Christmas, it’s a time for families to spend time together and enjoy the festive period, quite often all going round to a relative’s house to share presents and most likely eating a delicious turkey and some roast potatoes. The holiday season is a great time for us but it’s also a great time for a less desirable element of society: thieves.

Yes, Christmas comes for criminals too as they know that many houses will be loaded with not only the usual electronics and valuables but with presents being stored away it means that each house is viewed as a veritable treasure trove.

Aside from the usual security measures like burglar alarms and locks on doors there are actually a few more measures to take and even steps that can help alleviate the loss if you are unfortunate enough to be burgled this season.

Keeping presents in unorthodox places is a strategy that many parents employ to maintain the element of surprise on the 25th but burglars now know the common places and will target them first, places such as the garage or under the bed are ones which you can guarantee the thief will check. Putting gifts in the loft if you have one is a good option as many people use the loft as a place to put all manner of junk so a thief won’t want to go trawling through that.

The common thief is essentially looking to make a swift attack and be able to make a hasty exit, it’s unlikely that an especially dedicated crook is going to steal a piano from your front room but they will go for Hifi equipment or this year’s popular games console. Keeping the goods under your TV in a cupboard under the TV is much more secure as it doesn’t advertise any goods to the thief passing the window.

Sometimes methods like this are not going to deter all criminals and so should you actually think about what steps can help you if you are targeted. Getting home insurance is key to this, you can have all the security measures in the world but if a thief breaks in and gets away with something whilst you are away then you are still left with presents stolen, broken windows and possibly doors which will all cost money unless you have contents insurance.

Aside from the run up to Christmas New Year’s eve is the biggest night of the criminal’s calendar where people are typically out, and there’s plenty of parties and noise from fireworks to commit crimes under the cover of darkness. One possible step is having timers set on your houselights; these create the illusion of someone being home when they are not. Leaving music playing quietly in your house would give off a better impression that there’s people home partying.

As well as this keep an eye out for your neighbours, if they are away for prolonged periods of time over the holidays then make sure of little things like putting their bins out for them, even if there isn’t anything in them, also pushing any post and letters through the letterbox so they aren’t left dangling or mounting up would also help the illusion that the house isn’t empty.

Overall for this holiday season when you’re out enjoying yourself you don’t want to come home to a raided house and so making sure you trick the thieves and ensure you have insurance will make sure you don’t fall victim to the house thieves.

About the author

Andyt Adams is an experienced UK based financial writer