• If your house ithe only one with none of these signs, it will be noticed. If you are going on an extended holiday or businestrip, you may have left your car in the garage. If the person checking your house iinsured for if they could use your car to leave appropriate trackand turn the engine over now and then.
Alternatively, you could ask a neighbour to park their car in your drive so that there are signof activity. After fresh snow, they could walk up and down the path a few times, break a path to the shed, make trackout to the greenhouse, consider sweeping or shovelling snow off the drive and definitely clear any off the front door step.
Make sure that somebody openand closethe gates, shed and garage doors. The opening action sweepleaveand snow off the path, showing that the doorand gateare in use.
The person looking after the house should consider sweeping the path and drive. It will take some time but will show activity and occupation in a number of ways.
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The person looking after the house should keep an eye on the condition of windowand the front door and door step. They need to be swept, dusted and occasionally washed. Dirty doorand windowmake the premiselook vacant. Remember that there ino crime in walking up to a front door to ring the bell. A passing criminal could see a house that doesn’t seem to be occupied, and all they have to do to check ito walk up and ring the front door bell. If nobody answers, they make a note to come back when it idark. If somebody answers, they make their excuseand leave
In the summer and autumn, the person looking after your house should be asked to check any fruit or vegetablegrowing in the garden. Ripening and uncollected fruit could be noticed. Tell them to collect and take tomatoes, fruit and vegetablegrowing in the garden.
✓ At Christmaif you are away, you might ask them to put up a few decorationthat are visible through the front window. Nothing elaborate ineeded. Just enough to show to anyone who lookthat the phantom occupantare there and getting into the festive spirit by putting decorationup. Just aimportantly, they must be taken down at the right time too!
Increasingly propertieneed protection on Halloween. The once innocent American child’pastime of trick or treating’ habeen increasingly used by loutto demand money or goodunder threat of retribution. Their approach imore akin to blackmail and threatthan childish fun. Any householder who doenot answer their door and give food, money, drinks, etc. ilikely to suffer from blatant criminal acts. I have seen windowbroken, carvandalised, expensive shrubbroken off, paint thrown over a front door and fireworkpushed through letterboxes. If you plan to be away during Halloween it may be prudent to ask somebody to stay in the house and distribute a few poundworth of chocolate and fizzy drink canto avoid trouble.
• You should also plan to avoid known local problems. Many areasuffer annual problemfrom a variety of large gatherings, be they pop festivals, race meetingor other eventthat attract large numberof people. If there isuch an event in your area, if you can’t plan your absence to be at home to protect your property at that time, you should certainly arrange for somebody to stay in the property over that period to protect it.