New Strategies By Burglars

Have you ever noticed a sticker appearing on your gate, wall or door-post? They usually look innocent enough, just advertising the 24 hour services of a local plumber, locksmith or electrician. Perhaps useful, perhaps annoying, but there can’t be any harm in them, can there?

Sometimes there isn’t, but the company may not have put them there — it may not even exist. Stickers like this are increasingly being used as code by burglars, marking houses for future burglary.

If you find a sticker of this kind:

-Remove it at once.
-Contact the company (if it exists) to find out if they put it there.
-If not, notify the police.
-Make sure that all your locks are secure.

Disposal of Valuables

An occupational hazard of being a burglar has always been the risk of getting caught with your valuables while making a getaway — but the modern burglar is getting around this.

“Cash for Gold” envelopes are intended to allow law-abiding people to post small valuables and be sent cash in return, instead of having to take things to the local pawn shop. Unfortunately, this also works for burglars and their ill-gotten gains. If the envelope is posted at the nearest letter-box, the burglar is carrying no incriminating evidence.

The main things you can do about this are increase your security and mark all your valuables so they may be recoverable. And, always, make sure your contents insurance is up to date.

Types of Contents Insurance Policies

It’s happened to us often enough, as it happens to most Loss Assessors. A client’s furniture has been ruined in a fire, or their antique china collection has been stolen, and when they produce the insurance policy, all they have is a policy for Buildings Insurance. They haven’t realised that this only covers the fabric of the building, not any of their other possessions.

For that, they need Contents Insurance. There’s no obligation to take out a Contents Insurance policy, unless items have been bought on credit and it’s a requirement of the credit provider. However, if you don’t want to risk losing your possessions with no compensation, there are two types of Contents Insurance Policy that most providers offer.

-Indemnity Policy — This takes into account depreciation from wear and tear when calculating what you’ll be paid. The Loss Adjuster deducts a proportion of the original price of the item for each year since you bought it, and you only receive a percentage of the item’s cost in compensation.

-New for Old Policy — This type of policy pays out the full replacement value for each of the insured items. The only restriction is that, in the case of high-value items, only those correctly declared in the policy will be covered.

So which is better? An Indemnity Policy will be cheaper, but the benefit for the higher premiums under a New for Old is that you won’t have to find extra to replace your possessions.

Below two of many clauses which claimants don’t seem to know exist within their policy documents

Compulsary Excess

An excess is a part of the claim the customer pays. If this is a condition set by the insurer, it’s defined as a compulsory excess. The amount the excess is set at will be specified in the policy documents when the insurance is taken out. The plus side is that the higher the level of compulsory excess, the lower your premium payments will be.


On occasion, a loss may be covered under more than one policy — for instance, if you lose your possessions on holiday, you may be covered both by your home contents and holiday policies. In this case, the cost of the claim may be shared between the relevant policies, each making a Contribution.

Get in touch with us if you need to know more.

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