For many of us, summertime and the holiday season are two of the best times of the year. These are our chances to take much-needed vacations to visit family or to unwind at the beach, and we look forward to them all year long.
Unfortunately, burglars look forward to these times of year just as much as we do. With so many people traveling away from home, thieves will be out in full force during the times you are most likely to be away from home, and least likely to be thinking about your home security.
You don’t have to live in fear! Here are our top ten holiday safety tips to keep your house secure (and your mind at ease!) whenever you and your family travel on a vacation away from home.
1. TURN ON YOUR ALARM SYSTEM!
2. Have a neighbor collect your mail and newspapers for you.
3. Don’t tell too many people you are going to be away (and be careful of your posts on social media if you’re uncertain of your privacy settings).
4. Set your lights on timers, in various rooms. With some timers, the lights go on and off at different times each day, which means a burglar can’t pick up on a pattern. Motion sensor lights outside can also deter a burglar. Consider installing them in front and back.
5. Ensure that all your doors and windows are locked and secure.
6. Inform a neighbor when you’re leaving and returning, and ask them to keep an eye out for anything suspicious.
7. Leave a phone number with a neighbor where you can be reached, and a spare set of your keys in case of an emergency. You may also leave a home number of a relative with a neighbor.
8. Don’t leave valuables in sight through windows.
9. Inform the police department that you will be away from home. Many police departments will be happy to have a patrol car drive by your home periodically to keep an eye on things.
10. Make sure your house looks lived in. Have a neighbor park their car in your driveway if you’re taking yours. Also, ask them to put a bag of garbage at your curb on garbage day. In the winter, if it snows, have someone shovel your walk and clear off the car in your driveway.