The number of burglaries around the country has increased by nearly 25% in the space of two years, according to figures from the Central Statistics Office.
The burglary statistics have shown a steady rise from 10,158 recorded offences in the second quarter of 2007 to 12,472 in the second quarter of this year, the latest period for which figures are available.
The dramatic rise is a cause for concern for gardaí as the amount of more serious aggravated burglaries has also shown a similar increase.
Almost a fortnight ago, 84-year-old Paddy Barry – the grandfather of TV magician Keith Barry – died a week after a break-in at his home in Co Waterford.
Gardaí said they fear further increases in the rate of burglary when fresh crime figures are published later in the autumn.
They said from anecdotal evidence there had been further increases in house robberies and other similar crimes, particularly around housing estates in Dublin and in the commuter belt.
One senior officer said: "It has shown a significant rise over the past two years and that appears to be continuing. It stands to reason that it is linked with the worsening of the economy.
"Perhaps people who were able to pick up casual work or had jobs during the boom times will now turn back to crime when other options are no longer available to them."
The rise in burglary has been experienced right across Ireland with all but one garda region in Ireland showing a substantial increase over the past two years.
There was a near 28% rise across all categories of burglary in Dublin where recorded offences jumped from 3,602 between April and June 2007 to 4,610 for the same three months this year.
In the southeastern region, which includes Waterford, Tipperary, Wexford and other counties, there was a pronounced rise from 1,236 to 1,562 offences.
Similarly, in the eastern region, which encompasses the counties surround Dublin along with Offaly, Laois, and Westmeath, there was a rise from 1,778 to 2,230 recorded burglaries.
The only region of the country to show no increase in burglary offences was the southern district, covering Cork, Limerick and Kerry, where the figures remained static.
There was also a worrying increase in the number of aggravated burglaries, where the victim of the robbery is either threatened or assaulted.
In the northern region, which includes the border counties and Donegal, the number of aggravated burglaries rose from three to 13, while in the western region, including Galway and Mayo, it increased from one to six.
All six of the garda regions showed an increase in that type of crime, with elderly people living on their own frequently victims of aggravated burglary.
The effects of the recession have also had an impact on the crime rate in the UK where there was a rise of 4% in burglary rates between this year and last.
The last previous sustained rise in the burglary rate in the UK had been in the aftermath of the recession of 1991-1992 with small "blips" in 2000 and 2001.
Burglary Offences (April to June each year)