Of course, not to put a dampener on things, but these are the perfect conditions for a home break-in.
A burglary happens roughly once every 40 seconds in the UK and most of these are crimes of opportunity. Additionally, it's estimated around 57% of these break-ins occur when someone is at home - this figure is so high because when people are at home they become more complacent, cracking open the windows and leaving back doors ajar.
It's no small thing, going through the shock and upset of being burgled. That's why it's important to do everything you can to prevent it from happening.
Here are a few tips for staying safe at home:
- Out of sight, out of mind. Don’t leave your keys, ID or any documents within easy reach of doors, letterboxes or windows. Additionally, keeping curtains and blinds drawn at night, with net curtains up during the day, as this can prevent potential thieves from being able to "case" your home to see whether or not your belongings are worth stealing.
- Lock up. This might seem obvious but many burglaries happen when doors and windows are left open. Burglars can often be people you've seen before, like someone working on your house. If an unknown visitor uses the bathroom, they may unlock the window so they can gain entry later. Be sure to double-check ALL windows and doors after workmen leave your home. It also doesn't hurt to beef up your security, by attaching a dead bolt to your front and back doors.
- Safe as houses. Investing in a safe for your valuables can be incredibly worthwhile - smaller safes should be bolted down, although always ask for permission from your landlord if you are renting.
- Use your shed. Your shed or garage can provide the tools a thief needs to break into your home, such as a garden fork for prising doors open. Put several locks on the outside, plus wire on the windows.
- Phoning it in. An unusual but useful tip, is to turn down the ringer volume on your landline phone. Yes, some people DO still have a landline! And if a passerby can hear it ringing, then it goes to voicemail, this is a potential sign that nobody is home.
Remember, contents insurance can save lots of stress, so check out some comparison websites for the best deals.
If you have been a victim of burglary, there is support available. Go to www.victimsupport.org.uk/crime-info/types-crime/burglary.