If you’re going away in the next few months, there are plenty of things you need to think about before you set off. Have you got your travel insurance? Have you packed your toothbrush? Did you remember to cancel the milk?
But something lots of people don’t think about is how safe their house will be in their absence. Aside from a quick once over to make sure the doors and windows are locked, many people forget to think about how secure their property really is. Even if you’re not going away, the summer season, when people are in and out of the garden and leaving windows open to catch a breeze, leaves lots of opportunity for opportunistic thieves to strike.
Update your locks
To find out how you can help ensure your house is safe, we chatted to some of MyBuilder’s security experts to get their top tips.
Dean Knowles of Union Security (pictured above) encourages everyone to make sure their locks are up to date - all locks should be British Standard, and “anti-drill, anti-snap and anti-bump”. Dean says: “I’ve seen people buy locks from pound shops. People have TVs that cost thousands of pounds, tablets, phones everything - to protect them with a cheap lock doesn’t make any sense.”
Install security lights
For Stephen Mackinlay of DRAM Fire & Security, the most cost-effective way to protect your property is with security lights. “You don’t want dark areas around your home, especially around access points like doors and windows,” Stephen says. “It’s the first thing I recommend to people.”
The next step is installing an intruder alarm. Both Stephen and Dean agree that having a well-maintained alarm can help deter any would-be burglars. “If someone is coming down the street looking for a target, and they see one house with an alarm, and one without, I guarantee they’ll go for the one without,” Dean warns.
For someone serious about protecting their home, there are several next steps that you can take. Stephen says: “More people are looking at camera systems now. You can buy a simple four camera system on the high street for £200, but people should be careful - they don’t know what they’re getting. I’ve taken out a lot of cheap systems. I only use high-quality equipment, like HD cameras. If you’re going to have it, you need to have something that works.”
Both experts urge people to think about taking these precautions before it’s too late. Dean says: “Many people only think about security after they’ve been burgled. It’s far better to try and ensure you’re not a victim to begin with.”
If you have a security job you want to get underway, you can find the perfect tradesperson to help you here.