With any move, there are safety concerns for persons and personal belongings. But women on the move may be particularly vulnerable to burglaries—either during the move itself or once they are settled into their new homes. By planning ahead and taking the following precautions, women can ensure their safety and those of your belongings.
Prior to moving day
- Tell as few people as possible that you are moving prior to your move.
- Have the post office hold all mail during your move, and have deliveries sent to your office address, if possible. Avoid having packages or mail sent to the new address until you move in.
- If you are moving from an apartment, ask your landlord not to give out your forwarding address.
- If you are hiring professional movers, use a local agent of a national carrier or get word-of-mouth recommendations. If you are unsure about a moving agency, you can always check their reputation through the local Better Business Bureau.
- Give the impression that you are not moving alone. If you cannot afford a professional mover for the entire project, hire a crew from a local agency to load and unload the truck.
- Get to know your new neighborhood before your moving truck arrives -- different cities and areas have different risks, so it pays to be prepared.
Safety on moving day
- Don't tell new neighbors you are moving in alone.
- Consider hiring someone to guard the moving truck while you, or the mover, are unloading and carrying items to your new home.
- Lock the truck while you are unloading if you aren't going to be right back. In addition, lock the house between trips to and from the truck if you plan to spend a length of time outside.
- Don't pack valuables such as jewelry or silver with other items; keep them in the trunk of your car. Or better yet, place valuables in a safe deposit box until you get settled.
- Be aware of where you leave your purse and valuables -- someone could pick them up while you aren't watching.
- Label boxes for the room where they belong, such as the kitchen, dining room or bedroom, instead of identifying contents as “silver” or “electronics” to avoid drawing attention to valuables.
- Change all your locks immediately.
- Check all other possible entrances, such as windows or sliding glass doors, to make sure safety precautions are taken.
- Cover windows as soon as possible to prevent unwanted viewing of your possessions. Use a blanket or sheet until you have curtains or blinds installed.
- Because it is often necessary to have service people in to connect telephones, cable, gas and electricity, invite a friend over when service people are scheduled so you aren't alone. And never tell a service person you live by yourself.