Turn up the Heat with these Summer Home Security Tips

Holidays, festivals, hot weather and barbecues all signal the arrival of summer, but with them comes a countrywide increase in burglaries and theft. At Chubb Locksmiths, summer is a busy time where we often help people with the disastrous aftermath of burglary, changing their locks and helping them to make their home secure again. Here, we share our top five summer home security tips to help you look after your home this summer, and reduce the risk of needing the help of an emergency locksmith. Shut all the windows and doors It sounds obvious, but this is the number one way that burglars gain entry during the warmer months. Remembering to close windows and doors when you’re not in is essential in stopping opportunists. This also applies when you are in but in another area of the house. You would be surprised at how many burglaries we attend where the burglar has walked in through the front door while a family are soaking up the sun in the back garden. Put your post on hold If you’re going away for more than a couple of days, keeping your post safe and out of sight is the best thing to hide the fact that you’re away. There’s nothing that screams ‘we’re on holiday!’ more than a mound of post in the porch. Royal Mail’s Keepsafe Service stores letters for up to 66 days and can also help prevent mail theft and fraud. Don’t share your movements on social media While you might think you’re only sharing your holiday plans with your friends and family, there are numerous ways that thieves...

Keeping Your Keys and Home Safe

Recently we read about a spate of burglaries, where thieves have been stealing keys through letterboxes and even cat flaps!  With no end to the tactics burglars will try to steal your possessions, you need to be on your toes and make sure you are sensible about where you keep your valuables. Thieves have been known to reach through the letterbox and take the keys either out of the front door (if they can reach) or from a nearby table or shelf.  These could be your house keys, in which case they will let themselves in and steal what they want, or they could be your car keys, in which case you may wake up to find your vehicle missing from the drive.  Whatever keys, or valuables you leave close to the doors, you may risk losing them and much more in the event of an attempted theft. So, what can you do to keep your home and belongings safe? Lock all doors and windows before you go to bed and when you’re out of the house – it is also important to keep these locked when you’re outside in the back garden Keep your handbags, wallets and other portable valuables out of sight Don’t leave the keys in the lock after you have locked the door Keep tools and other outdoor equipment locked away in a shed, outbuilding or garage Make sure you don’t leave garden furniture or wheelie bins where they can be manoeuvred to gain access to your windows Taking these steps can act as a deterrent to would-be thieves. Another way to protect your home...

Increase home security to reduce home insurance costs

Your home is one of the biggest purchases that you will make, and you will want to make sure that it is protected. Not only that, but ensuring security is a top priority that keeps you and your family safe from opportunists and intruders. But did you also know that enhancing your home security can reduce your home insurance costs? By taking a few extra precautions, you can save some hard earned cash and know that you’ve done everything you can to protect your home and family. Here are our top five tips on how to keep your property safe and keep your home insurance premium low: 1.Use the right locks Some home insurance policies will want to know what type of locks you have on the external doors in your house. The five-lever mortice deadlock that conforms to BS 3621 is one of the most secure locks on the market, and if you have these at home, you may even get a discount on your insurance premium. Combine it with an automatic rim latch lock for even better protection.  Our Anti Snap Locks are proven to combat lock snapping – a common way for thieves to force entry into your home and have been used successfully​ in Police and City Council target hardening programmes. The SS312 Sold Secure Diamond and BSI TS007:2014 3 Star accreditations mean that the cylinder has passed lock snapping tests. 2. Use window locks Ensure that you have sturdy window locks throughout the house – with downstairs being a particular priority. Lock doors and windows when you go out, even if you’re not long....

Changing the Locks When a Relationship Breaks Down – What are Your Rights?

