Lowest burglary rate in 10 years with more people working from home
The many home offices which emerged as a result of the coronavirus pandemic has proven to be an effective deterrent to burglaries. Last year, final police statistics showed that there were 39,365 cases involving burglary in a home. That was expected to fall to about 30,700 for the entirety of 2020, insurance provider Interpolis said.
The company said it would be the lowest total in at least a decade if its projected 22 percent decrease holds firm. So far, there have been 28,113 recorded burglaries. A sharp national decrease of about 50 percent was measured in the second quarter. There was also a noticeable decline measured in the first two months of the fourth quarter when social restrictions from the second wave of coronavirus infections were put in place.
The decline was largest in Limburg at 41 percent and Groningen at 38 percent. Amsterdam and Rotterdam, the country's two largest cities by population, led the pack with the highest numbers of break-ins.
House burglary figures are often at their worst during the first and fourth quarters in the Netherlands, particularly when daylight hours are at a minimum. "During the dark days in December, a burglar can still spot an opportunity when people leave their home, even if only for a moment," the company said in a statement. "And especially during the holidays. On December 31, for example, the chance of burglary is three times as high as on other days in December."
Leaving the lights in an empty home on was one of several tips to deter robbers. Interpolis also suggested leaving out half-empty water glasses on the table and open the curtains half-way but with any valuables hidden out of sight.