The Ultimate Burglary Prevention Guide
As Barnet locksmiths with years of experience, we are often one of the first on the scene to a break-in to deal with emergency door replacement and repairs. On many occasions, we are there even before the police to either secure a property or change locks.
Why is burglary prevention such an important topic? Experiencing burglary ranks highly as one of the most traumatic experiences anyone goes through in life. The affects can be much more significant than you would expect. As a Master Locksmith in North London I have seen individuals and families shaken in many ways.
The obvious: financial loss, inconvenience and upheaval.
The heartbreaking: loss of irreplaceable sentimental items.
The sad: fear and insecurity that can be left after an intrusion into your personal space.
This is why preventing burglary is such a high priority.
You can check if your London address is a burglary hotspot here;
Burglars look for:
- Visible, high value goods
- Times when homeowners are out, unaware or asleep
- Easy access
When thinking about how to prevent a burglary it is vital to cover all bases.
IKS Locksmiths are family run locksmiths in North London, and we believe that by encouraging friends, family and customers to follow our home security advice we can actually reduce the crime rates in the area.
This is why I always exercise and share my 3 step burglary crime prevention strategy. Today I would like to share this with you so that you can be confident when assessing your property with regards how to prevent burglaries.
- Preventing Burglary attempts
- Preventing burglar access
- Preventing burglar success
Prevent Burglar Attempts
Making it hard for someone to break-in to a property is one thing; however, making sure they don’t try in the first place is another.The key is making your property unattractive to burglars by following considering these burglar deterrents.
Advertising the valuables that you have in your home will attract thieves
- Turn the packaging of expensive purchases inside out so there is no evidence of expensive purchases, such as TV, computers, iPad boxes by bins outside your home.
- Keep tempting items out of view in your house
- Shred sensitive information
Be mindful when leaving your property empty
Giving the impression your property is not empty could save you getting burgled!
- Lights on a timer: Set your hall and sitting room lights to switch on automatically when it gets dark using a timer.
- A radio on a timer gives the illusion of the house being occupied.
- Close your curtains or blinds
- Ask a family member or a trusted neighbour to shut your post box and open your blinds/curtains during the day and close them again at night time.
- Social media brings with it new problems. Don’t advertise you’re holidays on Facebook or any social media site.
- Cancel deliveries of milk, newspapers or anything else that could give clues that the property is unattended.
Installing Suitable Property Security
Burglars are experienced in spotting an easy target. They can also recognise which properties are going to be hard to get into. If they see the right security measures in place they won’t even attempt to access your property. They will target the property with the least security.
- Locks are a necessity. They are the most important means of protecting your property. It is important to have a security survey to ascertain the best locks for your individual property. Consideration should be given to all windows, door and even gates in the grounds of the property. Most locksmiths offer a free security survey. It is important to be thorough.
- Grilles – the look of a grille, whether fixed or collapsible, can be extremely intimidating to an intruder. They are unlikely to even attempt access when they see these. Especially if paired with high security locks.
Some people are reluctant to consider Grilles because they expect them to be an eyesore. At IKS we take pride in installing security grilles which complement the look of a property.
Here is a before and after IKS Grilles picture, look carefully to see if you can spot the difference.
We have carefully aligned the grilles with the existing window frames. The result looks as good as without grilles but with added security. We specialise in high quality bespoke grilles and also fit beautiful decorative styles for customers who wish to make them a feature of the property. Whether fixed or collapsible, discreet or decorative Grilles are one of the best visual deterrents to complement a high quality locking system that works!
- Once you have your physical security in place, it is worth considering installing a Burglar Alarm System. An intruder alarm is a good deterrent. At IKS Locksmiths we are specialists in locks and grilles. For alarms we recommend using an alarm specialist.
- CCTV is another good deterrent
Prevent Burglar Access
Where is an intruder likely to break-in to your house?
There is one simple answer to this question. And that is…anywhere! A low window, a high window with access via a balcony or ladder, front door or back door.
To prevent burglar access use this home security tips checklist on your property;
Property Locks – the most effective way to keep intruders out!
- Windows: make sure they are all shut and ideally lock windows with a key operated lock. A large percentage of burglaries are through windows and you would be surprised at how small the windows intruders will be able to fit into.
- Back doors: Obviously PVC doors are self explanatory by lifting and locking the handles but timber doors with additional locks on the inside should be used. These are as important as the mortice lock and can make all the difference.
- Most importantly deadlock your front door when you leave and go to bed at night is imperative.
- Key security: your locks will mean nothing if someone has a copy of your keys. Make sure you change your locks if you have the slightest suspicion someone else has your keys.
- Leave house keys out of sight: Many keys are simply left by windows or doors overnight. Remember if they are left by the window then it is more likely someone will be able to get into your property with relative ease.
- Lock all external entrances: gates, side passages, garden entrances.
- Bikes should ideally be hidden and chained up with a good bicycle lock.
- Tools can be used for breaking into a property so lock them away in a shed.
- Ladders can be used to reach high windows, so secure them.
- Garden furniture should be locked away.
- Balconies, gates or low roofs can be used to access high windows so consider adding something to deter access in this way.
- Lighting the grounds with a motion activated is advisable.
- Keep hedges low as these intruders can you these to keep out of sight.
Opportunities for intruders in the grounds of a property are plentiful and are often overlooked. If you cover all bases it will help put your mind at rest.
Prevent Burglar Success
By following the home security advice I have outlined above you should effectively prevent burglary of your property. In the instance that someone was to access your property it is prudent to follow this home security advice within your property to minimize the negative effects. An intruder will not want to stay in the property for more than a few minutes and the more awkward you make access to high value goods the better.
- Keep car keys out of sight. Car keys are often left within view of the front door. If someone does get into the house this is likely to be the first thing an intruder will pick up. They are sometimes even taken via the letterbox. Keep car keys hidden.
- Safes: High value goods should be locked in a safe. There are a wide range of safe types available in different sizes, prices. They can be free standing or secured to a wall or floor. A safe is a good investment when it comes to protecting valuable and sentimental items.
- UV Pens can be used to label electronic equipment, which may help the police to retrieve them.
The police have tips on ways to prevent burglary on their website. The police website is the go to site for burglary prevention tips. Our aim is to offer you advice on home security and ways to prevent burglary that leaves no stone unturned. We would be pleased to offer you individual advice specific to your London property. I hope that this article has been informative to you and I would be happy to offer further advice should you require it.