As temperatures start to increase and days get longer many of us take the opportunity to tidy up our gardens. Now is an excellent time to double check that your garden is secure and implement extra security measures to assist you in keeping crime free throughout the spring and summer months.
· Ensure that there are no weak points or gaps along fences and hedgerows that form the perimeter of your garden. These provide easy access points and undermine the security that you have in place.
· Try and keep wheelie bins locked up. Bins can be used in two ways to aid an opportunist thief. They can be moved to provide a convenient stepping stone over property boundaries or they can be used to carry stolen goods.
· When planting, put heavy stones in the bottom of pots or planters to make them more difficult to be carried away.
· If possible, anchor valuable garden ornaments or furniture to the ground.
· Lock tools and ladders away when you are away from your property / overnight. By leaving tools and ladders out you are providing an easy option for burglars as they can use these to gain entry to homes or outbuildings. This also means that they don’t need to carry tools with them so if they are stopped by the police there is no evidence that they are going equipped to engage in crime.
· Clever planting can enhance the security of your property as well as looking attractive. Prickly bushes and plants can be located at vulnerable areas / entry points around your property to create a spiky barrier.
· Burglars sometimes like to work undercover, therefore it is advisable to trim back any hedges, bushes or tall trees that might provide a convenient hiding spot for thieves. This also increases the natural surveillance of your property meaning, in terms of schemes like home watch that, you can keep an eye on each others houses easier and report any suspicious behaviour as it happens.
· Consider how you currently use lighting in your garden. Are there areas that are too dark and might benefit from lighting? Lights with motion sensors can be used to offer protection by covering specific areas of your garden or consider dusk till dawn lights to offer better overall lighting overnight.
· Sheds and outbuildings need to be properly secured. Many of us have a number of valuable items stored in such places and yet the security of these buildings often falls well below the security that we use on our homes. Extend your house insurance to cover any valuable items or consider having your house alarm extended to cover outbuildings. Property mark any valuable items and increase security by fixing them to the floor / wall or locking within a metal cage.
There can be an increase in thefts from sheds and outbuildings during spring and summer as people forget to lock them when they go out in the day or overnight. This provides an easy option for thieves so make life as difficult as possible for them and ensure that you take the extra seconds to lock these buildings when not in use