15 Ways To Keep Your RV And Home Safe From Thieves This Summer
When I bought my house, the neighbors all said how safe the neighborhood was because there is only one way in and out and because we live in a secluded area. We moved in in August and so far there have been three burglaries already. Luckily some of the neighbors had cameras and we were able to finally catch the guy. What I found most jarring about the video footage was how nonchalant and leisurely the burglar was in rifling through peoples cars. In one video clip you can see the guy going through the back of an SUV, rifling through bags and finally walking off with a pair of golf cleats. This guy was in no hurry at all. On three separate occasions he strolled through our neighborhood looting storage sheds and vehicles parked out doors. He even broke into my truck.
This was a real eye opener to me and is the impetus for writing this post for you today. I hope to help you keep your house and RV safe this summer when the theft and insurance claim statistics reach their peak.
It is no secret that a claims free Insurance history is the best way to keep your premiums low. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use your insurance when the need arises to file a claim. However doing everything in your power to mitigate a future claim is always money well spent and saved. Securing your RV to prevent theft will save you money and the hassles of dealing with unexpected property losses this summer.
While you are out travelling the US in your RV, motocoach aor pull behind camper this summer, you home is vulnerable to break –ins. According to the latest FBI annual report on “Crime in the United States, 2014” there were an estimated 8,277,829 property crimes (burglaries, larceny-thefts, and motor vehicle thefts) reported by law enforcement, resulting in $14.3 billion dollars in financial losses suffered by victims of these crimes.
The top season for proprerty thefts in the US is during the Summer. In warmer weather when we tend to keep our garage doors and windows open, or leave or homes empty for extended periods of time, allow for easier entry to thieves.
The odds are staggering, as one out of 215 insured homes will file a property damage claim in 2015. With an average price-tag of $3,786, according to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.).
Here are a few tips to help ensure that your Home and RV are less of a target for thieves, especially during the summer vacation season:
1. Don’t post your travel plans on social media. Even though your network includes only friends and aquaintances, sharing information like this publicly is best left for your return. Burglars have been known to use social networking sites to find victims.
2. Pushbutton locks on doorknobs are easy for burglars to open. You can open a door like this with just a credit card. If you don’t have them already, Install deadbolt locks on all your outside doors.
3. Before leaving home, check all exterior lightfixtures and replace any burned out light bulbs. One of the best deterrents against a burglar is to install motion-sensing lights.
4. Garages are a common entry point for burglars. Keep your garage door(s) closed.
5. Organize your neighbors. We were able to catch our burglar because our neighbors all shared information on a neighborhood Facebook page. Some of my neighbors had security cameras and after compiling all the different clips, a positive identifications made because our burglar had a very distinctive tattoo on his leg which you could clearly see in the surveillance video. Consider starting a Facebook page for your neighborhood to share info as well.
6. Invest in an alarm system. Many insurance companies offer discounts for alarms, and some systems also monitor for fire.
7. Think like a burglar. Ask yourself, “what would a burglar find when he looks at my house or RV that would be tempting?
8. Garages are a common entry point for burglars. Keep your garage door closed.
9. Don’t keep valuables in your home or RV’s bedroom. Crooks normally go straight to the bedroom because they know people tend to keep cash and jewelry there. Keep your valuables in an unlikely place, but not in the linen closet or the freezer (too common).
10. Although it is easier said than done, always lock your Home and RV. Leaving the window open even one inch can be just what it takes for a car thief to easily steal your car.
11. Try to park yourvehicle with the front facing an obstacle. Turn the wheels toward the curb, recommends Interpol. This makes it harder for thieves to tow your vehicle.
12. Use a trailer tongue lock to immobilize your travel trailer or pull behind.
13. Do not hide a spare set of keys anywhere on or near the RV itself . When camping, criminals may either see you hiding the key or look in the common locations people use.
14. Thieves prefer to work in the dark. Be particularly cautious at night about where you park your car. Park it in a well-lit area if possible. According to the Seattle Police Department, more than two-thirds of all auto thefts occur at night.
15. Don’t tempt thieves. Keep valuables out of plain sight. Take them with you or store them in the trunk