It's that time of year again... The 4th of July is a very popular travel holiday. Here are some tips to get your home ready for your travels and help you have a worry free vacation..
If your home is listed for sale or rent, let your agent know you will be gone so they have an idea for showings and can keep an eye and ear out for your property as well. If an offer comes in they would love to know how to get ahold of you if you are somewhere in a remote part of the world.
Five percent of U.S. households experience an attempted or completed burglary each year — that’s one out of every 20.
13,000 burglaries occur in the U.S. every day, about one every 15 seconds.
Two-thirds of all burglaries in the U.S. are perpetrated at residential households.
The average burglary takes seven minutes to complete.
Eighty percent of illegal entries are made through a locked door.
The average loss per burglary is $1,400.
The perpetrator of burglaries usually lives within one to two miles of his victim.
Does this mean you need to invest in a complicated alarm system? Hire a monitoring company? Stay home from vacation? The smart homeowner knows the dangers and how to minimize opportunities for victimization.
Make yourself a checklist, follow the advice below, and enjoy your trip. (Even if you won’t be away, it’s a good idea to look over the advice anyway.
A monitored alarm system can give you a lot of peace of mind, but it’s by no means a cure-all for burglary-prevention. While simply having an alarm-company sign or sticker in a window is a crime deterrent, the fact remains that, should a burglar choose to break in, chances are that he’ll be gone before the police respond to the alarm. Boost your home’s protection by seeing how the following suggestions can help you.
Be sure to close and lock all windows.
Trim back shrubbery around windows and doors so that none of your entrances or windows are obscured from the street. Heavy, concealing foliage is an invitation to a burglar.
Never, under any circumstances, “hide” a key outside of your house. The burglar has already thought of every clever hiding place you come up with. And forget about the hollow fake rocks sold in hardware stores — they don’t even fool children.
Turn your air conditioning on to about 82 degrees to control humidity.
Clean out the refrigerator and cupboards of perishable foods so you don't come home to an out-of-control science experiment. Turn off your ice maker — these have been known to continue producing to the point of pushing open the freezer door.
Unplug all televisions, stereo equipment, computers, and other electronics in case of a lightning surge.- With the weather we have been having you never know what will happen.
Have a trusted neighbor or friend hold a spare key to your house and check on the house periodically — if a water pipe does break or you did leave the iron on, your friends can prevent complete destruction of your home.
Put a stop on at the post office and call the newspaper delivery service.
Ask a neighbor to occasionally park in your driveway. ---I like this one it keeps everyone guessing.. including all the other neighbors.
If you have an automatic sprinkler system, be sure to leave it running. Have someone come mow your lawn or rake your leaves while you’re gone.
Put timers on some of the lamps near your windows so that they will light at dusk and shut off at the time you'd normally retire.
Install motion-activated lights in the front and back of the house or check the bulbs if you already have them
For the 3 of you who still have landlines, turn the ringer down low on all phones — that way a burglar won’t be alerted by an endlessly ringing phone.
Don’t announce your absence on your answering machine or voice mail, or post on Social Media about your specific plans.
Put a “Beware of Dog” sign in your window even if you don’t own a dog.
Secure storage sheds, attic entrances, gates.
Call your local police to let them know you’ll be traveling. Many departments have programs that send patrol officers out to your home, even walk around your yard while you’re away.
If you must park your car in the driveway, be sure to remove garage door openers and house keys, and lock the car doors.
Move small valuables — jewelry, credit cards you won’t be using — to a safe-deposit box or safe.
Having a video or photo inventory of your home and belongings is helpful if there ever is a break in, You can update them fairly regularly with the cell phones and will always have a date and time stamp on it as well.
Following this advice may decrease the chances of a break-in or appliance tragedy by a good percentage. And, you'll increase your own peace of mind and be more relaxed while you're vacationing.
Most of all have an amazing time and see the things you want to see, spend time with the ones that make your heart smile and enjoy the time away from your regular daily grind. Have a safe and blessed July 4th!
See you when you return!!