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Homes are most at risk of burglary in November

Press release: 01/11/2013

  • Police data reveals more burglaries take place during November than any other month
  • There is a domestic break-in every two minutes in November
  • Flats on the ground floor are the most at risk of burglary - 48% more likely to be burgled than other types of property
  • South Wales Police saw a 29% increase in reported burglaries in 2012

November is the month when most domestic burglaries take place, according to new research from LV= home insurance.

Police data obtained by a freedom of information request reveals that one in ten (10%) domestic burglaries take place in November and that a break-in takes place every two minutes[1] during this month.

The risk of burglary is not the same for everyone and varies according to the type of property and how accessible it is to burglars. Analysis of police data reveals that ground floor[2] and basement flats have the highest risk of burglary and are 48% more likely to be burgled than other types of property. Conversely, semi-detached houses and upper-floor flats are the least likely to be burgled.

Police data reveals that burglars are more likely to strike during the day when the home is unoccupied with official figures[3] revealing that most burglaries take place during the hours of 11am-5pm (31%). Despite this, the hour between midnight and 1am is the busiest single hour for burglars with 7% of burglaries being committed at this time - more than any other hour of the day.

While burglary rates are falling across the UK, certain areas have seen a marked increase in the crime. South Wales Police saw a 29% rise in domestic burglaries in 2012 from 2011, while Kent Police saw an 11% increase and South Yorkshire Police a 3% rise over the same period. At the same time, one of the largest police forces in England, Thames Valley Police, reported 7,579 burglaries in 2012 with one in three (30%) taking place while the victim was at home.

Of those who have experienced a break-in, victims say that electrical items such as laptops and cameras are most commonly taken (41%), followed by cash (33%), jewellery (31%) and gadgets such as mobile phones or tablets (15%). The cost of repairing the damage and replacing the stolen goods costs £1,730 on average and very few get their stolen goods back.

Hertfordshire Constabulary had one of the best detection rates in the country, reporting a 25% success rate for domestic burglary in 2012 and a 16% detection rate so far in 2013. However only one in six (16%) recent victims across the UK has got their stolen items back, leaving the vast majority without their belongings. In the majority (68%) of cases when victims got their possession back the Police returned the goods but in some instances victims approached someone on the street who was handling their stolen property (8%), or bought it back from a local pawn shop (5%) or online auction house (4%).

Burglary is still a major problem in the UK. Being burgled can be very unpleasant and more often than not, victims are not reunited with their stolen possessions. In light of this research, we urge all home-owners to review their home security measures to ensure they don't fall victim to this horrible crime. Keeping doors and windows locked, and making sure your keys and valuables cannot be seen through the windows can help reduce your risk of being burgled.

Selwyn Fernandes, Managing Director of LV= home insurance

Based on Police data from 2012

Number of burglaries reported to police per 1000 households
per year, by dwelling type in 2012

Prevalence of burglary relative to average

Flats or maisonettes on the ground floor

12.9

148%

End terrace

9.7

111%

Mid-terrace

9.5

109%

Detached house or bungalow

8.6

99%

Semi-detached house or bungalow

7.7

89%

Upper floor flat or maisonette

7.5

86%

All households in sample

8.7

-

*Based on data from 12 Police forces


Proportion of domestic break ins by month of the year in 2012

Month of the year in 2012

Proportion of domestic break-ins*

November

9.50%

January

9.00%

October

8.80%

December

8.70%

March

8.30%

May

7.60%

July

7.99%

April

7.90%

June

7.90%

August

7.80%

September

7.80%

February

7.80%

*Based on data from 20 Police forces


Proportion of domestic break ins by hour

Time of day

Proportion of domestic break-ins by hour
(where known)*

Midnight - 1am

7%

1am - 2am

4%

2am - 3am

4%

3am - 4am

3%

4am - 5am

2%

5am - 6am

2%

6am - 7am

1%

7am - 8am

3%

8am - 9am

4%

9am - 10am

4%

10am - 11am

4%

11am - Midday

5%

Midday - 1pm

6%

1pm - 2pm

5%

2pm - 3pm

5%

3pm - 4pm

5%

4pm - 5pm

5%

5pm - 6pm

5%

6pm - 7pm

5%

7pm - 8pm

4%

8pm - 9pm

4%

9pm - 10pm

4%

10pm - 11pm

5%

11pm - Midnight

5%

Total

100%

*Based on data from 15 Police forces

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Notes

All 51 police forces in the UK were asked about the following: the number of burglaries in their area in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, the number of domestic break-ins by types of property in 2010-2013, the month with the highest domestic burglaries 2010-2013, the time where most incidents take place and recorded, number where perpetrator was at home and the number of victims who came face to face with an intruder in 2011, 2012 and 2013. 26 had replied with at least one piece of data at the time of publishing.

Following Freedom of Information requests, useable data on burglaries by types of dwelling, covering a three-and-a-half year period up to mid-2013 was obtained from eight police forces in England, covering counties and local area districts containing a total of 3.47 million households. Forces reporting data ranged from relatively rural areas such as Staffordshire to relatively urban areas such as Thames Valley. Data from individual forces was matched to census data (2011) and other sources, in order to determine the prevalence of each type of dwelling, and burglary rates for each type of dwelling, within each police area.

The consumer research was conducted by ICM research. ICM questioned 2,021 adults on the 7-8 August 2013.

About LV=

LV= employs 5,700 people and serves over five million customers with a range of financial products. We are the UK's largest friendly society and a leading financial mutual.

When we started in 1843 our goal was to give financial security to more than just a privileged few and for many decades we were most commonly associated with providing a method of saving to people of modest means. Today we follow a similar purpose, helping people to protect and provide for the things they love, although on a much larger scale and through a wide range of financial services including insurance, investment and retirement products.

We offer our services direct to consumers, as well as through IFAs and brokers, and through strategic partnerships with organisations such as ASDA, Nationwide Building Society and a range of trade unions.

Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. LVFS is a member of the ABI, the AFM and ILAG. Registered address: County Gates, Bournemouth BH1 2NF.

According to ONS Police recorded 227,280 domestic burglaries between April 2012 to March 2013. According to the FOI data 9.5% of burglaries take place during November. Therefore 0.095 x 227,280 = 21,591 domestic break-ins took place in November 2012. 21,591 divided by 30 days = 719.7 a day in November. There are 1,440 minutes in a day, therefore 1,440 divided by 719.7 = 1 burglary every 2 minutes.

  1. Police grouped ground floor flats and basement flats together as 'flats on the ground floor.' Flats on other floors were grouped as 'other flats'. The term flats also includes maisonettes.
  2. This is the time when the incident was alleged to have occurred either by a neighbour, the victim or the Police.
  3. This is based on data from 15 Police forces covering 73,502 domestic break-ins.