Home and Property
October 2, 2023
Crime Prevention
How to keep your valuables safe

How to keep your valuables safe

Keep your valuables safely locked away where they can’t be seen and make sure you have a way to identify them if they’re stolen.

Store valuables out of sight

Make sure any expensive, precious or sentimental items can’t be seen through a window or door or when someone enters a room. 

Keep smaller valuables secured in a drawer, cupboard or safe, lock your power tools away in the shed or garage and position larger items like computers and televisions away from windows. 

Take photographs or video

If you have something rare or highly valuable, such as jewellery, antiques, artwork, silverware, rare books or special collections, you should take photos or videos of them. Make sure the background is plain and shows off the item as clearly as possible. For smaller items, include a ruler or coin to show its size.

Keep a record

Create a free account with PropertyVAULT to keep a secure online record of your valuables, including make model, serial numbers, a description and other key details. You can even upload photos and flag the items as stolen if they do get pinched. If your items are stolen, you can give this information to police and your insurer.

Invest in a safe

Consider investing in a safe to store smaller valuables. To protect paper documents like wills, property deeds and certificates, a fire-proof home safe is the most secure. If it’s cash, jewellery and paper that need protecting, choose a combined cash/fire-rated safe. 

Your safe should ideally be bolted to the floor, wall or structure of you home and positioned where it’s not easily seen.. 

Make your valuables identifiable

Mark your valuables with a unique personal code to make it easier for police to return them to you if they’re stolen and recovered. Items that can be easily identified are harder for thieves to on-sell. Police recommend using a “V” for Victoria and your driver’s licence number.

If you have rare or highly valuable items or special collections, photograph or video them instead.

There are 4 key ways to mark your property:

  • Engraving: Use an engraver to mark tools machinery and larger objects like bikes 
  • Ultra-violet pen: Quick and cheap. Good for delicate items. Unique identifier will show up under a UV light.
  • DNA marking: A synthetic clear liquid which contain a unique code, like DNA, that’s registered to you. It is dotted on to your valuables but can’t be seen with the human eye.
  • Data dots: unique identification numbers encoded on polyester substrate to form microdots which you then stick on your valuables. They act much like DNA.

Take out insurance

Make sure that you have adequate house and contents insurance which can cover your loss. Keep digital receipts or take a photo of hardcopy receipts and store safely.

Get Police Assistance

For all emergencies and immediate Police assistance
Call: 000
To report non-urgent crimes or events 24 hours a day
Call: 131 444
To report information about a crime contact Crime Stoppers on
1800 333 000

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Neighbourhood Watch Victoria acknowledges the 38 mobs, the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we operate, live, and gather as employees and volunteers. We recognise their continuing connection to land, water and community and pay respect to Elders past, present and emerging.

At Neighbourhood Watch, we believe everyone has the right to feel safe and welcome. We are committed to ensuring diversity, inclusion and equity are embedded throughout our organisation – in the work we do, the services we deliver and among our staff, volunteers, and the communities we work with.