Your holiday should be your downtime – a chance for you to spend some time just relaxing. But you won't get many opportunities to chill out if you spend your whole time worrying about whether your home is safe or not. Preparation is the key; if you take some time to ensure your home is safe before you leave, you'll have nothing to worry about. Here are the best ways to keep your property secure.
Check locks thoroughly before you leave
This might seem too obvious, but every year thousands of people are burgled where there was no sign of forced entry – indicating that a window was left open or a door unlocked. Even worse if there was a way in left for burglars you might invalidate your insurance which would make it impossible to get replacements and money for your missing possessions. Make sure you check every possible entry point before you leave the house.
Invest in a good alarm system
The last line of defence against burglary, a good alarm system can really help set your mind at ease. Even if the worst should happen, you will have an alarm in place to scare off potential thieves. Good quality modern systems are monitored by security firms and if your alarm goes off they can alert the police.
Have someone come round
Having a trusted family member or family pop round every few days just to make sure everything is doing fine. This doesn't necessarily just mean potential burglary – they can also ensure nothing has gone wrong. For example, a leaking tap might not be a problem if you're at home, but if you're away for a week it could build up and eventually flood the house.
Get smart with lights
There has long been a debate about what is best to do with the lights while you're away. Leave the lights turned off and it's obvious that there's no-one home – but leaving them on for two weeks straight is even more suspicious. Who has their light on a 4 in the morning every single day? If possible you could look into installing timed light switches that can be programmed to turn on and off at certain times of day.
Don't talk about your holiday on social media
Everyone loves to share stories and photos from their holiday on social media but it might be best to wait until you're back home to post them up. That's because if you share your photos while you're away you are effectively advertising the fact that your home is empty. That's not a problem if everyone who can read your social media profiles is a close friend but if you've got people on there who don't know especially well, it can be slightly risky to give them that kind of information. In any case it's always best to be safe than sorry – do you really know who reads your social media profile?
Mow before you go
It's the little things that can give away that fact that nobody is home. Is your lawn usually neat and tidy? If it's suddenly noticeable that it hasn't been done for a while it could be an indicator that you're away. To avoid this being obvious you should mow the lawn and make sure everything is tidy the day before you leave.
Let your neighbours know
Finally it's a really smart idea to let your neighbours know that you're going away and how long you're going for. They are going to be the ones who are most likely to notice something happening first, so if they know that you're not going to be back for a while they can sound the alarm and keep your home safe.