Can you imagine the horror of coming home from holiday to find you’ve become the victim of a crime? Those hard-earned hours of relaxation will be completely undone if you have to start filing a claim on your home insurance.
So here are five ways to protect your home before you jet off on your summer holiday!
1. Create the impression you’re still home
You can buy timing switches for your lights which can be set to turn on and off at specific times of the day, giving the impression you’re home. We never agree on what to do with the curtains – open or closed – but one thing’s for sure, don’t leave them half-and-half because you’d never normally do that if you were home!
If you’re driving to the airport or your destination, it might be a good idea to find someone to park their car outside your house while you’re away.
2. Hide the tell-tale signs you’re away
Nothing says ‘I’m an empty house, break in and help yourself’ like a pile of letters visibly building up on the doormat or bottles of milk lining up outside your front door. Consider giving a trusted neighbour or your mother-in-law a spare key so that they can pick up the mail every couple of days. Leaflets poking out of the letterbox is my bugbear – ask a neighbour to keep their eye on your letterbox for any so they can be popped in the recycling bin instead of telling the world you’re away.
Alternatively, the Royal Mail’s Keepsafe service will hold your mail for up to two months. If you’re only going away for a couple of weeks, consider using Keepsafe, which will hold your mail for up to 17 days for £13.50.
If you’re one of the very few people in the UK still receiving a milk delivery, consider pausing the service and any other grocery deliveries while you’re away to keep your home safer and save you a bit of money too.
3. Turn everything off at the socket
I make this one of my final-just-before-I-leave-the-house activities – make sure that every single appliance (except for your fridge/freezer) is turned off at the wall and not left on stand-by. Not only does this reduce the risk of fires, it’ll also save you money on your utility bills.
It sounds fairly obvious, but make sure you do a check to ensure all doors and windows are closed and locked properly. Check the garage and shed as well, if you have them.
If you were to leave a door or window unsecured and were burgled, you may find your home insurance provider unwilling to pay out for a claim because you failed to take “reasonable care” of the property.
That’s where a an innovative modern wireless device by Panasonic comes in. The Smart Home System monitors and secures your home in minutes.
The Smart Home from Panasonic is the modern wireless home security system offering you ultimate peace of mind with easy installation and operation. This isn’t a device you’d only use while on your holidays, however, as you can use it to switch your appliances on and off from the comfort and convenience of your phone or tablet!
Finally, leave a spare set of keys with a friend, relative or trusted neighbour so that someone can gain entry to the property if something was to go wrong inside the house.
5. Don’t broadcast your absence
Many of us like to count down to our holidays and tell everyone about where we’re going off to on Facebook, or post pictures from the beach on Instagram – but this could be a big mistake. I have friends who update their status with their every location, even if they’ve popped out for coffee – I think you need to consider who you are sharing the information with. What do you think? Do you think it’s risky to post photos of your holiday cocktails on social media? Does it put your home at risk while you’re on holiday?
What other steps do you take to protect your home while you’re on holiday?