Whether you’re spending the weekend at grandma’s or a month in Europe, taking security precautions can help protect your home from the unexpected. Before you head out the door, follow some of the tips below to help keep your home safe and tidy.
1. Set up a yard sign or window decal
Even if your home isn’t equipped with a monitored security system, setting up yard signs and window decals can discourage potential intruders from targeting your home. Smart burglars always go after the easiest targets and will likely turn elsewhere if they believe a home is protected by a security company.
2. Install outdoor lighting
If your home is completely dark at night, intruders will take it as an invitation to enter. If you haven’t already, install a few outdoor lights around the front of your home and set them to automatically turn on when daylight fades.
3. Keep your mail safe
If you plan to leave your home for several days or more, arrange to have the post office hold your mail until you get back. Identity thieves often snatch billing statements, court documents, and other confidential documents containing valuable personal information. Alternatively, you can ask a trusted neighbor to collect your mail and keep an eye out for suspicious passerbys.
4. Install wireless security cameras
There’s nothing wrong with a direct approach to monitoring your home. Wireless security cameras placed in and around your home give you a clear view of what’s happening. Many home security systems let you stream live video from these cameras on your computer or mobile device from anywhere in the world. Just make sure you can connect to the internet.
5. Install a home automation system
Home automation systems let you program thermostats, appliances, and lighting systems inside your home. Using this technology, you can schedule when the lights turn on and off, giving onlookers the impression that someone is home.
6. Use innovative gadgets
There are many innovative home security gadgets on the market. For example, setting up an energy-efficient fake television light box in your living room can make it look like someone is watching a late night program. Other helpful devices include an alarm that mimics the bark of an aggressive dog, and a wireless mailbox sensor that alerts you whenever someone accesses your mail.
7. Tidy up your lawn
Unkempt lawns tell burglars that your home is an easy target. Before you leave on your trip, mow your lawn and rake all leaves depending on the season. Remove all ladders, tools, and other household items from view. Trim large bushes and prune tall trees around the perimeter of your home to prevent intruders from climbing up to reach bedroom windows.
8. Join or establish a neighborhood watch
Joining a neighborhood watch is one of the best ways to discourage potential burglars. Just make sure your neighbors can contact you when you’re away in case they spot someone lurking near your home.
9. Consider installing a home security system
Security systems monitored by an experienced company offer protection against intrusion, fire, flooding, extreme temperatures, and other threats. Many of these companies offer 24-7 monitoring and wireless alerts sent directly to the internet compatible device of your choosing. Depending on the company you choose, you may be able to customize your home security package with entry sensors, flood detectors, pet-friendly technology, and other solutions to fit your needs.