Press release

Clocks going back

Thursday 23 October 2008

  • October to December most popular months for theft claims
  • Brits 24% more likely to be burgled in November than February
  • Tuesday is the favoured day of the week for criminals to break in

A study released today by Saga Home Insurance* shows that UK households become an increased target for criminals as the nights draw in. It is believed that the sudden increase in theft claims is due to the clocks going back and the evenings becoming longer, combined with people leaving their homes unoccupied more frequently than most other winter months as they catch up with friends and family before Christmas.

The study also looked at the days of the week homeowners were least likely to be victims of burglary over the last ten years. Monday is the least popular day for crooks to go looting and Tuesday is the most popular day.

Saga Home Insurance advises that adopting just a few sensible and basic measures during these months can give you the peace of mind of knowing that you have taken positive steps to deter opportunist thieves and protect your home.

Some basic precautions are:

* Keep windows locked and closed, especially when you go out.

* Use timers inside the home to turn lights on and off to make the house look occupied at night.

* Install and use outside lights to deter burglars, lights which have sensors that turn themselves on and off at dawn and dusk are recommended.

* Fit all sheds with strong padlocks to stop burglars using tools such as hammers and ladders to break into your property.

* Do not leave keys near a door because thieves could use hooks and magnets on a stick through the letterbox to get hold of them.

* Keep all presents out of sight until Christmas Day.

* Keep a radio or TV on if you are going out for the evening.

* Permanently mark all your contents with your postcode so they can be traced back to you. Even make a note of any codes on any gifts you have purchased, for example, a frame number on a bike.

However, it appears that even burglars find time to celebrate the Christmas season. The research showed that the three days you are least likely to be burgled are Christmas Day, Boxing Day and the 27 th December. Theft claims are also lower during January and February, in part due to the colder weather and also because people are spending more time at home. For instance, you are almost a quarter (24%) more likely to be burgled in November than in February.

For more information on Saga Home Insurance please visit www.saga.co.uk/home or call 0800 068 8719.

-ENDS-

Notes to Editors-

* Figures taken from Saga Home Insurance theft claim data over the last 10 years.

For further press information please contact the Saga Press Office on: 01303 771529.

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