Imagine going home after a long family vacation and finding out that your house, a supposedly safe space for your family and personal belongings, was burglarized. It’s a stressful and equally frightening situation, but it’s important to keep your emotions in check and do the following:
Contact the Authorities
As soon as you notice any signs of a break-in, avoid going inside the house or try to contact the police through your home phone. Instead, step away, go back to your car (or into your neighbor’s house) and call the police when you’re in a safe area. If you arrived at night or early in the morning, there’s a chance that the burglars are still there, and you may end up be endangering yourself and your family if you go into your home. Let the police know about the incident as soon as possible, this gives them a better chance of catching the perpetrators, and you’ll eventually need the police report when claiming insurance later on.
Hands Off and Eyes Open
Don’t touch or move anything in (and out) your house. First off, the burglar’s fingerprints may still be on the doorknob, gate, fence, or any other item or part of your home, and some scenes (placements of objects, etc) can serve as evidence or clues with regards to the break-in. When the police arrive and survey your home and the area, snap photos and take note of the items that are missing. Keep your list of missing items, and provide as much detail about the items as possible, these should be relayed to the police officers. Take note that the list will be something you’ll use when claiming insurance as well.
Acquire and File Reports (and Insurance)
File a victim’s report, and acquire a copy of the police report, and basically any paperwork that pertains to the case. Next, file an insurance claim as soon as possible for any damage to your home as well as the stolen goods. Avoid ‘fixing’ your home until the insurance adjuster and police officers have given you the signal to do so.
Repair and Clean Up
It really goes without saying, but you’ll want to start cleaning up and repair any damages to your home once you’ve been cleared by the police and insurance adjuster. This may also be the right time for you to re-evaluate and improve your home’s security.
Improve Home Security
After having your home burglarized, you’d definitely want to make sure that it never happens again, and improving your home’s security is the only solution to that. You can have full home surveillance and security system installed, as well as these other home security improvements:
Exterior Lighting. Criminals don’t want to be seen, so improving visibility through strategic lighting can be an affordable and effective way to make your house more secure. You can have motion-activated lights and security lighting put up around your home’s perimeter (together with motion sensors and alarms) to deter any future break-ins.
Security Cameras. The sight of security cameras around your house is enough to scare off any potential burglar, so have enough security cameras to cover potential points of entries, and leave no blind spots for criminals to take advantage of. Some homes even have these “fake”/”ornamental” security cams as a very cheap yet effective way to deter criminals.
Secure points of Entry. Front and back door, windows, and basements are common points of entry for burglars, so having more secure doors and locks (digital locks or pick-proof locks), and motion sensors (and glass break alarms) can significantly improve your home’s security. You shouldn’t forget about your garage, too; in fact, 9% of burglars enter houses through the garage.
So, if your garage was the point of entry, or you simply feel like it’s not secure enough, look for garage door installation services in Salt Lake City that offer safe and secure garage door designs and have one installed.
A burglary is a stressful and potentially dangerous incident, which is why it’s important to make the right (and smart) decisions following the incident, and this list can definitely help guide you in doing so.