When you’re getting ready to go on holiday, the last thing you want to worry about is whether or not your home will be safe. Luckily, taking a few simple precautions can help put your mind at ease and ensure that you come home to everything just the way you left it. Here are a few tips for keeping your home safe whilst you’re away.
Update your home insurance provider
If you’re going away on a long trip, it’s a good idea to update your home insurance policy. This way, if anything happens to your home whilst you’re gone, you’ll still be covered. Many insurance companies, similar to one sure, for example, require notice if your house is going to be empty for an extended period, but you can usually do this online or over the phone, and it only takes a few minutes. Failure to notify your insurance company may result in loss of cover if something goes wrong, so it’s worth notifying your insurance provider, just in case.
Secure your windows and doors
One of the best ways to keep your home safe whilst you’re away is to make sure all of your windows and doors are secured. If you have any windows that are easy to reach, consider installing window bars or grilles, and if you have sliding glass doors, be sure to put a dowel or stick in the track to prevent them from being opened if the lock is broken. Before you leave, do a final check to ensure everything is closed and locked – just one open window is enough to give someone access, but these simple measures can go a long way in deterring burglars and keeping your home safe.
Let your neighbours know
It’s a good idea to let your trusted neighbours know that you’ll be out of the house for a while. This way, they can keep an eye out for any suspicious activity and can also help collect your post. Letters building up in the letterbox is a major giveaway that you’re not at home, so it’s important that you find someone to collect them for you. A trusted friend can also take care of any plants or pets you may have – you’ll just need to make sure you have keys cut for them and notes left for them so that they know what to do.
Before you leave the house, make sure to unplug all electronics and appliances. If there’s a power surge, doing this will help prevent any fires or other damage. If you’re going away for over 2 weeks, it’s also a good idea to unplug the fridge – just make sure all food is removed and the door is left open to let it air. Whilst you’re at it, don’t forget to turn off the water at the stop-cock. This will prevent any leaks from occurring whilst you are away, meaning you can be sure you won’t walk into a flooded kitchen when you get back. Some insurance policies also require these steps are taken, so check your policy before you go.
Use a timer for lights
Using a timer for your lights is a great way to make it look like someone is home, even when you’re not. This can deter burglars and give you peace of mind knowing that your home is well-lit whilst you’re away. You can even get automatic curtains and blinds that can open and close by themselves each morning and evening – even with lights on, open curtains make it pretty obvious that nobody is home, so it’s worth considering them if the inside of your home is very visible through your windows.
Set up a security system
If you have a security system, be sure to set it before you leave. This will give you an extra layer of protection for your home. You can even get cameras that will send a notification to your phone if they detect suspicious activity, making them perfect if you don’t have any neighbours nearby to keep an eye on things for you.
If you have any valuable items in your home, it’s a good idea to hide them in discreet places. Burglars are often looking for easy targets like TVs, game consoles and computers, so putting your smaller valuables out of sight will help to keep them safe. You can hide things in safes, lockboxes, or even in inconspicuous places like false bottoms in drawers or under loose floorboards. Burglars look for the fastest route in and out of the house, so they’re not going to be wasting time looking under rugs or behind heavy furniture.
Going on holiday can be stressful, but the safety of your home is something you can control. Taking these simple precautions can help you keep your home safe while you’re away, so be sure to follow as many of them as you can. By taking these steps, you can relax and enjoy your holiday knowing that your home is in good hands.