It’s a matter of fact that criminals like burglars and vandals will usually go out of their way to try and identify unoccupied properties.
That’s because, in spite of what you might see on TV, the vast majority of such crooks don’t like the thought of discovery and confrontation. They will almost always try to select a house or flat that they believe is empty at the time they set about their business.
So, if you are going away on holiday or have a slight delay in moving into a house you have just purchased, it’ll be in your interest to try and hide the fact that nobody is living in it at the current time.
Here are a few practical ideas that might help even if they are not directly related to Christchurch removals as such:
• Don’t let post visibly accumulate in your post box, letterbox or on the floor of your hall. Criminals will spot that in an instant.
• If you are going to be away for some time, get a neighbour to keep your garden and external areas in good tidy condition. In particular, make sure the grass is regularly cut.
• If you are having work done and the property will be empty while it’s in progress, try to agree with the builders that they won’t hang their publicity signs outside; telling the whole world in effect that your property may be empty.
• Try to get a neighbour or friend to pop into the house periodically to move the curtains and blinds around.
• Leave a light or two on a timer switch.
• Whatever else you do, DON’T leave notices on your front door telling people when you plan to return from wherever it is you’re going! Yes, it really does happen…
• Assuming you are on good terms with friendly neighbours, ask them to keep an eye on your property and to deal with anything that crops up externally which might signify that you’re away (e.g. slipped roof tiles etc.).
• Be cautious about telling large numbers of people, particularly those you don’t know very well, that you’re going to be away. This is tantamount to advertising by word of mouth and gossip that burglars are welcome!
Of course, in addition to these commonsense points, it might also be a smart idea to look to your security. Burglar alarms and external security lighting are always a good idea – whether you are away or not.