Electricity being misappropriated

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  #1  
Old 04-08-2011, 10:10 PM
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Freeda Freeda is offline
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Default Electricity being misappropriated

I hesitated whether to post this, because I don't like dwelling on negatives; but I think that others could unknowingly be having this occur and should be aware that this can happen, even here in The Villages, where I would never have expected it would.

My husband (who was indoors) today noticed a neighbor who lives a fair distance away from us (and who we haven't met) staring at our house. Moments later, the man disappeared from view and when my husband walked to a different part of our house, he saw that the man was next to our house, leaning over; and then walked away. When my husband walked outside to see what was going on, he was shocked to see that the man had plugged his long electrical cord to a hedge trimmer into our outdoor electrical outlet, and had returned to his home, where he was busily trimming his bushes. A brief conversation ensued.

I feel sure that this would be an extremely rare occurrence, but since there are so many owners who are away for months at a time, or for those who in this economy are having to watch their expenses closely, I just thought people should be made aware of this potential, since it would never in a million years have crossed either of our minds that someone might do this (here in TV, or for that matter, anywhere else). I don't know if there is any way owners can protect themselves; does anyone know of one?

We wondered later, trying to figure out what would cause someone to do this, if maybe not all houses here have outdoor electrical outlets (although I would assume that they do), as a reason he would have done this; although when he and my husband were talking, he never offered this as a reason for what he had done. (He didn't offer any excuse; no apology; just took his cord and left). But even if that had been the reason, we would have thought someone would at least ask in advance. (And, if we had been asked, and if the reason had been that the man didn't have an outdoor outlet, or something else that was reasonable, we would have said 'fine' - it's just the boldness of using someone else's utilities without asking, rather than the actual cost, that bothered us).
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Last edited by Freeda; 04-09-2011 at 09:01 AM.
  #2  
Old 04-08-2011, 11:23 PM
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Wow! I really can't believe someone would so that without asking. I will admit that I have plugged into my neighbor's outlet to trim one bush because it was easier than dragging my cord to the back and plugging it in there, but not without my neighbor knowing. I've also used a neighbor's house when the outlet would constantly trip the GFI but, again, not without permission.

I think what amazes me even more is that when confronted he didn't even apologize or make an excuse.

I have said and truly believe there is a strange sense of, I guess, entitlement in TV. People do park in driveways without permission, borrow a tool without thinking twice or even asking if handy. I guess plugging in to your neighbor's house would probably be considered okay, too. They don't consider it stealing, just part of being neighbors.
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  #3  
Old 04-09-2011, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freeda View Post
I hesitated whether to post this, because I don't like dwelling on negatives; but I think that others could unknowingly be having this occur and should be aware that this can happen, even here in The Villages, where I would never have expected it would.

My husband (who was indoors) today noticed a neighbor who lives a fair distance away from us (and who we haven't met) staring at our house. Moments later, the man disappeared and when my husband walked to a different part of our house, he saw that the man was next to our house, leaning over; and then walked away. When my husband walked outside to see what was going on, he was shocked to see that the man had plugged his long electrical cord to a hedge trimmer into our outdoor electrical outlet, and had returned to his home, where he was busily trimming his bushes. A brief conversation ensued.

I feel sure that this would be an extremely rare occurrence, but since there are so many owners who are away for months at a time, or for those who in this economy are having to watch their expenses closely, I just thought people should be made aware of this potential, since it would never in a million years have crossed either of our minds that someone might do this (here in TV, or for that matter, anywhere else). I don't know if there is any way owners can protect themselves; does anyone know of one?

We wondered later, trying to figure out what would cause someone to do this, if maybe not all houses here have outdoor electrical outlets (although I would assume that they do), as a reason he would have done this; although when he and my husband were talking, he never offered this as a reason for what he had done. (He didn't offer any excuse; no apology; just took his cord and left). But even if that had been the reason, we would have thought someone would at least ask in advance. (And, if we had been asked, and if the reason had been that the man didn't have an outdoor outlet, or something else that was reasonable, we would have probably said 'fine' - it's just the boldness of using someone else's utilities without asking, rather than the actual cost, that bothered us).
WOW. Now that takes Ba**s...!

That makes my blood boil.

That would make me question his overall ethics on anything.
  #4  
Old 04-09-2011, 07:09 AM
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I've seen contractors use the electric outlet or hose from the house next to a home they're working on because it's more "convenient" (actually happened to us and they didn't ask permission first, just grabbed our hose and started using our water) but having the actual neighbor do it takes it to a new level.

As Redwitch stated, there is definitely a sense of entitlement here in The Villages.
  #5  
Old 04-09-2011, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by redwitch View Post
Wow! I really can't believe someone would so that without asking. I will admit that I have plugged into my neighbor's outlet to trim one bush because it was easier than dragging my cord to the back and plugging it in there, but not without my neighbor knowing. I've also used a neighbor's house when the outlet would constantly trip the GFI but, again, not without permission.

I think what amazes me even more is that when confronted he didn't even apologize or make an excuse.

