Keep Your Home Safe on Your End-of-Summer Vacation
Students preparing to go back to school in less than 2 weeks means there’s one last chance to sneak in a summer vacation. Whether you’re celebrating the end of August or starting off September with a no-labor Labor Day break, making the most of your vacation means keeping your home safe. Because there’s no better way to ruin the stress-free vibe of your time away than to come home safe to a house that’s ruined from damage.
Home Fire Prevention
Cooking and heating are the top two causes of home fires, according to statistics by the U.S. Fire Administration, but that doesn’t mean sparks can’t fly while you’re away. To keep your home safe from a blaze, take caution with the following tips.
Disconnect: Electronics and appliances can pose a fire risk to your property. Before you take off for your vacation destination, unplug as many items in your home that don’t need power while you’re away.
Detect: Take advantage of technology and connect your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to an alarm monitor that can call, text, or email you should one of your detectors go off. But of course, these monitors can’t do their jobs if your detectors don’t work. If you haven’t done so recently, replace batteries in all detectors.
Deter: If your home looks empty, it could make a great place for arsonists to play with fire. Consider having a house sitter while away, so that your home is always occupied. If that isn’t an option, make sure your house looks lived in by putting lights on a timer and holding your mail until you return.
Water Damage Prevention
Whether by storm or an interior malfunction, water damage is always a potential risk. To keep your home safe and spaces dry, try these tips.
Close: The less water coming into your home via pipes, the less chance your home has of springing a leak. Turn off water valves to appliances as well as the main water supply if it’s not needed for an automatic sprinkler system.
Check: Inspect the hoses and supply lines of your appliances and plumbing for any leaks, cracks, or other signs of deterioration. If moisture is present, fix the issue or bring in a plumber to address the problem. Also, if you have a sump pump, test to make sure that it is working properly should rising water become an issue.
Clean: Water runoff from your roof and home’s exterior can lead to interior water damage if your gutters and downspouts aren’t running clear. Remove any debris blocking your gutter system, and ensure that the downspouts are running away from your foundation.
Home Safe Theft Prevention
If you and your family have been away on vacation, you expect to come home to an empty house. But what you don’t expect is for your house to be empty of its possessions. Here are a few ways to thwart theft from happening while you’re away.
Lock up: It may seem obvious to lock your home while you’re away, but don’t forget it goes beyond just your doors. You also need to lock windows and the garage or other outbuildings on your property. Have a spare key? Consider pulling it from its usual spot and leaving it with a trusted friend or neighbor for safe keeping.
Leave quietly: Wait to share your summer vacay images and posts until you’re back home. Posting before your leave is like advertising your home is empty and unattended.
Let others know: If you have a home security system, make sure the company is aware you will be out of town. If you don’t have one, consider having one installed. Otherwise, bring in a home sitter or ask a neighbor keep a watchful eye on your home while you’re away.
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