Black Friday is coming fast and the holidays are right around the corner! This means some major shopping excursions are ahead for many. While you are out making those purchases, be sure to protect your new purchases and belongings by taking the following precautions to avoid auto theft to your vehicle.

According to the FBI, in 2014 nearly 23 percent (22.9) of larceny-thefts were thefts from motor vehicles. Regardless of the type of location – strip mall, shopping mall, or a city downtown shopping area – you are commencing your shopping activities; theft can happen, so take measures that will help prevent this from happening to you.

Park in a well-lit area. As well as one that is located in a busy area with many people around. This will deter potential thieves from causing a scene, as there is opportunity for someone to see it happen.

Lock your doors. It sounds pretty simple, but sometimes the simplest of things are the easiest to forget.

Close the windows and sunroof fully. Don’t give a thief easy access!

Hide your belongings and valuables. Electronics are a prime target for auto left. Stash that GPS, and do so before you park. You never know who is watching you around the corner. Take your phone with you. As for those gifts you just bought, put them in the trunk or in the back with the tinted windows so people can’t see them from the outside.

What to do if these preventative measures were not enough

If you experience a break-in, follow these steps to make sure you recover your valuables worth as quickly as possible.

  1. File a police report. Document as much of the break-in as you can for your records. Photos are important.
  2. Did they get any items with your personal information on them? If so, call your bank(s), etc. to report stolen information.
  3. File an insurance claim. Two types of your insurance coverage may cover your auto break-in: comprehensive coverage and/or homeowners or renters insurance. Comprehensive typically covers the actual damage that occurred to the vehicle. Homeowners or renters would cover the actual items stolen from the automobile.

The Roots is here to answer your auto theft and break-in insurance coverage questions. If you are uncertain of what your policy covers, please give us a ring. We would be happy to review your policy for you.

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Have a safe and happy holiday season!