One in six Australians is rolling out the welcome mat for burglars. Find out if your home is at risk, and whether your insurance policy would cover an unlocked door.
New research undertaken by Canstar, a comparison website for interest rates and star ratings, shows that one in six Australians admits to leaving their doors open and unlocked some of the time when they are not at home. One in five households lack security measures, such as an alarm, window locks or motion-activated lights.
The research was undertaken to highlight Canstar’s new ‘Lock before you Leave’ tool, which enables you to check what your home and contents insurance policy will cover in the event of a burglary. Steve Mickenbecker from Canstar explains, “With people throwing open doors and windows in the warmer weather, summer provides great opportunities for burglars. Most people probably don’t realise that there is a lot of variation in home and contents insurance policies and the circumstances they cover. For example, some policies might cover you if you walk out of your home and leave your front door wide open by accident, while others might require multiple locks.”
Even if your insurer covers you in the event of a burglary, most insurers want to see proof of ownership of your valuables before paying compensation. Less than a third of Australians, however, have a list of valuable belongings for insurance purposes. It’s a good idea to keep an inventory of your items, along with evidence of ownership. A simple way to do this is to photograph valuable items, along with the receipts if you have them, and store them in an online file, such as Google’s Picasa, or by emailing them to yourself.
Other findings from the research:
- Of the states and territories, Victorians are the least cautious when it comes to safety measures, and South Australians are the safest with their homes.
- New South Wales is the most trusting state, with 19 per cent of those surveyed admitting to leaving their doors unlocked when not at home.
- Baby boomers are the most safety conscious generation, and Generation Y are the least concerned with safety measures.
Visit www.canstar.com.au to use the ‘Lock Before you Leave’ tool and discover whether your contents insurance covers you in the event that you forget to lock the door.
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