Keeping Your Home Safe and Secure


The number of elderly, vulnerable adults living independently has dramatically increased over the last two decades. Whilst it is important that everyone feels safe and secure in their home, many people do worry about becoming the victim of a burglary.

If you are living independently, you are the carer of an older person or you are simply concerned that you may be vulnerable in your own home; the following are a few simple and largely inexpensive ways to protect yourself against burglars or scammers.

Door and Window Security

Think about having the following on your doors;

  • A good quality five-lever mortice deadlock

  • A night latch (traditionally called a Yale lock)

  • A cage on the letterbox to prevent anyone tampering with the locks via the letterbox

  • A peep-hole so you can check who is outside before opening the door

  • A door chain to help you screen unsolicited callers

And windows;

  • Window locks with keys to all downstairs windows and any upstairs which are easy to access, via flat roofs etc

Home Security Devices

Outdoor lighting can be an excellent deterrent;

  • Fit low-level lights which automatically switch on from nightfall until dawn are ideal, or

  • A motion detector light that switches on when it senses movement outside your home

Either will also make it easier for you to see if you’re coming or going after dark.

Visible burglar alarms will deter burglars and also warn of an intruder;

  • Get advice from the Safer Neighbourhood team at your nearest police station

  • Get more than one quote before choosing a reputable supplier

  • Ask your insurance company which alarm companies they recommend

Extra Deterrents

These are some things to think about when it comes to garages, sheds and side passageways;

  • Fit good quality doors and locks particularly to garages or sheds which are attached to the house and have internal access

  • Fit opaque windows so that thieves are unable to see any valuables inside

  • Don’t leave garage doors open for extended periods

  • Padlock side gates and make sure that gates and locks are solid

  • Keep your exterior doors free from overgrown shrubbery where burglars can hide from passers-by

Fences and Gates;

  • Check your fences are solid or plant prickly hedges or shrubs in front

  • Keep items like exterior bins away from fences where they could be used to climb over

Protect Your Valuables

  • Mark items with your postcode or house number to make them easier to identify and better yet, difficult to sell on in the first place. Your local Neighbourhood Watch or Safer Neighbourhood team may be able to help with this

  • You can register your valuables online for free at www.immobilise.com. This website enables the police to identify owners of lost or stolen goods

When You Go Away

  • Ask a family member, trusted friend or neighbour to keep an eye on your home for you

  • Never discuss your holiday plans or any other absences on social media sites or in public places

  • Cancel all regular deliveries such as milk or newspapers

  • Register with the Royal Mail Keepsafe service so that they keep your mail whilst you are away. The mail will be delivered upon your scheduled return. There is a small charge for this service

  • Plug one or two lamps, or even the TV or Radio, into timers so that the home looks occupied during the hours of darkness. Make sure the lights are not on all night though as this is a prime indicator of absence

  • Make sure that you always keep your building and contents insurance up to date

Should The Worst Happen

  • If you think your home has been burgled in your absence don’t enter the building unless you are certain the intruder has left

  • If you think there is any possibility that the intruder is still there – Dial 999 and ask for the police immediately. If you are sure they are gone call 101 to report the burglary

  • Make a list of any missing items and contact your insurance company to make a claim. They will want your crime reference number from the police

  • Change your locks as soon as possible

  • Cancel any stolen bank/credit/store cards

These are all simple steps to take, each one will add to your overall home security and hopefully will leave you feeling safe and secure in your own home!

#Caretips #homecare #elderly

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