I've just remembered that whilst living in my last house, I unlocked the front door when I arrived home from work, and went to turn off the burglar alarm. There was a red light on which indicated that something was wrong.
I don't know about you, but I tend to assume that there's a fault in the system when that happens, I'm not so paranoid as to think that someone's broken in, despite having been burgled years ago.
So, I turned off the system and went to check the doors. They were all intact, and so were the windows. I tried to turn the alarm back on, but it wouldn't activate. Clearly there was a problem. Finally I remembered about the zones - I'm not very technical!! The lightbulb went on in my head - the garage!!!
The garage door had been kicked in, shattering the lock. There was a lovely footprint visible on the cream painted door. I phoned the police, but told them there was no rush, the intruder had obviously run at the sound of the alarm, and nothing had been touched.
I contacted the insurance company, with whom I had both house and contents insured, and said I would be claiming for a padlock to keep the garage secure until the door could be replaced.
The girl on the other end said that a padlock wouldn't be covered, only a replacement door!
It took a great deal of persistence to persuade her that the paltry cost of the padlock, about £4.50, was considerably less than the potential loss of all the contents of the garage if it was left unlocked, since the intruder knew that it was now possible to enter it. There were several valuable woodworking tools my husband kept in there, plus cycles etc, so it would have been a tidy sum we would have claimed if it had remained unprotected, and the alarm couldn't be set due to the damage.
She did, reluctantly, agree to re-imburse us for the cost, but it was so short-sighted of her to have argued.
The police never found out who did it, despite the lovely footprint, sadly, it's only in CSI that such a thing is a vital clue!