A Halloween Haunt Nobody Wants: Vacant Home Vandalism
Posted on: September 15, 2015 by Aegis General
In previous blog posts, we’ve discussed methods that homeowners could use to keep their vacant homes safe, such as conducting frequent visits to the property to check on its condition, performing regular checks on utilities, and identifying any environmental problems in or around the home. With Halloween approaching in less than two months, owners of vacant properties should be even more concerned. While securing the right Unoccupied Dwelling Insurance Policy can financially protect the homeowner from vandalism & malicious mischief, Halloween is prime time for pranksters, and the damage inflicted could haunt these homeowners for years.
So how does a homeowner protect their unoccupied and unattended dwelling, especially when it’s unprotected at night? The following steps should be shared with these homeowners to help mitigate loss and alleviate anxiety over possible risks.
Know the Dangers. Unoccupied dwellings, such as homes waiting to be sold or those that have been sold but nobody has moved into yet, are key targets for vandalism. The fact of the matter is, someone who just wants to cause mischief but not actually steal property is more likely to victimize a vacant home than one that is empty. They may break windows, punch holes in walls, spray paint, etc.
Replace Locks. New homeowners should replace the locks on their doors immediately after they receive their keys, even if they plan on keeping the home unattended for a month or two before they move in. If the home will remain empty during Halloween, this gives vandals an even better opportunity as their presence in the neighborhood won’t be as suspicious on this night.
Make the House Seem Lived In. Put a couple lights inside the home that are set on timers. Put curtains and/or blinds up in the windows. Mow the lawn and pull up dead plants. Put a few decorations in the front yard. This is especially easy and pertinent at Halloween time; even just putting a few pumpkins on the front porch can give potential mischief makers the idea that the home is lived in.
These are just a few tips homeowners can follow to reduce their risks of dealing with the unfortunate costs of vandalism this Halloween. At Aegis General Insurance Agency, we understand these risks, and our Specialty Property Insurance products focus on safeguarding the property and assets of clients typically not served through the standard markets, whether they have past claims history, older properties or other unique exposures. To learn more about our operation and all of our insurance programs, contact us today at (866) 662-5752.