The end of a relationship can be a very difficult time and it’s understandable that in some circumstances, you will want to keep your ex-partner out of the home that you used to share if you are still living there. Whilst the simple solution would be to change the locks to prevent them from entering, whether you rent or own the property, the circumstances where you can do this are very limited. This blog post is designed to help you understand what your rights are: If you are married or in a civil partnership and live together Whether your home is your property, or rented, and regardless of whether just you or both of your own or rent the home, neither you nor your ex-partner have the right to change the locks. Through marriage or civil partnership, both parties have the legal right to be in the home unless a court has ordered that one of you be excluded. If you and your ex-partner own or rent your home together, but are unmarried If you jointly own or rent your home with an ex-partner, despite the end of your relationship, neither of you have the right to lock the other out as both of you have a legal right to enter the home unless a court has ordered otherwise. If you own or rent the home If your home is in your name, either on the title deeds or the tenancy agreement, it’s legal for you to change your locks. However, it’s important to note that you can only do so after you have given your ex-partner notice to...
Stop Burglars from Spring Cleaning your Home

Stop Burglars from Spring Cleaning your Home

With spring in full swing and summer on the horizon, it’s a prime time for thieves and burglars who love nothing more than an open door or window. At Chubb Locksmiths, we would like to remind you all to spring clean your home security, and to ensure that you have things in place to stop opportunist burglars in their tracks. Here are some of the things that you can do to keep your home safe this spring and summer: 1. Rethink what you store in your garage or shed During the warmer months, people will often use expensive equipment to do the gardening, only to then put it in a shed or garage that doesn’t have adequate locking systems. Think about what items you keep in your garage or shed, and if necessary, install secure locks. 2. Don’t go out with the windows or doors open Open windows and doors are an invitation to opportunists passing your home. Before you leave the room or house, make sure that you close them properly. You would be surprised at the tiny spaces people can get through. 3. Remove keys Once you have locked the door, remove the keys. Leaving them in means thieves could potentially smash their way in and unlock the door. Although you may think this method of break-in would be noisy and unappealing to burglars, it is one that we see all too often. 4. Lock doors behind you If you are going to be at the back of the house or in the garden, leaving the front door open can be an easy mistake. Just a simple...

Why Home Security Should be High on your List When Moving House

A survey by lock manufacturer Yale asked 2,000 people about their top concerns when moving into a new home. Of the top 50 results the survey revealed that home security is 43rd on the list of priorities. Home security was beaten by things such as how much decorating there’d be before the house felt like their own, or whether there’s enough space for a dishwasher. However not paying attention to your home security before you move in could leave your home vulnerable to theft, damage and the associated costs. Why do we ignore home security? Express.co.uk has revealed that only 43% of people own a home security product. In addition, 70% don’t bother to install a burglar alarm and 60% would ignore it if it was going off. Shockingly, it’s also been found that 16% of people don’t even lock their doors and windows when they leave the house! However new homes are more vulnerable to home security threats since they are more easily targeted by burglars. In fact, figures from the Home Office report that homeowners in the first 12 months of living in their new property are nearly twice as likely to be burgled. This may be due to many break-ins being committed by burglars who are within two miles of the targeted home. Living close by gives thieves the chance to learn about the houses on the market, as well as your daily routine or signs that you’re away once you’ve moved in. The average burglary takes between 6 and 10 minutes, so it’s extremely important to properly secure your new home when moving. Moving checklist:...

The Benefits of installing ABS Anti Snap Locks

If you want to improve your home security, installing high security locks is a sensible place to start.  It will strengthen your first line of defence and make it more difficult for anyone to break into your property. The majority of doors in the UK are fitted with standard cylinder locks, but armed with a hammer or screwdriver and no necessary expertise, a burglar can break this type of lock in under 3 minutes.  Once they have snapped the cylinder the rest of the lock becomes vulnerable and in very little time they will have gained unauthorised access to your property and the belongings therein. You might have several locking points or even deadbolts fitted to your door, but the main lock cylinder is the weakest point and once this is compromised your other attempts at home security may be futile. So, how to protect your home from lock snapping? Install Anti Snap Locks ABS locks feature a strengthened anti snap cylinder which will protect your property against lock snapping, bumping, drilling or picking – common techniques which burglars use to force their way into your home. Standard euro cylinder locks can be directly replaced by anti snap locks very quickly by a professional locksmith.  If anyone should attempt to snap the lock it will only break at the anti-snap line, leaving the rest of the locking mechanism intact and thus protecting you against forced entry. Whilst you can order ABS anti snap locks online and fit them yourself it is worth remembering that even a high security lock that has been incorrectly fitted may not protect you in...

