*50 Things to Know about your Neighborhood*
16 October 2003
For those of us who live in suburban or semi-rural neighborhoods, it is critical that we know everything about our surroundings. We must know who our neighbors are, what they drive, etc. Hereís a list of what you need to know.
There are many reasons why these things are important. Iíve made some suggestions, but you need to determine what is important for you.
- How many homes are on your street?
- What are their addresses?
- What is the distance between each home?
- Which houses are safe to pass between? They need to be dark with a few places of concealment. These houses should also be dog-free.
- Which houses have fences?
- Do these fences keep the dogs and children in or are they designed to maintain privacy?
- Do the fences hide a pool - a potential source of water?
- Where are the swimming pools?
- Which houses have sprinkler systems? If TSHTF, this may be a source of water.
- Do any of your neighbors have small gardens?
- What about livestock?
- Do any houses have vegetation that may attract animals such as deer, squirrels, or rabbits?
- Which houses have a well?
- What yards are prone to flooding?
- Where are the creeks or streams?
- Where is the nearest pond or lake? You should know every one within five miles.
- Where are the fire hydrants in your neighborhood?
- Which houses have natural gas coming in?
- What about a stack of firewood?
- Which neighbors hunt?
- Which neighbors fish?
- Who likes to camp or hike?
- Who have the boats?
- Who have the four wheelers or dirt bikes?
- Does anyone work on cars?
- Does anyone have a skill that could be bartered for one of yours?
- Which houses have basements?
- Which houses are two story houses?
- Which houses have fireplaces?
- Does anyone have a gas grill in the backyard?
- Which houses have security systems or CCTV?
- Which houses have lights with motion sensors?
- Are there any tall antennas other than for television?
- Who are the retirees?
- Who are the single moms?
- Where do the children live?
- What are the careers of your neighbors?
- What times do the school busses role through?
- When does the trash truck come?
- What is the company that hauls out the trash?
- Do you know what the trashmen look like?
- What company provides cable television?
- What company checks your water meter and electrical meter?
- What company provides the gas?
- If you have home heating oil in your area, what companies do your neighbors use?
- Which neighbors have a lawn service and who do they use?
- What kind of vehicles do your neighbors drive? Write down their vehicle and the license plate.
- Does your street have a lot of through traffic?
- Is there a neighborhood watch set up?
- Do any of your neighbors have alternate energy sources such as solar panels or a generator?
I havenít provided the answers here. If you arenít sure why these questions, give it some thought. It may be a source of food or water that you havenít thought of. It may be point out a weakness in your security plan. You should know the people that are coming to check your water meter, electric meter, and taking out the trash. I wouldnít want a stranger walking anywhere near my house. Think of all the robberies that have occurred by somebody pretending to be someone they are not. Most burglars will stack out a place or do some reconnaissance before they break in. They may be a few drive byís. They may actually pull into your driveway or your neighborís driveway.
Some of the questions may no have relevance to you. There are many other questions that you probably need answers to. If you can think of some that are not on the list, please send them in.
How do you obtain all this information? Itís called exercise. Go for a walk in the morning or evening, or both. Itís important to know who is coming or going and at what time. You may already be exercising and never thought about this stuff. You never know exactly what you will need to know. You have to prepare for everything. The more information you know ahead of time is very important. Map out these details and have that information available when you need it most
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