Burglaries in Ireland: Thieves reveal the first place they look when taking valuables and robbing houses

If you’re thinking about heading on holidays soon, make sure to protect your property and all of your valuables correctly.

The obvious first step is to lock all doors and windows and keep any valuables away from windows.

But wouldn’t it be better if you knew how to hide your valuables in a place where you know burglars won’t look?

Well, John Lewis Home Insurance asked a group of ex-offenders for their advice on where people should – and absolutely should not – hide items such as jewellery and other small valuables while away.

‘Children’s bedrooms are a no-go area’

Burglars said families should avoid hiding valuables in living room drawers and dressers, pots and pans and locked safes that are not secured to the floor or wall – as these are the places thieves search first.

Instead, you should opt for the not-so-obvious, such as hiding items in cereal boxes, packets of pasta and children’s toy boxes.

When asked what room holidaymakers should store their valuables in, criminals said children’s bedrooms – which many burglars rule a no-go area – as well as under sofas.

One offender said they never entered children’s bedrooms or playrooms when they broke into homes, calling it an ‘unwritten rule’.

“Children’s bedrooms wouldn’t be a bad place to hide belongings. Ideally something of high value would be hidden in a toy or a toy box,” they explained.

“Most people have got a ‘bits and bobs’ cupboard in their kitchen where they often keep their keys.

“Instead, I would hide my car and house keys in the food cupboards if I was going away – rice packets, cereal boxes. They are not going to go through all your food packets. DVD cases are another good place to hide valuables because they are harder to find.”

How criminals know when you’re on holiday

The study revealed that parcel deliveries left on doorsteps are one of the biggest clues that someone is on holiday.

Letters and leaflets sticking out of letterboxes and on doormats were seen as the biggest giveaway that someone was away – even more so than leaving lights on, curtains closed, or having no car on the driveway.

“The increase of online shopping has made it easier – if you’re walking down the road and see a parcel on a doorstep there is a good chance someone is not in,” explained one offender.

“I would suggest not ordering parcels if you won’t be around when they arrive and getting neighbours to check for parcel deliveries regularly while you’re away.”

Journalist – Emma Munbodh PhotoBurglar (stock) (Image: Getty)