Two men broke into a house on Catherine Crescent, Ballina, on Tuesday night while three family members were at home.
A father and his two young sons were on the ground floor when they heard the upstairs floorboards creaking above them.
When the father went up to investigate he saw two men in the upstairs office.
He yelled at the offenders who ran out of the room, jumped from the balcony onto a tin roof then onto the ground. They decamped from the premises into parkland that borders the southern edge of North Creek at the end of Temple Street.
The men were described as approximately 175cm tall, Caucasian appearance, wearing dark hooded jumpers and dark pants.
Police are appealing for any witnesses that may have information as to the identity of these offenders to contact Ballina Police on 6681 8699 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.