video of Dr. Lori now talking about stolen art,
Royal Doulton figurines, and inexpensive insurance coverage. Video courtesy CBS 3 TV.
Protecting Your Property from Theft #1
- #3 (below)
Property from Theft #4 & #5 (next
page to a friend
your Personal Property - Dr. Lori's Tips
While are all concerned about identity theft, we are completely forgetting about protecting our personal property. Every year, I evaluate about 20,000 objects both at
antique appraisal events and in private homes.
With every object comes a story. These stories below derive from people who have suffered a loss from personal property theft. Many of us are leaving ourselves vulnerable.
1. Don’t Advertise
I can’t tell you how many times I have been conducting one of my public events and all of a sudden I’ll see a person whip out a miniature photo album filled with pictures of nearly every valuable item they own and show it to someone sitting in the crowd next to them that they hardly know. They flip through the pages recounting how or when they acquired that oil painting, pair of crystal vases, or piece of estate jewelry.
As they move toward the refreshment table and share their album with someone else, the first person is asking another person where the “album lady” lives. I see this happening in the produce section of the grocery store, at the library book discussion session, and a litany of other places. Remember the old saying “Loose lips, Sink ships” from American history class?
2. Don’t leave People Unattended
This tip is borrowed directly from my mother’s instructions when we were youngsters and she was stepping out for a quick trip to the store. The cardinal rule was don’t let anyone in the house. And, running a close second was stay with your guests. For you art and antiques lovers, Mom’s tip should read “don’t let anyone in your home while you are hosting a yard sale.”
In Philadelphia, PA recently, a woman hosted a yard sale and allowed a gentleman to use her bathroom while she was outside. Sounds reasonable. Two weeks later, her house was robbed. He was “casing the
joint" during his bathroom trip. Also, if people are in your house to fix a leaky pipe, install new kitchen cabinets, or reviewing that old exercise bike that you are trying to sell, don’t leave them unattended.
3. Don’t keep Neighbors in the Dark
There have been numerous reports of the polite neighbor who noticed something “strange” happening at a neighbor’s house and did nothing. Fearing that they would be considered rude, the neighbor sat idly by while their neighbor’s house was robbed in broad daylight. Give a trusted neighbor the 911 and the Green Light. Share information about your vacations, a significant schedule change, or a relatives’ extended visit.
That Philadelphia, PA woman’s neighbors thought that she had decided to move in with her adult daughter. While she was away, her neighbors just watched as the “movers”, actually theives, loaded a van with her stuff. They even robbed armoires, chests, and other large furniture items right before neighbors’ eyes.
Give trusted neighbors the green light to call the police if they see something unusual happening around your house.
In Part II of this article, I outline more tips about how to protect your property when consigning to auctions and in the world of
Masterpiece Technologies Inc.