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7 Precautionary Measures To Take Before You Leave Home For Vacation
Everyone needs to go on a vacation once in a while to escape from their usual day-to-day and gain new experiences. And while most travellers know how to prepare themselves for their destination, packing the right clothes and gathering required toiletries or medication, many of them fail to consider about what may happened to their residence once they’ve locked the door and headed out to the airport.
Fact is, whether you’re gone for a week or a month, your home can be put at risk unless proper precautions are taken. There’s nothing that quite kills the emotional high of a fun vacation to the beach or faraway resting spot than pulling into the home’s driveway and noticing the house has been burglarized or suffered damage.
Thankfully, this unwelcome outcome can be avoided with some proper due diligence. These top tips to secure the safety of your home before going on vacation can guide you through what to do.
Have Someone you Know Check up on your Home
This is a simple solution that many people often overlook. There’s no better way to ensure your home stays just as you left it over the holidays than having a trusted friend or neighbour check in on it. Give them a set of keys to get inside, and make sure they come by to check out the property every second day or so. Things they should do are bring in any mail, water any plants and take care of any yardwork such as raking leaves and generally anything to keep the house in good order. They can also look after pets, if you have any. Make sure they have emergency vacation contact information for you so they can get in touch if anything goes wrong.
Don’t Alert Criminals through Online Postings
The times have changed. Don’t forget that with everyone on computers and the Internet these days, criminals are, too. Would-be thieves can easily do an online scan of popular social media websites to find anyone who is posting about heading out on a holiday. With a name, the crooks can relatively easily find the accompanying home address. So don’t let strangers know when you’re going on vacation by making publicly viewable posts on websites such as Facebook and Twitter. It’s also a good idea not to mention you’re on vacation on a voicemail or answering machine message.
Store Valuables Away
If you’re heading away for a decent amount of time, such as a week or more, consider not leaving any valuables such as jewellery inside the home. Take your most precious (and expensive) portable possessions to a bank and lock them away in a safe deposit box.
Stop that Mail
If you don’t have someone able to come by and take care of your residence (including taking in the mail) then have the mail and any newspapers temporarily halted. Contact your newspaper provider or local post office to put a stop in place.
Lights Left On
Some people think it’s wise to leave their home lights on while they’re away in an effort to make people think someone is at home. However, this isn’t the best solution as it those burning lights will suck up electricity and drive up your energy bill. Instead, get hold of a programmable timer that you can plug into a power outlet into which you have lights such as lamps plugged in to. This will make crooks think someone’s home.
Unplug Juice-guzzling Electronics and Other Devices
Many consumers are unaware how much electricity their electronic items use even when they are seemingly turned off. But in fact even when “asleep” things such as TVs, stereos and computers continue to draw juice. To prevent this, unplug them before you go. It’s also a good idea to unplug smaller appliances such as those in the kitchen to prevent any possible damage if there is a power surge.
Get Rid of that Spare Key
You keep it squirreled away near the front or back door in case of an emergency, but before you leave for vacation make sure you remove any hidden outdoor spare key. Criminals know where to find spare keys, and with the extra time they’ll have while you’re on vacation they could hit the jackpot and get in. So don’t take a risk and put the spare keys inside the home or somewhere secure.