CALL THE POLICE AND FILE A REPORT
- Step outside, call the police and file a report so that the incident is put on record. Putting the incident on record is necessary and easier for filing for insurance claims in the chance that you may find the person responsible for the break-in and retrieve your belongings.
- Once the police arrive, be sure to make a list of all items that have been taken, and the approximate value of each. Make another copy of this for your insurance company.
- Once you have called the police, don’t enter your home until the authorities arrive, because you don’t know if the burglar is still there or not.
- When you realize that you’ve been robbed, do not search the house for evidence of that person. If they are still in your home, they can pose a danger to you.
- Do not touch anything in your home before the authorities arrive because you may be tampering with any key evidence that the police might need to find the thief.
CALL THE INSURANCE COMPANY
- If you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, you can file a claim with the chance that you could get a decent amount for the items stolen.
- Make sure to do a call within 24 hours after submitting all the necessary information to the police. A claims adjuster will likely come and investigate in person.
- If you have security cameras installed, you might see the break-in itself. Take this footage to both the police and the insurance company for further proof. Use this footage to see if there are any security weaknesses that can be remedied to prevent this from happening again.
- Don’t try to clean up any evidence of the break-in until the claim adjuster comes to inspect your home, so it is advised to stay somewhere else in the meantime.
CLEAN UP ANY LASTING DAMAGE
The only thing left to do after the preliminary work is done is to just start cleaning up. Clear up all the signs of the break-in such as:
- Anything that’s been broken
- Any items strewn apart
- Markings/scratches on the walls and floors
- Board up any broken doors or windows until the repairman fixes them.
The sooner you get your home fixed and cleaned up, the sooner you can move past this event.
TAKE PREVENTATIVE MEASURES TO BETTER SECURE YOUR HOME
Some preventative measures that you can do are:
- Buy or upgrade any door and window locks
- Install a dummy security camera
- Put outdoor and indoor lights on timers
- Put motion sensitive lights outside your doors
These are the four main steps in the best way of handling a break-in. All that is left is to be sure to notify your neighbors of what happened for two reasons: to see if you can glean any information from them and that they can tighten the security of their own homes just in case.
With all the effort that we put in making sure that our homes are safe from burglaries or other crimes, it can be easy to think that means that it won’t happen. Unfortunately, that is not the reality. These break-ins will happen and cannot always be fully prevented. With that being said, in the case that you ever find out your home was broken into, there are several steps to take to help in dealing with the aftermath of a break-in easier.