When you are going travelling it is easy to get wrapped up in the excitement and planning and forget about what you are leaving behind.
But it pays to be prepared, and your travels will be much more fun with the peace of mind that your home is safe. So, check out these tips to help keep your house secure while you are away.
Secure and Automate Your Home
These days, home automation is becoming more prevalent, and the benefits of home automation extend to security, with many automated devices being incorporated into modern home security systems.
These include smart doorbells with integrated cameras, smart locks to monitor who is entering and leaving your house when you are away, IP (Internet Protocol) CCTV systems that can broadcast video to wherever you are, and smart blinds that can be opened and closed from afar to give the appearance that someone is at home.
If you have a home security system or any automated devices installed for security purposes, then ensure they are properly activated and programmed correctly for your absence and let it be known to would-be intruders that you have these devices installed.
Avoid Social Media
Do not tell people outside of your family and close friends that you are going away or for how long and try to refrain from posting about your travels on social media until you return.
You can never be completely sure who is snooping around on your feed and acquiring your personal information, especially if your social media channels are not private or you have many followers.
By sharing travel plans or dates you are advertising that your house will be empty, and word of an unguarded household can spread fast on the internet.
Keep up Appearances
One sure-fire way to advertise your home to thieves is to leave it looking unoccupied, so you will want to take the necessary steps to keep up the appearance of life.
Leave some curtains and blinds open and set timers on lights to turn on in the evening. Cancel any regularly scheduled deliveries, such as newspapers and milk, that can quickly stack up. Nothing says empty house like a mailbox stuffed with uncollected mail.
Finally, ask a trusted neighbour to put out your trash cans on collection day and hire a gardener to maintain your lawn and plants for the duration of your leave.
If all this seems a bit much, then you could always consider renting out your property while you are away, you don’t have to worry about making your home look occupied if it actually is!
Make Things Difficult
It seems obvious, but ensure that all access points to your home, such as doors and windows, have appropriate locks in place to make a burglar’s life as hard as possible.
Research shows that burglars rarely spend more than 60 seconds breaking into a home. The longer it takes the more likely they will be discovered, and secure locks are the best way to increase break-in time.
It is also estimated that nearly one-third of all burglars enter through the front door, so make sure to double down on locks here, with deadbolts and door chains being the best choice to deter lockpickers.
Enlist Your Community
Ask a trusted friend, neighbour, or family member to keep an eye on your property while you are away, or better yet consider starting or joining a neighbourhood watch scheme to help combat burglary in your area.
If you have an alarm or security system installed ensure that anyone who will be accessing your home while you are away know how to properly activate and deactivate it, and in the event of an emergency make sure they have your number and can easily reach you.