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If you want to avoid Halloween horrors around your home this year, there are plenty of steps you can take to protect your property.

Every year, hundreds of homeowners receive a nasty Halloween surprise. You might be unfortunate enough to come into contact with trick-or-treaters who take things too far and cause damage to your car or property, or it could be that opportunistic burglars target your home when you’re out enjoying the festivities.

Here, we look at some of the issues that could arise, and what you can do about them.

Beware burglars

Families are often at parties or out trick-or-treating on Halloween, meaning their homes can be a tempting target for thieves. Make sure you lock up securely if you’re going to be out, and leave a light on a timer switch so that it goes on-and-off intermittently, making it look as though someone is in. Turn any outside lights on too, so that it’s harder for people to enter your property unnoticed.

If you want to prevent people knocking on the door in search of treats while you’re gone, leave a basket of sweets outside your property so that trick‐or‐treaters can help themselves. Just hope no one swipes the entire stash.

Lock garden items away

For the vast majority of people, Halloween is a good excuse for some family fun, but there are always those who manage to spoil things by causing malicious damage. Look around outside your property and see if there’s anything they could break, such as plant pots or garden ornaments, and move them out of sight. You should also take any bicycles inside your property and put your car in the garage if you have one.

Keep an eye on candles

Lots of people put candles in their windows at Halloween to help create a ghostly atmosphere, but never leave them unattended or put them too close to soft furnishings such as curtains or blinds. Also make sure they’re out of reach of children or pets who might knock them over.

Your safest bet is to go for LED candles which look just as good as the real thing, yet have none of the fire risk.

Keep yourself safe

Never open the door to trick-or-treaters without looking at them through a window or spyhole first. If you don’t like the look of them, or they’re being threatening, stay inside and don’t respond. If you feel unsafe or they start causing damage to your property, contact the police. Make a note of their appearance so that it’s easier for police to track them down once they’ve moved on from your home. 

If you don’t want any trick-or-treaters to knock on your door, many local police forces supply posters which you can put in your window stating that you don’t want any visitors on Halloween.

Keep out uninvited guests

If you or your teenage children are hosting a big Halloween party, spooky masks and fancy dress can make it easier for gatecrashers to enter your home. Stay near the door while people are coming in or out to check you know exactly who’s behind each mask.