Vacations are supposed to be a time when you relax and let the stress melt away. That’s virtually impossible if you have to worry about your home and belongings the entire time you’re gone.Eight travel tips on how to get yourself and your home prepared for your next adventure abroad.Here, you will find my top travel tips.
The vast majority of break-ins occur when no one is at home. That makes vacationers easy targets. Instead of hoping for the best, there are a number of preventative steps you can take to increase security and prep your home to be left alone. With this to-do list, you’ll be able to truly take it easy while you’re on vacation.
Photo by: Jason Pratt
Travel Tips – Essential To-Do’s Before Leaving for Vacation
Update Your Homeowners or Renters Insurance
Now is a good time to inventory the valuables in your home. Homeowners and renters insurance will cover the cost to replace items that are stolen or damaged, but they need to be accounted for on your policy. Typically the policy will cover personal property losses in one of two ways: actual cash value and replacement cost.
Actual cash value means the insurer will cut you a check for the replacement value of items minus depreciation. Replacement cost is more extensive since it will cover the cost of a replacing the item with a new product regardless of depreciation. Premiums are almost always higher, but you don’t run the risk of having to make up the difference.
Set Up Smart Security as a good travel tips
A smart home security system will allow you to keep an eye on your home no matter where you are. These systems use sensors and wireless cameras that connect to a hub in your home. The hub feeds data directly to your phone alerting you the second anything is detected.
They aren’t quite the same as having a monitored home security system, but they are great for people that want to watch over their property. If you ever get bored while on vacation you can always check in to see what’s happening at your house.
Program Your Lighting
A few motion sensor lights and smart light bulbs are all you need to create the illusion that you’re home. Smart bulbs can be programmed to turn on and off at a certain time. You can also download compatible apps on your phone to control lights remotely. Try to replicate your regular lighting habits as closely as possible so everything looks normal from the outside.
Outdoor lights at the front and back door that automatically turn on at night will offer additional protection. Burglars are often hesitant to stand in front of well-lit doors for fear of being seen.
Another good travel tips Put a Hold on the Mail
An easy way to tell no one is at home is to check their mailbox. If it’s full then no one has been around to pick it up. If you have a mailbox that can be accessed by others you can enlist the help of the USPS. The Request Hold Mail service can be used to arrange for your mail to be held at the post office while you’re gone. USPS will allow you to request the hold up to 30 days before leaving town.
If you weren’t able to plan that far in advance ask a trusted neighbor to come by every few days and pick up the mail for you.
Hide Valuables as a good travel tips
In the event someone does break into your home, don’t make it easy to find the high priced items. You may not be able to remove the flat screen from the wall but jewelry, cash, prescription drugs, collectibles, art, etc. can be tucked away out of sight so it isn’t easy to nab. According to the FBI, burglars only stay in a home for 8-10 minutes on average. Hiding the valuables will increase the odds that they don’t get stolen.
Take Out Trash
Coming back to a smelly home is the last thing you want at the end of a nice vacation. Even if you’re only gone for a long weekend the trash can become a problem if it isn’t taken out. On the day you depart, empty out all of the garbage cans into a secured trash bin that can’t be easily opened by the neighborhood wildlife.
Close the Blinds
Window shopping is something we all do from time to time, and it’s a common practice for burglars. If your windows are left bare people can easily see in to decide of there’s anything work stealing.
Another good travel tips Lock the Doors and Windows
It sounds like very basic, simple advice, but many burglars state that they gain entry to a home via an unlocked door or window. Before heading out do one final check to make sure every window and door are locked securely. This includes the door connected to the garage.
Now that you know all of the basic travel tips on how to prepare for traveling, learn all about how to save money while traveling.