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Neighbour broke into my house

(84 Posts)
tenredthings Sat 11-Aug-18 08:58:47

My neighbour and her son sold us their house. They never lived in it and it was practically a ruin. She built a new build on land next door and they sold us the old ruin. We invested loads of time , money and energy and completely rebuilt it and now rent it out.
Since then we have suffered low level harassment from her son. He reported us to the council for our washing line and painting the house a slightly different colour beige than before ! He then broke our rain water storage and cut a hose pipe.

I caught him approaching our house another time with a metal bar and I confronted him , he behaved very aggressively poking the bar in my face. I tried to keep calm and just asked him what his problem was at which point he ran off with his fingers in his ears , dancing up and down like a young kid and behaving very strangely. He's 45 and holds down a job !
I reported it to the police but nothing was done.

I went into the house today to water the plants and noticed that a window was open. This window has no handle as it's a door length window with a drop outside and not safe so I never put a handle on it. Someone has climbed up from the outside, brought a handle with them ( the bar of which they have left in the door ) and entered the house. They couldn't shut the window from the outside so left it open. Nothing looks disturbed but I won't know if anything is missing till the tenants return. I am contacting the police but I have no proof it is him , though I am convinced it is. I contacted my tenants who say they have never opened that window and I have a photo taken a few weeks ago where I can clearly see that at that time the window had no handle bar.

WIBU to post him the handle anonymously so that he knows I know , and then if it wasn't him he will just think its weird and not connect it to me ? Given that his behaviour has been a bit unhinged in the past is it best to not get involved with him on any level ? How can I make him back off when I have no definite proof.

Grumblepants Sat 11-Aug-18 09:02:43

Don't post it back as your just giving it to him to use again.
Don't engage with them at all. Report and document everything and if necessary get cctv installed. It's so cheap to do now and if you catch them it will hopefully be all the evidence you need.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Sat 11-Aug-18 09:05:25

Ask the tenants if you can fit CCTV?

Aragog Sat 11-Aug-18 09:09:00

Do you have a burglar alarm and CCTV? They'd be the first logical steps I think.

Also report the break in to the police, ideally before touching anything more. They may get prints.

Document every single incident.

Hauskat Sat 11-Aug-18 09:11:05

I wouldn’t antagonise him as he sounds completely nuts. I second writing down every encounter you have with him, dates and times. Obviously that is unsatisfing but I would concentrate on making the place a fortress (and am delighted to hear cctv is cheap now - i’m Off to google it.) What do you think is motivating them? Would staying completely calm and not reacting much mean they get bored? Because I think that might be the best result you can get. So sorry, it sounds awful.

OnlyFoolsnMothers Sat 11-Aug-18 09:15:00

CCTV- my neighbours use Blink security systems. Then either catch him and take it further when he’s caught or if you just want it to stop- mention ‘In passing’ that you’ve installed cctv, might scare him off.

Berthatydfil Sat 11-Aug-18 09:17:15

Do you think that this neighbour thinks you have done them a wrong, or some how stiolen the house or defrauded them?
If you have done the property up increased it’s value and now renting it out maybe they are jelous. Or maybe he has some mental health issues. Anyway he sounds possibly dangerous.

Please report this to the police. It appears he’s escalating.

If you haven’t been into the property and disturbed things there may still be finger prints or evidence.

Get some external cctv. Obviously make your tenants aware. As long as it’s only filming your property you don’t need to put up any signs.

If the property is empty you could consider putting in some internal cameras.

Topseyt Sat 11-Aug-18 09:20:52

CCTV. With the tenant's permission of course.

PirateWeasel Sat 11-Aug-18 09:24:36

What do your tenants have to say about this? Have they fallen out with him, and he's acting out of 'revenge'?

pictish Sat 11-Aug-18 09:29:05

Why did he start bothering you in the first place? Why was he approaching the property with a metal bar? What was his explanation for that?!

What’s his beef?

BewareOfDragons Sat 11-Aug-18 09:55:16

He sounds unhinged, which is quite worrying.

I would ask the tenants to put in CCTV cameras and get them in. And log every incident with the police.

