No one wants to come home from a fun, relaxing vacation to discover their house has been burglarized. Unfortunately, a house left empty due to traveling is a tempting target for criminals. Therefore, spend a little time securing your home before you leave so that you can enjoy your trip without worrying about what might happen at home. Here are a few tips to help you get started.
- Enlist the help of a friend or neighbor
Let a trusted neighbor know you will be away and have them keep an eye on your home. Be sure to leave your contact information with them in case of an emergency. To avoid leaving clues that you are away, ask them to help out by picking up your paper and mail, mowing the lawn, and taking out the trash.
- Keep up appearances
Make it appear that someone is home. Use timers on lights, radios, and televisions to have them turn on and off at various times throughout the evening. Leave a car parked in the driveway, and don’t close all your blinds and curtains if you normally keep them open. Don’t forget to install exterior lights with timers or motion sensors.
- Watch what you share on social media
Don’t broadcast to criminals that you will not be home. Avoid sharing information about your vacation on social media before and during the trip. As tempting as it is to share updates and photos of your vacation as it happens, DON’T! Wait till you return to share.
- Bring in the spare key
Regardless of how clever your hiding place may be, it is best to simply remove the possibility that it will be found by removing the key before you leave and leaving it with a trusted neighbor for safekeeping.
- Lock everything up
It may seem obvious to lock your doors and windows before leaving; however, don’t forget to secure other openings, like pet doors or mail slots, to prevent burglars from reaching in with a tool and unlocking the door. In addition, disconnect the electronic garage door opener and secure the door by locking it or placing a c-clamp or 2×4 in the track to prevent the door from being opened.
If the worst should happen, ensure your home is protected with the right coverage. Contact your Cole Harrison agent to review your homeowner’s policy before heading out on your next vacation.