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Feeling Neighbourly??

February 14th, 2018 | by admin admin | in Safety Advice |    35   comments

Gardening is a great way to meet your neighbours. While I spent last summer waging a desperate war against weeds, I met all sorts of passers-by, curious about my 15-foot-tall sunflower and full of suggestions about my withering broccoli. Besides gardening advice, though, neighbours also offer extra sets of eyes and ears to help protect your home.

While out gardening, I saw a stranger poking around my neighbour Jack’s property. When I let Jack know, he casually mentioned he watches my backyard too. Win, win.

If you can’t tell your neighbour apart from a panhandler, then it’s time to get friendly. Belonging to Block Watch can reduce break-ins in your neighbourhood by 40 per cent.

Of course, even the nosiest neighbour can’t monitor your home 24/7, so it’s important to install an alarm and set it every time you go out.

Like most of us, burglars prefer easy jobs. They target houses with no alarms, and easy ground-floor access. Why not walk through an open patio door? Then again, climbing a tree or trellis isn’t much of a stretch to reach an unlocked upstairs window. You could be even more accommodating and leave a ladder lying around. If you don’t want to shutter up the house in the summer, consider adding security bars to windows that are not fire exits.

Even locked windows, however, can offer a great view of your belongings. Jewellery on a bedroom dresser or a laptop in the front lobby may be too tempting for a thief to pass up.

The vast majority of burglars don’t like company while they work. So, if you’re going on a trip – to the mall or to Barbados – make your house look occupied. Timers can turn your lights on and off at slightly different times each day. A radio or TV can make it sound like you’re home.

If you’ll be gone for awhile, it really helps to have your new best friend, your neighbour, mow your lawn, collect mail, and generally watch out for suspicious activity. So, maybe it’s time you went to borrow a cup of sugar…

To find out whether your home is perfect for thieves, check out the Vancouver Police Department’s “Easy Target Estates” web site [link: http://www.kwantlen.ca/vpd/intro.html]. Be sure to take the quiz to see whether your home is an easy target.


Author: Joslyn, VP Sales and Marketing, and a Neighbour

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