What to Do if Your Home is Broken Into
There is nothing more violating than the feeling of knowing that somebody has broken into your home. This is your safe space, your haven from the world, and you deserve to be able to go in and out of it without feeling anything less than confident that nobody else will. But the home that you pay for, whether it's a rental or you own it, is yours to ensure that it's safe and keeps you safe.
The problem is that you can't always predict if somebody is going to take it upon themselves to break in. You can't always determine whether or not you have done enough for your security until somebody breaks the breaches. If you come home from work one day and find that the window is smashed, you know that you can call a full-service window replacement company to come and fix it. But what else can you do? What's your first step? How do you get started to make sure that your home is safe again? Well, we've put together a list of things that you can do if your home is ever broken into. Hopefully, you will never need this list.
Leave the scene, and call the police. Don't stand outside a broken window or a broken door to call the police. Cross the road or go and speak to a neighbor or a friend and hopefully, they will let you in whilst you call the police. You should never just stand near or in your home after being broken into whilst you call for help. Firstly, you don't actually know if anybody else is inside, and secondly you need to be away from the scene so that you can think clearly whilst you call. A part of you may want to go in and defend your home, but a criminal doesn't really want to face the homeowner. In fact they would rather avoid you completely and take your stuff while you're not there. Confronting somebody in your house at this time could lead to you getting very hurt and it doesn't need to be like that. You can replace your belongings but you can't replace you. So move away from the premises ancol from a distance.
File a report. You may have the instinct that nobody is going to care about your home being broken into. This is not true. It's super important that you file a full report so that the police can ensure that your home is safe. If you do not file a report with the police, there is a chance that this could happen again or it could happen to somebody else and you have the power to avoid it. Police will enter your home and make sure nobody is still inside so that it's safe for you to be in there. They can process the scene and take evidence, take fingerprints and take photographs of any damage. You will have to be somewhere else during this time so make sure that you call a friend. Filing a report may seem like an inconvenience, but if you have insurance claims to make you need it.
Make a list of missing items. Take pictures of the scene and make a list of things that have gone missing. If you have a medicine cabinet at home, take a look inside there and also list that. You have to get to work once you are back inside the house. You need to make sure that everything possible has been listed and then you need to give this list to the police. They may never be able to recover any of the items, but they can try and they will try on your behalf. Valuable items are obvious targets but medications are potentially valuable to a thief.
Speak to your home insurance company. Once you have that police report you need to speak to the insurance company whether you are a homeowner or a renter. Don't clean up or secure any doors just yet, your home insurance adjuster has to see the damage. Of course, if you have to leave it overnight you need to secure the entry point and the police can help you with that. Starting a claim straight away serves several purposes. Not only will the insurance adjuster be able to see the damage themselves, but there are benefits that can cover immediate repair of doors and windows. We mentioned window replacement earlier on, so make sure that you mentioned which companies you would like to use for this. It's good to make that connection as quickly as you can so that your home can start to get back to normal.
Speak to your bank. It doesn't matter where the bank cards or cheques or credit cards were stolen. Thieves can use your bank statements and other ID documents to access your bank account. If a laptop that you used to log onto your bank account has been taken, then you have to let your bank and credit card companies know. Not only can you provide them with a police report, you can ensure that the credit bureaus are not going to mark you unfavorably if a thief has taken any money in your name and then doesn't pay the bill. You need to ensure that you have an immediate freeze on your credit which will prevent new accounts from being opened in your name.
Find all of your big ticket items. Your passport, your proof of ownership for your house, your important documents that have been filed, all of these need to be double checked. There is every chance that thieves could have taken these from you and could use them to their advantage and therefore put you at risk. It doesn't matter whether or not the breaking has happened overnight, while you are away or they didn't even touch that room, you need to ensure that you have everything available to you so that nobody is going to steal your identity.