Break and enter remains one of the most prevalent types of crime in Australia today and one of the crimes of greatest concern to the general public. The International Crime Victimisation Survey (ICVS), which commenced in 1989, reported data in 2003/04 from 30 developed countries, including Australia. In Australia, the prevalence of burglary was estimated at 2.5 percent. This was higher than the international average (1.8%) and placed Australia in the fifth highest position of the 30 countries. The 2005 Crime & Safety Survey, conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics highlighted that of the 7.8 million households in Australia, 3.3% had at least one break-in to their home, a garage or shed; and 2.6% had at least one attempted break in in the previous 12 month period. Law enforcement activities in each State continue to push the rate of burglary down each year. However it remains a significant risk for those who are unprepared. Insurers assess the risk of crime against your property and often offer considerable premium discounts , in some cases of up to 15%, if the property is protected by several key security measures.
All doors to the property should be fitted with a double locking deadlock, installed by a professional locksmith. In many locations the failure to have deadlocks fitted will mean that some insurers will not offer you insurance for your assets. Locks installed must be compliant with Australian Standard AS4145. Doors should also be solid core construction with a peephole and fitted inside a solid door jam.
All windows to the property should be fitted with a locking mechanism, installed by a professional locksmith. In many locations the failure to have window locks fitted will mean that some insurers will not offer you insurance for your assets. Locks installed must be compliant with Australian Standard AS4145. Glass in windows should be laminated safety glass.
A back to base or monitored alarm is the best choice in the majority of circumstances and will attract the most favourable view of many insurers. In some locations some insurers will not offer coverage beyond a certain limit unless the property is protected by a professionally installed alarm system. A security alarm installed in Australia must be compliant with AS2201.
Window / Door Security Screens
Many insurers will offer further discounts if professional security screens or bars are fitted to all of the windows and doors of a property. Care must be taken with this installation in order to ensure that building occupants can still escape the building in the event of a fire.
Gardens & External Fittings
Make sure that gardens are clean and tidy and do not create areas that would help screen a theft whilst in the act of breaking in. Make sure that trees, lattice and external fittings to the property are not providing a convenient ladder for a thief to access an upstairs window. Make sure that all fences and gates are in good working order to deter unauthorised access to your property. Make sure that your power meter is contained in a solid metal cabinet and is secured by an electricity authority lock to resist tampering.