Easy tips to keep gifts safe from theft this Christmas

7 December 2022 3 mins
christmas gifts safety theft

There should only be one guy using your chimney this Christmas. Here’s how to keep your gifts from ending up in the wrong hands this festive season.

Anna-Louise McDougall

Despite the nation’s cost of living woes, it doesn’t look like much is going to deter Australians from having a gift-happy Christmas. Australians are forecast to spend $63.9 billion in the pre-Christmas sales period (November 14 – December 24), which is a 3% increase on last year. That’s a lot of goods making their way to a lot of Aussie homes - which might mean a lot of money sitting under the Christmas tree this year.

While the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show that break-ins have decreased by 2.4% in the period Feb 2021 - Feb 2022 compared to the same period the previous year, 113,000 households still had something stolen and 79,600 had property damaged. It’s never been more important to think about not only how to protect your home, but how to protect those presents that you have spent so much time and effort choosing.

We’ve assembled a few simple tips to keep your gifts safe, and ensure the only one entering your home in the middle of the night is Saint Nick (he’s been doing it for years).

Christmas Gifts Safety Checklist

Keep presents out of sight. While few thieves will window-shop at your residence before making their way in, piles of boxes, stockings and sacks visible from the street may give them a pretty good idea of what’s going on. Your best bet is to keep gifts out of view, or hidden away until Christmas.

Break down any boxes. Got an Apple iMac box sitting on the curb? Hmm, not an amazing message to send prospective burglars. Take a few extra minutes to break down boxes that housed big-ticket items and put them in the recycling bin rather than leaving them on full display. 

Create mockupancy if you go away. As in, simulate what it looks like when you’re home. For example, you could consider using light automation to give people the impression that someone is at home by setting up lights to go on and off at certain times. Additionally, if you’re away for a while, ask a neighbour to pick up your mail and deliveries, so they don’t pile up for the world to see.  

Install smart home technology. From smart door locks to security cameras and fingerprint scanners, there are so many ways you can keep your home safe and stay ahead of the trend. With smart home monitoring that uses sensor technology, like the sensors we offer our customers, you can be alerted to movement, water leaks, sounding alarms and temperature changes that occur within range of where the sensors are placed. 

Keep the goods off social media. While ‘unboxing’ Instagram-worthy gifts is popular on social media, it’s best not to part-take in showing off what you’re wrapping, or receiving. Burglars don’t walk around in balaclavas hoping you’re not going to be home - they’re smart, and can use social media to target potentially empty homes and expensive items. If you're planning to go away or be out of the house, be wary of what you post. Set your social media accounts to private and don’t accept requests or messages from strangers.

Be proactive. If you have, or are planning on taking out contents insurance, it’s helpful to keep a list of the presents you buy and what they are worth. Though keep in mind not all gifts will be covered. Gifts have a claimable limit of $1000, and some specific items may have individual items that also have limits.

Take photos and document serial numbers and receipts so you have the details if you need them when making a claim. This way, you will be able to determine what it may cost to replace them, and you can consider updating your contents insurance accordingly.  

With Honey, you could be covered for the cost to replace gifts you bought for a special occasion due to loss or damage, if we agree to pay your contents claim for an insured event. There is a total limit of up to $1,000 for gifts, and we pay this benefit on top of your contents sum insured. The general limits found in the PDS also apply.

As always, don’t forget to check the PDS if you’re considering contents insurance for a full list of inclusions and items covered, and to know exactly what would happen if the worst were to happen.

Anna is Honey’s resident copywriter and product marketer, responsible for making insurance make sense. When she’s not grammar policing, she’s being her own devil’s advocate; could it read better, could it help more people, how much Honey is enough?

Anna-Louise McDougall

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