Q about house insurance and door locks etc

I'm currently researching house contents insurance, as it's approaching renewal time.
A couple of questions are proving problematic, and I'd be grateful for advice.
Q: Are all exit doors fitted with a mortice deadlock of at least 5 levers conforming to BS3621?
- How would I know this? The keys have no BS number and the parts of the locks that are visible have no markings. They are 6-pin Euro locks (the key has drillings of various depths in the flat sides)
Q: Does your property have a professionally installed and maintained NSI/NACOSS approved alarm system?
- the house has an alarm system that I have no interest in keeping serviced (I don't know the service codes, for example), consequently it is non-functional; what is this NSI/NACOSS approval that seems so important, and how would I know if it had such approval?
The point is that I *could* dismantle a lock to check the BS standard, but why should I have to? Supposing I was one of those people that didn't know one end of a screwdriver from another, how does Joe Public deal with this sort of thing?
A question about the house construction raised a wry smile - it's rendered, and I have no idea what lies under the rendering, but is that an option on the drop-down list? No......
Another dismal thing - one question reasonably asks the distance to the nearest water course; it's about 150m away. But I'm 300 ft ASL, and could probably ride out the melting of the glaciers - but do they ask that?
Doh! What a burden insurance is! I gave up on the online form, but the queries might be of use to others with the same issues.
--
Terry Fields

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Terry Fields wrote:

If the lock meets the BS it will be clearly marked as such. Usually the 'savings' for having an approved alarm are less than the cost of the monitoring contract.
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On 13/04/2013 10:58, Bob Minchin wrote:

Also, if you do tell the company about the alarm, and forget to set it on the day you get burgled, the company have an excuse not to pay out.
I've got one fitted, and don't know the service codes and *I* know darn well it doesn't work, but the insuance company don't know about it. Hopefully any of the local scrotes seeing the sounder, camera and floodlights will look elsewhere...
--
Tciao for Now!

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How would they know?
--
*To be intoxicated is to feel sophisticated, but not be able to say it.

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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On Saturday 13 April 2013 11:43 Dave Plowman (News) wrote in uk.d-i-y:

I'm guessing police witness statements from the neighbours or the alarm controllers logs, if it's fancy enough.
I know both are not entirely *that* probable, but I never underestimate the sliminess of an insurance company.
If you were robbed at night, they might ask "why did the alarm not wake you"?
After all, the police will usually dertermine the method of entry and if they say "door or window not locked, no forced entry" you are screwed.
Then again, I saw how easily a mate's son (who is a locksmith) got into our old house when SWMBO locked her keys inside... That was a new PVC door with a eurolock - hint, if fitting such a door, get multipoint locks with "top hat" shaped pins all over the frame!!
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You *really* think the police go round asking neighbours and taking statements for the average break-in? You're lucky to get a grunt and a crime number out of them round here. And there's no logging on my alarm.

I never ever use the alarm when indoors. Pointless in most houses.

How many break-ins involve picking a substandard lock?

If you had had lots of claims I can see an insurance company getting stroppy - but for the average one they're far more likely to argue over the payout than how it occurred.
--
*White with a hint of M42*

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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On Saturday 13 April 2013 12:24 Dave Plowman (News) wrote in uk.d-i-y:

True in many cases, but it does depend where you live. A mate of mine reported a nicked bottle of milk from his doorstep and a copper turned up later. That was Newton Abbot though, near the police training college!
I think we would get a visit where I live, from the PCSO - but then there is almost no crime here anyway, so a break in is very rare. Mostly distraction cons and metal nickage.

Good point. I guess I was imagining an alarm that could be set for door/window contacts only but I agree that's not a very standard domestic arrangement.

I said "Not locked" - not "picked".

I just don't trust any of them...
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Heh heh. Probably the punishment for some misdemeanour.

