Burglary after workmen visit your house

Hello everyone
Some information please.
We have just returned to our house (after9 months) in the Aveyron valley in Bruniquel near Montauban to discover that we had been burgled. Just small portable objects taken so all my electrical tools both French and British cordless and powered together with all of the bottles of wine and spirits. A very trusted neighbour has a key and entered only six times …three times alone to check all was well once with a local Batiment de France official once with an Enerdis engineer to install a Linki meter and once with her own very long term local cleaner who got the house ready two weeks before we arrived. The only unknown one to be alone for at any time was the Linki engineer.
So my question is has anyone in this Department- Tarn at Garonne where there are a lot of British second homes had a similar experience or know of any others in their circle of friends and acquaintances ie a burglary shortly after an Enderdis/Linki visit.
We have reported it to the police but with little interest shown and our concern is that if our suspicions are right this individual will continue to prey on similar second homes.
Thanks in advance for your help

I can’t help but wanted to say I am very sorry to hear you have been burgled.


Wondering why focussing there? I worry about talkative people as they all have families who also talk and a casual remark can reveal so much.
It’s amazing what some people you might not even know well, will tell you here about the doings and movements of people you don’t even know, in conversation.

I was advised when young always lock up your own tools when workmen on the premises but from what happened to you it seems like putting them out of sight even if secured a good idea as well.

Our keys to a property with half-done works and tools and parts lying near the work (had to be away suddenly) were left with two trusted locals. One a tradesman who also maintains the village landscapes and the other someone in a profession requiring trust.

Very expensive tools were taken and the “rubbish” left. Like your place, they had time to pick through everything and choose. The parts including some valuable ones not touched but when I came upon it on a flying visit I literally cleared everything out including a concrete mixer, to my current place for safekeeping. It was bl**dy hard work getting that concrete mixer into the van I accidentally had with me on my own that same afternoon, I can tell you. As I figured if left they’d come back for the rest.

Mysteriously the yard of the landscaping tradesman opposite the property was burgled and every machine taken 3 or 4 months later - must have been a massive insurance claim.

So I think I know what happened to us but there are also other possibilities.

Sadly Peter, once you have been burgled you are likely to be so again. Firstly, because they now know they can and secondly because they will expect you to replace what has been stolen.

You will need to look long and hard at what you can do to secure your place better, or to keep only the minimum there between visits.

Sorry to be gloomy, but I’m speaking from bitter experience. Also, may not be the person who visits but someone who watches. Having lived on the frontline in Stockwell where we had our cars broken into so many times we lost count, we moved into a house in a leafy suburb. It was a shock when we found all our power tools had been taken from an unlocked garage on the first night (we assumed we’d moved somewhere where that sort of thing didn’t happen. How naïve can one get!)

And it was in Stockwell when the guy who had broken in on a Friday night came back during the day on the following Tuesday with our keys and then tried to kick the front door in when he found we’d changed the locks.


Sorry, it’s horrible to thing a find a stranger has been rifling through your things.

But yes, two burglaries in a row is common… sadly second homes are a target. I would think it unlikely to be the linky person, but someone who overheard something or a friend of a friend. Or someone he/she innocently chats to…but is seeking information.


Horrible experience and one I’ve worried about. To the (maybe OCD level) of always taking a hard drive backup of our irreplaceable stuff (photos, home videos etc,) with me if I’m away for an extended period.

It’s a bit of a stable door comment on my part, but would you consider CCTV? I have a few inexpensive Blink cameras covering the front door, patio, etc. I may not be able to prevent a burglary but I’ll be able to nail the bastard that did it.

Thank you for your input. I think I need to clarify. Someone inside the house for some reason went to a door in my workshop and unbolted the door and took the key which regrettably was on the inside. So having excluded our neighbour and her cleaner and the civil servant who was accompanied at all times we are left with the electricity engineer who was alone for long enough to do a recce and disable thebolts. The door was not forced from the outside ! And when we arrived it was locked but no key anywhere. So I am particularly asking if anyone in this area of France knows of a house break in or robbery with a similar modus operandi . Thanks

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Stockwell. Pretty hard core


Ah Peter, you need these too…

I have one in the study to protect our technical stuff and one in the saloon to “protect” our other stuff. Though I am reassured that your average burglar would just grab what is to hand.

hope you don’t get up to any naughty bits with 'er indoors @John_Scully :slightly_smiling_face:

Only cams in the Study and Salon Graham and turned off whenever we’re in residence. Anyway, in this heat :crazy_face:

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Let me tell you… during my brief sojourn in student days as a LT bus conductor, Stockwell Garage canteen was the bees knees. Rissoles and chips to die for :slightly_smiling_face:

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Ohhhhhhhhh YUM I’ve forgotten to make rissoles for ages, a very common food in Aussie houses!


We had some gentlemen in a pick up looking for scrap metal the other week :wink: I watched while one spoke to my OH keeping her occupied while the other had a quick scan around, I watched him from the workshop as he clocked the 4 cctv cameras, the 5 cage protected PIR led triple spotlights, alarm and the barking dog :laughing:
He just looked at his mate when he got back into the pick up and shook his head, they were just looking for easy targets.
What he could not see were the hidden cameras at the back of the property and inside the house, workshop and garage.
I have been stung before at one of our other properties and it won’t happen again.


Even dummy cameras act as a deterrent, and can be backed up with some well placed wildlife/infra red cameras

Yes that’s pretty specific. But very odd if it was linky person as there was no knowing whether someone would check immediately after he had gone. Did he go to lunch leaving the place unlocked? Or your cleaner? Opportunistic thieves are very quick off the mark when they spot an opportunity…unbolt door take key and return later to steal everything?

Yes, it’s sad. It’s not a matter of making your house safe, it’s a matter of making it less attractive as a target than some other poor sod’s.

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How does one ruggedize a few cameras so they will still upload to remote internet and yet have batteries to run them a couple of years wirelessly?

Karen my external Blinks are about two years old, no visible deterioration and running on their orignal batteries. They just work :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks John can you interrogate live via app? how many days will it store in case you weren’t watching when the bunglers arrived?

If it’s that solid I might save up for a system. Best to fix high out of reach if it has good magnification, otherwise the last thing on your recording will be a closeup of the bungler’s hand?