EVER wondered how safe it is to park outside your own house?

And what about that dodgy road you leave your car on sometimes to avoid the extortionate parking rates?

Now you can find out, using a new interactive map reveals the safest - and most risky - places to park your car. 

The Park Smart tool helps identify car crime hotspots by allowing users to search for a street name or postcode.

It then displays a map showing the number of vehicle-related crimes in an area, using government crime data. 

You can use it here:

The widget has been created by Co-op Insurance, which claims there has been a 20 per cent increase in car theft across the country.

As well as producing the handy map, the firm has also issued advice to help people reduce the risk of being a victim of car crime.

Here are their top tips, plus some of our own:

  • Park close to other cars
  • Turn wheels towards surrounding vehicles
  • Turn wheels towards the curb 
  • Park on main roads or near shops and restaurants
  • If you have a steering lock, use it
  • Never leave anything on display in your car - especially bags, coats (might be something in the pocket), loose change or wires (indicates there may be a phone or satnav in the car)
  • Wipe suction marks off the window if you have a satnav mount

Have you ever been a victim of car crime? Let us know in the comments.