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Good garden security is about more than just keeping intruders away from your house. An average garden contains a number of valuables including plants, ornaments, BBQs, lawnmowers and other tools, which any thief will be more than happy to take off your hands.

Fortunately, there are a number of ways to improve your garden’s security, from installing a lock on your side gate to hooking your BBQ to a land anchor. The key is to know exactly where your garden is vulnerable and act on it. Thieves are not determined geniuses who will get past heavy locks and other security measures; they are opportunistic. In other words, if they see that your garden is well protected, they will more than likely look for easier targets elsewhere.

For expert advice on improving your garden’s security, your best bet will be to speak to a local home security specialist. They will be able to assess your garden and recommend excellent security solutions, such as CCTV. If your shed or fencing is in need of repair, book a local carpenter for repair work. You may have a shiny heavy lock on your shed door, but if a thief can just kick their way through the walls then this won’t be much help! You can also have a solid border wall constructed by a bricklayer. Finally, a local gardener or landscape designer can recommend hedges, climbing plants and other ‘green’ security features that will help to keep intruders out while also improving the appearance of your garden.
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How to improve garden security

When it comes to garden security there are a number of different elements to consider. First, you may be happy to know that you can accomplish a lot by simply changing your habits. Do not leave any toys or tools out in your garden overnight, make sure that you always lock your gate and never prop your bins up against a side wall. Failing to do this will just make things easier for thieves. Remember, they are opportunistic, so don’t give them any opportunities!

You will also need to consider:

  • Boundary - This will be the first line of defence in your back garden. Depending on your area, it can be sufficient to install a wooden fence, though naturally a solid wall will be more secure. A good boundary wall will be between 1.5m and 2m high (anything higher will usually require planning permission). While it may sound like a good idea in theory, you cannot upgrade a wall with features specifically intended to hurt intruders, such as barbed wire. However, you can add features like trellises which will make your wall harder to climb. For added assurance, why not have thorns grow up your trellises too?
  • Entrance gate - All entrances to your garden will need to be secured. This means making sure that your entrance gates each have a strong lock. However, this will not do much good if the hasps, latches and hinges are in poor condition. If necessary, have a handyman repair your gate or have it replaced.

  • Paths - If you have any paths in or around your garden, it can be a good idea to switch them to gravel. This will make it much more difficult for thieves to move quietly.
  • CCTV - A classic and intimidating feature, cameras will quickly let potential intruders know that you mean business with your security. Many smart security systems can even be monitored and programmed from mobile devices. That said, you will usually need to have a secure video recorder in your home - you do not want the cameras to get pinched along with the evidence! To be absolutely safe, have your CCTV installed by a home security specialist.
  • Motion sensitive lighting - One of the best ways to keep burglars away from your property is to let them know that they will not be able to sneak around. A motion-activated light will put a spotlight on any garden intruders, making it far more likely for them to be spotted and reported. Like CCTV cameras, lights of this kind are fairly easy to spot, so thieves will be able to see that your property is protected.
  • Secure storage - It is important not to leave anything valuable outside in your garden, but then you may not want to keep messy tools and toys inside your home. A great solution will be to invest in a secure storage crate with a heavy lock and, ideally, a chain to anchor it to the ground. This could be placed out of sight in your garden or even in a shed.

  • Front garden - Securing the front of your property is less about keeping people away and more about showing off the security features that you have in place. For example, any walls or hedges over 4ft high could provide excellent hiding places for potential thieves. However, a panel of former burglars once revealed that seeing that a property has a secure door, CCTV and defences will usually be enough to put them off. 
  • Garden valuables - Items like BBQs and furniture can be perfect targets for opportunistic criminals. It will be a good idea to secure these to the floor, either with nails or a land anchor, or to put them away in a secure storage area if possible. You can also mark your more expensive belongings with a serial number and postcode. While certain websites recommend doing this with pen, it will be far more effective to engrave the information, as items with permanent marks will be far more difficult for thieves to offload.
  • Shed - A secure garden shed can be the perfect place to keep your valuables. It will be a good idea to have a local carpenter repair any structural defects before you have any new locks fitted, though at the very least your door should still be secured with a padlock. Other shed security features include alarms, window mesh and internal lock boxes for storing your most valuable tools.
  • Insurance - The secret to good home security is anticipating worst-case scenarios. For this reason, it will be a good idea to check that your current household insurance extends to gardens and outbuildings.