Recently we had a terrible experience that I would not wish on anybody, especially not fellow watch nerds. We got burgled. This is a very traumatic time when one’s home is defiled, vandalised, and at times no longer feels like your home. It is definitely not how you should feel about your very own sanctuary against the outside world. On top of all of this, we are looking at items that have been stolen, a number of watches and some family heirlooms, obviously this has upset my wife no end, and me? Well, I am absolutely livid… It is not just the amount of time spent deliberating on which timepiece to buy, nor ones that were gifted from loved ones, but also the memories that have been shared with a watch. I know it sounds rather ridiculous but trust me, it does happen.
After having to go through all the paperwork and communications with insurance companies and jewellers, I have had an epiphany. Share the experience, and the lesson. For you watch nerds out there I suggest you look after your prized possessions, in very particular ways.
1/ Burglars tend to go to your bedroom first, they have a predetermined plan which normally involves this room being where all the expensive jewellery and watches are kept. 9 out of 10 cases, this is true, be it the wife’s jewellery box or our watch cases. So my advice, keep it somewhere else! Somewhere more conspicuous like in a false book on the book shelf would be an ideal alternative, granted it is a bit odd but that is exactly the reason why they will struggle to find it.
2/ If you have a large collection, or a particularly valuable collection, purchase a safe, preferably an immovable one once installed. This will certainly deter those opportunistic burglars. Good thing about a safe is that you can put more than just your watches in it.
3/ You could always keep your seldomly worn pieces in a safety deposit box at the bank, this is admittedly the most inconvenient solution. Especially if you constantly chop and change what you will be wearing.
4/ This final line is not about deterring your burglar, simple things like a home alarm system, or even a dog will sometimes suffice! No this final point is in the case that even after you have taken the above steps and maybe more, that your prized watches still get taken. I advise that you catalogue them, immediately, take pictures of the pieces themselves, the boxes, the paperwork and receipts. Then have it all printed and kept in the form of a folder, preferably two folders, one to be kept in a safety deposit box, the other at your solicitor or lawyers office. All because the claims process by insurance companies can take forever, and if they are not supplied with all the evidence they will rip you off and undervalue your items, guaranteed.
In a way I should apologize for today’s rather solemn article but I feel that this is an experience that we can all learn from, and these are just my suggestions, there are many weird and wonderful solutions out there so feel free to try them all.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below and thanks for reading!