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Discussion Starter #1
Got home from a week plus at Walt Disney World with my niece and nephews and found the house had been broken in to while I was away. They broke in through the kitchen window and took the oddest collection of things:

- company laptop
- spare change (both US and foreign)
- drinks from the fridge

They left behind the HDTV and Blu-Ray player and jewelry. Didn't even bother to look for my checkbooks or any other financial documents.

They dropped two sets of cars keys: one on the floor in the living room (DD keys) and the keys to the Lotus on the floor of the garage. I was fortunate that they weren't able to take the Lotus - the battery was flat since I hadn't driven it in a few weeks! I guess they couldn't be bothered to look for the charger sitting in the garage.

House was a wreck (bedroom was turned upside down), but no damage other than a broken kitchen window. Now I just have to clean up the fingerprint dust...

Overall I was pretty lucky, given the circumstances...
 

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Get a monitored alarm system - worth every penny!
 

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Sounds like maybe some local kids vs pros? Pros run to the bedroom, toss the mattress, toss all the drawers and empty closets of clothes looking for jewelry, hidden cash, guns or small valuables then gone asap. Neighbor and I had our apartments hit a few years ago, cops said it was a pro ring hitting our area by the MO

Stealing an Elise would be supremely stupid for several reasons, can't haul your loot, stick out like a sore thumb making your get away, and of no value to chop shops who are looking for common cars to part out rapidly
 

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Would have been interesting to see if they would be able to start the car (get past immobilizer/start button), AND put it into reverse
 

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Sorry to hear, but you still have your baby! Sounds like a bunch of kids. You really should have an alarm, though. Although, honestly, between the alarm service and the phone, it ticks me off that I pay roughly $105/mo to keep what's mine mine.
 

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On the topic on monitored alarm systems, the monitoring fee can be offset by the discount on homeowner's insurance. For those without a home phone, modern alarm systems can use either an internet connection or a cellular dialer to communicate to the monitoring station. You can also add monitored smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, flood detectors, hi/ lo temperature devices, etc. to ensure that you don't have any suprises when you come home. For the really paranoid, networked CCTV cameras can allow you to literally keep an eye on you home when travelling. You can have an alarm system page or text you with an alarm, and you can view the cameras from anywhere on the web to make sure everything is okay.
 

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I'd almost be tempted to toss them the lotus keys and see if they could figure out the immobilizer.....

That sucks to hear but glad it wasn't a slot worse.
Funny you should mention that. In the 2 years that I've owned my Elise, as an experiment, I've tossed the keys to car buff friends and acquaintances, and I simply asked them to start the car. Of the 10-15 I've tried this with, not one has been able to do it. Obviously, none of them had Lotus experience.
 

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Last saturday, I was awaken by my Elise's alarm SCREAMING (Gotta love that thing) I grabbed my gun and RUSHED out the front door.

No one there, a cat stared at me very confused from across the street. I said "Yeah you and me both kitty" and went back to sleep
 

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On the topic on monitored alarm systems, the monitoring fee can be offset by the discount on homeowner's insurance. For those without a home phone, modern alarm systems can use either an internet connection or a cellular dialer to communicate to the monitoring station. You can also add monitored smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, flood detectors, hi/ lo temperature devices, etc. to ensure that you don't have any suprises when you come home. For the really paranoid, networked CCTV cameras can allow you to literally keep an eye on you home when travelling. You can have an alarm system page or text you with an alarm, and you can view the cameras from anywhere on the web to make sure everything is okay.
The cost won't be offset all that much. Usually, it is on the order of 10%. So on a premium of $2K, you save $200/year. Every little bit helps, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Sounds like maybe some local kids vs pros? Pros run to the bedroom, toss the mattress, toss all the drawers and empty closets of clothes looking for jewelry, hidden cash, guns or small valuables then gone asap. Neighbor and I had our apartments hit a few years ago, cops said it was a pro ring hitting our area by the MO

Stealing an Elise would be supremely stupid for several reasons, can't haul your loot, stick out like a sore thumb making your get away, and of no value to chop shops who are looking for common cars to part out rapidly
The bedroom was turned completely upside-down. All the drawers were emptied, the mattress & box spring were off the rails, etc.

My guess is that if it was easy, they'd take it for a joy ride.
 

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Don't make the same mistake I made. My house was hit a second time almost exactly 1 month later. All my thoughts about an alarm and a safe not being worth it were changed the second time I got to go buy new laptops, cameras and pistols.

Sometimes the pros are smarter than we think. Give a guy time to go buy all new stuff then come back in!
 

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The bedroom was turned completely upside-down. All the drawers were emptied, the mattress & box spring were off the rails, etc.

My guess is that if it was easy, they'd take it for a joy ride.
No, they wanted a quick in, quick out. They didn't know otherwise. Pros would have and probably would have taken much more. Looking for cash, not much else. Believe it or not, people still do keep cash under their mattress.
 

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sounds like a "professional" burglar to me (not the kind you find on tv and in the movies). I don't know what you guys consider a "pro," but this scenario is typical of the career burglar. He's a guy on drugs (of course) who is looking for something he could quickly sell on the street. The #1 hot ticket item on the street nowadays is a laptop computer. Hardly anyone steals TVs, DVD players or stereo equipment. All that stuff is too big and harder to sell on the street.
Question for you, was your laptop visible through a window? The typical burglar is wandering neighborhoods looking for an easy score. That means an open window, and he would love to see what he's breaking in for (laptop!). He's likely hitting more than one home a night too.
He's eating your snacks because he's hungry. Did he take a nap on your bed or leave a nice log in the toilet?
If it were "kids" they would have taken the BD player and HD display (and any video game consoles if you had them).

It used to be the typical career burglar was a heroin addict. Nowadays the meth phreak is breaking into houses too, and in addition to the computer bootie he's looking for some papers he could use to steal your identity. That's everyone's fear - having their identity stolen. Take a close look at your checkbooks. Count every single check since the smart burglars will take one from the back of the book (deposit slips too for your acct number).
There are guides and tips available to protect yourself from identity theft if it's a concern.
 

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Something like that happened to us when we lived in FL during a hurricane power outage. My husband had an Expedition and evidently all you have to do is pop a screwdriver into the lock to get in. So that's what they did. My husband who is in real estate basically worked out of his car and had numerous folders full of info on his houses, two of his checkbooks, and the Damier briefcase I gave him for his birthday in the car. Also in the car was the spare key to my Infiniti which was parked in the driveway. They stole everything in Phil's truck except my key which ended up in the backseat somehow and his tennis rackets. I can't believe they didn't take my car.

My spare key now hangs inside the house and I always bring my car keys with me whenever I go out of town. When we leave this weekend we will be having a pet sitter come by for the first time and the first thing I thought was how am I going to keep her out of that garage. lol
 
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