When you live in a sparsely populated rural area who you call neighbor changes a bit. Around here, it’s people within about a 2 mile radius.
I’ve been letting my neighbors know that my lovely wife and I will be away this winter and that people will be house sitting. It’s not necessary to tell all the neighbors. As long as a few of the more outgoing ones know, everyone will know. Such is life in a small town.
People want to know what’s going on. I don’t want my guests to be mistaken for thieves or squatters.
Then there is the inevitable question and answer game of who they are. Everyone has a relationship to someone else. Once they figure out which family they come from, who’s kin to who, it’s all good. The guy has ties to this area so it’s fine. He has an aunt and distant cousin with cabins around the lake.
It seems that a lot of property has gone missing in nearby areas. One of my friends had a generator disappear. This was a heavy 5000 watt unit secured with a 1/2 cable. The cable had been cleanly cut. A place near him was totally cleaned out and destroyed with an ax. That’s just adding insult to injury.
Having people watch the place is nice. I don’t worry too much about property. Let the insurance company do the worrying, I say. However, there are some things that money can’t replace: one of a kind items, art, photos, and other odds and end that only have value because of the memories that are attached.