Imagine waking up Sunday morning to find your house in shambles and your prized possessions missing! You quickly come to the sad realization that the Easter Bunny is not the only one that likes making incognito visits to your home. Unfortunately, the potential for home theft is a part of every season.

With spring underway, many homeowners open the windows to enjoy our wonderful Florida weather, but will they remember to close them before bed? Burglars look for an easy entryway, and a cracked window or an unlocked sliding door are a dream come true for thieves. Here are some Do’s and Don’ts to keep your home secure and avoid a “hare”-raising experience with a criminal.

DO: Close and lock all windows and doors before bed. An open or cracked window is an invitation for thieves to help themselves to your belongings. Don’t make it that easy.

DON’T: Leave your blinds open for thieves to “window shop.” If your valuable possessions are in plain view, it can make your home even more tempting to those with sticky fingers. You don’t want criminals looking for loot through your window.

DO: Update your contents coverage on your Florida homeowners insurance policy to make sure your belongings are covered. You can use a digital home inventory to record all your belongings.

DON’T: Underestimate the amount of coverage you need for your personal belongings.  If you don’t have enough coverage, you could end up paying for your stolen goods all over again. Also, make sure that you have replacement cost coverage for your contents so you will receive the current value of your items so that you can purchase a new replacement. Many home insurance policies offer actual cash value coverage for contents, which takes depreciation into account when determining the amount of your reimbursement.

DO: Consider an alarm system or another form of home theft protection. Not only will these systems deter thieves, but they might even qualify you for a home insurance discount. Check with your Florida homeowners insurance company for more information.

DON’T: Hide an extra key under your mat or in a “hidden” spot - criminals know them all. There is no such thing as a well-hidden key. The safest place to keep your extra key is with a trusted friend or neighbor.

DO: Keep your hedges and landscaping maintained to avoid creating hiding spots for thieves. Tall bushes provide cover for thieves to lurk around your home.

DON’T: Post your alarm company sign in your yard. Many burglars buy information to help them get past specific alarms.

DO: Post a generic alarm sign in your yard. The generic sign will let criminals know your home is protected, but it will not give them additional information about the type of alarm.

DON’T: Forget to activate your alarm every time you leave the house, even if it’s just for a couple minutes. What’s the point of having an alarm if you’re not going to use it?!

DO: Install a motion sensor light outside in strategic areas around your home.  Light deters thieves and can give the appearance that someone is home even if you are away.

Keep your belongings safe and sound by following our helpful tips.

Also: Get a Florida home insurance quote to make sure your home and belongings are protected.