On the back of recent claims figures for garden thefts, Sainsburys Home Insurance is urging us to pay more attention to our garden security and to be on the look-out for green-fingered thieves this summer. The claims figures confirm an average garden theft home insurance for the year to January 2008 of just over £291.
Research from Sainsbury’s indicates that around 34% of items stolen are worth under £50, 23% are worth £50-£100, 26% are worth £101-£400 and 11% of valued at £401-£1,000. It's estimated that around 3% of stolen garden items are worth more than £1,000.
Commenting on the figures, Neil Laird, Manager of Sainsburys Home Insurance said: "Garden theft is on the increase and people need to take care to protect their homes. Homeowners need to review their garden security and ensure they have adequate insurance. Homes seen to have 'rich-pickings' that are left unsecured, may be targeted again so as well as tightening up security, it's worth picking a home insurance policy that allows you to benefit from and protect your no claims discount.".
Sainsburys is encouraging homeowners to fight back against garden thieves and take the following action:
- Take photograph's of your valuable garden ornaments and mark property with your postcode
- Start up or join a local Neighbourhood Watch Scheme
- Put a brick or other heavy item at the bottom of large pots to weigh them down to prevent lifting
- If you have garden statutes keep them close to the house and where possible bolt them to the ground. Otherwise weigh them down with heavy objects
- Add gravel on driveways and paths. This will help alert you to anyone approaching the house or garden via these routes
- Check with your home insurer to confirm if any expensive items need a specialist policy to cover them
- Buy and install outside security lighting that turns on automatically
- Consider installing or extending a burglar alarm to cover your shed and other outbuildings if they contain property
- Tools taken from your shed could be used to break into your home so ensure sheds and outbuildings are secure