The days and weeks leading up to a vacation can be an exciting time. As you pack and make last-minute preparations, consider these tips that can help safeguard your home while you are away. Do not forget to lock up thoroughly and arm your home security system before you dash off to your tropical destination or mountain cabin getaway.
Follow these home security tips:
Make your home seems as lived-in as possible while you are gone. You can do this by:
- Having a neighbor occasionally park in your driveway. Or if you are leaving a vehicle parked outside, have someone move it every so often.
- Using automatic timers on interior and exterior lights. You can also put a timer on a radio (and set to a talk radio station) so it will seem like people are inside talking when you are away. (Many home improvement stores sell timers.)
- Having a neighbor pick up your mail and newspapers daily or have them stopped by filling out a Hold Mail Service form at the post office.
- Keeping your lawn mowed and yard clear of leaves, which helps it look like someone is tending to it.
Leave spare keys with your neighbors instead of leaving them under doormats or flowerpots – places burglars would likely find them. Also, give them an emergency telephone number where they can reach you.
Do not broadcast your travel plans or announce your absence on your answering machine message, but do let your neighbors and close family members know where you are going and the duration of your trip.
If you live in a community that has a neighborhood watch, this may also be a good resource to take advantage of. Many local police agencies, like the sheriffs office, offer a vacation check program. It is a free service where a deputy checks on your home once a day while you are out of town.
There are many home security tips you can follow for when you are away on vacation or for everyday living. Consider making these tips part of your routine before and during your vacations. You will have better peace of mind knowing your home is safe while you are enjoying your time away from home with your family.