Fairly obviously being inner London there are more break-ins round here than in some areas. I've had one which was successful (only lost a VCR) and two failed attempts (that I know of). With the successful one the police did come round when called - but were obviously rather bored about it all. No fingerprints, etc taken. But the offer of sending someone round to advise on security. Which I declined.
--
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Tim Watts wrote:

It is extremely rare for burglars to pick locks. Lock picking is only done if someone does not want anyone to know they have been there.
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On 14/04/2013 02:21, F Murtz wrote:

I get the impression that most people think that a burglar will treat their property with the same care as they do. In reality they will use the easiest means of entry, kick in a door, break a window, wrecking bar (as used on a neighbours front door) etc.
--
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Quite. In most casual burglaries, it can cost more to make good the damage than the value of the good stolen. Certainly did in my case where they jemmied a window open (it had decent sash locks)
--
*I'm not as think as you drunk I am.

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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On 14/04/13 10:46, Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

+1. Goods stolen: 1 laptop worth bugger all and a watch I never used because it cost more to replace batteries every six months than I thought it worth. Insurance claim: c£2,000. not for the above but the replacement of two broken doors and the locks on three.
--
djc

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On Sunday 14 April 2013 09:27 alan wrote in uk.d-i-y:

There's still the mark of a wrecking bar on my front door (no idea, like that when I got the place - I did say burglaries were rare here[1])
Which is why I replaced the mortice lock lower down with a decent one.
[1] The hedges used to be 12ft high with no visibility.
Those are now 4ft and the fences fell down, so I took them to the dump with no intention of replacing.
We now have excellent visibility from the road which certainly puts scrotes off.
--
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I do have an alarm fitted, I fitted it, and I know it does work, so do the 10 CCTV cameras. But I'm not telling the insurance company for the very reason you mention above. In this case my reasoning is that what they don't know can't hurt me!
As for door locks, does any one have any comments on replacing my euro locks with thumb operation on the inside?
I am tempted to fit keyed alike locks on 3 external doors and fit the thumb option on the inside to make it quicker to get out in the case of a fire etc. But on the negative this would also make it easier for a burglar to get out too. But there again it would stop them from stopping me getting in by putting a key into the inside while they were there.
Why is life so complicated?
--
Bill

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wrote:

Look for a cylinder and handle meeting BS10621 "Thief Resistant Dual Mode Lock Assembly" . This is a lock which normally allows keyless exit in case of fire but on which the exit knob can be disabled only from the outside and only by a deliberate action. When you are in the house it acts as a normal knob operated exit lock, when you leave you have the option to secure the door so the internal knob will not open it.
http://www.fullex-locks.com/crimebeater-midlock.asp is one.
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Thanks Peter, just the sort of idea I'm looking for, now why didn't I know these existed before?

--
Bill

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On Sat, 13 Apr 2013 10:58:38 +0100, Bob Minchin wrote:

<snip>

Interesting reading here <http://www.euro-secure.com/locksnapping.asp
"Some look to standards to show the way but here it gets even more confusing. The EN1303 Kitemark test for cylinders up until 2012 did not include any real testing against lock snapping. Therefore the kitemark stamp on a cylinder offered no real value. With the introduction of the new TS007 Kitemark things got even more confusing. They introduced snapping tests to the kitemark approval system, if you passed you got three stars, but if you couldn't pass, you still got a kitemark, but one star. So even today if it's got a kitemark on, it's not guaranteed to be snap secure."
Our brand new back door has a very fancy key and the lock has a kitemark but no stars at all.
So no idea how secure it is.
Cheers
Dave R
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On Saturday 13 April 2013 10:46 Terry Fields wrote in uk.d-i-y:

If unsure, say no.

Say no on the basis it is not maintained. Use it is you wish - or not.

Phone them if there's not suitable option.

Simply put, always say no to the locks and alarms questions - unless you are 100% sure of being right and using them as specificified. Ditto window locks.
It usually makes no, or almost no difference to the premium, but answering in the affirmative gives them an option to slash any claim!
--
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On 13/04/2013 11:00, Tim Watts wrote:

Indeed. Out of interest, you could try getting another quote answering 'yes': chances are (as I did; since I have one potentially non-conforming door) you'll find it makes no difference to the quote.
--
David

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On 13/04/2013 11:00, Tim Watts wrote:

Unless you live in a particularly low crime area they'll quite likely apply a minimum standard of security clause in any case.
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