Shocking figures from the Office for National Statistics show that over 291,000 residential burglaries took place across England and Wales from July 2018 to June 2019, with an even more surprising fact that a burglary in the UK takes place every 108 seconds.
Property owners are not only left with strong emotional consequences to deal with but also high costs. In fact, the average cost of a residential burglary can sum up to over £3,000. This value is significantly higher for luxury homeowners, where target items for theft include cash, cards, wallets (identity theft), purses and jewellery.
There is no doubt that luxury properties are a prime target for theft and vandalism, so when in the planning process for your new build, make sure you research all options for physical security. The security market currently offers an array of solution for protection such as CCTV, alarms, security shutters, gates, etc. Keep in mind: addressing physical security at an early stage of construction widens your options; this can be a little more difficult if it were at a retrofit stage. Below you will find brief tips on influential factors to be aware of.
Prevention is key
Complete an in-depth assessment of your property’s potential vulnerabilities. This will allow you to identify threats and provide a better search journey for risk mitigation products. Properties that do not have security measures in place are 5 times more likely to be broken into than those that do.
An intruder will be inclined to target properties they deem easy to break into and can be out of in less than 10 minutes. You can find products that are security rated and can delay the duration of an attack long enough for response teams to act.
Making a property appear secure from an external point of view will discourage burglars from even considering your home as a target.
Understand the risk implied by the location of a property. Densely populated areas such as inner-city properties, particularly in London, are at most risk. Nonetheless, prestige properties in more rural areas often also see attempted burglaries. Properties located in strong weather areas must also be protected from natural means such as wind, rain, hail, dust and extreme heat. Consider the risks implied if your new build will be empty for extended periods of time, for example, if it were a secondary home.
Location also plays an important role within strategic planning due to the potential legal problems an owner can encounter.
Individual councils and local authorities will have their own planning policies and design guidelines, making planning permissions for properties in London, for example regarding external shutters, often to be difficult.
Similar restrictions can apply to historic domestic properties in order to preserve their architectural integrity and character. It is highly recommended to contact your local council regarding planning.
Planning physical security for new properties should be approached with a strategic mindset and aiming to reduce costly consequences in the unfortunate case of an attack. Taking advantage of a new construction at an early stage will also reduce costs of repairs and reparations on physical security over the first few years. This will also benefit owners by giving them wider options for selecting fixtures and fittings to tailor the property to their taste.