RCMP reminding people to take a few extra steps when locking up the cottage

For a number of people, this is the weekend they'll be locking up their cottages for the winter.

The RCMP say there are a few extra steps cottage owners can take to help prevent them from becoming targets for thieves.

The Mounties suggest cottage owners remove all valuables, including firearms, close all curtains and drapes, and make sure nothing is left outside that could be used to break-in.

They also say you may want to consider an alarm system, installing cameras pointing towards the cottage or cabin and using motion sensors or timers for outdoor lights.

Here are some other tips from the RCMP:
Lock / secure all doors and windows;
Ensure all out buildings (e.g., garage or shed) are secured;
Photograph interior - make list of items and serial numbers; 
Avoid storing vehicles and their keys at a cottage or camp - this includes ATVs and snowmobiles;
Ask someone you trust to check on your property regularly. 

Nova Scotia RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Jennifer Clarke says criminals see unoccupied cottages as easy targets so the more difficult you make it for them to get in, the better.

She also says if you discover your property has been broken in to or notice something unusual, it's important to report it to police as soon as possible.