Beware the bad ‘guy’ as burglary claims soar on Bonfire Night

With people preparing for fireworks festivities, Aviva data shows they need to beware of bonfire burglars.

An image of fireworks over houses
Almost 60% of people do not check they’ve locked the front door before a bonfire party, according to Aviva research.

Aviva's data shows that claims soar by 42%1 on November 5th as thieves take advantage of empty homes.

But Aviva research shows that many don’t do the necessary checks before leaving the house, with just under 40% not checking their windows are locked and 29% not checking doors.2

Claims soar on Bonfire Night


increase in burglary claims 


increase in fire claims

In addition, 55% don’t leave a light or radio on to make the house look occupied and 62% don’t ensure bikes and valuable items in the garden are locked away.  However, 13% are now using a smart home security device to keep an eye on their property while they are out.

And many of those who are having a bonfire party at home are leaving their home at risk from thieves with almost 60% not checking they’ve locked the front door before heading out to the garden.  A further two-thirds (64%) don’t check that windows are locked and 62% don’t hide away valuables.

With many families out enjoying the bonfire celebrations our data shows that they need to beware of bonfire burglars looking to take advantage of empty homes.  Those attending a display, or having one at home, need to make sure their home is properly secure and don’t make it easy for opportunist thieves to gain access. Otherwise it could be an unforgettable bonfire night for all the wrong reasons.

As well as burglaries increasing on Bonfire Night, unsurprisingly fire claims rise by 50% as fireworks cause damage to homes.

Do you / members of your household usually attend a Bonfire night or fireworks event away from your own home, such as a local fireworks display?

  • Yes, always


  • Yes, sometimes


  • No, never


With Aviva home insurance if the worst does happen you can make a claim online through MyAviva – the MyAviva app can be downloaded to a smartphone.  You can also call our UK claims team 24/7.

Tips to deter burglars

  • If you are hosting a bonfire night party in your back garden make sure front windows and doors are locked.
  • Leave a radio and lights on to give the impression that people are at home.
  • Use a timer switch to turn lights on as it gets dark.
  • Avoid telling strangers who know your address – such as delivery men – that your house is likely to be empty.
  • Put your car and bikes in your garage or out of the way for the night and don’t leave your keys in an obvious place.
  • Move garden ornaments and potted plants from the front of your house and out of sight.
  • Make sure sheds, garages and outbuildings have robust locks.


1Average Aviva claims 2007-2017

2Censuswide poll of 2001 adults between 4-8 October 2018

Media enquiries

John Franklin
01603 680795

Notes to editors:

  • We are the UK's leading diversified insurer and we operate in the UK, Ireland and Canada. We also have international investments in India and China.
  • We help our 19.2 million (as at 31 December 2023) customers make the most out of life, plan for the future, and have the confidence that if things go wrong we’ll be there to put it right.
  • We have been taking care of people for more than 325 years, in line with our purpose of being ‘with you today, for a better tomorrow’. In 2023, we paid £25.6 billion in claims and benefits to our customers.
  • In 2021, we announced our ambition to become Net Zero by 2040, the first major insurance company in the world to do so. We are aiming to have Net Zero carbon emissions from Aviva’s operations and supply chain by 2030. While we are working towards our sustainability ambitions, we recognise that while we have control over Aviva’s operations and influence on our supply chain, when it comes to decarbonising the economy in which we operate and invest, Aviva is one part of a far larger global ecosystem. There are also limits to our ability to influence other organisations and governments. Nevertheless, we remain focused on the task and are committed to playing our part in the collective effort to enable the global transition. Find out more about our climate goals at and our sustainability ambition and action at
  • Aviva is a Living Wage, Living Pension and Living Hours employer and provides market-leading benefits for our people, including flexible working, paid carers leave and equal parental leave. Find out more at
  • As at 31 December 2023, total Group assets under management at Aviva Group were £376 billion and our estimated Solvency II shareholder capital surplus as at 31 March 2024 was £8.5 billion. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE 100 index.
  • For more details on what we do, our business and how we help our customers, visit
  • The Aviva newsroom at includes links to our spokespeople images, podcasts, research reports and our news release archive. Sign up to get the latest news from Aviva by email.
  • You can follow us on:
  • For the latest corporate films from around our business, subscribe to our YouTube channel:

      More from our Newsroom