Homeowner's Academy

This is your guide to interesting facts, tips and general homeowner information. We hope you find the information useful - and feel free to share with friends!

Protect Your Home While on Vacation

by BROOKE GOLD HASSON | Jul 21, 2014

Planning A Trip Includes House Preparations

luggage-car-300x216Summer has arrived and it’s a time for trips and great vacations for many families. In all the excitement of getting out of town, don’t forget to spend some time taking precautions to keep your home safe while you’re away.

We’ve built this great list of five tips to make sure coming home is a relaxing part of your vacation. Staying vigilant will keep your property and possessions safe and stop you from having to worry about your house while you’re out having fun.

Hold Your Mail

If you’re leaving for more than a weekend trip, consider having the post office hold your mail. Stopping delivery while you’re away prevents someone from seeing an over-stuffed mailbox and keeps packages from sitting on your porch or front steps.

The Post Office can hold your mail for as little as three days or as many as 30. Most of the time you can even submit a hold request online! It’s best to call your local post office and double-check since some prefer an in-person form.

Picking up the Paper

If you get a daily paper, consider getting it stopped or asking a trusted neighbor to grab it for you.

When newspapers pile up in a yard, it’s a big sign that no one is home. Avoid this target by calling your paper and telling them to stop the delivery for the days that you’re gone.

Some papers may still accidently deliver during these stopped times, so it’s a great idea to ask a trusted neighbor to grab it for you while you’re away. If you have a trustworthy neighbor you can also ask them to be on the lookout for packages or other items that may accumulate and make your house look empty.

Pet and House Sitting

One of the best ways to keep your home safe is to have someone check up on it regularly, or even have a trusted friend or family member live in it while you’re away.

This can make sure there’s always someone to watch your belongings, take care of your pets and even keep those houseplants alive and well. They are also a great way to keep the newspaper, mail, doorknob fliers, and many other things from accumulating on your property and making the house look empty.

This can be an expensive option for some, but it’s one of the most secure.

A careful thing to note about house-sitters is that it should be someone you trust and make sure you have your agreement in writing. An e-mail with the agreement works fine as long as your house-sitter replies and says they agree.

Time It Right

What’s something you do every day?

For most of us that’s turning the lights in our house on and off, especially at night. There are many cheap and easy-to-install light timers that can be used for your interior lights to make your home look lived-in. Many work with your alarm system.

By programming lights to come on in the afternoon and turn off late at night, you give the impression that your house is operating like normal. This makes you look like less of a target for thieves.

Mow Ahead of Time

Are you the kind of person who keeps your lawn neat and trim during the week? Do you garden regularly? Is you porch a place you love to sit?

For those of us who enjoy spending time outdoors or like to keep the landscaping looking good, don’t neglect this before you go on vacation. Mow your lawn as close to when you leave as possible and spend a little time weeding or picking up your yard.

This makes everything look normal while you’re away and gives you a great looking home to come back to after your break.

Remember to put everything up in the shed or garage, and check out our other great vacation safety tips just for your garage and other entrances to your home.

This Blog is sponsored by:
People’s Trust Insurance Company