Australia has one of the highest burglary rates on Earth: How to protect your home

by Lena Woods20 Dec 2012

According to UN statistics, Australia has one of the highest global rates of residential burglary in the world (763.9 per 100,000 population), making us second only to New Zealand (965.7 per 100,000), Belgium, the UK and the US making up the rest of the top five.

Roughly 3% of Australian households experience at least one break-in to their home, garage or shed every year and one home is burgled every three minutes at holiday time.

Thieves are generally opportunistic, breaking into homes while people are away or on hot summer nights when doors and windows are left open or unlocked.

Making it more difficult with a few simple security precautions can keep your home safe and give you some peace of mind. Here are some ideas from LJ Hooker.

  • Cancel all regular deliveries such as newspapers and milk.
  • Ask a trusted neighbour to watch your home and collect your mail or arrange for it to be held by Australia Post.
  • Secure your ladders, tools and garden implements in a lockable garage or shed.
  • If you will be away for a long time, arrange for someone to maintain the garden so it does not look neglected.
  • Trim trees and shrubs, especially around doors and windows to make sure unwanted visitors are visible.
  • Leave your valuables in a safe or away from the home.
  • Turn the phone down before you leave, an endlessly ringing phone can draw unwanted attention to a vacant home.
  • Use time-controlled light switches while you’re away to mimic someone being home.
  • Make sure you lock all doors and windows before you leave; or for greater peace of mind, ask a friend to house sit.
  • One of the best deterrents is an efficient security system.  The presence of a flashing light and siren can discourage burglars. But make sure the system is working properly - if it constantly gives false alarms it will annoy to your neighbours and eventually be ignored.

     A home that appears well cared for and is difficult for intruders to break into means you will be able to enjoy your holiday free from worry about your home