A typical American spends more than $800 on gifts every winter holiday on around 15 holiday gifts, as reported by Statista. The bad news is that crimes such as theft, robbery, and scams also tend to increase during the holiday season, as reported by the U.S Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). One of the main reasons behind such crimes is most homeowners leave their homes unattended during holidays. Another reason is the distractions associated with holiday activities create an ideal environment for criminals to operate.
Keeping this in mind, here are five tips to help you protect your holiday gifts.
1. Burglar-Proof Your Home
According to a recent survey by the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation (AIREF), about 60% of convicted burglars say they won’t break into a home with an alarm system. This means that even when you are away from home, you can significantly increase your home’s safety by installing cameras and an alarm system. Other than possibly scaring burglars away, a home alarm system can also alert you, your neighbors, and the alarm monitoring station in the event of a break-in, thus enabling you to stop a burglary.
2. Create an Impression That You’re Home
According to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), most burglaries happen between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. because most homes in the U.S. are unoccupied during this period. During the holidays, however, most burglaries tend to occur in the evening and at night. To protect holiday gifts, always make your home look occupied, especially when you’re traveling. Some of the things you can do to achieve this goal include, among others:
• Leaving your lights on
• Asking a neighbor to empty your mailbox
• Leaving music on
• Parking your car on the driveway
3. Mark Your Important Holiday Gifts
On average, American authorities recover about 30% of all stolen property annually, with motor vehicles being the easiest to recover, as reported by Statista. Generally, items with labels or ownership information are easier to track and recover than those unmarked, such as clothes. With this in mind, label important gifts this holiday season to give the police an easier time to trace them in case someone steals them.
4. Don’t Keep Expensive Holiday Gifts at Home
Every year, criminals steal expensive items worth billions of dollars across the U.S. For example, in 2019 alone, criminals stole currency, jewelry, and precious metals worth more than $2.4 billion from homes across the country, as reported by Statista. This means you should not keep expensive holiday gifts at home. Instead, try to keep them somewhere safer, such as a safety deposit box in a reputable bank. For replaceable gifts that are relatively expensive, you can store them in a home safe, as per the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
5. Stay Alert at All Times
Holiday activities such as eating, partying, attending get-togethers, and overindulging often cause distractions, making people more vulnerable to theft. To keep your holiday gifts safe, strive to stay sober and alert at all times, especially if you are carrying something valuable. This will enable you to defend yourself or call for help if someone attempts to rob you. Besides, avoid overindulging and letting strangers into your house during the holiday season.
Use these five tips to protect your holiday gifts this season. For extra peace of mind, get the right insurance policy. Contact the experts at Robert J. Los Insurance Agency in Hamburg, New York, for all your coverage needs. We look forward to helping you with all your coverage needs.