How vulnerable is your home to break-ins?
With police figures showing an increase in burglaries last year, how can you keep your home safe?
Figures released by the Metropolitan police service show that house-breaking incidents rose by 21 per cent in 2017.
Yet taking simple action – such as carrying out window repairs – could help prevent your home from being seen as an easy target for thieves.
Mark Fletcher, managing director of Custom Glaze in Milton Keynes, shared his security tips. “There are several simple steps you can take to help keep your home safe,” he said.
“Checking you have the basic security, such as locks, windows and doors covered, can make a real difference.”
Here’s how to check that your home security is up to the task.
It is essential that you check the locks on your windows and doors are functioning correctly, as this will likely be the first thing that any potential burglar will do, too. “Are any of them old, broken or damaged in any way? If so it could be time to have them repaired or replaced,” said Mark.
Many houses have just a single Yale lock on the front or main door to the house, which can leave your house marked as an easy target, as thieves can use a number of techniques to work them open. Adding a second lock can act as an easy and cost-effective deterrent, as it doubles the work for the criminals.
Remember that even a small or upstairs window should be locked when you’re out, as burglars can still enter through these. “Locking the entry points to your home is essential. Having even the highest quality security glass in your windows and door panels won’t matter if they aren’t properly secured,” said Mark.
If your front or back door has seen better days it may be time to consider a replacement door. Doors that are loose on the hinges, splintering or don’t fit the doorframe as tightly as they should, can be interpreted as an open invitation to thieves.
“Don’t forget to check your back door as well. Many thieves choose this as an entrance point rather than a front door looking onto the street,” said Mark.
The security that comes with modern multi-locking and uPVC doors, which lock using a system of hooks and latches, could also function as an extra deterrent.
“Our bi-fold doors range is fitted with ModLok, which provides extra security and additional strength” he added.
A burglar looking for an easy opportunity will be drawn to homes where the windows are in a state of disrepair. Look to carry out window repairs as soon as you spot cracks or damage to the frames or glass, particularly if you have large windows at the front of your home, as this will automatically attract burglars to peer into your property, searching for valuables.
Consider installing double glazed windows, or adding secondary glazing to existing windows, for extra security and reassurance. “If you opt for secondary glazing, make sure it is securely fixed to tough aluminium frames, making the windows extremely difficult to open from the outside. The extra glazing also has the added benefit of reducing noise and helping save money on energy bills,” said Mark.
If you have sash windows, attaching sash stops will prevent anyone being able to open the window far enough to climb through.
Custom Glaze has a wide range of secure windows, doors and locks at their Milton Keynes showroom. Their expert team also provide repair and replacement services. Visit their website to find out more.