Checklist for a Worry Free Vacation
How many of us begin obsessing about our home’s safety as soon as we are out the door for a well-deserved vacation? We worry about so many things; recent break-ins in the neighborhood; leaving the iron or stove on: or a water pipe bursting. It’s enough to make you stay home to avoid the stress! But don’t worry—there are ways to prevent burglaries and other home-related disasters while you’re away.
Use these suggestions as a checklist:
- Install deadbolt locks.
- Close and lock all windows.
- Trim shrubbery that obscures windows and doors.
- NEVER hide a key outside of your house.
- In the summer, turn off the water heater and set your A/C at about 82 degrees to control humidity. For a winter getaway, turn your thermostat down to about 50 degrees.
- Clean perishables out the refrigerator and cupboards. Turn off your ice-maker.
- Unplug your TV, computer, and other electronics in case of a lightning surge.
- Have a neighbor hold a spare key and check on the house periodically — if a water pipe breaks or you left the iron on, they can prevent further damage.
- Pay a responsible neighborhood kid to pick up your mail and newspapers, or stop delivery at the post office and with the newspaper.
- Ask a neighbor to drag a garbage can in front of your house on trash day and park in your driveway.
- Put timers on lamps near windows so they will turn on and off in the evenings.
- Install motion-activated lights outside the house.
- Don’t announce your absence on your answering machine and don't put notes on your door, such as “Take deliveries next door.”
- Call your local police to let them know you’ll be traveling. Some departments may send patrols out to your home while you’re away.
- Move small valuables to a safe deposit box or safe.
- For added peace of mind, prepay bills so you won't have to worry about them while you're away.
After you have completed the items on the list—you are ready for a worry free vacation! So kick back, and be rest assured your home is safe and secure.