It’s an unsettling experience. Many homeowners feel so violated after a home break-in that they either panic or just don’t know what to do. It’s not surprising. After all, your seemingly safe sanctuary has been invaded, and your sense of security has been crushed. However, you need to be level-headed in this crucial moment. By mentally preparing yourself ahead of time, you can act quickly, increasing your chances of catching the burglars and getting your stuff back. Here’s a 5-point checklist of things you should do after a home break-in.
1) Call the police
Contacting the authorities is priority number one. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to catch the burglars and/or get your stolen items back.
2) Write down everything right away
Were you home when the burglar entered? Did you see them? Write down everything you can recall about them as soon as possible because you may forget. This will assist the police in finding the culprit(s).
Details you should write down include:
- How many intruders were there
- Sex, age and race of intruder
- The way they were dressed (as many details of what they wore)
- How they entered
- Where they went
It’s even better If you have a security camera. Then you don’t have to recall anything—the security camera does it for you and in more detail. Let the police know if you have a security camera and make sure they see the footage.
3) Take pictures—but don’t disturb anything
It’s important you don’t disturb the crime scene until the police arrive. You need to show them the conditions of your home as close as possible to how you found it after the home break-in.
With that in mind, take pictures of the crime scene without disturbing anything, including areas where items were stolen and entrances burglars used to get into your home. You’ll need this for insurance purposes to prove certain items were stolen and that certain areas of the home were damaged.
It also helps it you have pictures or receipts of the items before they were stolen.
4) File an insurance claim
Once you have your police report, immediately contact your home/renter insurance company.
It’s important to file the police report first because your insurance company will need the report number and a lot of information that’s in the report, including the point of entry, property damaged, items stolen, etc.
Later, an adjuster may come out. All your work before will pay off now, because you’ll need to explain your situation, provide receipts and/or pictures of items stolen and property damaged.
5) Identify your security weak points and strengthen them
Now that you’ve done all you can to get your items back, it’s time to repair and strengthen your home so this never happens again.
So, here’s the good news- if you’re reading this and your home has not been broken into, you can strengthen your home now and save yourself the trouble of steps 1-5.
Calling your local locksmith is a great step you can take next to bolster you home security, as many of them have the resources and the flexibility to assist you immediately. Quick Locksmith Los Angeles has been helping people with home break-ins for over a decade, so call today for a free quote at (323) 450-2142!