06/03/2015 06:26 EDT | Updated 06/03/2016 05:59 EDT

Vancouver break-ins down, but police urge vigilance

Police are urging Vancouver residents to remain vigilant, despite a dip in break-ins, saying many thefts are carried out by thieves entering through unlocked doors and windows.

A total of 702 residential break and enters were reported in Vancouver in the first four months of 2015, down from 733 break-ins by this time in 2014.

But police are concerned that 25 per cent of cases reported do not really involve a "break-in" — thieves are simply accessing doors and windows left open, and this increases as the weather warms up.

"Don't help thieves by giving them the opportunity to come in and steal from you," says VPD Const. Brian Montague. "Any door or window, even above the ground floor, can be used by crooks to enter your home."

Getting to know your neighbours or joining crime prevention programs, such as Block Watch or Log it or Lose it, can also help, say police.