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Whether you work long hours, are deployed overseas on a regular basis or have a second home you visit often, keeping your London home safe and secure is of paramount importance.

There are a number of products and services available that provide reassurance and peace-of-mind. Here are Behr & Butchoff’s top seven recommendations:-

  1. Outdoor security lighting: anything that highlights movement around your property will put off unwanted visitors. Although you can get exterior lights that are manually operated, sensor lights that flick on automatically when motion is detected are a good option, especially if you’re leaving the property unoccupied for extended periods.

  2. A dog: canines can be great deterrents as much as companions. A Co-op Insurance survey of ex-criminals found most burglars were put off by loud dogs barking. In fact, a barking dog took second spot in the top 10 list of burglar deterrents.

  3. CCTV: claiming the top spot in the aforementioned Co-op Insurance top 10 list was CCTV, as burglars do not want to be caught on camera. Wired and wireless cameras can be installed both inside and outside of a property, and certain set ups will let you access footage remotely from any smart device. You’ll also need to consider night vision, image resolution and motion detection options. 

  4. A burglar alarm: even just the sight of a burglar alarm on the outside of a property can make people think twice. Today’s alarms have moved on from the ‘bell’ type. Modern products are smart connected, and can notify the property owner, a friend or relative via an app or phone call that it’s gone off. You can also pay for a monitored contract, where a company will monitor your alarm and take action (or call the police) if the alarm is triggered.

  5. Substantial locks: Doors should ideally be fitted with a five-lever mortise deadlock tested to BS 3621 as a minimum. Window locks should conform to British Standard BS7950, and locks that secure the window to the frame, rather than ones that just secure the handle, are recommended.

  6. Private patrols: there has been an increase in the number of companies offering mobile foot patrols and house checks in London areas – covering single properties, vacant dwellings, estates and neighbourhoods. The staff on patrol will wear a uniform and may walk with a guard dog too. They will spot check vulnerable points on properties, such as doors, windows and fences, and report issues on a real-time basis. If this style of security appeals, ensure the company uses SIA-licensed officers.

  7. Timers: one of the simplest preventative measures is to make it look like someone is home, even if they’re not. Timers – now available as plug-in smart devices linked to ‘phones via an app – allow homeowners to schedule when lights, TVs and radios switch on and off to give the illusion of occupancy.


If you would like any further property advice, please get in touch with the Behr & Butchoff team.