Half of Britons live in fear of crime in their neighbourhood

More than half of Britons (52 percent) are living in fear of crime in their neighbourhood, according to a new report.

Half of Britons live in fear of crime in their neighbourhood
Half of Britons live in fear of crime in their neighbourhood

A nation-wide study into perceptions and experiences of crime in the UK, has revealed a staggering 73 percent of Brits believe that crime is on the increase in their area.

The findings come just weeks after the latest ONS crime statistics showed a 22 percent rise in vehicle theft, a 29 percent increase in robbery offences and an 8 percent rise in burglaries.

And according to the independent report of 2,000 Brits by Budget Insurance, in the last 12 months - more than one in ten (14 percent) have had their vehicle vandalised, while 13 percent have had their house broken into and 12 percent have had their car broken into.

More worryingly, 42 percent of those who said they had been affected by some form of crime DID NOT report it to the police, with 30 percent saying the damage was so small they didn't think it was worth reporting.

Almost three in ten (28 percent) thought the police wouldn't be able to do anything to help, while a resigned 17 percent said they didn't think they would ever get their things back so there was no point reporting it.

A more despondent 62 percent think the police simply don't have enough resources at their disposal but are doing their best under difficult circumstances.

The data also revealed that many Brits shoulder some of the blame, with 35 percent admitting they have left windows open in their house, 25 percent admitting they have left their car unlocked overnight, and 19 percent saying have gone out and left their front door unlocked.

A further 14 percent have left their car windows open, while more than one in ten (12 percent) have left valuables on view in their car.

Insurance, too, is not top of many people's agenda. Worryingly, over half of those polled (53 percent) admitted to either having no home insurance at all or having no idea about the type or level of cover they have.

Anna McEntee, Director, Budget Insurance, said: "We're struck by the apparent contradiction between many people's worries and concerns over rising crime and their casual approach to car and home security.

"It's important to remember that there are simple steps we can all take, first to secure our homes and cars and second to make sure we put the appropriate insurance cover in place in case our fears ever come to pass."

However, 45 percent say it's hard to remember to be vigilant at all times when it comes to potential crime - as they simply have too much on their mind.

A staggering 14 percent of those polled said they have actually caught someone in the act of breaking in to their home or car.

23 percent of Brits say they are sometimes kept awake at night with worries about being a victim of crime, with a further 28 percent saying they sometimes feel afraid in their own home.

According to the survey data, half of us worry about being broken into, 37 percent worry about being mugged or attacked in the street, and 24 percent worry about having our car broken into or stolen.

Meanwhile, the latest ONS statistics report that over 80 percent of people who've actually experienced burglary or had their car stolen suffer an emotional impact, ranging from anger and shock to fear and depression. A fifth of burglary victims (21 percent) report anxiety or panic attacks following the theft.

As a result, 26 percent of those surveyed said they would be prepared to pay up to GBP50 more tax every year to provide more police in their area.

However more than half (55 percent) thought it was the responsibility of central government to find the extra funds to pay for additional police resources.

Full report findings are available at https://www.budgetinsurance.com/pdf/crime-report-2018.pdf

Budget Insurance has compiled a simple quiz to help people understand how security conscious they are: https://www.budgetinsurance.com/blog/how-security-conscious-are-you/