Thursday, April 2, 2009

Don't let thieves and vandals ruin your garden

1st April 2009
Two-thirds of householders have failed to check if their plants, bushes, trees and shrubs are covered by insurance, despite the fact that the average garden contains £721 worth of greenery. As householders head into the garden this spring, the survey from home insurance provider M&S Money reveals that many people have been targeted by green-fingered criminals. The survey found that 17% of people with a garden know someone who has had plants, bushes, trees or shrubs stolen from their garden. The problem is particularly serious in northern England, where almost a quarter (24%) of adults with a garden know someone who has had greenery stolen. Plants are also a favourite target of vandals - 10% of people have had plants, bushes, trees or shrubs in their garden maliciously damaged. Gardens in Wales are most likely to be targeted by vandals, with 17% of Welsh respondents reporting they have had plants damaged. Despite the apparent extent of the problem, 67% of people have not checked whether their plants are covered by home insurance. The M&S home insurance policy covers for loss or damage to plants, bushes, shrubs and trees in the garden. Judith Roberts, M&S Insurance Manager, said: "Householders often spend thousands of pounds securing their home to protect their family and property. However, despite the huge amount of time and money invested in many gardens, security levels are often very poor, making them an attractive target for thieves and vandals. "Householders can take simple steps to reduce the risk of becoming a garden crime victim. It is also wise to check whether your home insurance policy provides cover for property in the garden. "M&S Money offers the following advice to reduce the risk of being targeted by green-fingered thieves: Install automatic security lighting in the garden; A prickly hedge around the garden will help to deter intruders; Garden gates should be kept locked with a good quality bolt; Keep shrubs and trees cut back to reduce hiding places; Gravel on paths will make it more difficult for an intruder to keep quiet

(Reproduced from Finance)

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