8 tips for securing your home while you’re on holiday
Holidays should be about rest and recharging, not creating major headaches. If you’re heading out of town, take these simple precautions to keep your home safe and give you peace of mind.
Do yourself a favour and to relieve the tension of possible disaster when you leave your house empty over the holiday period with these easy steps.
1. Cancel usual deliveries and services
Don’t forget to cancel your newspaper or grocery delivery and tell the gardener you won’t be needing his services for a while.
If you’re away for an extended period of time you might also want to have the post office hold your mail.
2. Talk to your trusted neighbours
Ask them nicely to take out your rubbish bins, bring in your mail or feed your pets (if they’re not going to a pet holiday villa themselves).
Let them know where you’ll be and when you’ll be home so they can contact you if anything were to happen to your property.
And maybe give them a little something for their trouble.
3. Batten down the hatches
Ensure the back and side gate are locked. Obviously make sure all doors and windows are locked as well!
Set your alarm if you have one, or consider getting a dummy alarm – they come with stickers for windows to ensure high visibility to ‘visitors’.
Bring your spare set of keys inside or take them with you. Set sensor lights. Remove ladders and gardening tools – anything that might assist a burglar breaking into your home.
Take valuables with you if possible, or lock them in a bolted down safety box.
4. Look as if you’re home
Have some lights on timer switches so they autmatically come on for a period in the evenings. Even put one on the TV so there’s some noise and light. Leave a car in the driveway if possible.
Have a friend mow your lawn and even housesit for the odd night. Hang some washing on the line – it looks like you’re still home.
5. Stop work on your property by outside tradespeople
Where possible, don’t go away whilst you’re building/renovating. However, if you must, just tell the tradies work has to stop for a while – don’t tell them you’re going away.
It’s more common than you think to have your house burgled by your very own tradie.
6. Be mindful of broadcasting your holiday plans
With the age of social networking firmly upon us, it’s all too easy to forget that whilst we believe we’re connecting only with friends and trusted souls, mush of what we say is public, searchable, and ripe for people to take advantage of.
Don’t tell everyone on Facebook that you’re going on holidays in two days time, and don’t tweet about it either. If your home is unattended while you’re away, save the updates and photos for after you’re back.
7. Don’t forget your answering machine!
A continuously ringing phone is a sure sign to a burglar that no one is home. Make sure your ansering machine is set.
You can also look into having messages or calls redirected so you can access them while away, just in case.
8. Update your insurance
Long before you head off, make sure your home and contents insurance is up to date and you have a copy of the policy details easy to hand.
The last thing you want is to have a break in and find you’ve let the insurance slip because you missed the last payment. Sort it before you leave.
Have a great trip!