If you've ever had a package stolen from your front door, you know exactly how frustrating it is. You are not alone.
According to a survey by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, more than 23 million Americans have their packages stolen annually. That's a lot of stolen goods!
What's worse, it can be really disheartening to think maybe one of your neighbors stole it. It creates a distrustful environment all around and makes you nervous about all your future deliveries.
If stolen packages is a huge security concern for you, we have some effective package theft prevention tips for you to put a stop to it.
1. Always Ask For A Tracking Number
Anytime you order something online or through the phone, always get a tracking number. With the tracking number, you can go to the courier's website and see where it is anytime. When you see that the package is out for delivery and on its way, try to be home for it or let a family member who will be home to keep an eye on it.
2. Get the Required Signature Option
If you just ordered something very expensive, we would highly recommend you to get a required signature option for it. If you're not home, the delivery person will have to return it and try again another time. If they leave it at your doorstep without a signature, they can get into legal trouble for it. Or, ask your neighbor to sign for it if they're willing.
3. Get Insurance for Your Package
The next option that is even safer than getting a required signature is to get insurance for your package. They won't cost you that much more but can insure up to thousands of dollars. For example, USPS insurance covers up to $5000 if your package is lost or stolen. If your package contains something very valuable, getting insurance for it is definitely worth it.
4. Use Package Lockers
A few years ago, Amazon started installing package lockers in commercial places for their customers to pick up their packages. This was a very smart package theft prevention move because it eliminated a lot of fear and headaches for their customers and themselves.
Several years later, 7-Eleven partnered with Amazon to expand their locker options for FedEx and UPS packages as well and so far, it is working out smoothly. If this is available near where you live, definitely take advantage of it!
5. Deliver Your Packages to Work or to a Friend
If you have a good friend whose home can secure packages better, ask if you can have sent your packages to them. Or, if your office allows it, get your packages delivered to work. It won't cost them anything and most offices allow it as long as the packages aren't too big.
However, we would air on the polite side and not send packages to either of these places too often. It's your friend and your job, and neither is the post office.
6. Ask a Neighbor for Help
If you have a good relationship with your neighbor and you know they're home more than you, ask if they'd be willing to collect packages for you occasionally. You can offer the same help in return when they're not at home. It's a great way for neighbors to help each other out.
7. Leave Packages Out of Sight
If you have a side door or back door, call up the courier or leave a note on your door telling them to place the packages in those locations. Having a package at the side or back door may not be 100% theft-proof but the chances of a thief being tempted in the first place will drastically decrease. Most thieves are only looking for visible packages because those are the ones that they can easily and quickly snatch away.
8. Pick Up Packages at Store or Delivery Center
No, it isn't as convenient but if the retailer you ordered the product from has a brick and mortar store, chances are you can ask for it to be delivered there. This is an especially good option if you ordered electronics or anything expensive.
In addition, couriers like FedEx allow their customers to send packages to their other FedEx locations and hold them until they're picked up.
Also, if you happen to work near these locations, you can just pick them up on the way home.
9. Put Package On Hold and Reschedule Delivery
If you're going on vacation but you're expecting a package, you can call to have your package intercepted and rerouted to a different address. If there is no one you can reroute the package to, you can have the item be placed on hold at the delivery center. USPS offers this service for $13.45 and UPS will hold your package for free for up to 5 days.
10. Install Security Cameras
Sometimes, even the best package theft prevention methods may not work.
If you've tried all the methods above and you're still getting packages stolen, install a security camera at your front door. Make sure it's visible or place a sign on your porch well before the door to let them know they're being recorded. This can work wonders to deter thieves.
For even more security, you can get a security system with a siren that can scare away the thief even faster. Your cameras will detect the motion and send you a shot, you can then remotely trigger a siren! They'll know not to mess with you.
Package Theft Prevention Can Be Painless
In order to make sure none of your packages will be stolen ever again, you'll have to mix up these tips and use them for different scenarios. The reality is you might not be able to rely on your friend or neighbor to receive your packages all the time, or you might not have package lockers near you. But hopefully at least one of these tips will work for you.
Package theft prevention isn't really about scaring thieves away. It's about decreasing the chances of them coming even in the first place.
If you need any more expert tips on theft prevention in general or need help choosing the right products to secure your home, visit our website or contact us today and we'll help you customize a security system just for your needs.