The security of your home when you head off to travel is important, not only to keep your home safe, but also for peace of mind while travelling.  Here are 10 tips for securing your home before heading on your holiday.

Tip 1: Ensure gates, doors and windows are locked

Firstly, ensure your gates are locked.  This makes it more difficult for a burglar to get access to the side or back of your home and if they do, it’s also more difficult to get back out.

Also, make sure all windows and doors are locked.  It may also be worthwhile considering if you should install more robust locks on your windows and doors.  Some locks can be flimsy and can easily be broken.

Tip 2: Cancel any deliveries you receive

Cancel or put on hold, any deliveries you receive, including delivery of the newspaper or groceries. You don’t want newspapers stacking up daily outside your home.

Tip 3: Organise your mail

Either have a neighbour, friend or family member collect your mail on a regular basis or have the post office hold your mail for you until your return.  You don’t want mail sitting in your letterbox.  It is both a sign to burglars that you aren’t home but it also puts you at risk of identity theft if a burglar can steal personal documents.

Tip 4: Check your insurance

Check that your home and contents is up to date before leaving on your holiday.  Also keep an electronic copy of your policy with you on your phone or other device.  That way if the worst happens and there is a break in or damage while you are away, you have your insurance details so that you can contact your insurer.

Tip 5: Have someone mow your lawn

If your going to be away for more than a couple of weeks, especially in summer when the lawn grows faster, it it worthwhile organising someone (a friend, neighbour, family member or your regular gardener) to mow your lawn.  This way your yard looks tidy and gives the indication you are home.

Tip 6: Clean up your yard

Make sure you don’t leave items outside such as kids toys, ladders, gardening tools or other items that can easily be stolen or help a burglar break in.

Tip 7: Hide / secure valuables inside your home

A bolted down safe is a good investment (a small safe is not expensive). This way you can secure valuables (eg. jewellery, documents) that you don’t take with you.  If you don’t have a safe, hide items in hard to find places.

Tip 8: Monitored security system

If you have a security system, consider having it monitored (if it isn’t already). You can advise the security company when you will be away. This way if the alarm does go off, the security company can check your property for you. You can also give them a contact person/s who can be contacted if needed. You can give this person a key so they can check on your property for you.

Tip 9: A barking dog can be a sign you’re away

I will say it upfront. I am against leaving your pets outside while you’re away and have someone come over to feed them. Your pet should not be considered as a tool to use in securing your home. A barking dog is an indicator to a burglar that you’re away. If a burglar wants to break into your home, there is a possibility they will bait your dog (which means your dog is likely to die slowly and painfully) and then break into your home. Don’t risk your dog’s life because you think it will be a deterrent to a burglar. Check out my blog Who Looks After Your Pets While Your Away.

Tip 10: Set your answering machine or have calls redirected

If your telephone rings continuously it may be a sign to a burglar that you are not home.  Either set your answering machine to take a message or if it’s not cost prohibitive, have calls redirected to your mobile / cell phone.

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10 Tips for the Security of your Home While on Holidays

26 Responses

  1. These are wonderful tips! We try to do all of these- the mail hold is something that I used to forget often. It’s great to have a list in one place!

    1. Glad they list is helpful Leah. And agree it really is easy to forget something especially when we are rushed to get organised for the trip.

  2. Your tips are practical and easy to do but I am mindful that I can easily overlook one or two. A list such as this is handy. Have pinned it for reference. Well done!

    1. Thanks Georgina. It’s definitely easy to over look one or two especially when rushing to get everything done before the trip.

  3. Good tips! I’d usually get a friend or family member to pop over or just look to check everything is OK. I have used a timed light too in addition to some of these. Always good to have that peace of mind on your trip 🙂

    1. It’s great if you can have someone check in or even house site for you. It really is all about peace of mind.

  4. Great tips! I don’t have a yard so luckily don’t have to worry about arranging someone to take care of that for me. I lived where it gets quite cold in the winter so we always have to plan for how to keep the pipes from freezing and bursting! 🙂 #coldweatherproblems

    1. Thanks Susan. Living in a warm weather area, I hadn’t even thought about pipes freezing and bursting.

  5. Totally agree with not leaving the animals outside! That’s why we offer house sitting services! Hiring a trusted friend to house sit is always a great idea!

    1. Totally agree Nadia. Finding a trustworthy house sitter is a great way to have peace of mind while away.

  6. Do people actaully leave their dogs outside when they go away? I am stunned. Great tips, and too bad the one about the dog is even needed.

    1. Unfortunately it is needed Rhonda. Having been involved in an animal welfare organisation, all too often we would receive dogs that had got out of their yard while their owners where on holidays.

  7. When we travel during the wintertime we always ask our eighbours to drive their car into our driveway to leave tiretracks. And if there’s no snow they usually park their car in our place, just so it seems that we’re home 🙂

  8. Great list. Also I think not telling people that you are away, other than a trusted neighbour or family member seems really important these days. Especially in our world of RV travel.

  9. Great tips! I would add: inform the neighbours you are away and ask them to leave car wheel tracks in fresh snow, plus two lamps on a timer 🙂

    1. Great additions. Thanks Slavka! Living in Australia, we don’t get snow but it is definitely a great idea.

  10. This is a great check list for anyone before traveling. I especially like the idea of having access to an electronic form of your home insurance.

    1. Thanks Wendy. A copy of your house insurance is one of those things you never want to have to deal with when away but if you do it wouldn’t be good not to have it.

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