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Love thy neighbour… just don’t trust them: Quarter of house watchers admit they don’t check the property even once while the owners are away

  • Almost four in ten people who house watch report that something went wrong
  • One quarter even admit that that don’t bother to check the property once
  • One in ten house watchers said a pet had died while they were looking after it

It’s how many of us ensure we can relax on holiday – we ask a neighbour to keep an eye on our home and feed the pets while we’re away.

But it may not be so wise to hand over the house keys – because a quarter of house watchers admit in new research that they don’t bother checking the property even once.

Thirteen per cent also confessed they had gone away while they were meant to be house-watching, without telling their neighbours.

And almost four in ten reported something went wrong, ranging from the alarm sounding to more major problems.

The survey of 1,600 Britons found 65 per cent had looked after a neighbour’s house. Six out of ten had never had a problem.

But of those who had difficulties, 15 per cent confessed to killing plants by accident and 10 per cent said they had forgotten to feed pets.

One in 10 who experienced problems said a pet had died while they were looking after it, while a similar number said a neighbour’s home had been burgled.

In the survey, for Yale, 68 per cent of people nevertheless insisted they were good friends with a neighbour.