Vacation Checklist: How to Protect Your Home Before Vacation

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10 Must-Follow Safety Tips Before Leaving Home for Vacation

This post was originally published on June 19, 2020 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Vacations are always an exciting time. Whether it is a quiet weekend retreat or a lush week in Cabo, we all yearn for some time to relax and have fun. However, before you embark on your trip, you want to make sure your house is protected.

Fortunately, there are some safety tips before leaving home, so you can spend less time worrying and more time relaxing.

1. Put your deliverables on hold, and DON’T promote your vacation on social media

Nothing says “rob me” more than a mailbox filled to the brim with old mail, magazines, packages, etc. To prevent this pileup from happening, contact your local post office and have them hold your mail until you return from vacation. Likewise, another option available is asking neighbors to collect your mail while away.

Although everybody is excited to post photos of themselves standing on white-sanded beaches or mountaintops overlooking serene views, those photos are clear indicators that you are away from your home.

2. Close and lock all of your doors, windows, etc.

Locking down your doors, windows, and garage is one of the most important safety tips before leaving for vacation. These barriers are your first line of defense against intruders. Always make sure locking your doors, windows, and garage are on your house checklist before vacation.

3. Set your indoor and outdoor lights on a timer

It is crucial to keep the illusion that you are home while on vacation. Smart lights are a great way to do this because you can program them to go on and off at certain times. It is never too late to add smart security and home automation to your home.

4. Reset your thermostat

When you go on vacation, remember to drop or increase your thermostat by 4 degrees. In the summer set it in the upper 70’s and in the winter set it in the high 50’s. This helps keep your electric bill low and reduces the risk of a pipe bursting in the winter. A smart thermostat allows you to make these adjustments, even if you’ve already hit the road.

5. Turn off your main water supply

The last thing you want to come home to after a nice vacation is a flooded basement or water-damaged home due to the water heater exploding or a pipe bursting. To prevent this from happening, turn off the water to your home before leaving for vacation. It will save you money, as well as a potential headache in case something goes wrong while you’re away.

6. Unplug your electronics

Unplugging electronics is another excellent way to save money. The kitchen countertop appliances, televisions, and alarm clocks all use electricity even just by being plugged in an outlet. Not to mention, unplugging all electronics will help prevent an electrical fire.

7. Let friends and family know about your travel plans

You’ll want to let them know you are going and how long you will be gone. Keeping them in the loop allows them to look after your home and keep an eye out for anything suspicious.

8. Collect spare keys

If you must have a spare key, be sure to give it to individuals you know and trust. That way, if something happens and entry into the home is necessary, there is someone familiar nearby to help. Another option for better entry protection is to add smart locks that let you to lock and unlock doors straight from your phone using a mobile security app.

9. Hide your valuables

Even if you take all the precautions before going on vacation, there is no real assurance that your home won’t experience a break-in. To better protect your home, do not leave anything of value visible from the street. Before you leave your home, remember to close your blinds so those passing by can’t peek in. Your best option is to keep valuables in a safe or hidden somewhere inconspicuous.

10. Notify your alarm company you will be out of town

Let your alarm company know about your travel plans. If you have a monitored security system, the monitoring center team will know that an alert about a fire, burglary, or burst pipe likely isn’t a false alarm.

Use these tips to make sure you have a stress-free vacation and a headache-free homecoming. If you want to find out more about what ADS Security can do to keep your home secure while you’re away, contact us today!

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