Top Christmas Home Security Tips

During the weeks before Christmas Day we have more precious items in our homes than at any other time of the year, making residential properties a popular target for burglars during the festive period. So, to help you prevent a holiday disaster, here we offer some top Christmas home security tips for keeping your home safe and secure this festive season: Keep your Christmas presents hidden It’s a lovely tradition to have presents set at the foot of the Christmas tree during December, but in reality the safest thing to do is have them stored away, safe and out of view. In the event of a break-in an intruder will always want to be in and out of your home as quickly as possible, and will have no intention of spending extra time searching for a festive jackpot. Close the curtains at night time Burglars will often wait until late evening to have a peek into your home to see what precious items and Christmas gifts are on show and easy to take. To prevent this, it’s a great idea to draw all curtains and drapes for the windows in your home when you go to bed at night, especially rooms where you have placed your Christmas tree or stored your presents. Beware missed deliveries In the modern day we are far more likely than ever to order Christmas presents online or over the phone. So if you are expecting a lot of deliveries during December, try to make sure that someone is available to sign for your package – a courier pushing a delivery note through your door...

Is today’s busy life preventing us from being security aware?

There’s no denying it – today’s world is so fast moving that most of us struggle to squeeze in the time to fit in run of the mill tasks. But one of the things that shouldn’t get pushed to the bottom of the list is your home security. Why? Because you stand to lose a lot more than just your possessions. Being a victim of burglary doesn’t just mean you kiss goodbye to your valuables, but your family could be hurt and you might feel so vulnerable that you never want to be in your home again. A recent study by Which showed that many people take shortcuts with their home security to save time, with the most common time-saver being leaving valuables out on display.[1] Nearly half of people surveyed admitted to not putting their burglar alarm on and a third don’t bother to shut blinds or curtains. So, what can you do to be more security aware? And does it really have to take up a large chunk of your day? Lock your doors as soon as you come in After a hard day at work, all you want to do is get in and have a cup of tea. But if you’re not planning on going out again, why not lock the front door on your way into the house? You’ll lessen the risk of accidentally forgetting to lock the door on your way to bed, and make your home instantly safer. Only keep windows open when you’re in the room Try and make it a habit to shut the windows when you leave a room....

A History of Locks

Locks – we use them every day, but most of us have never thought about how they came about. Like most things, locks have evolved from primitive designs that would make the modern locksmith quake in their boots, but have paved the way for the security devices we know today. From the beginning of civilisation, our late ancestors have used locks to protect their families and belongings, but instead of being made from metal, they were made from simple tools like rope. As time progressed, new technologies were developed and more resilient materials like metal and wood were used instead. Many historians are unclear about which ancient civilisation first created mechanical locks, but there’s a strong suspicion they started off in Ancient Egypt over six thousand years ago. Building on the technologies devised by the Ancient Egyptians and Greeks, the Romans then started using metals like iron as their primary material. They were then able to use metal lock technology to create stronger locks and smaller keys, often being able to wear the keys around their necks or put them in their pockets. Unfortunately, the fall of the Roman Empire saw an abrupt halt to lock innovation and it was not until the 18th and 19th centuries when technological advancements were made. It was during this time that Robert Barronin created the double-acting tumbler lock and Jeremiah Chubb formulated the detector lock with high internal security. Other notable engineers include Linus Yale who created the pin tumbler lock, James Sargent and Harry Soref, who created the first padlock in 1924. Today, most of the available lock technology has come...

Security tips for Landlords and Tenants

Keeping a rental property safe and secure is essential for both the landlord and tenants, helping to make the tenancy period beneficial for both parties. Because a break-in caused by poor security can be costly for both landlord and tenant, here we offer some top security tips for landlords and tenants to help you keep rental properties safe from intruders. New keys Regardless of how nice or trustworthy the outgoing tenant may be, there’s always a chance that extra keys were cut during their tenancy that may have been lost or fallen into the wrong hands. Installing a new lock system at the beginning of a tenancy gives peace of mind for all parties. Make repairs If any door in the property requires repair at any point during the tenancy it’s important for this work to be performed quickly. This means the tenant must be quick to inform the landlord or letting agency of any potential problems and the landlords must be ready to have any reported issues fixed quickly. Upgrade lock systems Because older lock systems are far more vulnerable to forced entry it’s advisable to install upgraded fittings. There are a range of burglar-proof systems available including ABS Locks which protect the property against forced entry by using a strengthened anti snap cylinder which is not vulnerable to attack. Appoint an emergency locksmith Because a landlord can’t be available 24/7, it’s important to have an emergency locksmith service on hand just in case the worst happens. Assigning a trusted 24-hour repair service means that any issues that may compromise the security of a rented property can be...

Are we Brits too trusting with our home security?

We all know that leaving windows and doors open can increase the risk of getting burgled, but surprisingly, 35 per cent of British householders still leave their windows open when they are out, and one in ten leave doors open when they go out[1]. Although many people have the attitude ‘it won’t happen to me’, you never know when or where a burglar might strike. Whether you live in a small, quiet village or a bustling city centre, you’re unfortunately at risk wherever you are. With winter nearly upon us, and the risk of getting burgled increasing, it’s time to stop being so trusting and take your security seriously. Shut your windows and doors We say it time and time again, but sometimes it takes a burglary for the message to sink in. Leaving windows and doors open when you go out or when you go into another room can be the biggest weak point in your home security, making you and your family vulnerable to intruders. It might be 2pm and light outside, but burglars don’t care about that – they’ll strike whenever they can. If you lose your keys, change the locks If you lose your keys, we would always advise changing the locks. You never know who has got their hands on them, or where they’ve picked them up from. Perhaps you left them in the door, or dropped them in the supermarket – either way, it’s not a risk worth taking. Install a security device in your home Security devices such as burglar alarms and cameras can help add another layer of protection to your...

