keep your home safe and secure at Christmas

Christmas, it’s the most wonderful time of the year! Unfortunately, it is also a prime time for thieves, so you need to keep your house safe and secure this Christmas to avoid any break-ins and burglaries. These seven tips will help you and your family stay safe.

Don’t keep presents in full view

With Christmas tree lights sparkling, it is not uncommon for people to peer through windows as they pass. But those with bad intentions may also get a glimpse. Keeping presents in full view runs the risk of tempting thieves, and showing them exactly where the goods can be found.

Don’t advertise an empty house

Going away for Christmas, or spending it at a friend’s or relative’s house? Don’t advertise that your house is going to be empty. When talking about Christmas plans, you should be subtle in situations where strangers may be able to find out when you are away. Keep the details between those you trust, as empty houses are always an easy target.

Avoid leaving out spare keys

It can be tempting to fall into the habit of leaving a spare key hidden outside your house. But thieves are wise to this and will be sure to rummage around plant pots, loose slabs and other common hiding places. It is sensible to have a spare key, but you should leave this with a trusted friend, relative or neighbour. If you find yourself locked out without a spare, a locksmith can help, which is better than risking a burglar finding the key outside.

Be careful when posting on social media

It is tempting to tell all on social media, but be careful with quite how much information you offer up. Sharing details of specific gifts or empty house dates could be seen by strangers and not just those you trust. That’s not to say you shouldn’t post on your account, but just to keep any of the more personal details under wraps.

Dispose of gift packaging

A simple and common mistake is not disposing of gift packaging in a subtle or hidden way. If you leave boxes out for the recycling, you could be advertising your new and expensive items to passing opportunists. Large boxes from televisions, games consoles and other valuable items should be broken down and placed into a recycling bin out of sight. You could also take them to a recycling centre, so they are off your property altogether. For a quick, short term solution, these boxes could be stored in a locked shed or garage.

Double lock external doors

Do you have the ability to double lock your external doors? If not, it is something to consider. Double locks are much harder to pick or break, and keep your house extra secure. If you don’t already have this, a locksmith can fit them easily, and this can provide you with peace of mind. Particularly great for if you are going away and leaving your property unattended, you can relax in the knowledge you have made security improvements.

Change your locks if you have any ‘key’ concerns

It is easy to think of lost keys as simply lost, but you never know who may have picked them up, or even taken them when you were unaware. Stealing keys is the easiest way for thieves to get into your property, as they can do so without causing damage or making noise. If you have lost keys, and cannot be sure where they are, change your locks. This precaution may seem extreme, but it’s actually a no hassle job for an experienced locksmith.