Recovering From a Break-in

Recovering From a Break-in

The agony from a burglary has little to do with the loss of your property. It is more about the loss of your sense of safety and privacy. After the incident, you may feel angry, anxious, and violated. However, you do not have to suffer forever. You can recover and resume normalcy if you take action to reestablish your sense of safety and recover your lost valuables.

Here is what you need to do immediately after a break-in.

Ensure Everyone is Safe

Intruders generally prefer to break into houses when nobody is home, but sometimes there are people around. Check on your family or roommate to ensure they are safe. If anyone has physical injuries, including you, get immediate medical attention.

  • Document the Incident

Take photographs of any damage such as broken glass, locks, furniture, or other possessions, and write down details concerning the break-in. Note the date, time, and any additional relevant information that can help authorities arrest the culprit or recover your property. Identify any missing items and estimate their value – in case you get
reimbursement.

  • Notify the Police and Insurance

You must notify the authorities after a break-in even if nothing is missing or the damage is negligible. Call the police and provide all the details, including date, time, and a list of missing items. Having photos of the stolen items and the scene will reinforce the investigation. You should also contact your insurance provider to file a claim and establish whether your home insurance policy covers break-ins.

  • Seek Support

A burglary is traumatizing and can cause you anxiety. If you feel unsafe at home, talk to a healthcare professional or friend about your fears. You can also stay with relatives or friends for a few days. If your insurance policy includes mental
health benefits, talk to a professional counselor to help you cope with the experience. 

  • Prevent a Repeat Incident

After experiencing such an invasive event, you must take measures to restore your sense of normalcy and make you feel secure. You will eliminate stress knowing that you are safe and prepared. 

Protect Your Home Following a Break-In

Not every intruder will break into your house to steal your possessions. They may come to injure you or your family. The burglar may also be there to case your belongings. Therefore, you must take immediate action to protect yourself and prevent another break-in. 

Conduct a Safety Assessment

The fact that an intruder was able to enter your home and probably take away your possessions is a reliable indicator that you have serious security issues. You need to inspect the safety of your house, and you start by establishing how the burglar got in. Was it a faulty door lock, a broken window, or an open patio door? 

A safety assessment will highlight safety threats. Call a professional locksmith to perform a comprehensive security check on your doors and windows. They will also advise you on how to secure any entry that a thief may exploit.

  • Upgrade Your Locks and Doors

Reinforcing your locks and doors will make unlawful or forced entry more difficult. After a break-in, you should change your locks, regardless of how the burglar got into the house. Changing your locks is critical, especially if the intruder gained access through a faulty lock. Additionally, there is the possibility that the thief took your spare key, and they can use it later. 

Old, outdated, and severely worn locks are more susceptible to manipulation than newer locks with advanced features. For
optimum security, upgrade to smart or keyless locks, or keyed locks with enhanced security capabilities. You can also reinforce your door with a deadbolt. If possible, replace the entire door with a more resistant type that
can withstand force or prying.

  • Update Your Security

Even after upgrading your locks, you need some security updates for the exterior and interior of your home. Install smart
outlets inside your house to deter criminals. They come with a timer that you can set to turn the lights or TV off and on when you are not home. The lights give an illusion of someone at home, even when there is no one. You can also
install a security system with sensors and loud sirens to scare off a potential intruder. Advanced systems come with an app that allows you to monitor your home from anywhere.

Trim bushes and shrubs that a burglar can use to hide and break into your house undetected. Also, cut off tree limbs that a
criminal can climb to access your home from open windows on higher floors. Additionally, lock away any tools that a burglar can use to break your doors, windows, or locks.

Protect Your Home From a Future Break-In

Criminals search for home security flaws to grab any item they can easily convert into cash. Your homeowner’s policy can help compensate you for your lost property. However, you must protect yourself from the emotional and mental distress that follows a break-in. Knowing burglars’ habits will give you insight into how you can effectively protect your
home. 

