Police are reminding householders to take steps to protect their home and reduce the chance of becoming a victim of burglary.
Michelle Wilson, crime prevention officer for Banbridge and Craigavon said: “There are straight forward steps that every householder can take to make their home secure.
“Before you leave your home go into each room and make sure all windows are tightly shut and locked. You may want to consider buying window locks.
“A burglar may be less likely to enter your home if a window needs to be smashed.
“Check all doors leading into your home are secure and locked. Ensure your main garage door is shut and locked.
“Consider fitting an alarm in your home . . .
“If you are going to be away from home ask a neighbour to leave your bins out, make your house look occupied by putting lights and/or a radio on timer switches and inform local police of the dates your property will be vacant.
“We cannot stress how important it is to look out for your neighbours.
“The chances are that if a criminal targets one house in a particular street they may try another a few doors up.
“You know who lives on your street so if you see someone acting suspiciously note down any important details such as description or car registration and contact police immediately.
“It could also be worthwhile finding out if there is a neighbourhood watch scheme in your area.”
In related advice, police say that to beat the burglar you have to think like the burglar.
“How would you get in?” a spokesperson asked. “Take a step back and look at your home starting from the outside.
“Does your home look secure or is it an easy target? Can a burglar easily work at opening windows and doors unseen?
“Are your high hedges giving a burglar hiding spots? – Reduce planting to allow clear sight of your property.
“The burglar doesn’t want to be seen so light them up. Consider installing security lighting.
“Burglars will look to see if there is an alarm installed. . . But remember you need to activate the alarm for it to work, even at night time.
“Forget about dummy systems . . .
“Put valuables out of sight; burglars like to window shop. . . Going away?Cancel deliveries and ask someone to lift post.”
If you would like further advice on home security please contact your local crime prevention officer on 101.