Keeping Your Home Safe While on Vacation

March 19, 2018 at 11:46 AM

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You’ve just spent a week basking in the sun, enjoying the fresh air of the beach, dining on good food, and visiting cute boutique shops your wife likes. Now, it’s time to go back to reality but when you get home, you quickly realize something is wrong.

As you pull into the driveway, you notice that the side door is ajar but you’re positive you closed it before you left. Cautiously, you open the door and discover that while you were away, thieves made off with your cash, electronics, and jewelry.

No one wants to come home from vacation to a house that’s been broken into. Unfortunately, each year thousands of homeowners fall victim to break-ins and thefts after they’ve been traveling.

So what can you do to protect your home to ensure this scenario doesn’t happen?

Use timers on your electronics

It can be difficult to tell if someone is casing your neighborhood, but a house that sits dark every night for a week or more is a sure sign for potential burglars. Flipping a light on as you head out the door is a strategy you’ve probably used before, but it’s not a very effective one.

There are several timers on the market that will plug into your outlets and turn your lights, as well as other electronic devices, on and off at specific times of the day.

A lot of homeowners use these timers for lights, but it’s a good idea to use them on radios and TVs too for added effect. Look for the timers that pair with your smartphone so you can adjust the timer while you’re away if necessary.

Use your home’s automation system

Using your home’s automation system throughout the year is an excellent way to maintain the ideal temperature in your house and keep it safe while you’re gone. Time your blinds to open and close as they normally would.

Connect to your security system

If you have a home security system, make sure you download the app on your smartphone before you leave for vacation. This will give you 24/7 monitoring and access to adjust it if necessary.

Reach out to someone

Do you know a neighbor, friend, or family member who could swing by your place once or twice a week? Ask them to stop by to check on your house, bring in the mail, shovel the driveway, or mow the lawn as necessary.

Avoid posting it on social media

It might seem cliché, but posting about your vacation while you’re away is still a bad idea. In our Instagram world, it’s tempting to post pics as you take them, but it’s best to wait until you’ve returned to share all about your adventures.

Lock doors and windows

This is common sense, but it’s easy to skip this step especially if you waited until the last minute to pack. Check all the windows and doors inside your home, the garage, and shed to make sure they’re locked and secure. If you have a deadbolt on your door, lock that too before you go.