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Do Friends Enter Your Home When You Are On Vacation?

Discussion in 'Friends & Neighbours' started by Rihana, Jul 26, 2022.

  1. Rihana

    Rihana Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Just a light thread ...

    When you are away on vacation, do friends or neighbors enter your home?

    Like to water plants or something?

    Do you care that people enter your house when you are away?

    Do you clean up the house a bit after you finish packing for the trip?

    Any do's and don'ts from experience?
    .
     
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  2. Rihana

    Rihana Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    For us, it has changed over time. Initially, we trusted only our best friends who lived a few miles away. Now, it is couple of our next door neighbors.

    I used to give the keys mainly so they can switch off the security alarm. Now, everything is app-controlled.

    Mostly, no one needs to enter. Once or twice we asked a neighbor to check on a window left open by mistake and once because 50 miles away from home, I was not sure if I switched off the gas stove. LOL.

    I am now more often the recipient of house keys. The arrangement suits me fine. In exchange for watering a few indoor plants and checking the outdoor sprinklers, I get to use their living room as often as I want. The peace of an empty home is indescribably after 2 yrs of all WFH. I get my neighbor's wi-fi password and binge on Netflix with no one asking, 'amma where is this/that" every 10 mins.

    But that comes with its own tension. Each time I leave their house, I am worried what if it gets burglarized.
     
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  3. sociallifein30s

    sociallifein30s Silver IL'ite

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    From personal experience, it is always done in the USA. BUt somehow not so much in India.
    a copy of my apartment keys were always with a friend. I had a key to my friends place too.
    But no one used anything in the house. Its just that if we lost our key, it is so difficult to find the maintenance people to open it for us. Maybe in India, we can bring someone easily to break open for us.
     
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  4. SGBV

    SGBV IL Hall of Fame

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    I always do that with my brother, who is living closeby. I can't imagine giving the keys to a neighbor or a friend given the fact that my house would be very messy after packing up & leaving with kids. I don't want to take the hassle of cleaning the house or arranging everything before the vacation & doing another round of cleaning upon arriving.

    But if it is for my brother, I don't mind leaving the messy house or even asking him to clean that up before my return. Of course he does the cleaning part with the help of a cleaner, yet the responsibility lies with him.

    I can't ask such favors from others, than a good sibling :)

    After moving to abroad, I've gone on 2 vacations.
     
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  5. sanjuruby3

    sanjuruby3 Platinum IL'ite

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    We give keys to our neighbors, just in case . Last time we gave keys to our close friends for india trip that proved very useful actually... We did not know he will ever need to come to our house but it turned out to be .. as our stay was extended. For plants, i usually handover my plants to my neighbors or friends as they need water almost everyday in summers.

    When you are away from home, you never know..you rememeber you left gas on or lights on. In those cases, it is good to have some one having keys.
     
  6. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    @Rihana,

    I learned the hard way how important is to leave a key to a neighbor from the experience of my family friend. Once he went on vacation to Europe and his water pipe connected to his fridge broke flooding his house. Luckily, the neighbor who had the key stopped the water flooding the house further but before he could do that the house was already filled with a lot of water damaging the carpets and many other electronic items. This neighbor also switched off the power so that the house will not face fire. When they came back, they claimed insurance and repaired the house. But for this neighbor, the house would have been flooded more and resulted in fire hazard.

    I personally leave a copy of my key with one of the neighbors whenever I go to India and tell them to keep an eye on the house if they see any suspicous activities. I don't set up the Alarm when I leave so that it is easy for them to open and close the house without any problem. But so far, none of the neighbors will have to enter the house. I keep one auto light on inside at a set time in the evening and it automatically shuts off in the morning. I didn't worry that much about the springlers as I periodically check them. Once to avoid water flooding, I shut down the water supply to the house without realizing that water was going to the water heater as well. When I came back it burned my water heater which I needed to replace. I realized that the best thing is to leave the house as is without any last minute decisions.
     
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  7. hrastro

    hrastro Platinum IL'ite

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    Early in my marriage, my FIL and I got locked out of our house - he was sitting in the portico and I went out to give him coffee and the door just got locked behind me - DH had to come home from office with his keys to open the door.
    So, it is not just during a vacation, we got into a habit of keeping a set of keys at a friends/neighbours place

    There are many occasions when friends and neighbours have left their home keys or car keys (the spare set) for some reason or the other - even now if I check my key holder - keys of at least 2 other homes can be identified ...

    But there have not been any occasions where any of us have actually used the keys (to clean or allow someone or water some plants or switch off the gas etc - cant remember a single incident)
     
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  8. Laks09

    Laks09 Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    My cleaning lady of ten years had a key and the alarm code. I leave a key with a neighbor, but since my assistant came and watered plants, cleaned up after me, got grocery and stocked up fridge before I got back, I never had to worry. She left me a few months ago and I've had such a hard time figuring out plants, cleaning, grocery etc.

    This time, I just got the cleaners to clean the day I was leaving. I left the plants in the shadiest part of my yard and turned on the sprinklers daily. Indoor plants, I just watered deep and left water in the drip pans also. Some dried but others were ok. Neighbors didn't need to get inside.
     
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  9. Thyagarajan

    Thyagarajan Finest Post Winner

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    It was before cell phone era.
    When neighbour with his entire family away for a fortnight, deposited key with a man in opposite flat in first floor.
    Few days later, a man with his appendage arrived in truck and knocked the door of the man holding keys for the opposite flat.
    When the man opened the door, the other man said pointing to the opposite flat,” sir, the steel store-well repainted and to be delivered to this mr X but it seems he is away to native place in Kerala. Just if you could open the door we would leave the storewell”.
    This man thought for a while and convinced that there could be nothing wrong by permitting this man to leave it in opposite flat.
    He agreed - open the opposite flat and allowed the storewell to be kept inside.
    Next day the same party came and said there was a mistake and the storewell wrongly delivered.
    “I wish to take it back and come few days later with the right one to deliver”.
    He felt nothing could go wrong and opened the door of opposite flat and the visitor with his appendage left with steel storewell . He noticed them their gait was bit slow as if the storewell turned too heavy!
    The family from kerala returned to find their flat burgled.
    Guess what happened ?
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2022
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  10. nuss

    nuss Finest Post Winner

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    Our cleaning lady has the key. We ask her to water the plants when we are away. She cleans the house after we leave and again before we return and will also stock up the fridge with milk and other necessities.

    I ask my postdoc or graduate student to swing by once a week just to check that everything is in order and make sure our fish feeder is properly working.

    Our neighbor is always happy to check if any package or mail arrived. She doesn’t go in though. I stop mail for the period of time we are away.

    When we are recipient of keys of our friends house, we do what they ask for (usually feed the cats).
     
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