WHEN YOU GO ON VACATION
- One of the times your home is most vulnerable is when it is left empty for an extended period of time. Darkened windows, mail or newspapers collecting and closed windows in hotter weather all advertise your absence to a potential burglar.
- The best protection for your home during your absence is to have a house sitter. A friend you trust staying at your house can take care of your pets and/or plants in addition to making sure the house is inhabited.
- Have a neighbor check on your home while you're away, turning on lights, radios or TVs and opening and closing curtains will give your home the appearance of someone there.
- If you don't have a friend or neighbor to housesit or check your home while you're away, perhaps even if you do, you should keep not only lights but also a TV or radio on a timer.
- Make sure whoever is checking your home while you're away knows how to work your alarm system and who to call in case of a problem.
- Unless you have a house sitter, stop your mail and any newspaper or other delivery. Nothing announces an empty apartment better than a stack of newspapers or an overflowing mailbox. Ask a nearby neighbor to pick up any packages delivered while you're gone.
- If you have a garden or potted plants that can be seen from the street, make sure someone is watering the plants regularly or put the plants where they can't be seen. Plants slowly dying due to lack of water may announce your absence.
- If you live in an apartment, check your lease. Many landlords require that you notify them if your apartment is going to be left empty for any period of time (this is so they can enter in case of emergency even if they can't reach you). If you've got a house sitter this isn't necessary.
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