Practical tips to help protect your home while you're away on holiday.
There are so many things to do before going on holiday, but before you pack up and head off, make sure home security is part of your travel plan so you can enjoy yourself knowing your home is safe!
Make Friends With Your NeighboursIn close communities, people often look out for each other. Neighbours can report suspicious activity at your home and help when you’re away – and you can return the favour. Let trusted neighbours or friends know your travel plans so they can deal with any emergencies. Perhaps they can park their car in your driveway, take out your bins or mow your lawn so it looks like someone is still at home.
Organise Regular Check-UpsIts a good idea to leave your house keys with trustworthy friends or family so that they can conduct regular check-ups on your property. This way you can relax and enjoy your holiday with peace of mind knowing for sure that everything back home is ok.
Don’t Let The Mail Pile UpNothing advertises an empty house better than an overflowing mailbox. Organise family, friends or neighbours to collect your mail to prevent letters from piling up. If that is not possible consider a short-term mail redirect through Australia Post or ask the post office to hold it until you return. Also, attach a ‘no advertising material’ sign to your letterbox so it doesn’t overflow and cancel your regular newspaper delivery.
Take Care Of Your Rubbish BinsThis is a dead giveaway that you’re not home. If your rubbish is visible from street view, it’s also a visual cue to thieves if everyone else’s bins are out and empty in the neighbourhood and yours is stuffed to the brim and still in the drive, that you’re most likely not at home. If you are leaving before bin collection day ask a friend or neighbour to put your bin our for you – this will also save you coming home to the horrible smell of rotting food!!
Think About Your Water & ElectricityYou should remember to pay your bills in advance – particularly the electricity – so that your alarm system and other electricity-reliant preventative security measures will have power during your absence. If you’ll be away for a long period of time, consider turning off your home’s water supply at the mains to prevent the risk of leaks. Make sure your electrical appliances are not left on stand-by. Unplugging things like your TV and computers will protect them from power surges, and save you power as well.
- Put some lamps on timers inside rooms that can come on in the early evening and switch off at bedtime. This may give the appearance to the casual observer that someone is at home in the evening. Try and avoid rooms being lit that can be observed from the outside through curtains.
- Consider also setting a timer on a radio or TV so that it switches on and off at a specified time. As with the lights on timers, it may trick the casual observer into thinking that the residents are at home.
- You may also make your home less approachable by installing a dog-barking alarm. As an alternative to a real dog, the angry barrage of dog barking sounds from the alarm system may be an efficient way to scare off would-be intruders.
- Leave a pair of your old shoes at the front door and at the back door. This will create the feeling that someone is inside. If someone was to look through a window, it’s a good idea to leave a few things scattered around that make the home look lived in. Nothing looks more like you’ve gone away than an immaculate place, so leave an open book and a pair of glasses on the arm of a chair or a few toys in the middle of the floor.