Security remains a priority for homeowners and buyers but, even with security measures in place, there is the chance your home could be burgled.
Those who do have the unfortunate experience of being the victim of a breakin should go through the appropriate processes afterwards, says regional director and chief executive of Re/Max of Southern Africa, Adrian Goslett.
Leave home and call the police
It is best not to touch anything. Rather call the police or home security company as soon as possible. Doing so will protect both yourself and any evidence that can be used to apprehend the culprits.
Talk to neighbours
Speaking to neighbours will ascertain whether they heard or saw anything that would be useful to the police and also alert them to criminal activity in the area.
Contact your insurance
If household items were insured, the insurance company will need to be notified. Having home insurance is the only way a homeowner will be able to recover any financial loss incurred during a burglary. Ideally, a homeowner should take photographs of their valuables and all high-ticket items to keep a record which can be used to identify the stolen items.
Search for lost valuables
After the crime scene clears, you could search online classified adverts or pawn shops for people trying to sell your belongings. If anything is found, report it to the police who can investigate the matter and, hopefully, get the goods returned. While it may take some time, Goslett says victims of a burglary will need to find ways to move forward and start the healing process. “It can often help to make some changes to the home to help prevent it from happening again.
Changing the locks and upgrading or investing in a home security system will help you feel a lot safer.” Some people might also consider searching for a new home in a safer suburb.