Keeping Your Home Safe While On Vacation

Summer is the prime time for family vacations but unfortunately, empty homes can attract unwanted attention. Before you lock up the house and head to your destination, make sure you take some simple precautions to protect your home while you’re away.

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Put a Stop to Your Mail
An overflowing mailbox or newspapers on your stoop is a sure way to tip off criminals that your place has been empty for a while. Keep your monthly bills and other materials out of sight by notifying your local post office to hold your mail until you get back from your trip. Or, you can ask a neighbor to collect your mail for you until you return.

Stay Off of Social Media
Friends and family aren’t the only ones who may access your Facebook or Twitter posts; so don’t tell the world you’re away on vacation or how long you’ll be gone. It’s not unheard of for burglars to scan social media sites for vacant homes they can target for their next break-in. It’s safer and smarter to share the highlights of your trip online once you’ve returned home.

Keep the Lights Lively
Leaving the house lights on throughout your trip can draw unwanted attention to your house as well as drive up your electric bill. Keeping the lights off the whole time is a sure sign your house is empty, which can encourage burglars. By using light switch timers to turn your lights on and off at various times, you can help make it look like someone is home. This can help discourage potential burglars from breaking in during your absence.

Play It Safe and Unplug
If you’re going away for a while, shut off and unplug your television, stereo, computer and any other major appliances except your refrigerator. Shutting off appliances and electronics will not only protect them from potential power surges, but will also help lower your electric bill. Even if your electronics and appliances aren’t turned on, they continue to draw power as long as they’re plugged in.

Have a Friend Housesit
One of the best ways to keep your house safe while you’re on vacation is to have someone live in it while you’re away. If you have a friend or relative who you trust and who would like a change of scenery for a while, ask if they’d be interested in housesitting. He or she can take care of your place and your plants and you can relax and enjoy your vacation.

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