• Richard Hopkins

How Secure Are Your Outdoor Areas At Home?

We all know how important it is to make sure our houses are properly secure, whether we’re at home or not. And we know how important it is to have the number of a professional and experienced Derbyshire locksmiths to hand, just in case something happens and we have to change the locks.

But have you made sure that the external parts of your property are as secure as the rest of the site? If not, you might want to make sure that you carry out a risk assessment at home and make any changes necessary to protect you, your family and your possessions.

New research from Direct Line has just revealed that there has been a rise in bike theft from communal areas outside blocks of flats - known as outside inside crime, since thieves can make off with belongings without having to gain entry into individual properties.

Apparently, since 2016 more than 4,300 bikes have been pinched from communal areas - an average of four each day. And this kind of theft is climbing, up 66 per cent between 2016 and 2018.

Head of home insurance with Direct Line Dan Simson said: “It is concerning to see that bike theft is on the rise and that thieves are getting even bolder, going into buildings to steal them. Anyone using a communal area to store an item should not be complacent and assume that just because they are inside, they are safe.

“Although these areas can be great space savers, we would urge everyone to make sure any belongings are locked up securely and ideally not visible from outside to deter opportunistic thieves.”

Interestingly, despite the fact that communal areas are often used for storage and numerous people have had trouble because of this, many don’t have insurance in place to cover them if something happens. It was found that 29 per cent of people storing bikes in communal areas don’t have insurance - especially concerning given that 57 per cent of communal areas are left unsecured.

Recent data from the Office for National Statistics shows that for the year ending March 2019, the number of burglary offences recorded by police dropped by three per cent. Domestic burglary has remained stable since the 12 months leading up to March 2017 - which is sure to be heartening news for households all over the country.

That being said, you still shouldn’t be complacent when it comes to security at home, so make sure that you’re taking all the necessary steps to protect yourself and your family.

There’s a lot you can do these days, from motion-activated lights, smart home security, gravel driveways so you can hear people approaching, guard dogs, fencing and more. It’s just a matter of you working out how best you want to go about it - but the important part is actually prioritising security in some form or other to keep burglars at bay.

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