Research for Liberty Insurance reveals almost one fifth of Irish people do not lock their front door when leaving the house.

One in three Irish people don't turn on their alarms before leaving the house

  • Almost half of Irish people don’t have an alarm
  • One in five people rely on neighbours and family to keep an eye out instead of an alarm
  • One in four people with alarms don’t lock their front doors

Today, Wednesday 20th May, 2015:

New research commissioned by Liberty Insurance into home safety behaviour (1) has revealed that 17% of Irish people surveyed admitted they don’t lock their front door when they are leaving their home unattended. The research revealed 47% of respondents to the survey don’t have an alarm on their home. Surprisingly one in five (22%) people rely on their neighbours and family to keep an eye out on their home instead of installing an alarm system.

The research was carried out by Millward Brown for the launch of Liberty Insurance’s home safety campaign, which encourages people to ‘Check, Lock and Leave’ particularly over the summer holiday period.

The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office reports that 26,430 recorded burglary cases took place in the last year to date, a 5% increase on the same time period in 2013.(2)

When asked about home security systems:

  • One in four Irish people stated they don’t really worry about an alarm – this rises to almost half (43%) of the youth population.
  • 24% of people have a monitored alarm or a home alarm where they receive texts or calls.
  • Connacht and Ulster have the lowest number of alarms in Ireland at just one in three people, with alarm ownership highest in Dublin and the rest of Leinster (64% and 63%).
  • Surprisingly one in three people who have an alarm don’t switch it on when they leave home.
  • Irish people who have no alarm are more likely to lock their door at 90%, but almost one in four people with alarms don’t lock their door.
  • Surprisingly Dubliners are the least likely to lock their door with 23% not locking the door when they leave their home unattended (compared to 17% in the rest of Leinster, 13% in Munster and 14% in Connacht and Ulster).
  • Interestingly, men are slightly more likely than women to leave a door unlocked at 20%.

One in three people stated they felt relaxed and content leaving their home unattended. Interestingly, there was little difference in people reporting feeling relaxed and content for those who have alarms and those who don’t. In fact, those who don’t have alarms are marginally more relaxed and content at 36% versus 33%.

Over half (56%) of people were confident leaving their homes unattended and those with alarms were just marginally more confident than those without at 59% versus 53%. The youth demographic was the least confident at just 50% compared to 66% for people aged 66+.

Annette Ni Dhathlaoi, Head of Marketing, Liberty Insurance said; “Our research has revealed some surprising insights around people’s habits when leaving their homes unattended. A high percentage of households don’t have alarms, and a significant proportion of those that do are not using them. Additionally, a significant number of people are not even locking their front doors.”

She continued, “We believe the tips we’ve developed will help people to start changing their habits. Householders should not be complacent when it comes to security; taking even the simplest measures will help people feel confident when leaving their homes unattended”.

With the "New for Old" promise on contents policies, if you have a claim and your belongings cannot be repaired, Liberty Insurance will replace, or pay to replace, the items with brand new ones (3), unlike other insurers who deduct for wear and tear.

Check, Lock & Leave Tips

Some quick and helpful tips from Liberty Insurance to keep your home safer when on holidays;

  • Make it look like someone is home with timer plugs that automatically turn on and off lights.
  • Ask your neighbours to keep an eye on your home, to remove any post not pushed fully through the letterbox, and encourage them to invite visitors to park in your driveway from time to time.
  • Cancel milk or other deliveries if you will be away for days or weeks at a time.
  • Check that all exterior doors and windows are fitted with a secure locking mechanism.
  • Don’t leave valuables on view.
  • Install a visible alarm with panic buttons upstairs and downstairs.
  • Secure outside sheds with a padlock.
  • Don’t leave wheelie bins close to access points - wheelie bins can make a good ladder for burglars if left near side gates or open windows.
  • Consider installing security lighting - lights can be used in a variety of ways to deter burglars at night. Exterior lights will make it more difficult for burglars to stay undetected when they’re trying to break in.

For more home safety and security tips, visit our blog, check out our Facebook page or tweet us @LibertyIRL

For further information please contact:
Kate FitzGerald or Shane Lennon @ Wilson Hartnell
086 387 3083 (KF) or 087 900 0320 (SL) / 01 669 0030 or

Notes to the Editor:

  1. Research was commissioned by Liberty Insurance and conducted by Millward Brown amongst a national population sample of 1,000 people in March 2015.
  2. CSO Burglary and Related Offences
  3. Items like flooring, bedlinen, and clothing are subject to a ‘wear and tear’ deduction by some insurers but with Liberty Insurance there is no wear and tear deduction from your claim payment. For full terms and conditions on Liberty Insurance home insurance see