Is House Sitting the Newest Form of Home Security?

Lights, noise, cars parked on the drive – all the signs that someone is at home – are strong deterrents for potential burglars looking for easy targets. But what about when you’re away for a weekend or you’re on holiday? Of course, you can have your neighbours take in your mail to make it less obvious that you’re away, or watch your home for you, however your home is still vulnerable to theft or damage when left unoccupied. Burglars can be extremely resourceful, which means that simply locking your doors and windows isn’t enough. This Is Money claims that 80% of burglaries occur in unoccupied homes. And according to Moneyfacts.co.uk, it’s estimated that the average home insurance claim for theft or damage in an unoccupied home is £2,146. Not only this, but coming home from your holiday to find that your possessions have been tampered with or taken, and your home intruded, can have a severely distressing emotional impact. That’s why an increasing number of homeowners are looking to house sitting as an additional home security measure. While you’re away having a trusted house-sitter will help to put off thieves from targeting your property, and they can also ensure that your home is protected from unexpected damages. House sitting and home security in the UK Research from Policy Expert shows that 45% of homeowners in the UK rely on house sitters when going away:   68% trust in family and friends 20% ask their neighbours to check in 25% of house sitters pop in every now and then 15% of them stay for the duration of the holiday  ...
Going Back to Basics with Home Security

Going Back to Basics with Home Security

The 2016 National Home Security Month campaign reported that a burglary happens in the UK around every 40 seconds. Having your property broken into and your possessions stolen or damaged is a horrifying thought, though with a few basic home security measures burglary can be prevented.   In fact, Police.uk has stated that homes with no security measures in place are five times more likely to be burgled than those with simple security measures. Here we’ll share some of these simple things you can do to protect your home and ensure your safety: Keep your front and back door and windows locked In the UK it’s estimated that 40% of burglaries occur when a house is empty. This shows that even if you are home, you’re still vulnerable to someone trespassing and stealing. Keeping your front and back door locked will make it harder for burglars to break in. And something as simple as installing a deadlock and high quality anti-snap locks on your doors could deter burglars altogether. If effective home security measures are evident, the chances are burglars will not target your property. Making sure that you lock windows and doors will also keep your home insurance valid if you do need to make a claim. Your insurer might not pay out if there are no signs of a forced entry, so don’t forget to remind the people in your house on this easy precaution! Team up with your neighbours It has been found that for every 100 crimes, over a quarter have been prevented by Neighbourhood Watch schemes. Neighbourhood Watch schemes are a key crime prevention...

Securing your Rented Home on a Budget

With a decline in the number of new houses being built and house prices increasing by up to 7% per year, renting a property is now an attractive option.  In fact, it was recently revealed that in many cities around the UK, including London and Cambridge, renting is still cheaper than buying.  If you are going down the rental route, chances are it is a temporary arrangement whilst you can save up the money needed to put down a deposit on a new house, so with this in mind you will need to spend your hard-earned cash wisely. We have a few tips that can help you to secure your rented property on a budget: Test lighting in communal areas – poorly lit hallways and staircases in apartment blocks make for tempting burglary targets, so by testing the lighting in your communal areas you can report any lights that are not working properly to your landlord. Your neighbours might thank you for your proactivity too as it will also make their property more secure. Research crime stats for the area – whilst it doesn’t make the best bedtime reading, researching the history of crime in your area may reveal crime hotspots and areas to avoid, which might be helpful prior to signing a lease – particularly if you are torn between two properties. Replace your door locks – of course you will need to check with your landlord first, but changing the locks will give you peace of mind that previous tenants can no longer access the property. By upgrading to high security locks such as ABS anti snap...