The Advantage Blog


Prepping Your Home for Spring Break … Or how to keep your home safe when you are away.

spring-breakSpring break and summer vacations are just around the corner.  Families look forward to getting-away after being stuck inside all winter or just venturing off to some fun destination.

9 Out of 10 Break-Ins are Preventable
A house or apartment left empty while its owners are traveling is a tempting target for criminals. According to the Insurance Information Institute 9 out of 10 home break-ins could have been prevented.

So don’t let your vacation be ruined by returning home and finding your possessions taken and property vandalized.  Follow these 10 Tips to keep your home safe when you are away.

10 tipsTip 1:  Ask a friend or neighbor to keep an eye on your home while you’re away.  Give them a key to your house and any vehicles left at home (in case they have to be moved). They should also have your contact information and itinerary in case of an emergency.

Tip 2:  Make sure all doors and windows are locked and fastened. Doors should have deadbolt locks and secure sliding glass doors with a metal rod or piece of wood placed in the track to prevent an intruder from forcing the door open.

Tip 3:  The more it looks like you’re home the better.  Use timers on lights, radios, and televisions to give the impression that you are home following your regular routine.  Leaving lights on ALL the time is a give-away that no one is home.

Tip 4:  Unplug the power to your automatic garage door to keep thieves from opening it with a universal remote.

Tip 5:  Keep the perimeter of your home well lit. Install low voltage outdoor lights and put them on a timer.

Tip 6:  Posting pixs on Facebook and Twitter of you on vacation is not the best idea.  As much as we want everyone to know what a good time we are having, it also tells burglars that you are not home.  Leaving a message on your answering machine or voice mail is another way to broadcast that your home is unoccupied.

Home SafetyTip 7:  Either have your mail and newspaper stopped or ask your neighbor to pick them up for you.  Do the same with trash containers. Have them put out and picked up so no one realizes you are not home.

Tip 8:  Don’t hide a key outdoors in a “secret” spot. Burglars know the best hiding places, like under the welcome mat, or above the door jam.  Don’t give them easy access to your home.

Tip 9:  Keep your lawn cut and maintained if you are going to be gone for more than a few days.

Tip 10:  Install a home security system and activate it when you leave.  This will significantly lower the chances of being burglarized.  Even if an intruder enters your home, upon hearing the alarm, they will generally leave immediately.