How secure would you say your home is? It would seem that a good number of adults in the UK are confident that their home and possessions are safe with 28% not taking any security precautions at all.
However, the stats from the Office of National Statistics say otherwise with theft rates having risen by 13% between March 2017 and March 2019. That’s why Yale’s National Home Security Month seeks to highlight how homeowners can keep their homes more secure with a different focus for each week of October.
Read on to find out more about the security issues that are being focussed on this National Home Security Month.
Week 1 – Security Myth Busters
The first week of National Home Security Month focusses on the many myths that surround home security. Some of the most common misconceptions are:
- Crime and burglary is confined to low income areas – FALSE
It is just as important to lock your front door and windows in a well-heeled part of town. The top spot for burglaries Henley-in-Arden.
- Most burglaries take place at night – FALSE
Actually, the most common time for a burglary is between 10am and 3pm when people are at work or school.
- Burglary only happens to other people – FALSE
This is the biggest myth people hold. It can happen to any of us.
Week 2 – Knock, Knock, Who’s There?
Where do you think an intruder is most like to enter your home? Around the back of the house, through a window?
A whopping 74% of burglars break into homes through the front door! Ensuring that your door is locked is a crucial deterrent to thieves. Investing in a modern composite door with robust locking mechanisms will make it much more difficult for intruders to enter your home.
When looking for a new door look for the BSI Kitemark which signifies that the door has been rigorously tested.
Try and remember to lock your door at all times when you are at home and when you go out.
Thornhill offer a range of locking solutions. We can change the locks following a break in or add additional security to doors and windows.
Whoever installs your locks, make sure they are an approved Master Locksmith. Thornhill has been a member since 1973 and this badge gives you the homeowner the certainty that the locksmith is professional, competent, reliable and honest
Week 3 – Beat the Burglar
With theft from homes an increasing issue for communities it’s important to work together and take advantage of new technology to keep homes and streets safe. Being part of a Neighbourhood Watch area can reduce crime rates by 11% according to research carried out by Nottingham Trent University.
- Rather than keeping an outside light on all the time, a security light with a motion sensor is more of a deterrent to burglars as it highlights when someone is approaching a house.
- Don’t leave a spare set of keys ‘hidden’ outside of the house for a relative or friend – burglars will think to check these places too.
- If you have valuables in your shed or garage make sure you have an effective padlock or garage lock to deter thieves from forcing entry.
- Try to keep all valuables hidden and away from windows and doors. Leaving these items out will only entice a thief to break in and grab and go. If you feel your windows or doors are particularly vulnerable as an entry point, consider fitting security grilles.
- If you can, invest in CCTV. This is considered the top deterrent for a would-be intruder.
Week 4 – Start Smart
Smart phones, smart appliances, smart security – it is an ever-increasing part of our lives. 33% of adults have a smart doorbell and 17% have app-controlled locks whilst 89% of ex-burglars say thieves would be deterred by a connected home.
Smart security generally uses Wi-Fi or Bluetooth i.e. it is wireless! It is no longer a job that requires you to drill through walls and sort out electrical wires.
So, what are the options?
- Digital Spyhole – Know who is at your door before opening it. The digital spyhole displays a high-quality image and is quick and easy to install.
- Digital Lock – No need to keep remembering where you put your keys or locking yourself out with the keys on the inside of the door. The digital lock is a keyless touch screen where you enter a secret pin code.
- Keyless Entry Lock – This can be opened by either a 6-digit code or with a radio key that can open the door at a press of a button.
Week 5 – Dark Nights Return
Burglaries spike by more than a third when the clocks go back (according Co-op insurance). Bonfire night sees claims rise by 42% compared to other autumn nights because houses are left empty and unsecure whilst people attend the displays. Whilst there is a 160% increase in claims for vandalism and malicious damage to homes at Halloween.
Below are our top tips for keeping your homes safe during the darker autumn and winter months.
- If you leave to watch a fireworks display lock all your windows and doors. You can also give the impression that your house is not empty, by leaving a talk show on the radio, setting up timers on your house lights and keeping the curtains shut against preying eyes.
- Don’t leave valuables in plain sight, keep them well hidden or secured in a locked safe. Safes can also be hired if security is required for a short period of time.
- To avoid theft or vandalism, move your car into a locked garage or drive. If you don’t have this option, consider parking in a secure public car park or asking a friend or family member if you can park there for the night.
- Install a burglar alarm, whilst these systems can be expensive, DIY systems are available. Dummy alarm boxes are also an option if you can’t afford a system.
Secure Your Home with Help from Thornhill
We’ve highlighted a few of our products and services here that can be used to increase your home security, but if you have a particular issue not mentioned here do give our security experts a call on 0117 967 4994 and we’ll be happy to advise and help.
Alternatively, why not pop into our fully stocked security shop in Bristol and browse our range with guidance from an expert locksmith.