What kinds of goods do thieves target? It’s important to educate yourself on this subject, because as the cliché goes, knowledge is power. If you own a shop, you’ll want to have a firm understanding of which merchandise bears the greatest risk of theft, and if you’re a homeowner, you may want to put yourself into the mind of a potential burglar as you organize your household essentials. Securing your valuables can save you tremendous heartache and frustration in the event of a burglary, and some of the most commonly stolen household items may surprise you.
The Top 10 List
In 2012, Property Room (a popular online police auction service) compiled comprehensive data about the most stolen goods in America, and they published their results on their website. Property Room’s entire inventory is made up of stolen goods recovered by police departments across the nation. The items go up for auction when nobody claims them. According to the company’s own data, here are the biggest targets of theft:
- Power Tools
- Gold Jewelry
- Cell Phones
- Hunting Equipment
- Small Electronics (especially Apple products)
- Decorative Weapons
- Lawn Mowers
- Small Boats
Don’t Become a Victim
So how can you secure your personal valuables? You don’t want your jewelry to go missing while you’re on vacation, and you certainly shouldn’t have to replace your $1500 laptop due to the selfish actions of a sneaky crook. Once you determine which valuables are at risk, you can take steps to protect them, even if you do become subject to an intrusion. Here are just some of the things you can do:
Place your valuables in the most inconvenient locations. Burglars like to slip in and out as quickly as possible, so don’t leave your valuables out in the open, within easy reach of an exit. Hide them if possible, and lock them up. For instance, rather than just placing your bicycle in the garage, lock it up as though you were locking it at a public bike rack.
Invest in a safe. A large, heavy safe may make for a costly investment, but it can also go a long way in protecting some of your most treasured valuables. If you keep hunting weapons, especially guns, you’ll want to have a reliable safe on hand anyway, for your safety and for the safety of your family.
Invest in a diversion safe. If you’re looking for a safe on a budget, consider a diversion safe. Perfect for concealing small valuables like gold jewelry, these unassuming devices are designed to look like everyday objects: hairspray bottles, books, even clocks. But in fact, they’re just hollow storage spaces designed to hide all of your small treasures.
Use GPS. Recently we wrote about a case in Arizona involving a burglarized man whose valuables were recovered thanks to a GPS device attached to one of the stolen goods. Miniature GPS units can be discreetly concealed on laptops, PCs and other desirable objects, and they can prove invaluable in catching criminals after your home is invaded.
Use burglary deterrents. A good offense is the best defense, and ideally, you’ll want to minimize the odds of your home being targeted for intrusion in the first place. Even if you can’t afford a full-fledged security system, you can use simple burglary deterrents to send criminals running before they even attempt to enter your home. Dummy cameras, fake TV lights, yard signs…these are just some of the effective but affordable tools that you can use to better secure your home.
Secure Your Valuables
The world can be an unpredictable place, and a home is burglarized every 15 seconds in the U.S. alone. It’s important to be prepared, and fortunately, preparedness doesn’t have to be costly or difficult. So if you love your electronics, your bikes and your hunting gear, it may be time for a bit of fine tuning on the home security front. Spend a little now, save a fortune in the long run.