Convicted burglars have spoken out about some of the tricks of their trade to help homeowners protect themselves from becoming a break-in victim.
Eighty-six per cent of thieves do all they can to avoid bumping into the occupant, with three-quarters abandoning a robbery attempt altogether because they had heard someone in the house or returning home.
And night-time burglars – termed “creepers” – admit they would hide to avoid discovery.
Mike Bullman, Director of Safe Security Solutions in Essex said: “Most burglars will target a property they believe to be unoccupied, meaning encounters are rare.
A fifth of burglars said that the change in the law which allows homeowners a reasonable allowance of force, has made them undergo additional occupancy checks to ensure they didn’t meet the householder and risk confrontation in the first place.
Two fifths of burglars wear cheap trainers when committing crimes, disposing of them after their thefts, to avoid leaving traceable marks at the scene if they believe the property is of high value and the Police may investigate.
Over three quarters of these criminals wear gloves, or even socks, on their hands to avoid leaving finger prints.
One in five burglars uses a hat to cover their hair to disguise themselves when committing a crime but they know most domestic CCTV systems are not usable as evidence and are of poor quality.
Mike said “The chances of meeting the burglar are quite slim but we urge house owners to think more about how to make burglars avoid their home in the first place. The question we ask people is – Why even allow them to reach your building?
Why have security?
Having full time security guards on your home property is not viable but there are security systems available on the market that can make the burglar aware that they have been detected even before they reach your property. These are called Perimeter Intrusion Detection systems or PIDS.
PIDS were originally designed for military use but have now entered the normal market and have become far more affordable.
Making the property look occupied, having locks on doors and windows, locking garages and sheds and removing valuables from sight are all very basic measures to help prevent burglary.
But they should not be your only levels of security. Stopping them before they reach your house, gives the home owner added security along with peace of mind, for their family and property”