GOING AWAY FOR THE HOLIDAYS? KEEP YOUR HOME SECURE WITH HOME AUTOMATION.
The family home is like a beacon to criminals during the major holidays. It's all too common for unsuspecting vacationers to excitedly pack for their trip, start up the car, and hurriedly drive off without giving a second thought to the security of their home while they are away. According to the FBI, there are more than 400,000 burglaries between November and December alone in the United States. While home security is an important consideration at all times of the year, it is vital that specific precautions be taken during times of extended absence.
Here are 10 tips for making sure your home is secure during the holidays while on vacation:
- 1. Install & Activate a home security system
- If you have ever considered installing a home security system, your investment could not be timelier than before you leave for holiday. There is a certain peace of mind that comes from knowing that you have done all that you can to protect your home during your absence, and knowing that you have a home security system, is the first step to enjoying your much anticipated break.
- 2. Inform your alarm monitoring service
- It is always a good idea to inform your security or alarm monitoring service of the dates that you will be on vacation. This is essential so that any activity that may have normally received a standard response can be escalated for immediate investigation. You should provide the security company with details of anyone that has key holder access to your premises, and ensure that your own contact details are current in the event of a security emergency.
- 3. Make use of timers
- Timers can be your best friend while you are on holidays, and allow you to be in two places at once. You can be enjoying yourself at your vacation destination, yet also at home turning on the lights both inside and out, that is, as far as any potential burglar is aware. You may wish to have common area room lights or simply smaller lamps turn on at the times you would normally do so if you were at home. Inside and external timer lights are generally sufficient to deter intruders, although you can also use timers to activate noise by turning on the radio and television.
- 4. Lock up when you are leaving
- If you have ever experienced that niggling sensation whereby you can’t recall whether or not you locked the door behind you, then you will know how troubling it is to have that feeling. Save yourself the stress and check that you have locked all doors and windows before going for holiday. Check twice if required, or have someone else check as well. It could be a long and expensive trip home if any entry ways had remained accessible to intrusion
- 5. Put your mail on hold!
- Any controlled deliveries that you receive can be put on hold until you return, or you can ask a neighbour, friend or family member to collect the items for you. This is a wise idea in any case if your mailbox is prone to getting pummelled with junk mail. You don’t want an overflow of shopping brochures on your lawn which would signify that you are not collecting your mail. Even burglars can put two and two together in this instance!
- 6. Keep the place tidy
- If you are only going to be on holiday for a short period, then give your yard a decent ‘trim’ to suggest that the house is still very much occupied. Arrange for someone else to maintain it for you if you are having an extended time away. Your lawns should be nicely mowed, and your hedges and trees trimmed to allow a complete view of your house. Ensure that all accesses are visible to discourage anyone from hiding behind thick shrubbery or bushes. Any landscaping equipment including ladders, spades and bins need to be locked away to prevent them from being used as tools to assist a break-in.
- 7. Install motion sensor lights
- Sensor lights that are installed at the front entrance have proven to be effective in deterring strangers from using the dark of night to venture further than the sidewalk footpath. These lights have a wide motion sensor, and you can adjust the range to which they can detect motion and initiate the lights that spotlight the cause of the movement on your property.
- 8. Mind your phone message
- It is recommended that you leave any recorded home phone message as it is, rather than changing it to reveal that you are currently away from home on holiday. If you must change your message, ensure that the message volume is at minimum volume so that your message cannot be heard from outside of the house.
- 9. Place security stickers and decals in plain sight
- Whether you have security installed in your home or not, you should obtain stickers and labels that indicate that you do have home security. Stickers and decals that are strategically placed on front windows and garage doors are rarely questioned and prove to be great deterrents to security-aware intruders.
- 10. Avoid publicly announcing your holiday plans
- It is one thing to feel as if you are being watched by strangers at your own home, but it’s something else when you encourage it by announcing your plans across the social airwaves. From party crashers to stalkers to home invasions, if you tell people on social media that you are taking a vacation, you risk catching the attention of social ‘pariahs’ who will do what they can to obtain your details. Do yourself a favour – keep it within the circle of family and close friends.
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KEEP YOUR FAMILY & HOME SAFE FOR THE HOLIDAYS AND ALWAYS! CALL TODAY TO GET PROTECTED!