Summer Holiday Security – Part 2

Welcome back to our look at the security aspects of a summer holiday let.  We’ve looked at the main concerns for the owners, and now we turn our attention to what the renters need to know.

The keys, or RFID access token for your holiday let should be treated with the same care as your own house keys, so ensure they’re in a zipped pocket or zipped compartment in a bag, or otherwise tethered safely – many bags and rucksacks come with a small loop inside which you can attach keys to.  If they are lost or stolen, ensure that you inform the owner straight away so that a locksmith can be called, or that key fob disabled and a new one issued.  Most cases of lost keys don’t lead directly to a burglary, but some do and if the keys are stolen, it’s even more likely that they’ll be used to burgle the property.

Treat the house as your own home, so ensure windows and doors are securely locked before you go out.  If there is an alarm system, set it, because failure to do so could mean you’re not covered by your insurance policy if a burglary occurs when the alarm system was not set.  Don’t leave valuables in sight of the windows or doors, and ensure that car keys are not visible from the front door.  Car keys left on a hallway table are easy to lift with a coat hanger and it’s an almost irresistible scenario for burglars.

If you have rented a beach hut for your holiday don’t leave any valuables, or anything you couldn’t bear to lose, in the beach hut overnight.  Although vandalism is more common than burglary, you don’t want to arrive for a day at the beach to find your deck chairs are broken or that your radio and beach toys have gone.  Ensure you lock up properly, and that nothing is left outside it that gives a clue as to what is left inside it.

Get to know your beach hut neighbours, as they could be invaluable as witnesses to a crime.  The nature of beach hut lets means that the occupants will change on a weekly basis, but as long as you know who is around you that week, and they know who you are, any suspicious activity can be monitored or challenged.  Sharing information with your beach hut neighbours could make the difference between a burglary taking place, and the burglars realising they’ll be caught and challenged if they break in. 

Check for council-owned cameras in the area, so you know whether any crime would be caught on camera or not.  Beach huts covered by a lot of cameras will be an unattractive target compared to those that are tucked out of the way.  That might give you more privacy, but at what cost?

Security on holiday is very similar to security at home, and the things you need to do and to be aware of don’t change just because you’re on holiday.  When holiday security goes wrong it’s usually because the mind-set of being on holiday can mean letting your guard down, and not being quite so on top of security as you would be at home.  Enjoy your holiday, but don’t get complacent about security just because the picturesque town you’re holidaying in seems sedate – there are criminals in every community.