When I arrived in the first village, the tutorial popups warned me that I should be careful not to do anything that would draw the attention of the guards. I ignored this advice and went right to looting the houses in the village and taking anything that isn't nailed down.
This doesn't seem to have any effect so far, and no repercussions. Can I really just loot anything, or are there some things that will trigger a response if I loot them? Are there any indirect consequences of stealing everything in the game?