Lifestyle

Going Away? How To Make Sure Your Home Is Safe

Going Away? How To Make Sure Your Home Is Safe

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Summer is within touching distance, and many of us are looking forward to jetting off for a well-earned holiday. If you’re travelling abroad or you’re planning to visit friends or family, the last thing you want is to be worrying about home. Here are some simple tips to make sure your home is safe while you’re away.

Neighbourly favours

If you’re close to your neighbors, it’s a good idea to call in some favors while you’re away. Ask your neighbours to keep an eye on your house and collect your post for you each day. If you trust them with a key, you could also ask them to switch lights on and off and open and close curtains and blinds. This will help to make it look like you are at home. If you don’t know your neighbors, it may be worth enrolling in a neighborhood watch scheme. You could also ask a friend or relative to pop by from time to time and pick up your mail. Parking a car in the drive will also help to make it look like you’re still at home. Ask one of your neighbors if they would mind parking in your driveway from time to time.

Milk and newspapers

If you get anything delivered on a regular basis, such as milk or newspapers, make sure that cancel your orders before you go away. If you have piles of papers or post or a stack of unopened milk bottles outside, this is a clear sign that nobody is home. Give the dairy or post office a call and let them know the dates you will be away. If you’re going on an extended holiday, it may be worth getting in touch with the mail office to redirect your post.

Locks

Before you head off on your travels, make sure that all windows and doors are locked. Leave a spare key with your neighbor or a friend and take other sets of keys with you. Never leave car keys by the front door. Make sure garages and sheds are secured. If you have faulty locks, or you’ve lost the keys, get in touch with a company like Bradley locksmith before you go. It’s essential to secure your home properly. If you’re in a rush, it’s easy to forget to lock a window or shut a skylight. Take five minutes to walk around the house and check all the windows and doors. Most commonly, thieves enter a property through ground floor windows and back or side doors. If you are leaving your car at home, make sure that it is locked and secure it in the garage.

If you have a garden, make sure gates are closed and locked. Secure all valuables, such as tools, outdoor furniture and machinery in a shed or garage. Don’t leave anything out.

Valuables

Close curtains and blinds before you hop in a cab bound for the airport. Try to avoid leaving valuables, such as games consoles, tablets and computers, in view. Keep anything that has monetary or sentimental value in a safe place. If you don’t have a safe, keep your possessions in a locked box. Combination locks are often tougher to crack than locked padlocks.

Alarms and security lighting

If you have a burglar alarm, you’re less likely to be targeted by thieves. The alarm is a visible deterrent and it can also alert you or others to a potential break-in. Try and ensure that your alarm is visible from the street or driveway. If you don’t have a security alarm, consider getting one installed. Security lights and CCTV can also help to deter anyone on the prowl. Securing your home behind electric gates can also help. Dogs are another obstacle for thieves. Even if your dog is staying with family or boarding in kennels, a ‘Beware of the Dog’ sign may help to make your home less appealing.

Electrical safety

When you’re lying on a beach, the last thing you want is a panic about whether you’ve left sockets on or appliances running. Before you go away, have a quick check and make sure that all your power sockets are turned off. Remove plugs from the wall. If you’re going away for a long time, you may want to adjust your heating to save money on bills.

Pets

If you have pets at home, you’ll need to make arrangements for them while you’re away. It’s not safe to leave animals at home while you are on holiday. Ask a relative, friend or neighbor if they would mind looking after them, or see if somebody would be able to move into your house while you’re away. Alternatively, you could look into booking your pet into a cattery or kennels. Ask friends or colleagues who have pets for recommendations, or contact your vet for advice.

Smoke detectors

If you’ve switched everything off and you’re not around, it’s very unlikely that you’ll have to worry about a fire at home. However, you never know when accidents may happen and it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Before you head off on holiday, make sure you check the batteries in your smoke detectors. If you don’t have alarms, install some as a priority. All homes should have smoke detectors. They pick up warning signs much sooner than we can and they are proven to save lives. Contact your local fire office for more information. They will be able to give you advice about installing and checking smoke detectors.

Holidays are supposed to be a chance to rest, relax and discover new places. Nothing ruins a trip away like worrying about the safety of your home. If you’re planning a foreign escape or a staycation this summer, follow the steps on this checklist. Plan ahead and make sure you leave time to do some basic safety and security checks. Don’t be afraid to ask neighbors or friends for a favor. When they next go away, you can repay them and keep an eye on their home. If you know you’ve done everything to secure your home, you can enjoy peace of mind and focus on having a fantastic holiday.

Naomi Isted
Editor in Chief, Naomi Isted is known as The Ultimate Lifestylist to her readers and viewers. She is a TV Presenter and Columnist. Ranked in the Top 100 LFW Social Media Influencers AW14 & SS15, Brand Ambassador for Pears Soap UK. Her Celebrity beauty TV Series currently airs to 27million homes on Physique TV in UAE, previously on Wedding TV in the UK. She brings fashion and beauty advice to her readers and viewers on a daily basis. She is Fashion and Beauty Columnist for Herald Scotland and has a Fashion and Beauty Bridal Blog for HELLO. She can usually be found attending celebrity fashion and beauty events in and around London and sharing the latest fashion and beauty trends with her readers.

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