Summer 2019 is right around the corner, and that means it's time for a vacation! It's time to leave your home, your responsibilities and head for your favorite destination or venture out to somewhere new. When you take a break from your life, you want it to be worry free which means being rest assured that your home and belongings will stay safe and sound while you vacation.
Did you know that according to the FBI, crime rates increase 10% to 13% in June, July, and August. There are a number of thoughts about why crime increases in the summer… people let their guard down, more people are gathering together, kids are out of school.While there aren’t any foolproof plans, there are a number of things you can do to prepare your home for a warm welcome when you return and to keep it as safe as humanly possible.
Here is a basic vacation checklist to help you when your “to do” list is a mile long:
Leave your contact information with a neighbor.
Install Door Amor kits on all exterior doors
Check your smoke alarms to make sure they are working.
Make sure and unplug any small appliances to eliminate the unnecessary use of electricity as well as to prevent any malfunctions.
Turning off water valves to things like your dishwasher, your washing machine, and sinks can eliminate potential plumbing issues.
Turn your thermostat down/up based on the temperature outside. No need to air condition or heat your home unnecessarily while you are away. (Of course, keep your pets and plants in mind!)
Run vinegar and water down your kitchen sink to clean out any smelly residue that could lead to an unpleasant return.
On that note, make sure all of your trash cans are emptied and your refrigerator is cleaned out.
Notify your credit card companies that you will be traveling so they aren’t surprised when you check out at the souvenir store.
Keeping your home safe from burglars:
Make It Appear As If You Never Left
Add timers to a few lights in your home to give the illusion that you never left. Also, make sure that your outside motion detectors are working as well to deter anyone from trying to break into you home in the evening.
Remove Mail and Newspaper Clues
A box full of mail and a sidewalk covered in newspapers are a clear tip off to potential thieves that you are away from home. Ask a friend or trusted neighbor to pick up your mail and newspapers for you each day, or better yet, have the post office put a hold on them until your return.
Driveway Red Herring
One signal to potential robbers is the absence of a car in the driveway. If you are close with your neighbors, invite them to park their vehicle in your driveway on occasion to trick thieves into thinking you are home.
One of the best ways to protect your home while you vacate your life is to hire or invite a young person to house sit your home. Finding a young college student to housesit can be a win/win for both of you!
Make sure that your security system is well-maintained and in good working order. Also, make sure that you notify your home security company to let them know you will be on vacation, so that they will have those notes in your file. If the alarm is sounded, they will know almost instantly to send out law enforcement to your home.
It’s summer! It’s vacation time, and you deserve to get away from the norm. Use these tips, and not only will your vacation be relaxing and rejuvenating, but so will your return.