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Old 11-15-2012, 03:24 AM
Location: SF Bay area
170 posts, read 199,116 times
Reputation: 137


We (family with 3 young kids) are moving to the Willow Glen area from South Florida. We've spent some time out there and love love love the weather (as one does) but I haven't figured out the window thing. Where we currently live there is enough of a burglary problem (and all the homes are one-story ranches) that on the rare occasion that the weather permits open windows, we still go around closing them when we leave for any length of time and at night.

What does everyone do in San Jose? I realize in certain areas it's probably safe, and if we luck out with a 2 story house I'll feel comfortable leaving the windows open. If we didn't have little kids I'd be less worried as well, but is it the norm to leave them open all the time or do people have armed screens or something I don't know about? Please cut me some slack if I sound paranoid, 40 years in Broward county, FL will do that to a person.
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:27 AM
Location: Silicon Valley
3,377 posts, read 6,518,433 times
Reputation: 2481
Is the window opening small enough that it needs to be opened further for the burglar to fit through? If so, you can just mount extra magnets on the window frame so you can arm your burglar alarm even with the window open, and have it go off if the window is moved. If you are in a two-story house, and sleep on the second floor, you can configure most alarms to selectively arm the motion detectors depending on whether the alarm was armed in "stay" (all motion detectors deactivated) or "night stay" (motion detectors in non-sleeping areas active) mode.

Mount a 120db siren with a strobe on the front of the house so it's clearly visible (up high where it can't be tampered with), put your alarm company's sign in your front yard and stickers on all the windows, and the burglars will skip your house.

If none of these apply, get a big dog.
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Old 11-15-2012, 10:15 AM
Location: Fremont,CA
152 posts, read 303,542 times
Reputation: 82
Well, Willow Glen is a fairly safe area, so I'm sure a variety of residents do leave their windows open. You could ask your new neighbors. In general, the city of San Jose has seen an uptick in crime recently however.
While living in Fremont, most people left their windows open at night in one story houses, we did even without a burglar alarm and never had issues. When I lived in Oakland, people left them open only on the second floor.
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Old 11-15-2012, 10:42 AM
Location: Newark, Ca
1,837 posts, read 3,504,114 times
Reputation: 2562
The fact is, burglaries can happen in any neighborhood and leaving a window open can make for an easier target. Personally, I don't leave my kid's window open ever but have no problem leaving my own bedroom window open on warm nights and it's on the first floor. I also have a great watchdog though who sleeps in the room with me and my wife and will go berzerk if somebody so much as steps on our property. My wife hates leaving the window open though because she also is scared about the possibility of a burglary. There really is no answer to this. It's a personal choice. San Jose is safe overall, and Willow Glen is one of the safer parts of town, but crime can happen anywhere. Welcome to the area and good luck with your move!
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Old 11-15-2012, 11:35 AM
Location: SF Bay Area
12,979 posts, read 12,382,761 times
Reputation: 18742
No, it is -not- the norm to leave them open all the time, especially if you have kids on the first floor.
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Old 11-15-2012, 06:08 PM
Status: "Thar's Hippie-billies up here!" (set 13 days ago)
Location: Boulder Creek, CA
9,174 posts, read 11,033,714 times
Reputation: 6205
The more south you go in Willow Glen, the more sketchy. Leaving windows open when you're gone is just asking for a burglary just about anywhere (somebody's eventually going to scope this out and wait for you to leave). When you're there, a little precaution is in order, but you shouldn't feel like you have to live in Fort Knox in WG.

There are people from small towns who have started threads stating how they can't believe anybody locks their cars, but the opposite incredulity occurs with we who have lived here at length when we hear this stuff. Gotta realize that there are a lot of people out of work and resorting to desperate measures to get by, and San Jose alone has nearly one million people.
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Old 11-15-2012, 08:55 PM
Location: A bit further north than before
1,548 posts, read 2,608,677 times
Reputation: 1248
Leave them open when you're home, close them when you leave.
You're welcome
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Old 11-15-2012, 10:39 PM
Location: San Jose, CA
6,965 posts, read 14,058,638 times
Reputation: 8530
Get operable skylights and leave them open with impunity.

But otherwise, leaving ground level windows open at night or when you are away, even in a safe neighborhood, is like driving your car without a seatbelt because you're a safe driver. Some day it may catch up to you. It's a numbers game, regardless of where you live.
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:43 AM
755 posts, read 1,623,386 times
Reputation: 659
We never leave our windows open. We have terrible allergies, and want to limit the pollen and dust that comes in from the open windows.
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Old 11-16-2012, 05:53 AM
Location: SF Bay area
170 posts, read 199,116 times
Reputation: 137
Thanks all of you! And thanks for not making more fun of me We spent most of the summer in vacation houses in your area, and my husband thought it was hilarious that I went around closing all of the windows every time we left the house, and opening them right back up when we got home. It was a little tedious, but I'm glad to know it's the norm. It's the same where we live now, too, but since we only have about 10 temperate days a year, it's not such an issue. We have a big dog, but he lacks a protective streak. He's too sleepy to bark at intruders.
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