Have you ever arrived at your travel destination only to wonder if you left your house in the right condition? Following a checklist before you head out of town alleviates those worries. Use this guide for preparing your home before vacation.
1. Make It Look Like Someone’s at Home When Preparing Your Home Before Vacation
A home that’s obviously unoccupied attracts burglars. Start preparing your home before vacation by arranging for mail and newspapers to be held at the post office while you’re away. Use a timer or a smartphone app to turn lights on and off. If you’re not taking your vehicle for your trip, park it in your driveway. Going on a road trip? Ask a neighbor to park in your driveway. Install motion-detecting lighting on the side and back of your house.
2. Take Care of Your Plants
For short trips, water your houseplants immediately before you leave. If you’ll be gone for a week or more, ask a trusted neighbor or friend to care for your plants. Give them a list showing where your plants are located to make sure plants aren’t overlooked. An alternative is to use self-watering plant stakes.
3. Don’t Waste Energy While You’re Away
Set your thermostat to save energy while you’re on vacation. Unplug your microwave, toaster oven, and any other appliances that won’t be used. Also, unplug any lamps that aren’t on timers. Unplugging electronic devices protects them from damage in the event of a power surge and helps reduce phantom energy loss.
4. Clean Your Kitchen
Leaving on vacation with a dirty kitchen makes for an unpleasant return home. Along with washing dishes and wiping countertops, throw away any food in the fridge or pantry that will spoil before you get back. Take out all of the household trash when preparing your home before vacation.
5. Security When Preparing Your Home Before Vacation
Securing your home may be the most important part of preparing your home before vacation. Make sure that every door and window is locked, even upstairs. Leave your contact information with a neighbor and ask him or her to keep an eye on your property. If you have a home security service, inform them that you’ll be away.