It’s usually a lot easier for thieves to target your garden than break into your home.
Taking steps to secure your garden can help to prevent the theft of valuable items such as high-end barbeques, expensive ornaments and gardening equipment – and reduce your garden insurance premiums accordingly.
How can I secure my garden?
Good garden security involves five main elements:
- Marking your items
What height fence should I put up around my garden?
From a security point of view, lower – up to 1.2m – fencing is a better option at the front of your house, as it will look less suspicious to passers-by.
At the back, a standard 1.8m wall or fence should offer sufficient protection against people who want to get in. If there is public access on the other side, however, you should consider increasing the height to 2m.
Anything higher usually requires planning permission. You can legally boost the perimeter fence with a trellis fixed to the top, which is difficult to climb over. Planting prickly plants or a hedge such as firethorn, climbing rose or hawthorn at the edge of your garden can also be a deterrent against burglars.
What locks should I use on my garden?
If you can access your garden from the side or back of the house, you need a strong, lockable gate.
Garden gates should be at least the same height as the fence, with the hinges securely attached to the gateposts.
The best type of padlock to use is a straight shackle or shutter padlock, which is the hardest type for thieves to cut through.
Should I put lights up in my garden?
Don't forget the lighting for your garden, especially in areas near doors and windows. Choose lights that can either be triggered by movement, or triggered by light so that it comes on automatically from dusk to dawn.
How do I protect my garden furniture from thieves?
Police suggest you mark valuable garden furniture and ornaments with your postcode, followed by your house number – either painted or etched onto it.
Try to make it easy for burglars to spot, as this will make your belongings less appealing.
If they are stolen, there is more chance of you being reunited with your possessions if you mark them.
Invest in storage and keep it tidy
Don't tempt thieves by leaving your valuable possessions lying around on display in your garden. Garden tools, children's toys, paddling pools, lawn mowers and bikes should all be stored inside the house, a locked shed or your garage at the end of the day.
Bulky items such as large gas barbecues or furniture should meanwhile be covered up.
Place garden furniture and wheelie bins away from the house so they can’t be used to access upstairs windows. Never leave a ladder in your garden, as thieves can use it to access higher windows.