Going on vacation is a special treat for most families that you have had to save for and wait for. Worrying about your home should not be something that you have to do when you are vacationing. If you plan ahead, you can have a great vacation with no worries about your home!
A House That Is Watched Discourages Thieves
If you are lucky enough to have a friend or relative to house-sit, you are fortunate. They can help provide the security of someone coming in and out of the house and can help take care of your pets. If you cannot find a house-sitter, then at the very least you need to find someone to come and pick up your mail, put your trash out on garbage day, and water your plants. An untended garden or plants and an overflowing mailbox are big signs for a thief that your house is ripe for the picking.
Security experts recommend that you NOT stop your mail, because there are some unscrupulous people that may pick up on the fact that your mail carrier does not stop at your house. Don’t forget to ask your friend or family member to pick up your newspaper too. A car in your driveway is a helpful deterrent also.
If you don’t have a house-sitter, you need to make your house look lived-in. Inexpensive timers on your lights will help your home look like someone is home. A good place for the timers are in the living room and bathroom (by the window). Have the person who is checking your house to adjust the blinds also.
Cover lawn-care too. A lawn with high grass is a sign that thieves look for too.
Protection While You’re Out
Whether you are just going down the street, out to dinner, or on vacation for a few weeks, these tips should be followed.
Always lock your door and give the person caring for your home a key to check on your home in your absence.
Timers on lights and a radio on will help give the impression that someone is home.
A spare key should not be left in a flowerpot, under a doormat, inside the mailbox, or in other obvious key hiding places. The fake rock key holders are helpful, but only if you already have rocks in your flower garden. The best thing is to leave a key with a neighbor.
Tell your neighbor if you are going out of town. Neighbors will be able to notice things out of place much more quickly than someone who just pops in one or two times a day. Neighbors are a great tool to watch each other’s homes.
If the Worst Happens
If something happens while you are gone, here are some things for you to look for:
If you see a broken door or window, then do not go into your home. Call the police from a neighbor’s home or from your cell phone. Even if there is nothing stolen, it is better to have a police escort just in case.
If you believe a crime has occurred, do not touch anything. Keep the scene as preserved as possible until the police can conduct their investigation.
If you put these tips into effect, chances are pretty good that your house will be safe and secure when you return. Now you can relax and enjoy your vacation.