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Fakenham insurers Lycetts' heatwave warning as Norfolk Constabulary launches Operation Protect to reduce domestic burglaries in warmer summer months



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With a heatwave expected later this week, an insurance expert is advising West Norfolk homeowners to be vigilant about security as police warn of a potential spike in home burglaries.

Anderson Fossett, of insurance broker Lycetts’ Fakenham office, issued the warning as Norfolk Constabulary has launched Operation Protect – a two-week campaign aimed at raising awareness and reducing domestic burglaries during the warmer summer months.

Fossett said: “When temperatures increase, people naturally tend to open more windows and doors. It’s all too easy to forget to secure them at night, making it easier for opportunistic burglars to strike.

Anderson Fossett, of insurance broker Lycetts’ Fakenham office.
Anderson Fossett, of insurance broker Lycetts’ Fakenham office.

“They will often target small, expensive items such as watches and jewellery as they can be easy to find and sold-on swiftly.

“A common mistake is to renew home insurance cover each year without re-calculating the value of possessions, simply giving an ‘educated guess’ of their worth.

“An item’s value for insurance purposes is how much it would cost to buy new, not what it cost when you bought it.

Burglary.
Burglary.

“Getting legitimate valuations is the safest route to being sufficiently insured. Homeowners should make a detailed inventory – item by item, room by room – and be diligent about receipt-keeping for high value items.

“Some possessions, such as expensive jewellery, collectables, family heirlooms, valuable antiques or fine art may need separate specialist cover.”

Although Norfolk has the second lowest burglary rate in the country – just 1,347 residential burglaries in 2021 according to Gov.UK, Crime outcomes in England and Wales, year to December 2021 – Fossett said it was important not to be complacent.

He urged householders to consider bolstering home security with smart technology.

“We have witnessed an upsurge in the number of clients investing in smart home security systems and doorbell cameras, as well as app-controlled locks, smart motion-sensor cameras and wireless light switches, which are all great ways of improving security and reducing the risk profile for insurers.

“However, while technology has its advantages, homeowners should be mindful that it can also pose risks.

“Social media can be a useful resource for would-be burglars, as they can easily scope out your daily schedules to establish when the house is most likely to be empty. Review privacy settings on social media platforms, refrain from over-sharing information, and only share holiday snaps once you’ve returned home.

“It’s important to check your home insurance policy too, as some may pay out less or not at all if you’ve publicised that you’re away on social media.”



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