Property

1 in 10 fail to report crime over fear it would devalue their property

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22nd November 2016

The latest research from Direct Line Home Insurance has shown the true extent of our property obsession.

According to the report, almost one in 10 Brits state they have been a victim of, or witnessed a crime, but have not reported it to the police for fear it would show up on an online police crime map and devalue their property or make it more difficult to rent.

The study also reveals that 4.5 million Britons would consider not reporting a crime, or would discourage their neighbour from reporting one because it would show up on an online crime map. Those living in Newcastle, Birmingham, London and Glasgow are the least likely to report a crime for this reason.

Half of UK adults would check crime statistics in a neighbourhood they were looking to move to, before committing to buying or renting a property with 24 million refusing to live in a high crime neighbourhood. This refusal could rule out traditionally highly desirable areas such as Knightsbridge and Belgravia in London.

Out of the respondents not reporting a crime, anti-social behaviour was the most commonly unreported followed by vehicle crime and burglary and/or shoplifting.

Rebecca Clapham, head of household products at Direct Line: “We are a nation obsessed with property and this has even filtered through to how we report crime with some homeowners concerned about doing anything that could devalue their home. It’s frightening that people are turning a blind eye to crime with some going unreported as a result. People need to remember that the purpose of a crime map is to analyse crime to help law enforcement and to evaluate crime prevention strategies, not to devalue a property.

Our homes contain some of our most prized possessions and so it’s important to make sure they are properly protected. It’s concerning that burglary is one of the top three unreported crimes, especially as you need a crime reference number during the claims process when the loss or damage is as a result of a crime. If you haven’t reported the crime you won’t be able to have this and you may find your claim is rejected.”

Most common unreported crimes

Anti-social behaviour / public order offence

33%

Vehicle crime

25%

Burglary / shoplifting

24%

Robbery / theft from person (including bicycle theft)

21%

Drugs

21%

Criminal damage / arson

20%

Possession of weapons

19%

Violent or sexual offences

15%

Other crime

6%

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