Mummyoflittledragon Sat 11-Aug-18 10:02:20

Has anyone else touched the handle? It can be removed and dusted for finger prints.

mum11970 Sat 11-Aug-18 10:15:30

If someone has broken in why have you posted here before contacting the police? Why have you touched anything? And why were you watering plants in a tenants garden before 9 am?

juneau Sat 11-Aug-18 10:19:30

I would fit a security camera, security lights and a burglar alarm to the property. Your neighbour sounds mentally ill tbh, but if the police will do nothing you need to protect your property. Have the alarm monitored by the police, that way they will have to get involved if he breaks in again.

Summersup Sat 11-Aug-18 10:25:44

The police might not do anything about a one-off incident a while back but they will be interested in ongoing harassment, and I would log this with the neighbourhood police person and explain why you are worried to them; they may well visit or send a letter to the person concerned (I've been in a similar situation).

CCTV is also a good idea.

TomHardysNextWife Sat 11-Aug-18 10:27:22

Agree about fitting the CCTV, even putting a dummy camera up may be enough. They clearly still think of the house as their property.

If they chose to sell, why are they so hostile?

Pinkvoid Sat 11-Aug-18 10:30:59

I feel sorry for the tenants. He sounds like he has serious MH issues, threatening you with a metal bar is shocking.

Agreed with pp’s to have CCTV installed and a good burglar alarm system. Keep everything well documented and evidenced and take it to the police.

chocolateworshipper Sat 11-Aug-18 10:31:16

Do not antagonise a deranged person. Report to the police

justilou1 Sat 11-Aug-18 10:32:05

Don't do anything - get the police to fingerprint it. Good grief! Get CCTV! He's obviously got some kind of serious issue, why would you risk stirring him up like that???

HolyMountain Sat 11-Aug-18 10:32:57

Don't confront him or do anything to put yourself in a difficult situation.

CCTV is the way to go as said. ^

AjasLipstick Sat 11-Aug-18 10:38:22

He may have put a hidden camera in there OP. It might appear as though nothing is disturbed but be very careful.

PattiStanger Sat 11-Aug-18 10:45:55

Only on MN would someone describe a worrying incident and a poster ask about the watering of the plants.

Honestly, if you don't believe it you use the report button, how do you know where the OP lives, she could be ina totally different timezone.

Some posters just can't help themselves.

I'd put up cameras and keep a record of everything that happens.

BlankTimes Sat 11-Aug-18 10:51:39

Definitely Police for fingerprinting and a good sweep for hidden cameras, google them then look for every sort available, some are really tiny, inside a hook on a wall etc.

As to his motive - I'd guess jealousy. They may have needed the money when they sold the ruin, they haven't processed how much it cost you to renovate it to top spec but only see the amount of rent you're charging and don't realise how much of that 'disappears' in income tax, property upkeep, cleaners, sheets and towels laundry tenant damage, wear and tear etc.

In a nutshell, in their eyes, you bought it "for nothing" and now you're "raking in a fortune" from it. They feel as though that's "not fair" and want to spoil it for you because the money they think you're making "could have been theirs"
The above is only my idea of the circumstances you described, I could be way off the mark flowers

Saffy60 Sat 11-Aug-18 10:53:08

Or you could put a couple of wildlife cameras in the garden, I'm sure you have a very strong desire to find out if there are badgers, hedgehogs, foxes etc right up close to the house???

tenredthings Sat 11-Aug-18 11:00:11

I've reported to the police but they aren't very interested as nothing seems disturbed. I have to go in later so that they log it as an incident, but they won't send anyone round.

I was watering the indoor plants and yes some of us get do up before 9.00 and get on with tasks !!

I think the guy is a bit unstable. The house was in his name but his mum had to agree before he could sell it. He had a psycopathic tenant, his son and dogs Who lived in there for a while ( a whole other thread! ) but we were careful not to antagonise him and stay on good terms with this tentant. I looked after his son loads. Eventually he left and I don't know if our neighbour somehow blames us. The house was falling down, holes in the roof, raw sewage pouring down the wall.. you couldn't make it up ! Anyway they put it on the market and we bought it. I think he's jealous maybe that we did it up, when he owned it for ten years he did nothing to it.

I've always dealt with him in a really grey rock kind of way but I'm really furious that he has the audacity to enter in like that. I'm looking into installing cctv although I hate the thought. I'm looking round my property wondering what he may do next , it's a horrible feeling.

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