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Revealed: The UK burglary hotspots, do you live in one?

It doesn’t matter where you live in the UK, you need to be mindful about security in your area. This means to install some additional lights, making sure the entrances are well light, close all your windows at night and find a more secure place for the spare key. Ensuring your house is not an easy target for criminals is paramount.

New research from MoneySuperMarket has revealed which areas in the UK experience more crime than others. Data analysed from more than 2.5 million home insurance quotes over the last two years has revealed the postcodes most at risk of burglaries.

The top 20 have been listed below, do any of these look familiar?

While averaging the data doesn’t accurately reflect on individual experiences, those living in the areas at the top of the list should be mindful of their surroundings.

Rank Postcode district Post town Contents theft rate (per 1000) *
1 B95 Henley-in-Arden 50.46
2 CM4 Ingatestone 49.76
3 IG5 Ilford 47.56
4 EH4 Edinburgh 46.43
5 LS8 Leeds 46.30
6 B94 Solihull 45.80
7 GU23 Woking 45.30
8 SK8 Cheadle 45.29
9 EH15 Edinburgh 43.99
10 M21 Manchester 43.98
11 CB5 Cambridge 43.48
12 M20 Manchester 42.92
13 BS7 Bristol 42.79
14 RH8 Oxted 42.65
15 SK4 Stockport 42.08
16 L16 Liverpool 42.04
17 LS17 Leeds 41.81
18 BS9 Bristol 41.78
19 TW11 Teddington 41.32
20 IG9 Buckhurst Hill 41.28

Whilst major cities make up quite the bulk of the list above, interestingly, London is not featured once. Essex however, favours less well, unfortunately having a couple of postcodes included in the worst offenders list.

Whilst the stats above highlight the reality of the situation, residents perceive the burglary problem in their local area differently. People living in London (28%) and Leeds (31%) are the most likely to believe they live in a burglary hotspot. In reality, the rate is far lower than they may expect.

Major city Postcode % of local residents who believe they live in a burglary hotspot Contents theft rate (per 1000)
Belfast BT 24 7.36
Birmingham B 22 21.24
Bristol BS 18 17.09
Cardiff CF 11 11.95
Edinburgh EH 15 20.19
Leeds LS 31 26.49
Liverpool L 18 15.72
London N, E, W, SE, SW, NW, WC, EC 28 16.69
Manchester M 21 23.43
Newcastle NE 13 9.10

Emma Garland, data scientist at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “Over the past 12 months, burglars have mostly been targeting suburbs and urban areas, with the safest areas dominated by smaller towns and villages.

“Anyone that has ever been burgled will tell you that the cost goes beyond the value of the items stolen, from the psychological impact of your home being violated to the difficulty of replacing things with sentimental value. That’s why it’s surprising to see that almost half of people haven’t put any additional protection in place for their home, despite one in five believing they live in a burglary hotspot.

“For thieves, it’s all about risk versus reward – if the reward looks likely to exceed the risk, they are going to target that home. Homeowners must do as much as possible to tip the balance in their favour and make things harder for burglars.

For tenants, it’s more difficult to ensure the security of their property. Any modifications need to get approved by the landlord and that’s not always easy. However, tenants should attempt to persuade their landlords that an investment in security will pay off.

Breaking and entering can cause a lot of damage to the property:

  • Damaging the locks and hinges of the front door
  • Breaking a window
  • Cutting power lines
  • Cutting through a fence

All of these will be the landlord’s responsibility to repair or replace and the costs can easily run into the thousands. At the same time, the majority of thieves will be deterred if all possible entry points are well light.

The other hurdle for securing rented properties, especially HMO estates is controlling the access. The Tenants’ Voice recommends all tenants to replace the locks in their new rented property immediately after their move in.

Usually, this still requires the landlord’s approval, but if you return the property with the original locks at the end of the tenancy, and don’t unreasonably deny access, you shouldn’t run into trouble.

We’ve got some more tips on security in rented properties in our dedicated guide – Home Security for Tenants And Rented Properties

Disclaimer

This article is provided as a guide. Any information should be used for research purposes and not as the base for taking legal action. The Tenants' Voice does not provide legal advice and our content does not constitute a client-solicitor relationship.

We advise all tenants to act respectfully with their landlords and letting agents and seek a peaceful resolution to problems with their rented property. For more information, explore the articles in our category.

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If you experience problems with your tenancy deposit, have disrepair in your rented property or suspect that your landlord should have a licence to rent your property but does not have one then you can receive a free consultation by calling our advice service: Call Tenant Assist on 0333 344 3788.

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