man wearing a ski mask

Break-Ins: What to Do After You’ve Experienced One

A robbery is no small thing. Apart from the valuables lost, this crime also strips you of your sense of security in your own home. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that it’s a traumatizing experience, and everybody involved needs time to heal. Don’t be ashamed to say that you need to process your feelings and maybe get professional help to deal with them. This is especially true for younger family members and anyone who had contact with the burglar, no matter how brief.

That said, this doesn’t mean you can’t be proactive in recovering your peace, security, and possibly your possessions, too. You can take steps right after the robbery and in the days that follow to ensure that this never happens again. Believe it or not, burglars who have targeted a place once might return when they feel that you’ve replaced your stolen goods.

Being a victim once doesn’t mean you’ll never be a victim again, so acting now gives you the best chance of preventing future incidents in your home.

Don’t Play Cop

You’ll want to investigate the soonest you realize that someone broke into your home. The place is likely a mess with glass shards, misplaced possessions, and even content of entire drawers and shelves spread out on tables. There could also be mud smeared across the floor and leaves carried inside through broken entry points like doors and windows. Homeowners have made the mistake of moving things around and even cleaning up before calling in the cops in hopes of identifying which valuables were taken.

However, the proper response should be to leave your home and either go to your neighbor or stay in your car while you call the cops. This prevents you from possible hazards like bumping into the burglar if they’re still in your house or contaminating the scene. The more clues the police can retrieve and work with, the better the chances of catching the culprit and possibly retrieving your valuables.

Once the police are there, wait for them to do their job and call you in. They’ll allow you back inside your home once they’ve gathered evidence and cleared it of any risks to your person.

Get in Touch with the Right People

The cops aren’t the only people you’ll want to get involved right away. You also have to make sure that you call the insurance company to file a claim as soon as possible. Don’t attempt to repair broken doors, windows, and other damaged parts of your property before your adjuster arrives. If it’s not feasible to have an adjuster visit your home within twenty-four hours of the incident, take photo evidence. Send it to them and make a detailed list of what you’re doing to keep yourself secure before repairs can be made.

Get your contractor on the job instead of treating it like a DIY project. Experts will know what changes need to be made to prevent the same kind of break-in from ever happening. Replacements with parts like euro cylinder locks will make you feel safer since these alternatives are usually made to resist common break-in methods. They may also suggest installing certain features that will help improve your sense of safety, and although they might cost more, consider them worthy investments.

Lastly, inform your bank. Provide the case number so that they can verify that a burglary has happened and your cards may be compromised. This will enable them to freeze them or confirm that the suspect performed recent charges made under your name.

home security cameras

Invest in Home Security

If there’s one thing you wouldn’t want to rush, it’s selecting your home security system. Different houses and families require different kinds of security systems to keep burglars away. Depending on the immediate risks in your neighborhood, you’ll want to first arm yourself with the basics like intercoms, automated lights, video doorbells, and even security cameras.

Install something that you can manage through your smartphone to check your home even when you’re in the office. Work your way up from there, and when you’re ready, maybe get a credible security company to give you the upgrade that will make you feel safer.

In the coming weeks and months since the burglary, regularly check auction sites and pawn shops for your missing valuables. If you spot something that strongly resembles yours, get the police involved. This might be how you’ll catch the burglar.

Moving Forward Safely

It’s difficult to make guarantees in any situation involving crimes like burglaries. What’s for certain is that you can be proactive in preventing another break-in and keeping the people around you safe.

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