As you're planning your upcoming vacation, there are many items on your to-do list. One of the things that should be at the top of your list is to make sure that you've secured your home.
And by securing your home, you need to actually take some preventative measures so that unwanted intruders don't make a visit while you are gone. This goes above and beyond just making sure every door and every window are locked. Follow these tips to make sure that your home, and its contents, stay safe while you're away.
Stay off Social Media
You may want to announce your trip on social media, but don't. You never know who is going to read your updates, and the last thing you want to do is announce to a potential criminal that you'll be out of the state for a couple of weeks. Let a few people know because you'll want them to check on your house, but under no circumstances should you announce your plans online. If you want to tell people about your trip, you can let them know about it after you're home, safe and sound.
Turn the Lights Off
Many people falsely believe that leaving the lights on is a good way to deter criminals. The reality is that if someone is seeking out your home, they will get suspicious when the same light has been on for days. Not to mention, your electric bill will go up during the time you are gone.
Instead, purchase a light with a timer, so that the lights can turn on and off at appropriate times of the day.
Hold Your Mail
It's easy to contact the US Postal Service to put a hold on your mail. Mail being stacked up outside your home for a few days is a sure sign that no one has been in the house for a few days. If you don't want to hold your mail, have a friend or neighbor stop over every day to collect the mail. Also, if you have a newspaper delivery, have that postponed as well.
Move the Spare Key
If you hide your spare key under a welcome mat or a plastic rock, move it. If a criminal determines you are on vacation, they will scour the home for a spare key somewhere. Don't leave one anywhere outside, even in a spot you think a criminal won't figure out.
Consider letting your police department know that you are going on vacation if you're leaving town for at least a week. They may be able to drive by your home a few times to make sure all is well.
Another alternative would be to install a home security system. If someone were to try and break into your home, they would be apprehended pretty quickly. If you live in a neighborhood with a higher crime rate, this may be worth looking into. Talk to companies such as Maffey's Security Group for more information.