According to the figures available from the Ministry of the Interior, around 490,000 households were victims of a burglary or an attempted burglary of their main residence in 2018. If the successive confinements of 2020 have of course led to a sharp drop of this delinquency (- 20%), the desires of escape of the French are now as many advantages for the criminals. The security of your home must therefore be a priority as soon as you move in.
Install an eyecup and a guard at the front door, make sure your shutters are solid, the window locking systems and, depending on the location of your home, do not hesitate to invest in an alarm system (only 8% of households would be equipped, according to INSEE).
Without falling into paranoia, it is also necessary to adopt good habits on a daily basis to avoid being an easy target. For example, avoid putting your address on your key ring and remember to double-close the door, even when you are at home. Likewise, carefully store all garden tools that could constitute weapons or scaffolding.
In addition, when you go on vacation for several days, or even weeks, it is important to conceal your absence, possibly asking a neighbor or a relative to visit you regularly. In addition to watering your plants, he will be able to open the shutters, empty the mailbox, turn on the radio for a few hours … Failing that, forward your mail and install a timer on your lighting or television.
The underside of theft insurance
Despite these precautionary measures, there is no such thing as zero risk. This is why it is necessary to be well insured. Comprehensive home contracts generally include a guarantee against theft. It is still necessary to check the quality of its coverage. First of all, look at what forms of theft are taken in charge by breaking and entering, with violence, by clandestine intrusion in the presence of the owner or by using false keys. Please note, only the types of flights listed in the contract are covered.
Also be aware of the security conditions imposed by your insurer. Depending on the company, this can range from a simple lock to the installation of gates or an alarm, without which the warranty will not apply. The limit for repayment of possessions can also vary, as can the coverage or not of acts of vandalism. In any case, if you have been burgled, contact law enforcement directly without touching anything, as well as your insurer.
Peaceful vacation operation
Each summer, the gendarmerie and police services mobilize across the country to monitor the unoccupied homes of individuals as part of the “Operation Tranquility Vacation” (OTV). Since 2009, the system has also been extended to all school holidays.
To benefit from it, all you need to do is report your absence to the police station in your neighborhood. You can complete the appropriate form which can be downloaded from the official Service-public.fr platform or from the websites of the municipalities. It includes your contact details and address, the period concerned as well as the security features of your accommodation. In this way, your home will then be the subject of surveillance patrols which will immediately notify you in the event of an anomaly.