6 Ways to Mentally Recover After a Porch Theft

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Remember the infomercials that always ended with, “Please allow 6 to 8 weeks for shipping and delivery”? Good times. When, oh when, will your “Greatest Summer Lovin’ Hits” compilation CD arrive?

These days, e-commerce is an exercise in near-instant gratification. You see it, you buy it, twenty-four hours later — or sometimes less — it’s on your porch ready for you to enjoy.

Unless it’s not. 

Picture this. You’re at work. You get the email that says your package has arrived. You anticipate opening that box all afternoon, but when you get home, you find your porch empty. Your package has been stolen.

The agony. The humanity of it all!

Porch theft isn’t just about losing time and money. Sure, in most cases it’s easy enough to call the shipper or vendor, file a claim for a stolen package and get a replacement fairly quickly. But the mental cost is something else. 

Will the replacement be there when you get home, or will it be gone too? If someone can steal your package, what else can they take?

It sucks. We get it.

If you’re looking for tips on how to recover after a porch theft, here are nine of our favorite options.

1. Whine About It

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We were originally going to call this option “Call Mom” but if your mom’s like ours, her first question will be, “What are you going to do about it?” — and that’s not helpful. You don’t want solutions, you want to shout to anyone who will listen about the cosmic unfairness of the whole entire universe.

Totally been there. Go for it.

So whether you call Mom or a spouse, complain over the fence to your neighbors, or just go on a long tirade while you take Sparky for a walk, acknowledging how much porch theft sucks is an important part of your recovery. Take all the time you need.

2. Do the Responsible Thin

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Okay, now that you’ve got the whining out of your system, it’s time to do the responsible thing and get your replacement on its way. Make the phone calls, send the emails. If you ordered a new laptop, it might take some work. If you were just trying to satisfy that craving for pizza-flavored Goldfish, odds are good the vendor will ship a new order pretty quickly.

Afterward, you get to wait for your new order to arrive, which isn’t ideal, but waiting builds character. Doesn’t it? Sure. Let’s go with that.

3. Invest in Some Tech

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Remember that thing we said at the beginning about online shopping being all about instant gratification? Maybe it’s time to do a little more. Invest in some tech to help protect your home and your packages from porch theft in the future, and feel that little endorphin rush when you hit the checkout button.

Many homeowners will buy something like a doorbell cam or a wireless security camera they can mount above their door. Some of them even have one-way speakers so you can tell those pesky porch thieves to get their hands off your stuff. “Get off my lawn!”

Of course, not every porch thief is going to be deterred by a disembodied voice going “step away from the package!” So while options like doorbell cams are great, particularly if you’re already at home and want to see what the noise on the porch is, sometimes all they can do is give you footage of the mean man walking away with your package box.

4. Make a Back-Up Plan

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It’s been a tough year. People are anxious. And anyone with anxiety can tell you the best way to feel safe after something bad has happened is to come up with a million and one back-up plans to make sure it never happens again.

If you’re really worried your porch has become a hotspot for package marauders, come up with an alternate plan. Many e-commerce companies will give you an opportunity to add delivery instructions like “please deliver behind the back gate.” Or when you receive a notification about an upcoming delivery, many shipping company apps will let you log in and change the delivery date to a day or time you’ll be home.

Back-up plans can be a bit of a hassle. If your best alternative is delivery to a third-party or getting it dropped off at your in-laws — because Myrna never leaves the house — then you’re going to have to make a detour to get your package, but at least you know it’ll be where you expect.

5. Get Creative, Get Even

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Proceed with caution. Revenge is a cold dish best served sweet…or something like that. The internet is full of creative ways to feel like you’re one-upping the neighborhood package theft ring. Glitter bombs, exploding soda, rubber snakes and automatic paintball sentries have all been tried, with varying degrees of success.

But some of these are expensive (seriously, the glitter bomb guy attaches four smartphones to every package) and others are risky (we don’t recommend the paintball thing unless you were planning to repaint your siding this summer anyway), so while they’re fun to watch on YouTube, they may be more trouble than they’re worth.

Actually, that’s probably a better solution. Watch some package theft prank videos online. Almost as entertaining as cats. You get to experience your revenge vicariously and don’t have to shell out the cash for four new iPhones to do it.

6. Protect Your Package & Rest Easy

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All kidding aside, the best way to mentally recover from a porch theft is to keep it from happening in the first place. A package locker like Package Protector creates a secure solution that is accessible by mail carriers and other delivery drivers but will foil opportunistic porch pirates every time.

Whether you install a Package Protector™ PRO into the side of your home’s exterior or use the pedestal-mounted PORT model, you’ll sleep well knowing your packages are safe until you’re ready to pick them up.

If you’ve gone through all the stages of package theft grief and are ready to be proactive, visit the Package Protector™ website for more information.