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How to Keep Your Home Safe While on Vacation

Learn all the tips and tricks to protect your home and your valuable belongings.
William Brown Oct 25, 2019

Prelude

Going on vacation should relieve stress and be a fun experience. However, we’ve all heard stories of others coming back from a vacation and finding out that their house had been broken into.
Whether you have read reviews about flashlights on Outeroptics.com or have all the games for the family in place for the vacation. You still need to cover the essentials.

Have Peace Of Mind

Luckily, there are many ways to protect your home and your peace of mind while you’re away. Some might use their hunting gadgets namely a trail camera to record any movements. Preparing your home may take some planning, and you may need to make a couple of investments in technology and your time.

Minimize Potential Damage Expenses

These efforts will be worth it to avoid costly repairs and to guarantee the safety of your belongings. This list will give you the information you need to be confident about leaving your home unattended so you can have an amazing, worry-free adventure. 

How to Protect Your Home from Burglars while on Vacation

Invest in a professional Home Security System. This may seem like an obvious, and expensive, way to protect your home, but it can be the most effective. Plus, it will benefit you for years; not only while you are on vacation. This investment will allow you to focus on making memories instead of worrying about the safety of your home.

Sensors

When deciding on a home security system, choose one that includes door and window sensors. There are current systems that allow you to check on your home’s status from your phone. But keep in mind, this will only help if you have service or Wi-Fi where you are going, and may not always work out of the country.

1. Ask a Friend to Check In

Only ask a friend or family member who you can fully trust to follow any instructions you leave and re-lock all the doors when they leave.
Being able to contact this person can keep you at ease so you can continue to enjoy your vacation, whether it be by phone or email. Ask your friends to park in the driveway and move some things around.

2. Illuminate Dark Areas Around Your Home with Security Lights

Install outdoor lights in areas around your house that are dark, such as the back door and sides of the house. A burglar will be more likely to attempt to break-in if there are places they can lurk around unseen.
To save on extra energy costs, choose motion-activated lights or those that only come on at night.

Solar Lights Will Work Too

There are also solar powered security lights that won’t put a dent in your electricity costs. Do your best to make sure the light is not pointing directly into a neighbor’s bedroom.
Some neighbors may get so frustrated with the light shining through their curtains that they may unscrew your light bulb.

3. Don’t Leave Spare Keys

Many people leave a spare key hiding around their house - and burglars know that. Remove all hidden keys, just to be safe. Even if you aren’t on vacation, it is safest to not leave keys lying around.
If you choose to have a trusted friend check-in while you are away, give them a key to hang on to until you return.

4. Don’t Advertise Your Vacation Until You Return

You may want to brag to all your friends and family that you are going on an awesome trip, but you should resist the temptation until you are back home.
Advertising your vacation via social media can be unsafe because other people, who you may not know or trust, will know that your home will be empty for a while.

5. Get A Security Camera

Many security cameras have the ability to send video clips and alerts straight to your phone. Once again, this can only be useful if you have access to internet and phone service.
The sight of cameras should deter burglars, but if someone does attempt to enter your home without permission, a camera can help identify the perpetrator.

Even 'Invisible' Cameras Will Work

You can place them outside and inside your home to catch anything that happened. There are many types available, including those that are nearly invisible and those that are meant to be obvious.

6. Invest in a Video Doorbell

Similar to a security camera, a video doorbell can send live clips and alerts to your phone. If you install a video doorbell, you can answer the door from anywhere via a speaker at your door.
Even if you cannot use your phone at the time, you can access the videos later to see who came to your door.

7. Pause Your Mail

An overloaded mailbox is a sign that no one has been home for a while. Put your mail and newspaper delivery on hold until you return. You can easily suspend your mail online or at your local post office. Make sure to not make online purchases that will be delivered while you are away.

8. Make It Look Like Someone is Home

There are ways to make it look like someone is home, even if your home is unoccupied. Setting a light or two to a timer will give a definite sign that someone is home. You can go the extra mile by setting a radio to a timer as well. Timers are an inexpensive way to mimic a human occupancy.

9. Keep Valuables out of Sight

Even though you may choose to keep your blinds closed, you should keep any valuable processions out of view.
While it may be difficult to hide your TV, you can move DVD players and game consoles into a closet. For smaller items, such as jewelry, consider putting them in a locked safe.

10. Unplug the Automatic Garage Door Opener

This is a tip that many may not think of. Automatic garage doors can often be opened by universal remotes. Even if the burglar does not enter the main part of your house, they can take anything kept in the garage.

Tips to Protect Your Home from Damage while on Vacation

1. Keep your Thermostat On

If you are vacationing during the winter, make sure to leave the thermostat set at 50o F. This will keep any pipes from freezing, and bursting once they thaw. When you return home, make sure that the indoor temperature is at least 50o F before running any water.

2. Unplug Electronics

Since you won’t be using your TV, computer, coffee maker, or toaster while you are traveling, unplug them. This will minimize the risk of damage to your appliances or fire if there is a power surge. As an added bonus, it could save you some money on your electricity bill!

3. Shut Off The Main Water Supply

Water damage is extremely expensive and can destroy your valued belongings. Turning off the water supply to your house can ensure that you don’t return home to soaked carpets and ruined hardwood floors.

4. Make Sure Gutters Are Clean and Storm Drains are Cleared

Another way to prevent water damage is to keep storm drains surrounding your house and the gutters clear of debris. In a storm, clogged drains will force water closer to your house and increase the risk of flooding and water damage.

5. Add Environmental Sensors to your Home Security System

Many home security technologies can detect environmental changes, such as high moisture levels in the air when there is a flood.
These systems can also sync up to carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors, and alert you and the proper response teams of the issue.

6. Keep Your Yard Free of Dead Plant Debris

Maintaining your yard regularly can minimize the risk of fire while you are out of town. Especially if you are vacationing in the summer, make sure to clear any dead branches and leaves from your yard. If you live in a fire-prone area, make sure there is an adequate clearing between your house and any brush or trees that may feed a nearby fire.

Finally!

Whether you are leaving for a weekend or a month, it is worth your peace of mind to spend the time and effort to keep your home safe. Knowing that you’ve done everything you can to safeguard your home will allow you to enjoy all your adventures, big and small, and focus on having fun!