It’s the end of another school year and for many, that means family vacation time. This is the time we look forward to all year as an opportunity to rest and unwind.
Unfortunately, this is also the time of year that thieves look forward to as well. According to the FBI, the highest rates of burglaries occur in the months of July and August – prime summer vacation time.
But, with a little bit of planning, you can keep your house secure and have peace of mind whenever you and your family travel away from home. Here are six tips to keep your property safe:
- Keep Quiet – While social media is an easy and convenient way to keep in touch with family and friends, it can also work against you. Thieves can easily monitor your comings and goings without ever leaving the couch – just by reading your posts. Also, don’t change answering machine and voicemail messages to say you’re on vacation. It’s best to tell only a few trusted people that you will be away.You can post your vacation pictures after you return.
- Maintain Appearances – Make your home look like someone is there. Keep a car parked in the driveway; stop mail and newspaper delivery or have it picked up by a neighbor; install timers to have lights and television turn on and off at night. If you’ll be gone for an extended period of time, make arrangements for someone to cut the grass while you’re away.
- Lock it Up – Make sure all windows (both upstairs and downstairs) are locked. Lock both deadbolts and regular locks. Lock all storage sheds, garages and barns. And, don’t leave spare keys hidden outside. Either lock them up or give them to a trusted friend or neighbor.
- Disconnect – If you save personal information on your computer, make sure it is difficult to access. Turn off your computer and disconnect it from the internet.
- Out of Sight – Don’t leave valuables in sight through windows. If you have expensive jewelry or other small items, move them to a safety deposit box. Also, don’t take chances with important documents and items of sentimental value that can’t be replaced–move those to a safety deposit box as well.
- Neighborhood Watch – Ask a neighbor to keep an eye on things while you’re gone and leave a phone number where you can be reached in case of a problem.
By following these few easy steps, you can have a safe and worry-free vacation and be able to RELAX!