Beating the burglars with our winter home security tips

It’s safe to say that winter is on the way – the nights are drawing in, curtains are being closed earlier, and bobble hats and scarves have made a firm reappearance. But cold weather aside, did you know that during the second half of the year, the number of burglaries goes up by nearly a quarter[1]? Whether this is down to burglars being able to hide more easily, an increase in people going out and about to soak up winter festivities, or a lack of home security, the message is clear: although it’s getting colder, your home security needs to be hotted up. So, what can you do to beat the burglars?  We share some of our top winter home security tips: Install ABS locks Lock snapping is one of the key methods of entry for burglars, and if you don’t have ABS locks installed, you’re at risk. How to snap a lock can be easily researched, it’s quiet and often allows burglars to go undetected until it’s too late. You can read more about lock snapping here. Install security lighting The dark nights are a thieves’ dream, so installing a security light at both the front and back of your property can help act as a deterrent. Try and position it so that it goes off when you’re around any windows or doors. Don’t give your burglar a helping hand It can be easy to accidentally leave out tools that can aid a burglar’s mission. If there’s anything in your front garden that may offer a leg up over and into your back garden, make sure you remove...

Eviction time – changing the locks

If you’ve had trouble tenants, you’ll know the commotion getting them out your property can cause.  You’ll also know that it’s not a simple case of changing the locks and throwing their possessions away. Unfortunately, if you take this course of action, it could land you in more hot water than your unruly tenant – as incorrect eviction is a criminal offence. First, you’ve got to give them a Section 21 Notice if you want the property back after a fixed term, or a Section 8 Notice if they’ve broken the terms of the tenancy. If they don’t leave by the date specified on the notice and they are behind on their rent, you can apply for an accelerated possession order. If they still don’t go, applying for a warrant for possession means bailiffs can forcibly remove them and their possessions from your property. Believe it or not, a key factor as to whether an eviction goes ahead is whether there is a locksmith there at the same time as the bailiffs. If there’s not, the eviction can be postponed and you’ll be back to square one. Before you arrange the eviction, find a trustworthy and professional locksmith who won’t let you down on the day. Once the property is empty, it can become a target for disgruntled ex-tenants who are keen to cause trouble. Therefore, having all the door and window locks changed is a prudent move and can ensure your property doesn’t get accessed and vandalised, for example. What if my tenants are violent? If you’ve had threats of violence from the tenant(s), it’s best to inform...

The rise of lock snapping in the West Midlands

Since this time last year, West Midlands Police have had to deal with a minimum of 2,000 burglaries a month. And it’s now reported that lock snapping is the forced entry method of choice in the area[1]. But what is lock snapping, and why should you be worried about it? If the doors on your property just have the usual Euro Profile Cylinder lock that’s often installed with uPVC doors, your home could be a burglar’s dream. Armed with just a set of pliers and a screwdriver, burglars can get into your home quickly and easily by snapping the lock barrel in two, before removing the outside part to expose and undo the lock. Lock snapping allows burglars to get into your home quickly, quietly and quite often, without you even noticing. Many thieves now target homes in this way in the dead of night when everyone is asleep, not giving you the opportunity to protect yourself, your home, or your loved ones. It’s not just electronics and other valuables that thieves are attempting to steal either, if intruders manage to gain entrance to your home and you’ve got an expensive car, you may well find your car has disappeared from the drive too. So, what can you do to protect yourself against lock snapping? The only way to protect yourself against lock snapping is to have your locks updated to anti snap locks. There are several on the market, but at Chubb Locksmiths we use ABS Anti Snap Locks, widely regarded as one of the best solutions available. While there is a small cost associated with having your...

Chubb makes international list for best locksmith blogs

At Chubb Locksmiths, we work hard to ensure that you’re all well informed on home security and all issues related to locks. That’s why we’re super proud to announce that we’ve beaten off stiff, international competition to be featured at 69th place in Feedspot’s Top 100 Locksmith Blogs and Websites. The list features locksmith blogs from around the world, including Australia, America, the UK and Canada. Our blog has been highlighted as being one of the most frequently updated, and finishes higher than numerous other UK locksmiths. Feedspot is a modern Rich Site Summary (RSS) Reader, which means when you’re trying to keep up with news and content on multiple web sites, you can read everything easily in one place. To make sure you stay up to date with the latest news from Chubb Locksmiths why not follow us on Twitter and Facebook?...

Help! I’ve lost my house keys. Do I need to replace the locks?

Most of us use our house keys at least once a day, so it’s inevitable that at some point we’ll lose them and wonder what to do next. While it’s relatively unlikely that a burglar will be able to gain entry through a set of lost keys, it does largely depend on how you lost them and where. Stolen handbag If you’ve had your handbag stolen, for example, the likelihood is that your keys will be in the bag, along with sensitive personal information, such as your address. Therefore, getting your locks changed as soon as possible is crucial in keeping your home and family safe from intruders. Leaving keys in the door The other potentially lethal situation that we sometimes come across, is where homeowners have lost their keys but have a vague inkling that they left them in the front door. If this happens, it’s best to get the locks changed as a matter of urgency, since you never know who might have swiped them from the door. Leaving keys inside the house If you’re in a rush, it’s easy to accidentally leave your keys in the house and lock yourself out. If this happens to you, call a reputable locksmith who will help you get into your home. Whether they pick the locks to get in, or have to drill through the locks and replace them with new ones, this process shouldn’t be overly costly. Don’t try and break into your home Although losing keys is an inconvenience, trying to gain access to your property by smashing windows or prising open doors is an expensive way...