Moving into a new home is so exciting. It feels like a fresh start. But fresh starts go hand in hand with being a little naïve about your surroundings. You don’t know about the hazards in your neighborhood, you don’t know whom you can trust, you aren’t familiar with the streets, you don’t know the good delivery places – the list goes on. Worse, getting settled into a new home can make you a target for burglars and other criminals.
If you’re a new resident, make sure you pay extra attention to the following as you’re moving – it could be what ultimately saves you from becoming a victim of burglary.
Between the moving trucks lugging your belongings from your old home to your new one, and the items you purchased online to spruce up your new place, you might have delivery trucks pulling into your driveway several times a day. So you probably wouldn’t question it if a truck pulled up, claiming to have a piece of furniture you ordered. You’d let the delivery personnel into your home without issue. But these could easily be burglars, trying to get into your house. Scan every delivery person and truck that shows up at your home. Ask which company they’re with and what exactly they’re delivering. If they don’t have answers, don’t let them in.
You’re eager to meet your neighbors and make new friends in the neighborhood, so you talk to everybody you see. You’re not yet familiar enough with the area to know who actually lives there and who is just passing through. Burglars love pretending to be a neighbor and taking a chance on talking to a peppy new resident. They can ask you things about your schedule, car, profession and other pieces of information they can use to target you later. Be careful what you tell new neighbors until you’ve gotten to know the area.
Property Weak Spots
You may not yet know that the ground on this part of the backyard is loose, or that the walkways on the side of the house are bumpy and can cause you to trip and fall. Make sure your security lights are up and running around your property, first thing, so you can safely navigate your new grounds.
Speaking of setting up your security lights, set up your entire security system right away. Too many new residents put this off and make it the last thing they do. That leaves your house very vulnerable while you’re leaving back doors open to unpack your car, leaving the garage open to unpack boxes and letting delivery people in and out of your house. Your security system should be the first thing you set up.
You might sell some of your old belongings to make room for new items. Just make sure to take safety precautions when doing so. Don’t invite Craigslist buyers to your home but, rather, meet them in a public place. Don’t list your address on your for-sale ad. And don’t give potential buyers too much personal information.
When you move into a new home, a slew of professionals and service experts will contact you. The neighborhood dog walker, the neighborhood landscapers, the neighborhood babysitter and more might knock on your door. Make sure you thoroughly vet all of these professionals before hiring them. They may just be burglars posing as professionals, because they know you aren’t yet familiar with legitimate businesses in the area.
Don’t forget that before you found that home, a large sign sat out front that likely displayed its price. Even if the seller didn’t get his asking price from you, anyone who saw that sign has a vague idea of what you paid and what sort of income you have. If you bought a big-ticket home, you could certainly be a target for burglary, which is why installing your security system before unpacking even one box is crucial.
You should enjoy the excitement that comes from a new home, just don’t let that excitement cloud your judgment and leave you vulnerable to crime.