Going on a vacation with the whole family does not have to mean leaving your home vulnerable to home invaders. These practical tips will ensure that your home is safe from intruders while you are on a holiday:
Hold the Mail
Leaving stacks of envelope gathering dust on your front doorstep is one of the first signs that no one is home. Before you go on a holiday, we recommend calling your local post office and have your mail put on hold until further notice. Don’t stop at just your mail, have your newspaper delivery put on hold too. However, if this is not possible, ask a trusted neighbor to collect the mail and newspaper for you while you are away.
To keep burglars away, create the illusion that someone is home. There are many ways to do this! You can invest in an automated lighting system to improve home security. Most lighting system can be set up to turn on automatically as the sun sets. You can also hire a trustworthy professional to mow your lawn at least once a week to keep your front and backyard pristine. A great trick would be to leave toys lying on the ground or leaving the hose unrolled to show signs that the home is being lived in.
If you are committed to making your home safe while you are away, do not tell the world that you are on a vacation. That means avoiding posting updates on Facebook, uploading airport photos on Instagram, and chronicling your vacation on Twitter. Remember, anything you put online will be there forever. Do not announce your departure or vacation dates. You can start uploading the pictures once you get back from your holiday.
Clue in a Trusted Friend
If you have a trusted friend, have that person come to your home at least twice per week to make sure things at your house are in order. Give that trusted friend a spare key and your contact details in case of an emergency.
Give your vacation contact info and a spare key to at least one friend or neighbor. That way, they’ll know how to contact you in the case of emergency.
Unplug Unnecessary Appliances
If you are going away for a long vacation, make sure you unplug all appliances that are not in use. That includes the TV, the radio, the AC, the kitchen appliances, water heater and so on. Unplugging unnecessary appliances are the best way to protect your home from electrical fire or power surges. It will also minimize power consumption while you are away.
That said, you could leave the thermostat running while you are away. Just make sure to turn the power down to save up on electricity. If you are leaving in the winter, keep the heat to about 55° to ensure that the pipes won’t freeze. During the summer, leave your air conditioning running to 85°. But again, have a trusted friend come to your home at least once or twice per week to make sure things at home are in order.