MoneyMagpie

Jun 23

Use a safe to be safe!

The World Cup may be a damp squib for England fans but so far it has contributed to a record high in home security sales as thousands of football fans prepared for extended holidays to Brazil.

Sales of domestic security devices during March, April and May were up by 40% on the same 12-week period in 2013.

And retailers have a seen a 100 per cent increase on similar purchases in the last 12 months.

A “substantial number” were made by England supporters planning to make the 10,000 mile round-trip to South America.

Exterior appliances such as security lights, burglar alarms, CCTV cameras and window alarms – and those to protect sheds and outdoor furniture – have accounted for the biggest trade.

But sales of internal devices like fake TVs, automated lighting and motion detectors have also risen “considerably” as homeowners look for ways to safeguard unattended properties.

Tess Batley-Moss, of Redline Security, a family-run home security firm in Flint, Flintshire, said the World Cup, and the boom in summer vacations generally, is fuelling the rise in sales.

“There is, almost always, a direct correlation between the number of homeowners going on holiday and the number of home security purchases,” she said.

“More Britons are planning domestic and overseas holidays this summer than in previous years, and we have recorded an increase in sales as a result.

“Couple this with the World Cup and the result is a significant spike in purchases of home security equipment.”

According to industry forecasts, holiday sales are set to experience year-on-year growth over the next five years – an indication that consumer worries about the UK recession are fading.

The research, published in February, also found that Britons will take more than 100 million holidays in 2017, compared to just 94 million in 2013.

Thousands of these will be flying to Brazil in coming days to watch England’s fixtures, the first of which begins against Italy on Saturday.

But experts warn that burglars will be looking to take “full advantage” of unattended – and unprotected – properties this summer.

There were 227,280 domestic burglaries between April 2012 and March 2013, according to the Crime in England and Wales survey.

Batley-Moss, of Redline Security, said the majority of this year’s trade has consisted of basic alarms, locks, lights and other items each costing less than £50.

Sales of the company’s £69.99 Holiday Security Pack, which includes a motion sensor, property marking pen, and a FakeTV– an interior light which flickers to mimic a television screen –also increased by 49 per cent in the run-up to summer.

Purchases of other devices, such as timer lights and shed locks, have leapt by 65 and 71 per cent respectively.

Overall, Redline Security has seen a 104 per cent average increase in product sales in the last 12 months to June.

The company has recorded a 40 per cent spike in sales in March, April and May alone.

But the firm also conducted independent research to determine industry-wide sales statistics.

A poll of 849 homeowners found that 72 per cent of those taking a holiday this summer have or plan to increase home security before they leave, with timer and security lights among the most common deterrents.

Of these, 91 per cent have had experience of burglary and just eight per cent said they trusted the police to safeguard their properties in their absence.

A total of 18 per cent of respondents said their holidays were either to Brazil or “otherwise connected” to the World Cup where matches will “feature heavily in their day-to-day itinerary”.

Experts say a property, including its garden, sheds and outbuildings, can be “adequately” safe for around £300.

“Adding external security lights or internal motion sensors aren’t expensive but send a clear message to would-be intruders: this property is protected,” she added.

“Some lights come with CCTV installed – as soon as an intruder is detected the security light will flood the area, CCTV will begin to record and an audio warning such as a dog bark can activated.

“Nothing is or ever can be 100 per cent burglar proof, but these simple and affordable precautions may prevent opportunistic burglars from striking in your absence, keeping your home and properties safe in your absence.

“Whatever you do, don’t make their lives easy.”

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