If a home looks vulnerable, the chances of it becoming a target of burglary increase. A home under construction, or a home that looks vacant is the perfect opportunity for a break in. That’s why taking the necessary steps to protect your vacant property during a construction project are so important!
Remember, theft or destruction can come from anywhere – not just complete strangers. It is important to consider that anyone that has access to your vacant property, or that is aware of your project has equal potential for becoming a suspect. Making sure to protect your vacant property from all sides will ensure that you are covered from known and unknown threats – and prepared for the worst!
Keep Signage to a Minimum Until You’re Ready to Sell
While it may be tempting to get a jump on marketing the property as quickly as possible, keep all for sale signs off the yard until you have a crew coming and going at regular intervals. For sale signs advertise that the home is empty, which is a beacon for shifty characters. When construction crews are on site day in and day out, and can report any oddities from one day to the next, signs are okay – but until you have someone at the home regularly, keep the signs off.
It seems obvious, but all doors should be locked at all times. This includes patio and sliding doors! Garage doors should be closed and have additional padlocks placed on the doors to keep them locked up tightly!
Same goes for windows. Never leave windows open or unlocked. Everything that has a latch should be locked whenever the home is empty. You may also consider replacing the locks whenever keys are lost or even if too many copies are given out to contractors or real estate agents.
Make the Home Look Lived In
Make sure the house doesn’t look vacant.
- Put the mail on hold. You can even go as far as having it sent to a completely different address, or collecting it on a schedule… just make sure that it doesn’t pile up and overflow out of the mail box. Same goes for the newspaper.
- Keep the landscaping maintained. The grass should be mowed and bushes trimmed. Not only will this show that someone is still in the home, but it also gets rid of hiding places for sneaky individuals.
- Put lights on timers. You can purchase inexpensive timers at home improvement stores that will turn lights on at different intervals during the day, giving the effect that someone is home at all hours of the day.
- Post “Beware of Dog” signs – believe it or not, they do work!
Keep a Log of Who Comes In/Out
It may seem like overkill. But keeping a log of the real estate agents and contractors that were last in and out of the house is a great idea. This keeps people accountable, but also provides you a list of people that were actually in the house should anything go wrong or missing down the line.
Make Friends with Neighbors
Neighbors should be your best friends. They are your eyes and ears when you aren’t around. They can report odd sightings, and can even collect mail if they’re nice enough! Another idea is to make friends with your neighbors and have them park a car in your driveway, giving the illusion that someone is actually home at the house.
Call A&J Property Restoration DKI for All Restoration Needs
Having a contractor that you can trust is the best feeling in the world. At A&J Property Restoration DKI, our reputation follows us wherever we go. We work with the best teams around, and our restoration work speaks for itself. Visit our website for more information and call us for a no obligation quote today – we’re looking forward to working with you!