With it being the holiday season, many people have travel plans that leave your home open to burglaries while you’re gone. There’s nothing worse than coming back from a family vacation, being tired and ready to go to sleep, to find that your house was burglarized while you were out. While you’re gone, rest assured that your home is safe, and will be safe and untouched when you get back home. Burglaries are always on the rise in the holiday season, don’t let your home be one of those.
1. Lock all of your doors and Windows
Before you leave, do a full circle of your home to make sure that every door and window is secure. Many people just make sure that they lock their front door before they leave, this isn’t good enough. Do a complete walk-through and think like a burglar. Do you have a window heating or air conditioning unit that a burglar could push in? Take that out before you leave. Check second floor windows and any other entry points. Are your locks good enough? You might want to have us swing by and take a look and see how easily your locks can be broken, or have us install high security locks before you leave.
2. Alert Neighbors and Neighborhood Watch
If you have a neighbor that you trust, or even a neighborhood watch, it’s time to talk to them about you being gone. Let them know if anyone is expected to come by and check on the plants or animals, or house sit for any duration of time, let them know. Give them your contact information so that they can alert you to any potential wrong doings.
3. Cancel your Newspaper and/or Mail
If you are going to be gone for a long period of time, put your mail on hold by going to the local Post Office or filling out the forms online. You don’t want your mail overflowing. Even more obvious, is your newspaper subscription. You don’t want a stack of newspaper on your doorstep. Nothing screams “I’m not home!” like a pile of this week’s papers. You’ll also want to make the house look lived in, in other ways. Mow the lawn before you go and get a timer for a few lights.
4. Don’t tell the World!
We all know you’re excited. But only tell people that you’re close with. Most burglars get their information from Facebook, Twitter, or other social media avenues. Did you know that if you post something on Facebook, and a friend of yours comments on it, that it’s possible that someone that is friends with them, but not friends with you, can see that you’re leaving for vacation? That’s scary, right? Save all of the vacation photos for when you get back, and post them all from home. Don’t tell people that you’re going to be gone unless you’re sure you’ve locked down your security settings the way they need to be.
5. Hide your Expensive Stuff
By hide, this just means to not let it be visible. If you have windows in the garage, put the nice tool set to the side. Don’t leave the curtains open so someone can see that fancy TV in the living room, and don’t let thieves see your laptop sitting on the table. Make sure all of your nice stuff is out of sight, and let the would-be burglar take on someone else’s house as their project.
6. Install a Remote Security System
Nowadays, it’s pretty inexpensive to get a hold of a video surveillance system that you can check remotely via your phone or laptop. There are many reviews on this subject, so it won’t be covered here, but a video camera in the living room might just make your trip a little better knowing you can check in on your home whenever you’d like.
When you’re travelling for the holidays, or any other time of the year, whether it’s for a family vacation, or to visit the relatives for the holidays, make sure to follow the above tips – not only for the peace of mind, but for the added security.