise you are away by posting it on Social Media such as Facebook.
  • When you are going away leave a telephone number so they can contact you in an emergency.
  • If you are concerned about your security at all you can contact the Police Crime Prevention Officer who can be contacted by phoning 101.
  • The above advice and information will not guarantee you will not get burgled but it will certainly help to deter burglars.
  • In 50% of burglaries the thieves gained entry through insecure doors and windows.
  • The majority of burglaries in our area can be classified as opportunist due to the burglar getting lucky with poor security.
  •  Before you leave your property have a routine of checking your security and carry it out.
 
  Tom Carrick    04.05.2015