During the long months of lockdown and the restrictions enforced by the COVID-19 pandemic, it was easy to think that the UK was experiencing a period of low crime. While crime, in general, did decrease, it still sat well above the figures for 2016-17 and years before that.
As a homeowner or a tenant, this means that while it may seem like that broken window lock isn’t a big deal because there’s less property crime than a few years ago, the reverse is actually true. Here’s a look at why crime rates mean home security is more important than ever in 2022.
The crime rate big picture
Let’s start by looking at a few stats from 2020-21 to give us a bigger picture of what was going on. In England & Wales (Scotland composes their own stats) there were 5.44 million crimes with a crime rate of 77.6 per 1,000 people.
There were 600 homicides across the countries with 145 of these taking place in London. But the North West was the region with the highest homicide rate. There were also 1.93 million theft offences and just over 59,000 robberies.
Changing face of local crime
There are interesting trends in the period from 2019 until 2021.
Robbery, burglary, shoplifting and theft were all lower in this period but much of this was due to the restrictions that were in place. As shops were shut and people were working from home, opportunities were greatly reduced for theft, burglary and vandalism.
Violent crimes such as assault, harassment and homicide all continued to rise, following the trend of previous years. Other offences such as drunk and disorderly behaviour have also risen after the lockdowns ended as people were free to go to pubs and nightclubs once more.
How this impacts home security
While the overall decrease in burglary stats makes it seem that it’s okay to be a little slack on your home security, the opposite is true.
For starters, there’s a strong indication that as more people return to pre-COVID working patterns, burglary figures will rise once more. Opportunities for thieves and burglars will naturally increase and therefore the number of cases will also increase.
Also, as it was harder to have a tradesman visit your home during the pandemic, many properties are behind on basic maintenance. This often means that they haven’t had a security audit or similar check for some years and homeowners may not spot that there are potential weaknesses in their home security.
Protecting your home
Getting the right security in place is still very important for homeowners and something tenants should be aware of. With the right checks by a professional locksmith, for example, you can be sure your doors and window locks are robust enough to protect your home. Adding a CCTV system or security lights can also reduce the chance of your home being targeted.
Take this opportunity to make sure your home security is up to standard so you can reduce the risk of ever featuring in crime stats.
Contact Security Masters for a no-obligation security audit for your home or business.