With the darker nights closing in, homeowners have been reminded to keep their properties as safe as possible as burglars are more likely to come out during winter – and one of the most effective ways to protect your home is by keeping your gardens locked.

According to recent research from Churchill Home Insurance that was reported by Your Money, November is a prime time for thieves, with the month accounting for 14 per cent of all home insurance claims for burglaries.

Indeed, there is a daily average of 325 robberies during November when there is only eight and a half hours of sunlight a day, compared with 246 daily break-ins in May with nearly 16 hours of daylight.

Head of the insurance provider Martin Scott gave some advice to homeowners on how they can deter thieves during the month, so they do not become one of the claims made every four minutes for a theft.

Among his suggestions were fitting security lights, getting a home alarm system or investing in a smart door bell to allow you to watch your home when you are out.

“It’s also important to check your doors, windows and garden gates are locked before you leave the house,” he reminded Brits.

Lloyds Bank also advised homeowners to remove ladders from gardens as these provide easier access for burglars who use them to reach open windows.

In addition to this, it is a good idea to ensure you keep up with gardening outside your Lancashire home during the winter months, as the bank said overgrown bushes, hedges and trees provide good places for thieves to hide, particularly at night.

Garden tools should also be locked away, as burglars have been known to use these to help them break into properties.