Homeworkers have been warned that opportunist thieves are increasingly targeting office sheds and outbuildings.

Dave Williams, said there had been a huge increase in the number of people converting garden buildings to office space during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“With so many people working from home due to the Coronavirus restrictions, there has been a real surge in the search for separate office space – and even though restrictions have eased, many employees will still be splitting their time between the office and home.

“And this trend has seen opportunist thieves step up their activities as they realise there is all kinds of technology and equipment stored in quiet and isolated buildings at the bottom of people’s gardens.”

Dave said most home insurance policies offered some level of garden cover, but not to the level of the true value of the items that a home office was likely to include.

“Some insurance policies will cover items stored in sheds as standard, but with some firms there could be an extra cost to add them to your cover.

“Any items stored in a shed or garden office would usually be covered for theft under a homeowner’s contents insurance.

“But there is generally a limit as to how much you’ll be able to claim and under some policies, you will only be eligible to claim if the outbuilding was locked and you can prove entry was forced.

“You may want to consider a specific specialised shed working insurance policy that will cover every eventuality because figures have shown that it can take up to a month for a home-based business or shed worker to get fully operational again after being the victim of a crime.

“And of course, if you can’t work, you’re losing money which could lead to potentially critical cashflow problems.

“With the home working revolution that has taken place over the last two years, it’s important to have the right insurance cover in place to protect yourself and your business – don’t just assume your home insurance will be enough.”