Protect Your Home During Vacation
Take these precautions before you leave and while you’re out of the house.
No one wants to come home to a disaster. Learn how you can reduce the risk of burglary, as well as fire and water damage, while you’re traveling.
Before You Go
Before locking your doors and windows and hitting the road, there are several things you should do — and not do — to help keep your property and possessions safe. Here’s a helpful checklist:
- Stop your mail service. Old newspapers and a bulging letterbox could tip off burglars that no one is home.
- Put your lights and television on a timer to cycle on and off. This helps create the illusion of an active household.
- Lock any valuables you don’t take with you, such as jewelry, in a safe or a safe-deposit box.
- Unplug electronics and appliances that don’t need to be running to reduce the risk of a fire — and save energy.
- Shut off your main water supply to prevent leaks that could lead to water damage.
- Arm your alarm system. If you don’t have an alarm, consider installing one—the investment could lower the cost of your homeowners insurance.
- Hide a spare key outside. If you must, be sure it’s hard to find.
- Lower your blinds. Instead leave them at their usual height and move visible valuables away from the window.
- Change your answering machine to let callers know you’re on vacation.
- Post your travel plans on social media. Learn more from MetLife Auto & Home® about protecting your home from social thieves.
- Leave your GPS in your vehicle at the airport. Someone could break into your car and get your home address.
While You’re Away
You can feel confident your home is secure even if you’re miles away. Here’s how:
- Enlist the help of a neighbor, friend or family member: Have them park in your driveway, take out the trash or mow the lawn to help make your home look lived in.
- Talk to local authorities: If you let your local police know you’re out of town, they may drive by your house to check for signs of trouble.
- Use your smartphone: Download an app that allows you to link your smartphone to a webcam so you can watch your home from anywhere — even the beach.