Chances are you or your family will be traveling this holiday season, and a house left empty is a tempting target for criminals. We at Putnam Builders don’t want to scare you, or make you fear leaving your treasured belongings while you travel to enjoy time with family. Some simple preventative measures can help to keep your home safe from intruders while you’re away.
- Ask for Help
Ask a friend or neighbor to keep an eye on your house while you’re away. First step to find a responsible friend or neighbor and bribe them with holiday baked goods. You’ll want to ask this responsible party to drive by your house frequently. Give them a key and ask them to bring in any mail or newspapers, feed your cat, water your plants, rake your leaves, etc. If your car is parked on the street, give them a key to the car in case in needs to be moved. Be sure to also give them a copy of your literary and contact numbers in case there is an emergency.
- Don’t advertise your trip online
It can be tempting to brag about your vacation or how excited your are to see Nana, but that’s exactly what you shouldn’t be doing. You may think that your Facebook and Twitter can only be seen by your nearest and dearest, but you’re wrong. There are many ways for criminals to gain your information online. So wait till you get back to post all your fabulous vacation pictures.
- Inform local law enforcement
Call the non-emergency line for your local police department and notify them that you’ll be away. Often they will send patrols to your neighborhood, especially if you live in a smaller community. Also consider notifying your neighborhood watch, if you have one.
- Keep your curtains open
If you typically keep your curtains open, keep them open. A change in how your home looks could clue in potential intruders that you are away. Also, open curtain will allow passersby to notice if someone is in your home. Before you leave place more expensive and portable items, such as jewelry, laptops, and tablets, out of sight from the windows.
- Turn the lights on—and off
It can be tempting to keep your lights on non-stop while you’re away to make it appear as if you are home. But your electric bill will be huge, and lights on all night will appear suspicious.
Instead purchase a light timer. You can program you lights to turn on and off as if you’re in the home. This little bit of extra security will only cost you about $20-30 per switch. Home Depot and Amazon both carry several options.
- Stop your mail
Put a stop on your mail. Piled up mail will immediately let potential intruders know that you haven’t been home. It’s easy and can be done online at https://holdmail.usps.com/holdmail/
Follow these few steps and you can relax that your home will not be a target while you’re enjoying your holidays with friends and family.
Have a Happy and Safe Holiday from Putnam Builders!