OK, you have the tools and you have a property in mind. Now lets get you inside. Many empty properties can be walked straight into, as they have become insecure through vandalism. It is an offence to break into an empty property if anything you do can be classed as "criminal damage". In theory therefore, the police can only arrest you if they catch you "red-handed", e.g. with a crowbar in your hand, or if there are witnesses.

When: The best time to open a squat is between ten and midnight on a Friday or Saturday night, why? The neighbors are less likely to be worried about any strange sounds they hear... drunk yobs. The police are going to busy with calls to the pubs concerning violence, from drunk yobs.

EXCEPTION TO THE RULE: Citex... get yourself some overalls and a ladder, do it during the day.

This is the riskiest part of everything you are about to do, and strangely enough it is not opening the squat! You have to get from where you are to the squat with all your tools. If you are stopped by the police carrying tools they WILL think you are breaking and entering (B&E), if you cannot explain why you have these tools (unlikely) you will probably end up spending the night in a cell (and lose the tools). For this reason you should all arrange to travel to your potential squat separately and from experience the man with the tools should go by bike!

Now you have to get inside the building, post lookouts and have pre arranged escape routes and signals in case of emergency. DO NOT simply pry open the front door with a crow bar, that's just stupid. If you weaken the front door it's not just you who can open it again in a hurry, for example the owner, landlord, police. I suggest in order of preference.

  • A second floor window
  • A first floor window
  • The back door
  • The front door
Now you need to find out what kind of a place you have, the lookouts should almost disappear at this point, but they need to be able to know that you are safe. Some things you may discover a landlord has done to deter squatters:

Look around and make your decision now, this building will either be suitable or not. If not GET OUT NOW. However if things are OK, get the rest of your friends into their new home.

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