Your bags are packed, your airline tickets are booked and you’re well on your way to a highly anticipated vacation. However, before you jet out the door to and onto the freedom of a much deserved trip away, take a minute or two to assess whether or not your home will be safe while you’re gone. A sad but true reality is that unattended homes are a prime target for burglars and other undesirables, and the last thing you want to come home to after vacation is to find your prized belongings are gone or expensive damage has been done to your doors or windows. These helpful tips will ensure your home and belongings remain safe while you’re gone, allowing you to rest easy on your time off without the stress of worrying.
Hire a House-Sitter
Hiring someone you know and trust to house-sit for you is perhaps the easiest way to make sure your property remains safe while you’re on vacation. This is an especially good idea if you have pets who need caring for or a lawn or garden that needs tending too. You can hire an extended family member or a neighbor you trust, or you can hire a professional from a house- or pet-sitting agency. Having a house-sitter will also ensure your mail is picked up and brought inside each day, preventing thieves from stealing documents that contain important information from out of your mailbox.
Make Sure Your House Doesn’t Look Unoccupied
If you can’t swing the cost of a house-sitter or feel like it isn’t necessary, at least ask a neighbor to help keep your house looking maintained and lived in while you’re away. Have your neighbor collect and hold your mail, pick up your newspapers and remove any fliers from your front door for the duration of your vacation. If you have a grassy front lawn, consider also asking them to water it periodically if you will be gone for more than a few days. A dead lawn, a pile of newspapers and a porch filled with fliers are all indicators of temporary vacancy burglars and squatters will be on the lookout for. Removing these items from your home will help keep your home protected and your mind at ease while you’re gone.
Invest in Light Timers
Like an unkempt lawn, a house that is dark around the clock is a like a neon vacancy sign for undesirables. To keep up the appearance of a lived-in house, purchase some timers for a few different lights in your house. Set the timers to turn on around dusk and turn off around midnight, or whatever time you normally go to sleep. This will discourage break ins and can be effective in keeping your home safe.
Disable Your Garage Door
With the invention of universal remotes comes the worry about thieves breaking in through your garage door. To prevent this from happening, temporarily disable your garage door while you’re planning to be gone. You can easily connect it again upon your arrival back home.
Invest in a Home Security System
If your budget allows, a home security system can be one of the most effective ways to keep your home safe while you’re gone. New, high-tech models can even sense for carbon dioxide and other hazards, and can alert security personnel in the event of a fire. Some models, such as those offered by Xfininity, include cameras that you can access on your smart phone or computer to keep an eye on things no matter how far away you are. These models even include commands to control the lighting in your home, so you can easily click your lights on and off with ease as you see fit.