Police and AA Insurance's advice to keep your home safe from thieves this summer

New research has revealed that one in 10 Kiwis aren't properly locking their homes as police urge holidaymakers to secure their properties over the holiday season.   

While more than half of Kiwis worry their homes will be broken into, new research by AA Insurance shows one in 10 don't properly lock up when they leave.  

With many houses standing vacant as people head away for summer, Christchurch police Senior Sergeant Roy Appley said, "generally burglary has been increasing overtime and there's a lot of reasons for that".  

Tom Bartlett from AA Insurance said, "the cost of burglaries is significantly increasing.   

"The last two summers we've seen an increase of 35 percent to cover those burglary claims."  

Stolen goods are also often of a higher value after Christmas. 

Bartlett said thieves tend to take the more expensive items like electronics, laptops, iPads and phones, jewellery, designer clothes and power tools.   

Police warn that most burglaries aren't targeted but instead opportunistic.   

This means homeowners should try to remove all temptations and ensure they have outside lights and decent locks.  

"Make sure nothing's on display," Bartlett said.   

"We tend to leave things lying around the garden," he admitted.   

"Make sure bikes are put away and leave things out of sight inside," he said.   

Burglaries in Christchurch have fallen in the past few months.  

Sen Serg Appley said the decrease in thefts was due to "good work we're doing targeting known offenders and good court outcomes".   

There were 107 residential burglaries across Christchurch in November.   

"But that's still 107 people had their houses broken into which is 107 too many," he said.   

Homeowners can help by being extra vigilant.  

"We want people to have a safe and enjoyable summer but we also want them to be safe in their homes," Bartlett said.    

Watch the full video for more.