June 24, 2014
Protect Your Home Away from Home: Six Vacation Home Safety Tips
If you’re a lucky owner of a vacation home, you understand both the pleasures and pains that come with it.
It’s a pleasure because you have a gorgeous second home that you get to enjoy. Unfortunately, maintaining a second home can be a huge pain, especially when it comes to its security.
Vacation homes are often empty for long periods of time and are frequently located in secluded areas, which make them prime targets for burglars.
We know that it’s incredibly important that you protect your vacation home. We also understand that you want a simple solution. What would be better than by following the same rules/guidelines that you use to protect your everyday home? Here’s how.
- Lock doors and windows. Doors are the most common point of entry for a burglars – more than 30 percent of burglaries occur through unlocked doors and windows. Simply lock the doors and windows to your vacation home before leaving and you’re home is automatically safer.
- Get to know a trustworthy neighbor. Ask them (if they are permanent residents) to watch over the home when you’re not there. See if they’d be willing to make it appear that the home is still occupied by picking up mail/packages or walking across the yard if it snows. If there are no neighbors nearby, hire a lawn-care service to maintain the property.
- Avoid oversharing. It’s okay to tell people that you own a vacation home, but they don’t need to know the details like the address or its furnishings. One thing you should absolutely NOT do is share if you’re leaving or going to your vacation home on social media. This is an announcement to burglars that one of your homes is potentially going to be empty.
- Take down the ‘Available for Rent’ sign. Placing a sign that shows the home is available for rent is standard practice, but this sign can tip off that the home is currently unoccupied.
- Light it up. A burglar doesn’t want to be seen, so lights can be a great deterrent. If you can, invest in a system that allows you to schedule your lights to turn on at certain times or to control them remotely. Or…
- Get a home security system. Many come with home automation features, including light controls. And there is no better way to protect your vacation home than with a home alarm system. Consider one with options like environmental sensors to immediately alert you about environmental dangers, or security cameras and remote access so you can stay connected 24/7.
After spending time in your vacation home this summer, you can rest easy as you pack up your things and head back home knowing you’ve done what can to secure your home.