Ross Mortgage News

6 Ways to Protect Your Home When You’re on Vacation

July 5, 2018

Hitting the road for vacation soon? Whether you’ll be gone for a few days or a few weeks, make sure your house is well-protected with these home security tips!

Lock All Windows and Doors

This might seem like an obvious no-brainer, but 30% of all burglaries occur with the offender entering through an unlocked door. Before you leave for a trip, be sure to set a reminder in your phone to securely lock all windows and doors. Additionally, move or remove any spare keys that might be in obvious outdoor hiding spots.

If you have an alarm system, be sure to set it. If you don’t have an alarm system–or need to upgrade–consider installing a smart security system so you can easily monitor your home and control access while you’re away.

Get A Friend to House-sit

If you’re planning on leaving your home unattended more than a couple days, enlist a friend to check on your home while you’re away. Have them bring your mail inside, feed pets, water plants or simply stop by to ensure everything is functioning properly.

Piles of unopened mail in your mailbox is a very distinct indicator to criminals that nobody is home. Therefore, if you can’t get anyone to housesit, contact the local post office to temporarily stop delivering your mail during the dates you’ll be absent.

Upgrade Your Lighting

When burglars case neighborhoods for their next target, they’re drawn to homes that keep their lights off for a consecutive number of days—a clear signal that the owner is on vacation. If you don’t want to leave the lights on for fear of a high electric bill, set your lights on a timer to toggle off and on at scheduled times of the day.

If you’d rather not rely on a timer, consider upgrading to a smart lighting system that allows you to control your lights from anywhere. You can also install motion-detecting lights around dark areas of your home’s exterior as an added tactic to ward away unwanted visitors.

Control Your Thermostat

Have you ever turned off the A/C before leaving for a trip? While it may have seemed like a good idea, your house ended up paying for it. Cutting off the air allows humidity to creep in, which in turn causes mold to grow and wood to swell. It also keeps your fridge running much longer and can cause electronics to overheat.

We recommend setting the A/C to 85 degrees while you’re gone—a temperature that still allows air to circulate without costing you a fortune. You can also consider upgrading to a smart thermostat that allows you to schedule and control your home’s temperature remotely.

Stay Off Social Media

 If you’re going somewhere amazing for a summer vacation, you’ll probably feel compelled to post about it before and during the trip. While it’s tempting to make your friends and family envious, posting about a vacation also lets burglars know you’re out of town. Rather than give robbers an open invitation, wait until you’ve returned from your trip to make your experience public.

Keep Your Lawn Trimmed

Another thing intruders look for when casing neighborhoods is a neglected, unmaintained lawn—a distinct sign the owner is away for a prolonged period of time. Before leaving for a summer trip, be sure to arrange for a lawn care service to keep up the illusion that someone is occupying your home.

What other tips do you have for protecting your home while on vacation?