Are you renting a moving truck and going from a quiet, friendly community to a high-crime area of the United States? Whether you're relocating for a job, for a relationship, or just to broaden your views on life, you're going to find that you've got to adjust some of your behaviors in order to protect yourself and your belongings. Start by learning how to move your stuff safely into a high-crime city with these moving-day tips for shady neighborhoods.
1. Get the Right Insurance
You aren't the only one at risk in a high-crime city—your rental truck is, too. Career criminals know how to strip vehicles down quickly, and they aren't picky about their selection. And if you don't have the right insurance, you could be liable to pay for the damages.
When your truck rental agency asks if you want supplemental coverage, say yes, particularly to a personal damage waiver and personal effects insurance. The personal damage waiver will waive your responsibility to pay for any damages your moving truck sustains in the event that it is stripped, and the personal effects insurance will reimburse you for your belongings if the thief happens to get those, too.
2. Mind Your Attire on Moving Day
Last year alone, a janitor was attacked and a teen with special needs was shot, both allegedly for wearing gang-related colors into the wrong neighborhoods. What may seem like a normal pair of shoes to you could be perceived as a challenge by dangerous gang members. Before you dress yourself on moving day, take the time to read the Quick Guide to Gangs, published by the National Alliance of Gang Investigators' Association. The guide will give you a rundown of gangs who might be hanging out on the streets of your new neighborhood and what identifying marks they use, so you'll know what colors and symbols to avoid wearing on moving day and on all days thereafter.
3. Keep Your Keys Separate
It takes only 15–20 seconds for a carjacker to steal your vehicle, and yes, carjackers do steal moving trucks. If you happen to be victimized by a carjacker as you approach your new neighborhood, you'll want to make sure that you don't sacrifice the safety of your abode in the meantime. Do not keep the keys to your moving truck on the same key chain that holds your new house key. Instead, carry your house key on your person at all times so it doesn't fall into the hands of a carjacker who may have been watching you and may know where you live.
4. Block Off Your Moving Truck's Cargo Door
If your belongings are going to be sitting in your moving truck for any period of time, you're going to want to take extra measures to ensure they don't get stolen. Your moving truck may have come with a padlock to secure its cargo compartment, but if it's an inexpensive padlock, it can be easily cut by a thief with a bolt cutter. Either ask if your moving truck provider rents case-hardened steel padlocks or purchase one from a hardware store; these locks are more durable and less of a target for criminals.
For even more protection, back your moving truck up to your house or garage so that there is only a couple of inches between the cargo compartment and an exterior wall. The less room there is to maneuver around the back of the truck, the less apt a thief is going to be able to cut or bust your padlock and steal your belongings without making much noise.
If you're moving to a high-crime city, it's time to boost your safety measures. Start on moving day by practicing the above 4 moving day tips for relocating to a shady neighborhood. If you'd like some help keeping your belongings safe during your relocation, contact a household movers agency near you that specializes in full-service moves.