Home Burgled? Here’s What To Do Immediately Afterwards

Home Burgled? Here’s What To Do Immediately Afterwards

According to an FBI report published in 2017, 5,298 burglary incidences were recorded that year. FBI considers home burgled, larceny theft, arson, and motor vehicle theft as property crimes.

According to FBI’s Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime report, property crimes witnessed a decline of 2.9 percent from January-June 2017—but this doesn’t mean that the need for effective security measure have diminished.

Locks provide basic security. Make sure all main doors have a commercial grade lock, or a high-security lock installed that prevent lock picking, bumping and drilling. Professional locksmiths recommend that all doors and windows on the ground floor should have a lock installed. Security measures have evolved, but so have burglary methods.

In the event your home experiences a burglary incidence, here’s what you need to do.

Call the cops

Report the crime as soon as possible; it will improve chances of getting your

things recovered and catching the culprits.

Call the police from a safe location. If you have arrived at your home and noticed signs of a forced entry, avoid entering the property.

The burglars may still be in; walking in on a break-in can cause panic, leading to casualties. Be cautious. Exit the property, and call the police.

The response team will be dispatched to your location, so sit tight and make a list of important things that need to be informed to the police.

Find a safe location and take notes of your time of arrival, suspicious things you noticed when you arrived at your property, suspicious activity you can recall earlier in the week and security details on your property.

Informing law enforcement authorities of details earlier on will speed up the investigation and the insurance claim process. Just make sure the authorities are informed within the 24-hour time frame.

Everything is an evidence

Waiting and being patient in turmoil is the most difficult thing to do, but it’s necessary. Tampering with evidence on a crime scene can mislead the cops.

It’s hard to consider your home as a crime scene or yourself a victim, but it’s imperative that you avoid touching or repositioning valuable things. Your house will be full of footprints and fingerprints that can assist the investigation process.

Give yourself time to recall the incidence

If you witnessed a burglary, take out some time to recall essential details. Pay close attention to:

  • The gender of the intruder
  • Height, age
  • Even if their faces were covered, tattoos or a specific physical trait can help in identification process
  • Type of clothes they were wearing
  • The direction they headed in, after leaving the house
  • If they escaped in a vehicle—its color, type, model, and number plate

Providing thorough detail regarding the burglary incidence can help authorities catch the culprit and recover your valuables.

Utilize your security protocol

If your home is integrated with a security system, make use of it. Many details can be uncovered with help of security camera footage. In addition to this, video evidence will provide more credibility to your statement given to the authorities earlier.

The way locks were manipulated can also provide vivid details about the burglary. The police might take help of a forensic locksmith to determine the nature of the crime. Inform the authorities about your security protocol as soon as they arrive, so that necessary steps can be taken.

Evaluate your valuables—what’s missing?

Once your home gets clearance from the authorities, take stock of things that are damaged or stolen.

Make a list of valuable things you own, and determine what was damaged or missing. This process identifies the target or motive of the crime. It will uncover the nature of the crime—was the burglary done for cash, electronic items, a specific safe, documents, or jewelry.

Running an inventory check can be a difficult task, but the sooner it’s done, the better. Knowledge of missing items allows the police to determine the nature of crime, and helps you file an insurance claim.

Speaking of which…

File a claim

To start the insurance process, you will need documents that verify the burglary. Call your insurance company to get their requirement. Generally, the following documents are required:

  • Police report
  • List of items stolen or damaged during the burglary
  • Complete list of valuables on your property

Notify your insurance company as soon as possible, preferable within the 24-hour time-frame. Even when a burglary happens late at night, drop in a message to your insurer immediately. Recovering a claim takes a lot of time; the sooner the process begins, the better.

Cleanup and repair

Dwelling in the victim phase can be detrimental to your peace of mind.

Allow yourself some time to accept the situation and then try to move on.

Looking at broken windows and door is not only damaging to your security, but is a constant reminder of the terrible incidence. Call a locksmith to repair damage caused by burglary. Ask them to assess the property’s locks and if need be, get new high-grade security locks installed.

Keep in mind, that all cleanup activity should be conducted after getting approval from the authorities. Until the police are investigating the crime scene, nothing should be removed from the property. Doing so, can contaminate and hamper the investigation process.

Re-evaluate your security measures

A property breach means your existing security measures are vulnerable to outside threats. Re-evaluate your security protocol; take the authorities’ recommendation for a better security detail for your home. A good security protocol secures your home at every level. Make sure you have taken following necessary measures:

  • Evaluate your property if your home has a lot of tree and shrub; get them cleared. Add a fence to mark your property.
  • Identify hiding spots and make them visible.
  • Make sure all the blind spots are under surveillance.
  • Add locks to windows and doors at each level of the house.
  • Install motion sensor and lights around the home.
  • Avoid keeping spare keys under flower plots or floor mats.
  • Make sure the doors linking the garage to the home is properly secured.
  • If you’re going on a vacation, keep the lights on timer to give out the impression that someone is home. Ask a neighbor to keep an eye on your house while you’re away.
  • Keep track of the people who have a spare key to your home. If you have lost track, get your locks replaced.
  • Lock away ladders and secure all air conditioning widows to prevent facilitation in burglary.
  • Avoid keeping valuables at home; keep them safe in a locker at a bank. Even if you do have a valuable item at home, make sure it’s insured, and under lock and key. Moreover, keep a detailed list of valuable items you own.
  • Upgrade locks and security system to avoid future breach.

Recovering from a burglary takes time. Burglary is a societal menace; provide awareness to your neighbors and work together to make your neighborhood safe.

Start from the basics; get your locks assessed by New York Locksmith Networks. We offer 24-hour emergency locksmith services in NYC.  Homes, cars, or business facility—we provide quality commercial, residential and car locksmith in New York City. Contact us now!

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