We’re well into the lazy, carefree days of summer when most families hit the road for some well-deserved time away. When traveling with your family or even away from home, enjoying a local park, pool or sporting event, you shouldn’t have to worry if your home is safe. It’s easier to relax when you follow some basic steps for preventing home break-ins while you’re making memories with your family. Here are Alert 360’s top five tips for securing your home when trip planning:
A home that appears occupied deters burglars: Automate entertainment systems and appliances or use timers for lights.
Turn your telephone ringer down, so no one outside can hear repeated rings, and make sure your outgoing message does not imply you are not home.
Ask a friend or neighbor to pick up newspapers, mail and other deliveries. Or, have your mail held at the Post Office.
Arrange for continuing yard care, and if your car is parked in the driveway, have a friend or neighbor move it occasionally.
Install deadbolt locks on all exterior entrances, including those to the garage. Consider wireless, home security cameras at entrances and an alarm monitoring mobile app that allows you to keep an eye on your home using your smartphone, tablet or laptop.
Don’t Forget House Sitters or Neighbors
You’ll also want to ensure the safety of anyone who stays home or keeps an eye on your house, such as neighbors, pets and home sitters. Consider these additional tips that help protect property and keep visitors or loved ones safe when you’re on the road or year-round:
Illuminate your home with well-placed lighting, making it safer for those who enter after dark and easier to spot unwelcome visitors;
Ensure all doors and windows are locked before you go, including those upstairs;
Don’t hide a spare key outside. Consider keeping a spare with a trusted neighbor instead or installing keyless entry;
Consider how our home security packages can increase security before you go. For example, trim hedges, foliage and trees that create hiding spots near your home;
Make sure smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working and consider installing monitored detectors so emergency personnel are alerted even when you’re not home or are unable to call for help.
Post emergency phone numbers by the telephone. Make sure visitors staying at your home also know your address and where these emergency numbers are located.
Remember: Your Security System is on Your Side
A monitored alarm system with home automation options can pull double-duty and lend a hand when you’re away. Put your system to use and let visitors in or out, turn lights on or off, ensure the garage door got closed, and check in via security cameras. And, if you have water sensors installed, rest easy, knowing you’ll be alerted if water is detected. If your home is monitored by a security system, it’s especially important to:
Be sure to test your system monthly to ensure it is working properly before an emergency occurs and especially before you hit the road;
During this season of increased travel and in the event of an incident at your home, always report any changes to your emergency contact list to your monitored security provider. Make sure your contacts also are not traveling and check if their phone numbers need updated;
To help prevent false alarms, be sure to provide detailed instructions on the operation of your monitoring system to anyone who has access to your home.
Our best advice? Relax and make every family vacation your best ever. Also, if you do rely on a friend or neighbor to keep an eye on your property or pet, don’t forget a “thank you” souvenir or a special gift to show your appreciation when you arrive home. Happy trails!
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