As the nights draw in, here is some crime prevention advice for the Autumn:
- Make sure doors and windows are locked, particularly when leaving the house. It's easy to leave your front door or windows unlocked, especially when you're in a hurry or distracted. But, even if you only do it once, that could be enough to get burglarized. Most burglars are opportunistic - they look for an easy way to get in that won't take long or arouse suspicion, so many try the front door first.
- Look like you are in when you are out. Timer switches can be fitted to operate lights when you are out.
- Make sure you close curtains or blinds to prevent potential thieves seeing into your home.
- Visible burglar alarms make burglars think twice.
- Never leave a spare key in a convenient hiding place such as under the doormat or in a flowerpot.
- Marked property can deter burglars because it is harder for a thief to sell and may also help police secure a conviction.
- Consider joining or starting a local Neighborhood Watch Group.
- Burglary, on the whole, is an opportunist crime. A burglar will select his target because it offers him the best opportunity to carry out his crime undetected and with the fewest number of obstacles in his way. A building that presents itself as unoccupied and unsecure is far more likely to be targeted than one which is properly secured.