Tips To Avoid Holiday Theft!

We know that these coming weeks can be quite busy. Finishing up you holiday tasks can  be stressful and time consuming. For those of us doing some last minute shopping or packing in preparation for vacation, we have compiled a few tips that can help you and your family have a safe and theft free holiday.

For Shoppers:
  1. Hold on to your belongings. Leaving them unattended makes your things a target for holiday theft.
  2. Don’t make multiple trips to the parking lot to drop off you goodies in your car. The holiday makes it the best time for thieves to be out looking for gift filled vehicles to break into.
  3. Keep gifts out of sight. Avoid storing gifts in the back seat or floor while making a lengthy shopping trip to various retailers. Thieves will take a quick peek into your car to determine if it is worth it for them to break into. Make it difficult for them by keeping your stuff hidden away.
  4. Travel and park in well lit and busy areas. It will be easier to spot a thief and call for help.
  5. Shop with a friend. Shopping is always more fun when you have a friend around, and having an extra pair of hands is always great. You will also be harder to target when you are not alone.
  6. If you have purchased or received any expensive toys or gifts. You should speak to your insurance broker to see if it is an option to schedule them on to your insurance policy. Some items such as jewellery will need to be scheduled on to your insurance policy for it to be covered.
For Vacationers:
  1. Keep your home looking lived in. Put some lights on a timer and keep the snow shovelled during snowfall so that would-be thieves will think that the house is occupied while you are away.
  2. Call a friend. Ask a trusted family member, friend, or neighbour to inspect the home every couple of days and collect the mail. Give them a spare key instead of “hiding” one under the welcome mat. Another benefit of this is that if a loss happens, they can let you know and mitigate the damage instead of you coming home to a days, weeks or even months of damage after a vacation.
  3. Document everything. Do a quick inventory of your home and take pictures of big ticket items. If something does happen while you are away, at least you will have a record of all the things in your home and can provide it to your insurance company.
  4. Shred or tear up gift boxes before disposing of them. Boxes are billboards to burglars, it will let them know of all the expensive toys and trinkets that you have recently purchased.
  5. Put things back. If you recently put up Christmas lights or holiday decorations, don’t leave your ladder lying around and make sure that no extension cords are coming from inside of the home.
  6. Speak to your insurance broker about scheduling any expensive items you may have on your home insurance policy. That way you can make sure that they will be covered.

This festive season, whether you are staying in town or going away on vacation, utilize these tips so that you can enjoy the holidays without worrying about holiday theft.