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'Preventative Measures Needed' To Avoid Financial Woe

Dec 4, 2007
In failing to take adequate security precautions, many homeowners leave themselves open to financial strain, new figures show.

According to a study conducted by LV=, leaving expensive items on display through the windows of their homes could see some 15 million consumers making themselves an easy target for thieves. And with the festive season approaching, the insurance company reported that having costly presents and decorations visible may mean that they are at higher risk of being a victim of crime. Consequently should the worst happen, many could find that their ability to manage their finances as they look to make payments on utility bills and loans - in addition to replacing stolen items - is hampered.

However, money management difficulties through a lax attitude to security could become even more pronounced for those living in the West Midlands. More than three-quarters of people from the region admit to displaying their valuables for all to see. Research from the firm also showed that the typical home has more than 25,000 pounds worth of contents. However, with a tenth of homeowners claiming that it would cost between 6,000 pounds and 12,000 pounds to replace the items visible in their homes from outside, a cheap personal loan could be one way to meet the cost of purchasing such goods.

Overall, televisions are the most likely item to be on display, as some 59 per cent of homes have such a product viewable from the outside of their property - a total value of 5.9 billion pounds. Meanwhile, 44 per cent of consumers have computers and games consoles at an estimated worth of 4.8 million pounds on display.

Commenting on the study, Martin Milliner, spokesperson for LV=, said: "There is a temptation to leave curtains open in December to show off Christmas trees and decorations. However we would urge homeowners to take preventative measures especially in December by closing curtains or blinds to hide their belongings.

"Simple things, such as putting valuables and jewellery boxes out of sight from the street and breaking up boxes so it's not obvious when you have bought new expensive items can make your home less attractive to burglars. Burglaries cost householders millions of pounds each year in damage to property and the cost of replacing lost items, not to mention the significant upset and stress of coming home and finding your house has been ransacked."

He added that burglaries are often carried out by "opportunist criminals who see a quick way of making a fast buck". According to Mr Milliner, thieves are more likely to target homes if they can spot expensive items, such as high-value electrical goods. Consequently, consumers looking to replace such products may find that a low cost personal loan can help them to get back on to their feet.

As a result, those concerned about the security of their property may not only wish to move items such as televisions and computers away from the prying eyes of outsiders, but also to have locks and alarms fitted. Research carried out by Alliance & Leicester Personal Loans earlier this week indicated that the average homeowner is willing to invest a total of 8,500 pounds into making their home safe. One in five state they are prepared to have door and window bars installed, while 68 per cent claim that they are considering buying a high-tech alarm system. Consequently, applying for a personal loan could be one way in which to help meet the expense of having such work done.
About the Author
Steve Smith writes for 1 Stop Finance Shop, a one stop, Personal Loans Shop, with information on bad credit loans and debt consolidation loans available on site.
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