Your flight is booked, hotel accommodations reserved, and your bags are packed and ready to go! You feel like you have forgotten something, but your ‘to do’ list is organized and checked off accordingly. Perhaps there is something that may have slipped your mind; protecting your home while you are away. If you’re travelling for more than four days, you may want to take the appropriate steps needed to ensure that your house is safe and secure while you are on vacation. Failing to do so can leave your home vulnerable to a break in, theft, and other potential disasters while you are away. Nobody wants return to a home that is ransacked, or disorganized.
Below are some tips to help keep your home safe while on vacation:
Perception is Reality: Let’s face facts – criminals build their careers on taking advantage of situations. The first thing you want to do before leaving is give the perception that someone is still home. Leaving lights on in certain rooms will help make it seem like someone is there; even though no one is. The wasted electricity costs may haunt you for a bit, but this technique can deter thieves from breaking into your home.
Mail and Newspapers: Speaking of perception, nothing screams vacation like mail and newspaper pileups on your doorstep and mailbox. Ask a neighbor or friend to gather these items for you while you are away. You can also ask your paperboy to refrain from delivering the newspaper, or put in a request at the post office to stop delivering your mail throughout your vacation.
Step Away From Social Media: Many people’s first instincts are to post about their vacation leading up to the big event, and potentially tweet about it along the way. While you want to keep friends and family in the loop; posting about going away on vacation is also a great way to invite criminals to break into your home. Therefore, take lots of pictures while you are travelling, and save posting them for when you get back.
Power Surges: While break-ins are a concern, so is damage to your appliances that can be caused by a power surge. Power surges can occur even when appliances are turned off – as long as they are plugged in. Avoid hassles by unplugging electronics, computers, televisions, and other appliances before you head out.
Lock … Everything: This seems like a no-brainer, but many who are caught up in the whirlwind of vacationing may forget. Before you leave, lock all doors, windows, and garage entries. It also helps to draw curtains closed as well.
Ask a Friend: Rather than hide that spare key in your garden, pass it on to a friend and ask them to check in on your place periodically while you are away. This won’t only help deter thieves, it will also make sure your house is safe, and hasn’t suffered from an unknown disaster.
These simple tips will not only ensure you come home to the same house that you left; but will also provide you with a peace of mind during your vacation!