While you’re packing for your much-awaited vacation, don’t forget to prepare your home as well. There are many things that can happen to your house when it’s left unoccupied. If it’s not thieves, it can be bad weather or electrical problems. To mitigate possible risks as much as you can, here are the safety precautions you should make:
1. Safeguard your pipes
Experienced insurance adjusters deal with all types of claims, including flood and water damage. In many instances, water damage occurs because of a burst pipe, especially in vulnerable areas of the home, such as the attic or basement. If you are leaving the house unoccupied during very cold weather, ensure that the pipes are insulated and set the thermostat at 55 degrees or higher. Since there is no one in the house to use the faucets, pipes can easily freeze and burst.
Alternatively, ask a neighbor or a trusted friend to come by every once in a while to run the faucets.
2. Set timers on the interior and exterior lights
Deter burglars by making your house look like it’s occupied. Set timers on both your interior and exterior lights to come on, particularly during the night.
3. Check your alarm system
Take the time to check your alarm system and ensure it’s set correctly. If you are going to be gone for longer than a couple of weeks, consider alerting your security company representative as an extra precaution. Don’t forget to download the security apps so you can monitor your system remotely as well.
4. Double-check your doors and windows
There’s no harm in checking twice. You definitely don’t want bugs, rain, snow, or worse–burglars, to enter your house while you’re gone.
5. Unplug your appliances and electronics
A power surge can happen at any time, and you definitely don’t want it to happen while you’re out of the house. Before you leave, unplug all appliances and electronics. Alternatively, plug them into a surge protector.
6. Set your thermostat
To save energy and protect your house’s pipes, set your programmable thermostat before you leave. Don’t forget to check the batteries as well.
7. Have someone pick up mail and newspapers
Ask a neighbor or friend to swing by your house and pick up deliveries and mail. Not doing so can make your house look like it’s unoccupied.
8. Secure your valuables
Secure your valuables in a safe and hide it in an unusual place where burglars usually don’t look. Alternatively, store your valuables in a safety deposit box, especially for high-value items such as jewelry or heirlooms.
9. Disengage your garage door opener
If your garage door can be opened with a remote, thieves can hack it and find a way into your house. Disconnect your garage door opener or lock it manually.
10. Fix leaks in the roof
If you are expecting a storm to come while you’re gone, now is the time to fix leaks in the roof. Otherwise, the water can cause more damage the longer you are not at home.
A house that is left unoccupied for an extended amount of time faces a lot of risks, such as burglars, inclement weather, power surges, and more. Thus, before leaving for vacation, make these safety precautions both for your security and your peace of mind.