What You Should Do if a Burglary Happens in Your Neighborhood

In the United States, a home burglary happens every 26 seconds, according to the FBI. That adds up to over 3,300 burglaries per day. No wonder this is the property crime most people are concerned about. So what do you do if this has happened in your neighborhood? Here are the first few steps you need to take.

1. Be a Helpful Neighbor

A burglary is a traumatic event, and your neighbors are likely to be afraid and also upset. Their sense of security has been violated, and their property may have been damaged. Now is the time to lend a helping hand and be a good neighbor.

You can offer to help them clean up or repair any damages. You may even want to think about welcoming them into your home and letting them stay in the guest bedroom until their house is repaired. Remind them that you are there for them, and keep in frequent contact.

2. Communicate With Your Family

If there are children in your home, talk to them about how they feel about the burglary. They may be concerned that it will happen to your home, or they may have questions about why burglaries happen at all. Have an open conversation as a family where the children can voice their concerns and know that they are being taken seriously.

This is also a good time to talk to your children about safety basics including using the buddy system and not opening the door for strangers. You may even want to think about establishing a “safe house” in the neighborhood where your children can go if they feel like the house is unsafe.

3. Up Your Security

Burglaries are often repeated in the same neighborhood so you want to make sure all the security on your house is up to date. There are also some practical safety steps you can take:

  • Turn on the porch lights.
  • Turn the television on when you aren’t home.
  • Plant thorny bushes near any ground-floor windows.
  • Lock all of your windows.

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