How to Prevent Wintertime Homesteading Equipment Theft

| 12/27/2016 10:24:00 AM

Whether you’re coming to the end of your homestead’s first growing season or its fifteenth, it can always be a bit surprising when things come to a halt so suddenly. With that first frost comes some cleanup, and you’ll need to get your outbuildings and animals ready for the winter, but after that? Well, a long winter’s nap is a much-deserved rest after the hard work you did all year long.

Not so fast, though. Just because you’re ready to stay inside and recharge for a few months doesn’t mean that everyone is. Wintertime on the homestead is often an enticing season for thieves. When you’re not active on your property regularly, it’s the perfect opportunity for rural criminals to case your place and make off with your valuable equipment. They’re banking on the fact that you won’t notice until it’s too late.

Early winter is the perfect time to take advantage of the relative lull in your farming duties to secure your property. Try these tips for keeping your farm safe from would-be thieves this season.

farm shed in winter
Photo credit Unsplash

Join — or Start — a Local Farm Watch

It’s just not possible to keep a steady watch on all your acreage all the time. That’s why many homesteaders and farmers have banned together to combat crime in their regions by forming farm watch groups. These are like suburban neighborhood watch programs, in which members share concerns and information about local crime conditions.

You may even decide to take turns doing an evening patrol of each other’s farms to check for problems. The group can set out signs to warn would-be thieves that the area is under surveillance. Make sure to coordinate with your local law enforcement to avoid misunderstandings and to keep everyone on the same page. Many hands make light work, and sharing the burden of security checks can help everyone protect their properties.

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