I have said and truly believe there is a strange sense of, I guess, entitlement in TV. People do park in driveways without permission, borrow a tool without thinking twice or even asking if handy. I guess plugging in to your neighbor's house would probably be considered okay, too. They don't consider it stealing, just part of being neighbors.
I dunno Red, parking in a driveway doesn't run up the electric bill. Taking lemons off the tree if a neighbor wasn't there....not so bad, they would be going to waste...but I couldn't do that without asking first.

You can do anything with permission, but a lot of nice people would be surprised and caught off guard and wouldn't really know how to get out of it gracefully.... if asked for permission to use their electricity routinely.
  #6  
Old 04-09-2011, 07:36 AM
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If that happened to me I just might consider quietly flipping the breaker off while they were using their tool (or whatever) and leave them scratching their head (or whatever) wondering why their tool (or whatever) suddenly stopped working. It would be funny if they were dumb enough to start taking their tool (or whatever) apart to check it out before testing the tool (or whatever) on another outlet! BTW, I am talking about an electric tool... or electric whatever!
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  #7  
Old 04-09-2011, 07:52 AM
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Gracie, I'm not saying it's right, I'm saying it seems to be the TV mentality. There really does seem to be a way of thinking that says if you're not using it and if I don't break it, it's okay for me to use it without even asking.

Personally, I think you should ask before parking in someone's driveway or at least leave a note but people just park and walk away. I suppose I could give my neighbor $0.05 for the electricity I use in trimming my bush since it takes me about 5 minutes to cut it down to size and shape and maybe a dollar for the house where the circuit breakers constantly trip. For the circuitbreaker house, I also trim the neighbor's trees, so I think they're getting the better deal.

The odd thing is I'm willing to bet the people who feel free to just use/"borrow" wouldn't have dreamed of doing the same thing in their last hometown.
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  #8  
Old 04-09-2011, 08:12 AM
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Freeda - Was this the next door neighbor or farther away (two or more houses away)?

It must have been a mighty long extension cord that he was using. It really does boggle the mind that someone would do that when he knew there was someone was in the home he was poaching electricity from.

I do not think it is a sense of entitlement that does this. It is just very strange. I would guess the person (poacher) is probably mentally ill. Normal people (even in The Villages) would not do that without asking. Most would not even consider it - unless you were very good neighbors and it was a mutual benefit kind of thing - like Redwitch has done.
  #9  
Old 04-09-2011, 09:07 AM
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He had to pass a closer house to get to ours; yes, it was a very long extention cord. Until a few months ago, when we moved to this house, the owners had been leasing it on short-term leases, and I would imagine there were times when it was vacant, which may have lead to this happening. That's why I felt others should know that this can happen. In a down economy, I think that some people bend the rules.
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  #10  
Old 04-09-2011, 09:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skyguy79 View Post
If that happened to me I just might consider quietly flipping the breaker off while they were using their tool (or whatever) and leave them scratching their head (or whatever) wondering why their tool (or whatever) suddenly stopped working. It would be funny if they were dumb enough to start taking their tool (or whatever) apart to check it out before testing the tool (or whatever) on another outlet! BTW, I am talking about an electric tool... or electric whatever!
Well, what my funny husband did, which was also comical if you can picture this in your mind, was he unplugged the cord and started slowly gathering it up in a coil. That is how he got the man's attention.
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The world needs dreamers; the world needs 'do'-ers. But most of all, the world needs dreamers who are do-ers.
  #11  
Old 04-09-2011, 09:35 AM
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Hi

I don't think it's the economy with this guy. He just wanted to use your dollar and not his. This guy probably did the same thing back home and he's doing the deal here.

I'm really sorry for your experience. Maybe they sell Adult safety outlets, can't access the outlet unless you get permission from the owner.

It takes all sorts of humans to make a village.
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  #12  
Old 04-09-2011, 10:05 AM
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A similar thing happened to me about a year ago. The house next to us is pretty much unoccupied most of the year. There were landscapers over there working on the shrubs etc. I noticed that they had connected their hose to my water faucet. When I discovered this I went and spoke to them. They said they would be finished soon and in "payment" they would trim my shrubs. In any case they didn't finish that soon so I had them disconnect the hose. They did come the next day and trim my shrubs. I can't believe that the owners of the house next door had turned off their outside water but maybe they did. However, this contractor never asked permission to use my water. In checking my water bill the following month it was not that abnormal.

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  #13  
Old 04-09-2011, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jhooman View Post
Hi

I don't think it's the economy with this guy. He just wanted to use your dollar and not his. This guy probably did the same thing back home and he's doing the deal here.

I'm really sorry for your experience. Maybe they sell Adult safety outlets, can't access the outlet unless you get permission from the owner.

It takes all sorts of humans to make a village.
I think they just found the "Village Idiot"!! As Gracie said, "that takes ba**s", or as we say in Dixie, "big kahunas" (and I'm not talking about anything Hawaiian)!
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Old 04-09-2011, 10:13 AM
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What you should have done was unplug the cord, take a very sharp knife and cut the plug off the end. Drop the cord and the plug on the ground and walked away. I think that would deliver the message, quietly.....
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Old 04-09-2011, 10:14 AM
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