Homeowners hoping to protect their properties this November may need to invest in security fencing, as darker nights provide rich pickings for thieves.

Research from Confused.com shows that the most home insurance theft claims are made in November, marking a 20 per cent rise from April when they are at their lowest.

Statistics suggest that the average cost of a burglary is £3,500, giving homeowners the incentive they need to invest in security measures.

Detective Superintendent of Essex Police Sean O'Callaghan commented: "The onset of darker evenings, marked by changing clocks, always signals a change of tactics by police towards preventing burglaries.

"The cover of darkness has obvious attractions to these criminals."

Confused.com made a number of suggestions on how to keep properties secure, such as ensuring all windows and doors are locked, and that valuables are kept out of sight.

Installing a burglar alarm is also an effective deterrent.

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