This is Joe. Joe’s a good guy. The best kind of guy, in fact. He helps old ladies cross the street. He pays for the coffee of the man behind him in line at Starbucks. He gives gifts to people in his neighborhood.
Okay, that last part isn’t totally true. They’re not gifts and the people who get them don’t necessarily live in the neighborhood. But more than once this year, Joe’s ordered something online, only to find out that a porch thief has taken it right off of his front porch.
It’s frustrating, and Joe’s not alone. Porch package theft costs Americans $25 million every day. Maybe ten years ago, package theft protection wasn’t something we thought about, but with e-commerce in the United States expected to hit more than $700 billion in 2020, it’s definitely something to think about now.
Don’t be like Joe.
Do You Have to Pay for Porch Protection?
We get it. Porch theft sucks. And it’s expensive. Even if you can get a replacement for the item that was stolen at no additional cost, someone still has to pay, whether it’s the vendor or the delivery company.
But do you want to spend more money to protect yourself from porch theft?
We’re not going to be the ones to tell you the only way to prevent porch theft is with a product. If you’re living a frugal life, there are ways you can do it for free.
- Schedule deliveries for when you’re home. Many delivery services now have options for you to select the day you want your package to arrive, so you can be there to scoop it off the porch ASAP. Sure, it might cost you a day of work, but if your schedule is flexible, it can be effective. (Plus, who is actually leaving their house right now anyway?)
- Change the delivery address. Whether you send it to a neighbor’s, your office or have it dropped off at a third-party pick-up spot, like a CVS or your local post office, giving a delivery address where someone will be available means you can be confident your package will be there when you pick it up.
- Leave delivery instructions. Things like “deliver to back door” or “hide under front step” are a great way to foil many package thieves. Porch theft is a crime of opportunity. No one’s casing your house for days on end. They’re looking for unattended packages out in the open. If your delivery driver has somewhere accessible they can hide your package, most thieves won’t spend the time looking for it.
- Go full Home Alone*. Yeah, you heard us. This one costs no money because you’re setting booby traps using stuff you already have around the house. You’d be amazed at what you can come up with using a few paint cans, some dinky cars, a couple skipping ropes, a Bing Crosby Christmas album and an iron.
What If You’ve Got Budget to Invest?
Maybe you’re a big-time online shopper. Or while your mom thinks e-commerce is a great way to stock up on toilet bowl cleaner and wrapping paper, you’re having some higher-ticket items shipped to your house. It would be a shame if something happened to that shiny new laptop.
If you’re motivated to keep your packages as safe as possible, it could be time to spend a little money.
One of the most common solutions we hear people talk about is doorbell cameras or other cloud-based security camera systems. And don’t get us wrong, cameras provide an important function … after your package has been stolen. If you need to file a police report to get your refund or your replacement, footage from your doorbell cam is useful to prove your package really was stolen.
Another option is to go full NASA and build your own glitter bomb. This requires a bit of an upfront investment, including several cell phones, stink spray, a metric tonne of glitter and a GPS system. It’ll also take some time since you’ll have to go hunt down your package after the glitter is deployed if you want to get the phones back. But, if YouTube is to be believed, it’s both fun and effective!
But if you don’t have your own in-house aerospace engineer, then the best option to make sure your package is and stays where it’s supposed to be is a Package Protector™. This locker can be installed right into your home’s exterior wall or onto a pedestal by your driveway or garage. It’s accessible to delivery drivers but keeps the porch thieves out. Instead of reactively documenting the theft, it means your package boxes will be home waiting for you.
Put Your Package Where Your Mouth Is
Okay, that headline made more sense in our heads, but in the end, what you really want is your new computer monitor or that new pair of jeans to be delivered safely and to stay where you want it to. If you’re not feeling so DIY and think Package Protector™ is the solution for you, contact us to find the product that will fit your home and your needs.
*Look, Kevin McAllister was our childhood hero too, but let’s all acknowledge that some of his methods were a bit…er…illegal. Assault charges suck, even when you’re defending yourself from people doing lousy things like stealing your packages, so proceed with this option at your own risk.