Millions of people will be traveling over the next month or so. This usually entails leaving your home unattended for at least a few days and more often than not more than a week. Leaving your home always assumes some sort of risk for a burglary. Before you leave town go through this checklist to make sure everything in your home is in order and all security measures are accounted for.
#1 Lock Everything
This may seem like a simple thing to do, but you’d be surprised how many people forget to lock all the doors and windows before they leave on vacation. Go thru the house and check everything, including locking the garage or any gates before you leave.
#2 – Mail newspapers and deliveries
Arrange with a neighbor or friend to have everything that comes to your home picked up on a daily basis. This means your mail, newspapers, and especially those packages which show up over the holiday season.
#3 – Timers
It is wise to have your lights set on timers so they can turn on and off automatically at different times during the night. I recommend making a smart home. It’s a big project and more expensive than getting timers for lights, but it is very cool and worth it in the long run.
#4 – Fresh Bulbs
While were on the subject of lights and timers it’s also a good idea to make sure you have working bulbs. Walk around the outside of your home and check to make sure all the light bulbs are working properly. If you have questionably old bulbs then go and make some changes.
#5 – Alarm Settings
Set your alarm system to be armed during your absence. It is also a good idea to have a friend or neighbor enter the home to recheck the alarm periodically. If the power goes out it can reset the alarm.
#6 – Lawn Care
It’s a good idea to have your lawn taken care of just before you leave on your trip. That way the lawn will look neat and trim. Possible intruders will think someone is in the home. If you have scheduled lawn maintenance it’s a good idea to keep them on so the lawn is taken care of all when you are gone.
#7 – Snow Removal
If you are in an area that’s a cold weather climate, make sure you schedule someone to take care of the snow removal. Snow left uncared for on driveways and sidewalks make the home look empty.
#8 – Carpark
Most of us will take our car on the journey, if not at least to the local airport. Because of this we might want to have a friend or neighbor park a car in the driveway periodically. If you have an extra car consider putting it on the driveway.
#9 – Valuables secured
Gather up all the important papers, jewelry, cash, and anything else of value and secure it in a safe place. The best places for these types of items is a home safe, and if you can’t put them in a safe use a safe deposit box.
#10 – Insurance policies
Before you leave on your vacation take time to review all of your home insurance policies. Make sure everything is up-to-date and your coverage is enough to mitigate any disasters. You may even want to call your insurance agent and inform them of your plans. They may have suggestions for your coverage while you’re gone.
David Glenn is a home improvement expert of over 20 years. He occasionally freelance writes about home automation and making your home more green. Check out SmartHome USA’s surveillance systems for state of the art home automation.