Watch out because more thieves are about in the summer, according home insurer Aviva.
Analysis of home insurance claims over the past 10 years show thefts from gardens, sheds, garages and homes rise by 50% in the summer and while forced entries in to property fall, thieves still get in and claims from thefts from inside homes rise 10%.
The insurer puts this fluctuation in claims figures down to poor home security as homeowners fail to take care of their possessions in the warmer weather.
Valuable garden furniture and toys like trampolines and children’s bicycles tend to be left out over night.
Many leave doors and windows open on warm nights, allowing thieves simple access to their homes.
Jonathan Cracknell, household underwriter at Aviva said: “Most homeowners are pretty savvy when it comes to securing their main home while they are away on holiday, but thieves are still sneaking in through open windows and doors, so don’t forget to have a quick look around and check you have shut and locked everything.
Thefts from gardens, sheds and out-buildings are 50% higher in July and August compared to January – with bikes and tools among the favourite targets for thieves.
Aviva suggests a security check list for homes and gardens in the summer:
Leave a key with a responsible relative or friend to regularly check your home if you go away
Put toys, bicycles and garden equipment in a shed or garage
Make sure locks work
Ask a neighbour to draw curtains, clear mail and remove rubbish bins after collection
Set a timer to turn lights on and off
Leave a car on the drive – but hide the keys inside the house
“If you are going away for longer, the key is not to advertise your home is empty, make sure you’ve brought in the wheelie bins, if you can leave a car in the drive and have some timers set for lights to turn on once it gets dark.”