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Home safety in the summer

We have been lucky enough to have had a great spring; the weather has been exceptional and we have all had to chance to enjoy our gardens and air out our homes. Though, it has to be said that coming home to find your house has been burgled would certainly cast a shadow over even the sunniest of days. The summer time is when thieves are especially active and they will take advantage of the fact our homes are more open and we are more relaxed. It is times like these when it is important to make sure you have the right insurance in place, just in case you become one of the statistics.

A recent study discovered that few home insurance policies cover all of those items left outside. You might not think you have much of worth, but if you add up the worth of all those bikes in the shed, garden tools, the lawnmower and your garden furniture you could be looking at a significant loss.

Furthermore, a study has recently found that almost half of all home owners do not lock their doors when they are at home and many do not even lock their doors or windows at night.

Unfortunately these sorts of crimes increase during the summer. But there is plenty you can do to avoid having to claim on your insurance policy and some will even help you to keep your home insurance costs down.

  • Always lock your garden sheds with a sturdy padlock and install an alarm. Burglars have even been known to remove the doors of a garden shed, so buy one which has screw heads which are not exposed.
  • If you have very expensive garden items you should keep them inside your home. This might include some power tools or some types of garden furniture.

  • Make sure your side gate is secure. Bolt it top and bottom and install a lock which requires a key to open. Use trellis or even spikes to prevent it being climbed over.
  • Avoid opening the downstairs windows at the front of your home if you are in the garden. A thief can easily jump in through the window and be out again in seconds and you would never know.

  • Always close and lock all doors and windows when you leave the house. Even upstairs windows can be an entrance point for a burglar. They can be very nimble and will go to great lengths to gain entry to your home.
  • Lock your front door during the day, even if you are at home. In the summer months you may be in the garden and unable to see or hear what is happening at the front of your house.

  • Lock your back door if you go upstairs. An open door from the back garden to the inside of your home is an invitation to a burglar. They will be more than happy to scale your fence and could be in and out in less than a minute.
  • Keep garage doors closed when not in use. This is particularly true if you have an internal access door from the garage to your home.

  • If you are going on holiday you need to take special care. Lock valuables away or hide them in the loft, ask a neighbour to keep an eye on your home, cancel milk or paper orders to avoid it looking as though you are not home, use light timers to give the house an air of being occupied and ask your neighbour to mow your lawn if you are away for several weeks.
  • Making sure your home is safe is important all year round, but thieves love the longer evenings of the summer and the fact that we like to be outside either in our gardens or away from our homes. Don't let a burglar get the better of you and take special care of your home.

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