House Burgled and car stolen

  VNAM75 04:20 21 Nov 2009

I got my house burgled tonight (friday). I came home at around midnight and found that my front door had been broken/forced open. They went through the house emptying draws and stole my laptop which cost me £330 2 years ago (1.7ghz celeron). I don't know how much its worth now but I can't claim on insurance because I only have buildings cover.

When I got home I phoned the police who arrived quickly and filled in some paper work. To make things worse I had not realised they stole my spare car and house keys too. About 2 hours later they came back and stole my car (a 2002 ford focus, worth about £2300) which was parked on the drive. I did hear a car door close but by the time I went to the window the car had already been driven off. I phoned for the police again and they arrived quickly.
This is the first time I have been burgled and I am in very deep shock and I'm asking people for advice and support. My family memmbers have also been burgled in the past too. I've also read a few threads from other forum members here who have been burgled and would like them to share their experiences and describe how they coped. I have been very complacent about security. I live in a reasonably quiet and populated area with very little trouble. I always buy buildings only insurance cover and I never leave the lights on when I'm out at night.

I will be phoning the insurance companies to claim for the front door lock replacement and also for the car. Should it be straight forward for these 2 and have I done everything I ought to?

  crosstrainer 06:32 21 Nov 2009

Very sad news, but without contents cover you really are faced with forking out for new items.

I would check all insurance documentation carefully....Maybe you have basic contents without knowing it?

Stab in the dark (crosses fingers)

  PP321 07:46 21 Nov 2009

Thats shocking, my sympathy's.

I couldnt bare being burgled, its the thought of "my castle" being invaded as well a my privacy.
As suggested by CS , try the insurance company, you never know?

Hope it works out for you.

  rdave13 07:52 21 Nov 2009

A nasty experience. Disbelief soon turns to anger.
One thing that would worry me is the laptop. Did you have any accounts information on it that could possibly be hacked? Some sites save your info, such as Amazon. If you think so then possibly notify your bank and credit card company.

  morddwyd 07:54 21 Nov 2009

You must be feeling really bad- I've had my car done but not the house, touch wood.

The worst thing is that in the unlikely event of them catching the lowlives your stuff will be long gone and they'll just get a slapped wrist.

  BT 08:13 21 Nov 2009

A friend had a breakin a couple of years ago despite having a burglar alarm. The thieves removed a window from the double glazing. It was the older type where the glass panels were fitted from the outside so it was an easy job to prise out the retaining strips and lift out the glass. They only stole the car keys from the hall table and got away with BOTH BMWs. Fortunately my friend had trackers fitted to both cars which were recovered undamaged by the police.

There are two lessons to be learned from this. If you have older type Double glazing with the glass fitted from the outside consider having it upgraded. Secondly don't leave your car keys on the hall table,something I never understnd. Mine are always in my jacket or trouser pocket.

  the hick 08:20 21 Nov 2009

This is awful, my sympathy. I had my car broken into on driveway two years ago, but heard nothing indoors - no alarm on it. Two months ago, broken into again on a lit town centre carpark, and CD/radio stolen. I dont keep anything of value in cars now. However, having your home burgled is far more disturbing, and this has happened to friends. Do check whether any items like passports, driving licences, bank cards etc, have been taken.

  wiz-king 08:25 21 Nov 2009

Now is the time to take a long realistic look at your 'castle' and see where you can improve it without going so far as to spoil your standard of life.
You can improve your security with out going over the top and spending a fortune.
You say the smashed your front door, as you have now got to fit new locks then fit mortise type locks as well as the normal latch, also think about fitting hinge bolts while your at it. Look at your gardens front and rear - do they have enough light to enable your neighbours to see anyone attempting to break in, you don't have to floodlight the place but a porch light with sensor is a good idea (try to adjust it so that foxes/cats don't set it off ever 10 min). If you have louvre type vents at the top of your windows then a couple of vertical bars will stop most people from removing the glass and getting in.

Above all dont worry about being angry - any one who has been burgled feels the same but direct your anger to ensuring its not that easy next time.

  sunnystaines 09:28 21 Nov 2009

if the courts woke up and locked these people up for 5 years, most of them would be out of circulation and we would all be safer.

  birdface 09:36 21 Nov 2009

No lights left on is just advertising that there is no one at home.
Always leave a light on or have a timer that will switch one on and off at a certain time.

  Quickbeam 09:41 21 Nov 2009

I leave a radio on as well, that might just be enough to make a burglar believe you're at home and active, even for several days. The power cost is worth the cost.

It's no consolation, but you'll feel uneasy and paranoid for many weeks yet, it knocks your confidence in your own space hard being burgled.

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