Whether you are going on holiday, visiting friends, going into hospital or leaving your property for a while for whatever reason, here are a few tips to help protect your property:
Make sure that you have up to date buildings and content insurance.
· Leave small valuable items like jewellery on a deposit at a bank or consider a floor safe.
· Mark items, especially valuables with your postcode and house number or first two letters if house name. This can be done both visually with marker kits or a permanent marker and/or invisibly with a UV pen. Forensic solutions are also available which can be available through some Neighbourhood Watch Groups as well as directly from the companies.
· Make an inventory of all valuables, including description, serial numbers and any differentiating marks.
· Take a clear photo of your items and store in a safe place.
· Arrange for pets to be properly looked after.
· Cut your lawns before you go away.
· Cancel any regular deliveries such as milk or newspapers.
· Don’t make it public knowledge that you are going away. Do not post anything on social media before or whilst you are away, you can always post photos when you return.
· Make sure your house looks occupied, closed curtains in the day makes it look like no one is at home. If you have a trusted neighbour, friend or family member ask them to open and close your curtains at appropriate times so it looks like someone is at home and remove the post from your porch/doorway.
· Use timer switches to have the lights come on as it gets dark and go off when you normally go to bed. You may wish to also have timer switches to have a radio come on at a specific time or use a TV light, available from some Neighbourhood Watch groups as well as a number of companies.
· Don’t leave valuables where they can be seen from windows or doorways.
· Secure your garage and shed with suitable locks and alarms, so that they cannot be used to break into your home.
· Run a chain through any bikes, tools, garden equipment, ladders etc and secure to a strong anchor point.
· Don’t have your address showing on any outward labels on your luggage, put this only on the inside of your cases.
· Ensure all external windows and doors are closed and locked with the keys in a safe place, not left in.
· If you have a burglar alarm make sure it is set.
· If possible ask a neighbour, friend or family member to park their car on your drive.
· If you are leaving a vehicle whilst you are away, put a steering lock on, anti tamper number plate screws on the registration plates and fit an alarm. Consider outside lighting and possible CCTV.
· Leave your contact details with someone you trust whilst you are away in case you need to be contacted in an emergency.
For my advice and information visit: www.warwickshire.police.uk.