Students are at higher risk from burglaries and attempted break-ins. Here we provide some advice to protect your belongings in your Sheffield Student Accommodation. Taking steps to protect your possessions should become second nature to reduce the risks. Even though you may only view them as “things”, It’s not just the fact that they have been taken, but the emotional effect of knowing someone has been into your private space and been through your belongings.
Statistically, a higher proportion of students are vulnerable to crime.
Police research shows that students are the most targeted section of society by criminals. Although varying by location, on average, 12 out of every 1000 students in private accommodation experienced a domestic burglary. Compared to only 5 students in university accommodation. Generally, because of campus conditions, university accommodation had far more security measures than private accommodation.
With the average cost of the insurance claim to be around £950 can you afford to replace your belongings?
Don’t become complacent though, even if you’ve been burgled, as many as 11.4% of burglaries are repeat crimes.
Steps to take to reduce risk to protect your belongings in your Sheffield Student Accommodation
There’s a reason that neighbourhood watch groups work and actively reduce crime in areas. But before becoming a full curtain twitcher just a few basic steps can help.
- Show an interest in people working, or attending your vicinity. By waving or saying hello if you feel secure doing so, you might encourage rapport with those simply going about their business and deter potential thefts.
- Get to know your neighbours, especially those who live nearby full-time! If you have a good relationship with your neighbours, they will likely keep an eye on your property even when you are away on holiday.
- If visitors or workmen visit the property be sure to verify who they are. One recent scam for new tenants is people claiming to be there to perform a deep clean or work on behalf of the landlord. Once they gain entry they proceed with a distraction burglary. Verify their identity by calling us or asking them to show a form of ID. Our regular maintenance team are Brad and George.
Think about your location
Especially if you live on the ground floor level and passers-by can see into the property. Burglary is very rarely planned and most thieves are opportunistic. If your property is visible from the street consider:
- Lock doors and windows, even when you’re home
- Make your home look occupied when you are out – leave your lights on a timer switch.
- Keep valuables out of sight and never near doors, especially non-traceable jewellery, bank cards and high-value electronics.
- keep side gates locked and secured
- If you have access codes to a building never share them with anyone.
- Never leave keys near windows or entrance doors where they could be easily accessible through open windows, letterboxes or forcing entry.
- The majority of burglaries happen during the day when people aren’t home. Double-check that doors and windows are locked and any security system you have is activated. Even if you only pop out for a few minutes.
Outside your property
- Keep bikes secured with a suitable lock, even if stored in a shed or outbuilding. Register it on www.bikeregister.com to increase your chances of having it returned if it is stolen.
- Be mindful of the rubbish your putting out. Boxes for high-value items such as tv’s and laptops visible next to bins show that there are new valuable items inside the properties.
- Recycle prescription medicines correctly by taking them to the pharmacy. Thieves can see medicine bottles in the bins and the knowledge that prescription medicines may be on the property can be an attraction to thieves.
Use common sense to prepare for the worst.
Unfortunately, theft and burglary from a property can still happen. The next step is to prepare for ways to mitigate losses. Marking your belongings with smart water pens can help police track stolen items. In general, thieves won’t take unique items, but ones that are easily untraceable and easy to sell.
Having contents insurance can help to cover the cost of items taken, make sure you’re familiar with the terms and conditions of the coverage before claiming. Some bank accounts will cover things like bank cards and mobile phones, whilst your parents home insurance may cover the cost of some contents during your time away from home.
Leaving Properties Unattended – How to protect your belongings in your Sheffield Student Accommodation
Almost 70% of student accommodation is empty during the holidays. This makes Christmas, the end of term and summer a prime time for burglary. Consider taking your valuables home with you when you leave for extended periods. Keep the curtains closed and if possible use timer switches or get a housemate to occasionally switch the lights on to help the appearance of someone being at home.
Less than half of the students in rented accommodation who have a burglar alarm use it. If the property is going to be completely empty make sure it’s armed!
What to do if do experience a burglary.
- Don’t panic, being burgled can be a huge inconvenience but issues can be resolved.
- Contact the police, You’ll need to report the crime as the culprit may still be in the area. The sooner you contact them the better. If you suspect they still may be inside, Don’t go in!
- Don’t touch anything inside or out, especially surfaces. The police will dispatch the scene of crime officers to check for any forensic evidence that the perpetrator may have left.
- Make a list of everything missing or damaged. You will need to provide a list of everything taken not only for the police but to give to your insurer. On visiting the police will issue you with a crime reference number that insurers require.
- Inform the bank and or card companies. If your cards have been taken, the bank will put an immediate block on their use to prevent others from using them.
- Make the point of entry secure. If the doors or windows have been broken during the break-in these will need to be fixed immediately. Contact us to arrange the repairs as an emergency. The Police will also issue advice on how to improve any problems in the security of the building to help prevent further incidents.
About Thornsett Properties
Thornsett Properties have provided Sheffield student accommodation since 1985. We supply housing to over 650 students studying at Sheffield Uni and Sheffield Hallam Uni every year. Designed to fit with your budget whilst looking for Sheffield student accommodation. Thornsett Properties are property owners and not agents, meaning all our properties are managed by ourselves and not reliant on third parties. Our aim is to help you succeed whilst living and studying in Sheffield student accommodation