Some common ways intruders break in include:

  • Opening the front door using a spare key from a hiding
    spot, or by forcing the lock open.
  • Using secondary entrances that usually have cheaper
    locks and doors. Their locations also provide more cover for an intruder
    to gain entry unnoticed.
  • Entering through open windows and those that only have
    latches and no locks. Such windows are easy to force open without breaking
    the glass.
  • Taking advantage of climbing opportunities to reach
    balcony doors and second-floor windows. Such opportunities include
    ladders, furniture, grills, or trees.   

With this information, you can take several deliberate steps to forestall a break-in. These include:

Change the Locks

If you move into a new house, change all locks and update all coded entry points. Previous owners could have left a passcode
or a spare key with a neighbor or a housekeeper. Changing the locks is the only way to control who can access your home. Additionally, never leave your spare key on your property. Whatever hiding spot you can imagine, a burglar can find it. Instead, you can give it to a friend or a trustworthy neighbor.

  • Strengthen Door Locks

While most burglars get in through open windows and doors, a significant number of break-ins involves forcible entry. Most
doors and locks, especially those on the porch, garage, or the back, are not sturdy enough to keep intruders out. For optimal security, you should have solid, kick-proof exterior doors. The doors should also have a deadbolt and a box strike plate with 3-inch screws for extra durability.

  • Secure the Windows

We all like opening windows for some fresh air, especially during warm weather. However, windows are easy to shatter.
Furthermore, most people leave them open or fastened with a latch that makes it easy to pry the window open. Install an auto-lock feature or a secondary locking mechanism to secure your windows. You can also add a track lock to aluminum or vinyl windows to restrict the up and down movement of the frame.

  • Reinforce Sliding Glass Doors

Most sliding glass doors are vulnerable to attack because they can be easy to break. They are also infamous for lock
failure. One of the most reliable solutions is installing a heavy-duty lock on the sliding door. For extra safety, you can install a shatterproof film or glass break detectors to trigger your home alarm at the sound of breaking glass.

  • Lock Valuables Away

An experienced thief already knows that most people keep valuables in jewelry boxes. A home safe provides an extra layer of protection for your high-value items. The safe should be too heavy to carry or mounted on the wall or floor.

  • Lock Garage and Shed Doors

An open garage or shed door will give a thief a preview of your pricey tools. It may also provide them with an idea of what
they can use to bump your locks or climb in through your top floor window. Additionally, thieves often case the joint. Locking your garage or shed door with a high-security lock will deter any burglar looking for an easy target.

  • Lock Car Doors 

Always lock your car if you park in the driveway, in an unlocked garage, or on the street. Also, keep your remote garage door opener out of sight. A thief may steal it at night and get into your garage when you leave in the daytime.

If you are a victim of a break-in, you do not have to endure another incident. Intruders can attempt to break into your home,
but you can make it a difficult target. Installing high-security doors and locks will make it harder for a thief to break in.

About Us

TBC Locksmith is a professional, dependable, and affordable provider of residential, commercial, emergency, and automotive locksmith services in Toronto and the GTA. We serve clients in and around cities within 60 kilometers from Toronto, including Brampton, Mississauga, North York, Markham and Vaughan. We also service cities further on the outskirts of Toronto: Pickering, Oshawa, Ajax, Barrie, Newmarket, and Whitby. Our team of highly skilled locksmiths offers top-notch door repairs, installation of new locks, making new keys, and rekeying locks. We provide solutions for home, apartments/condos, offices, storefronts and car lockouts.

Having the right security solution for your property is critical. You need an experienced locksmith that you can rely on both for regular services, and whenever emergencies occur. We are open 24/7 and have a 15-30 minute response time so do not hesitate to give us a call. At TBC Locksmith, we have a large inventory of superior quality locksmith products to ensure that we respond to your needs promptly. We believe in delivering our promise and doing the job right the first time.

Here are some more reasons why TBC Locksmith is a great choice.

    • We are a family-owned business
    • We provide 24-hour availability, 7 days a week
    • Our technicians are fully licensed, certified, insured, and bonded
    • Our response time is 15-30 minutes
    • We offer honest, competitive pricing
    • We offer a 90-day guarantee

You can call us at (647) 699-0953 any time you need locksmith services for your home, office, or car. We will respond immediately and offer you the best solution.

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