A recent rash of local home burglaries is a good reason for homeowners and renters to update their home security, take extra precautions and check their insurance coverage, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California.
“One recent technique we’ve been hearing about is that thieves will turn off electricity to the house at the breaker box to check whether anyone is home,” said Jim Will, vice president of insurance claims for the Interinsurance Exchange of the Auto Club. “We suggest adding a lock to the breaker box and/or the access gate for the side of the house where the box is located, if possible.”
Other tips from the Auto Club’s insurer include:
- Make sure all your window and door locks are in good working order, and never leave an entry point unlocked when you’re not at home.
- For an extended absence from home, make the house appear to be occupied with light timers and be sure your mail and newspapers are cancelled, or consider hiring a housesitter.
- Do not keep spare keys hidden outside the house. Thieves will search for them.
- If possible, install a monitored alarm system in your home. You may be eligible for a discount on your insurance premium after the system is installed.
- Make sure your home insurance is updated and provides adequate coverage for any valuables in your home. If you own expensive jewelry, high-priced electronics or other luxury goods, you may need an additional rider to your insurance policy, or a “floater” insurance policy, to be adequately covered in the event of a loss.