wraphomeChristmas is a busy time of year for us all, but whilst Santa and his Elves are busy distributing gifts for the big day, the diligent burglar is working hard for other reasons altogether.

Whilst we prepare to unwind over the holidays, our relaxed nature can prove fruitful for the opportunist burglar, who pays vigilant attention to identifying their target. So let’s wrap up our homes safely this Christmas.

To ensure your home is left alone this Christmas, we have put together a few simple home security tips for you. Leaving you to enjoy your upcoming holiday or that occasional shopping trip with peace of mind.

 

No sneaky peaks at the presents under the tree…

treeSeeing the presents under the Christmas tree is exciting for children both big and small, but it can also call for some unwanted attention. Be cautious if your tree is positioned in view of passers-by, as this will also appeal to opportunists.  The safest option would be to keep the presents out of sight until its closer to the big day. At the same time, we all innocently dispose of old packaging in the bin and recycling, this indicates what is on offer within the home. It may, therefore, be worth going the extra mile and popping to your local refuse centre.

 

Home alone?

Try to make it look as if someone is at home, even if you are just popping out for a short trip. We have all been there, a couple of items on the list soon turn into many and not to mention the detour for coffee and cake, shopping is hard work after all! For added peace of mind, deter opportunists by leaving a small lamp on, or use a timer light switch, which will make it look like someone is at home. It is also worth considering an outdoor security light, to make sure the front of your home is bright and visible, so irregularities will not go unnoticed.

 

Can you ever have too much lighting?

christmas-lightsAt this time of year we are allowed to go a little overboard with the lighting, decoration, and let’s be honest, there can never be too much sparkle. Whilst we all love to deck the house with the best Christmas lights in the street, we do need to be careful of wiring and electricals to avoid any hazards and fires. Firstly, ensure they comply with safety standards by checking that your Christmas lights carry the British Safety Standard sign. Also, be careful not to over plug the sockets as this can be a fire risk. Generally speaking, your home is decorated with highly flammable items at the moment, so it is important you look out for fire safety around your property. It may be worthwhile paying vigilance to how you position candles and heaters safely, and look out for any loose decorations around the fireplace.  

 

Rest assured with household cover

With the purchase of a few new valuable items and gifts, it may be worth adjusting the level of your home insurance cover to suit. Some insurers even offer seasonal packages that allow a temporary increase during the seasonal period, which may be worth taking advantage of. Whilst this gives added reassurance that your new purchases are safe, you could also investigate whether you are covered for accidental household damages, such as wine spillage. It may also be worth security marking your valuable new purchases with your postcode and house number. Or, why not go the extra mile and register your details with the manufacturer, or for free on the national property register.

 

 

‘Can someone get the door…?’

guestsThis is the season of giving, sharing and caring, but it is still important to be careful of whom you let into your home. Planned burglars may visit before putting their plans into action, whilst opportunists may strike it lucky and find the spare key while you are not looking. To keep your family and home safe, do not invite unknown guests into the home. Also be careful not to hide spare keys or other secure valuables near the front door… a professional burglar will know exactly where to look.

 

Be alarmed

A burglar alarm will give you security all year round, so it is worth the investment. Whilst an alarmed home is less likely to be targeted, you are left with the assurance that your homes and valuables are both safe whilst you are away. For added security, it may also be worth just double checking that the latches, bolts and locks of your windows and doors are all in good working order before you leave.

 

 Cancel deliveries

Try to avoid making it obvious you are away; the stacking up of papers, milk bottles and deliveries will not go unnoticed to the vigilant passer-by. So be sure to cancel any regular deliveries whilst you are away.

 

Quality family time

familyWhen you look past the glitter and glam of the presents and decorations, Christmas is about caring for friends and family. So try to make good use of this holiday period by putting down your laptops, iPad, and dare I say it, your phones, to spend quality moments with your loved ones. Many of us use social media to publicise our plans and share those enviable holiday pics, but in doing so you are also alerting opportunists of your plans. So try to avoid posting any information that would indicate your home is empty, be it for a holiday or shopping trip.

 

From all of us at Mackenzie Smith, we wish you a fun-filled and safe Christmas.

 

If you are looking to get your home on the market, or are simply interested in a free valuation contact your local branch:

Ash Vale – ashvale@mackenziesmith.co.uk  – 01252 353030

Farnborough – farnborough@mackenziesmith.co.uk – 01252 375999

Fleet – fleet@mackenziesmith.co.uk – 01252 812121

Hook – hook@mackenziesmith.co.uk – 01256 764666

Hartley Wintney – hartleywintney@mackenziesmith.co.uk – 01252 844015

Lettings – lettings@mackenziesmith.co.uk – 01252 514000