Avoid a break-in while you’re on a break

You’ve shiv­ered your way through the last few months, but now that sum­mer is fi­nally peek­ing its cheer­ful head around the sea­sonal cor­ner, it’s time to fo­cus your en­er­gies on get­ting the most out of the sun.

The Tribune (NZ) - - BACKYARD BANTER -

But here’s a warn­ing. While you’re plan­ning your sum­mer ad­ven­tures, don’t forget to be mind­ful of your per­sonal be­long­ings too, be­cause while you’re out­side en­joy­ing the sun, op­por­tunis­tic crim­i­nals might make their way in­side your home.

Ruth Colenso, AMI Claims gen­eral man­ager, says most thieves are picky about the types of items they’ll steal from your home with small (easy to grab and hide) items of high value such as jew­ellery, com­put­ers and other elec­tri­cal goods high on their pri­or­ity lists.

‘‘How­ever, thieves of­ten prove less par­tic­u­lar about the lo­ca­tion of their tar­gets. Many peo­ple don’t re­alise that most bur­glar­ies are crimes of op­por­tu­nity and that your home is vul­ner­a­ble whether you live in the Auck­land CBD or on a re­mote West Coast farm.’’

Here are a few ways to pre­vent your place from be­com­ing an­other bur­glary statis­tic. Make your house looked lived in

Whether you’re away for a day or a few weeks, it’s im­por­tant to make sure your house still looks lived in. Hang some wash­ing out and put your lights on a timer. If you have a sec­ond car, park it in the drive­way or ask a neigh­bour to park their spare there. A sure sign of an empty house is an over­flow­ing let­ter­box, so ask some­one to col­lect your mail ev­ery day you’re away. Or­gan­ise a house-sit­ter

If you’d pre­fer it if some­one gave your home ex­tra spe­cial at­ten­tion while you’re away, ask a trusted friend or neigh­bour to house-sit – es­pe­cially if you’ve got pets. Move valu­ables away from the win­dows

Never leave lap­tops, TVs, jew­ellery or cash near win­dows. Out of sight, out of mind . . . Shut the win­dow, close the door, hide the lad­der

Open win­dows and doors pro­vide fur­ther temp­ta­tion for op­por­tunis­tic thieves. Even if you’re only head­ing out for the day, firmly lock your win­dows and doors be­hind you. Lad­ders should be locked away as th­ese can be used to ac­cess open sec­ond storey win­dows. Be sen­si­ble on so­cial me­dia

We don’t rec­om­mend an­nounc­ing that you’re head­ing on hol­i­day on so­cial me­dia. Neigh­bourly.co.nz is a good plat­form to let your trusted neigh­bours know you’re go­ing on hol­i­day though; send them a pri­vate mes­sage or knock on their door to ask them to keep a friendly eye out while you’re away.

Be pre­pared be­fore you head away on hol­i­day, reg­is­ter your per­sonal be­long­ings on Neigh­bourly’s Home Con­tents Locker so if the worst does hap­pen you know ex­actly what you had and how much it was worth. The Home Con­tents Locker lets you record de­tails about your per­sonal be­long­ings, up­load pho­tos of your things and PDFs of your re­ceipts, and list brand, model, se­rial num­ber, and pur­chase de­tails.

Open win­dows and doors pro­vide temp­ta­tion for op­por­tunis­tic thieves.

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