Ensuring safety in home refurbishment, design or construction

When it comes to refurbishing or rebuilding a home, being aware of key trends or requirements is a must. Somewhat surprisingly, many of those involved in the industry are unsure of who is responsible for home security measures. Should someone refurbishing a home pay close attention to its security?

According to research collected by IronmongeryDirect, they should be. Preventing burglaries is just as important as ever – and home security measures that can be fitted easily during a refurbishment have been proven to help protect households.

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Current burglary statistics

According to an Office for National Statistics report, there were 1,920 burglaries per day in the UK, which equates to 1.33 each minute. Each home burglary costs a homeowner an average of £3,600, which means those involved in home building, renovation and refurbishment need to place a higher amount of scrutiny on their home security systems. But which work best?

The best security measures for homeowners

First and foremost, a home needs a good lock system. Locks as a security device have existed for over 4,000 years, continually changing through refinement and new technology since 2,000BC.

861838If you’re wondering why it’s so important to fit a good lock system on properties, you may be surprised to learn that 30 per cent of all burglaries are through open windows or unlocked doors. A further 34 per cent of burglars use the front door as an entry point, with deadbolts and other preventative methods most important when it comes to improving security.

Even the act of focusing on security when you’re rebuilding or redeveloping a home can help deter theft. A report from the University of North Carolina surveyed convicted burglars, of which 60 per cent admitted they avoided homes that had alarmed security systems in place. It’s clearly vital to place home security at the heart of what you do. According to a Royal Statistical Society report used in IronmongeryDirect’s research, a home without a security system is 300 per cent more likely to be burgled.

zab15scYou don’t need to go overboard on deterrents either. Instead, fitting measures such as window locks, indoor lights, double door locks and external motion sensors are 50 times safer than their undefended counterparts. Even just fitting effective window and door locks makes a house or building 12 times safer.

Burglar alarms may not be as effective as first thought, as studies have found that the preventative effect has lessened since the 1990s. However, it’s important to mention the 60% of US burglars who factored alarms into their decision to avoid properties. To put it simply, not fitting an alarm in a property seems like an unnecessary risk.

Is CCTV worth it?

cctv_camerasAccording to the latest crime statistics, Police arrest just 14 people per 100 burglaries, which may be something to do with the poor identification of criminals. This naturally leads to a question for anyone involved in home building or refurbishment – is adding CCTV to a home property worth it?

In the same Royal Statistical Society report studied by IronmongeryDirect, homes that added CCTV on top of window locks, security chains and door locks had the highest safety rating of all – but also the smallest sample size, which is not surprising when you consider that in a survey by Which?, only five per cent of members had home CCTV.

It’s fairly clear that CCTV is helpful – but may not be worth the cost unless you live in an especially burglar-prone area, as a home is only slightly safer when it has CCTV fitted compared to having secure locks, indoor lights and external motion sensors. When you’re undertaking any aspect of a refurbishment, rebuild or construction project for a home, it’s clear that security measures need to be in place to help prevent burglaries.