Security tips before you leave home
Tuesday, 15th March, 2016
With the excitement of packing your bag before you travel, make sure home security is a priority. Unfortunately in this day and age we have to be aware of who might see our home as a potential pay day so do ensure your home is not a possible target for break and enter.
Here are some ideas which I have found handy, for a month, a week or even for a weekend away. This is the time that great neighbours are blessings if they keep an eye on your home and even let you know if the kids throw a party; don’t forget to give them your holiday contact details. This works both ways of course as you can return the favour when they go on holidays.
To make your home look lived in:
- Install timers on lamps around your home, there are ones that turn on at a preset time or when it gets dark. Even having a radio on timer will give your home the ‘lived in’ feel.
- Outdoor lights ideally should be fitted with motion detectors, which trigger when someone is in proximity of the sensor, also great for security year round.
- Place your mail, newspapers or deliveries on hold or have someone collect your mail daily. A ‘no junk mail’ sign on your letterbox keeps it free from filling up, although some junk mail deliverers cannot read! Australia Post can place your mail on hold for a small fee; make sure to organize this service well in advance.
- If you are going away for quite awhile, have a friend or a lawn mowing service attend to your garden and water your plants.
Home safety tips:
- Unplug all electrical appliances, air-conditioners, except fridges, but be careful… I recently unplugged the fridge by accident and came home to ruined food and a dreadful smell. This also helps to save electricity and to avoid problems with electrical outages.
- If going away for over a week, turn off your internal water valve to prevent the risk of flooding from a broken pipe. These things seem to happen when you are not home! Lucky us, we had a call from our lovely neighbour last month to say there was water flowing down the front of our apartment, she turned off the water and called my son-in-law who discovered a burst pipe.
- If possible, lower the heat setting on your hot water system to save electricity. Remember to turn the heat back up when you arrive home.
- Lock all doors and windows; don’t leave keys inside in any locks. Do not leave a key hidden outside the house; chances are it may be found. Leave a key with a trusted person who can check on your home now and then.
- A simple hint for extra security is to drop a rod into the tracks of sliding windows and doors.
- Deadlocks are also a good idea, as it stops a burglar walking out the door with your TV…looks a bit strange to have a TV going through the window!
- Stow away valuables, including hard drives with your valued photos or work.
- Disconnect the electrical pad on the electric garage door, as a potential burglar may be able to figure out the code to trigger the door open. Instead use a strong lock.
- Marking your valuable property using the ‘Police Property Identification System’ is also a good idea. Information is on the Queensland Police website, I am sure it is the same in other states and countries.
- Make sure your home and contents insurance is up to date and that you have old for new or a reasonable amount that will cover purchase of new goods, how often do you hear of people that have not reviewed their insurance and then a flood, fire or theft happens and they can’t afford to replace the goods.
I find these simple ideas help me unwind and enjoy the excitement of preparation, the flight and my holiday.
Wishing you a fabulous holiday, you deserve it.