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The great suburban house break-in

Diary of a real estate flipper

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It takes less than 15 minutes to break into an average suburban house; I know because I did it a couple of weeks ago. The house in question was my own, a two-family property out at the beach. It's the first and only house I've ever owned, and boy, it's been nothing but trouble. The break-in first: my contractors were due out, and I had hopped a train from the city to meet them, but of course I forgot to grab the correct set of keys. Rescheduling these guys would take two weeks at least, so I just popped a window out instead. (I'm no Tom Cruise, so it took a little finagling with a broomstick to pull the dehumidifier over so I could jump on it.) I'm a little ashamed to say that none of my neighbors – at least one of whom was out in their yard – questioned why someone was wriggling into a basement in broad daylight. Or maybe they were just enjoying the spectacle that I had to take out two panes to get my hips through. Next, the trouble: I bought this house five years ago, af...