Protect Your Package Deliveries from Houston Porch Pirates
If you’re having holiday packages delivered to your Houston home, take precautions! Package theft has become an epidemic around the country in recent years, with about 23 million victims in America. And as online shopping becomes more commonplace, thefts are occurring in higher numbers.
Package thieves in Houston have not been deterred by broad daylight, security cameras or the homeowners being present. They often follow delivery trucks and scoop up packages within moments of them being dropped off. They are brazen and quite unafraid of being identified.
Some frustrated homeowners have tried to “bait” thieves with dummy packages in order to catch them in the act, so that arrest and prosecution can take place. While this sounds gratifying, it’s not a good idea. There have been incidents where confrontations with a package thieves have led to injury. It’s a mistake to assume that these thieves are unarmed, or have never done anything worse.
In most cases, package theft is a non-violent crime of opportunity, but you never know who you are dealing with. What’s more, the capture of a package thief in one neighborhood seldom cures the problem for long. Another thief soon takes their place.
Your best defense against package theft is to never have an unattended package left at your doorstep, not even for a few seconds. Here are some tips to help you thwart package thieves:
Require a signature for all deliveries. If you anticipate that you won’t be home for a delivery, use an alternate shipping address, such as your place of employment (if permitted) or a neighbor’s home.
You can create online authorization to allow the USPS to leave deliveries at a back door, or with a neighbor. First, create an account at USPS.com and enter the package tracking number to see whether it’s eligible.
Deliveries can also be held for pickup at a post office, or delivered to a GoPost location.
FedEx and UPS offer alternatives as well. With FedEx Delivery Manager, you can customize delivery times and addresses. You can have your packages held at a FedEx location, sign for your delivery in advance, and provide specific delivery location instructions. You can sign up for free, but FedEx charges a fee for certain services.
Even if you’ve never had a problem with package theft at your door, it’s a good idea to insure your packages whenever possible.
Before shipping gifts to friends and family, ask them about the best time and place to have a package delivered. It may spoil the surprise a little, but better a safe delivery and less surprise, than no gift at all!
If you suspect a package has been stolen, file a police report. Contact the shipper to report the theft. In most cases they can file an insurance claim and send a replacement package.
We hope these tips are useful to you! And when you’re looking for information about Houston real estate, we’re here to help you! Obtaining the expert advice of the KW Energy Corridor Team is the first step in a successful home purchase or sale! Contact us today for your personal real estate consultation!
KW Energy Corridor Team
11757 Katy Fairway | Suite 930
Houston, TX 77079