Information about stopping thieves and keeping your garden secure.
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If you have a garden, it’s the first thing an intruder will have to deal with if they want to break into your house. There are also items in your garden which a thief may wish to steal.
Take some simple steps to secure your garden, shed and garage.
Keep hedges, walls and fences low at the front of your house. Keep this to a maximum of 1.2 metres high. This will make it harder for thieves to go unseen by neighbours or people passing by.
Install locked gates so it's hard to get into the back or sides. Rear fences and walls should be a minimum 1.8 to 2 metres in height. Trellis topping or an intruder deterrent strip can make climbing difficult.
Grow aggressive shrubbery to make it hard for intruders to climb through. Ideal plants include berberis, blue spruce, common holly, giant rhubarb, golden bamboo, firethorn, shrub rose, pencil Christmas tree, juniper and rubus (bramble).
Security lighting around your property can act as a deterrent. Ask whether neighbours would see someone with the light. Careful use of lighting will inform you or neighbours if someone is there.
Avoid floodlighting that can cause problems to neighbouring properties.
Make sure waste / recycling bins aren't in a place which will make them easy to use to step or climb over fences/walls or access windows.
Lock away any garden implements, furniture or tools in a shed, garage or outside store. Items such as ladders can be useful for breaking into your home.
- Photograph valuable items of garden furniture or tools and keep a record of the make, model, colour and serial numbers.
- Use a UV pen or DNA Marking Kit to security mark your tools or furniture with your house number and postcode
- Use a chain to lock garden tools and furniture together, ensure the anchor point is securely fixed to the ground or solid structure
- Fit a good quality hasp and padlock to the door, make sure it is fitted with dome headed or non-returnable screws to prevent tampering
- Sold Secure or Secured By Design products should be considered
- Secure windows and don’t let intruders see inside
- Depending on the type of window, you could consider fitting internal window grills, heavy wire mesh or reinforced glass
- If a window opens, a window lock should be fitted
- If you have an intruder alarm, consider extending it to cover sheds, garages and outbuildings. Ensure that there is a visible external sounder box
- If you do not have a secure shed, don’t leave items lying out bring items inside
- If your garage joins with your home and there is a through door, it should be to the same security standard as your front or back door, and when not being used you should keep it locked.
PC Stevie McGill from Edinburgh shows us how you can keep your belongings secure.
Neighbourhood Watch operates in many local communities. Find out if a group exists in your area or how to set a group up by speaking to your local community policing team by dialling 101.
For general crime prevention advice and tips, speak to your local Crime Reduction Officer / Designing Out Crime Officer or community policing team by dialling 101.
For more in-depth advice about building crime prevention into your home, get more information about what our Architectural Liaison services can offer you.
If you see signs of a break-in at your home, like a smashed window or an open door, then DO NOT enter - the intruder may still be inside. Instead, go to a neighbour and call the police on 101. If you think the intruder is still there call 999.