Based on data collected during a mail survey of crime and vandalism on farms in a southern state, this study involves a modification of two procedures in the Total Design Method: 1) individually signed cover letters; and 2) replacement questionnaires for the second mailing. While the first procedure was found to have no significant effect on the return rate, the inclusion of replacement questionnaires with the second mailing improved the response rate by a wide margin (more than double the letter-only mailing). The implications of audience type (in this case a farm audience) and other survey design features on response rates are discussed.

Publication Date