How to protect your home and business when you are away
It’s that time of year when so many people are about to head off on their holidays. You may have been waiting for this holiday for months, planned it for what seems like forever and now it’s time to pack.
In the excitement to get away, don’t forget about protecting your home and business, if you have one, whilst you are away. Have a think about anything you may need to do before you head off on holiday that will help to ensure things are as you left them when you return. When the sun is out and we are getting in the holiday mood, it can be easy to get a little complacent – don’t take the risk.
Here are a few things to think about before you leave.
Turn off/unplug unnecessary electronics
This applies to the home and your business. Whilst the chances are that everything will be fine, why take the risk? If they aren’t things that still require power in your absence then switch them off or better still unplug them.
This reduces the chances of an electrical fire and will give you that added piece of mind whilst you are away. Obviously if your freezer is full don’t unplug that, but the kettle, toaster and TV can all be unplugged.
Inform a trusted person
Again this applies to both home and business. If you have a neighbour you trust you could inform them, even give them a key if that feels appropriate and ask them to collect the post for you. Built up post is a clear sign you are away on holiday.
With your business, perhaps you could inform another local business and just ask them to keep a watchful eye – you can always offer to return the favour for them at some point.
Make sure you give them your contact number should they need to reach you. Then you should be able to relax and enjoy yourself.
Install an alarm system
If your home or business doesn’t already have one, you could install an alarm system ahead of your holiday. Sometimes just having a system installed can be a deterrent, especially if you also display the signs/stickers saying that the office or property is fitted with an alarm.
If you do have a security or alarm system be sure to test it is all in working order before you depart and make sure you have a back up plan in case it goes off by accident.
Move valuables away from windows
Again, you can practice this both at home and you place of work. Do not leave anything of value ‘on display’ near a window or door for that matter. If you have blinds installed you may wish to choose a couple to close or partially close to prevent anyone looking further into a particular room.
If you are leaving your car anywhere whilst you are away, this also applies to your car, don’t leave any money or valuables in view of passers by. Having said that, a car left on a drive is actually a deterrent for a property, so that can be regarded as an added security measure.
News travels fast in the era of social media. Don’t be afraid to be a bit vague with your travel plans, especially your travel dates. You don’t need everyone to know when you are away and when you will be back.
You may want to consider leaving a couple of lights on, or even using timers whilst you are away. Less of an issue in the summer perhaps with more daylight hours, but this can be an added deterrent, so you may want to consider this as an option.
Don’t leave a full bin whilst you are away, the smell when you get home will be hideous and not only that, but you may have some unwanted visitors on your return. Animals and insects will be attracted by the smell and that’s the last thing you want when you return from a lovely holiday – not a very nice welcome home!
Empty all internal bins and any external ones you have will need to be checked and secured to make sure they can’t blow over and make a mess if is was windy.
There are all sorts of things you can do to protect both your home and business whilst you are away, but hopefully you’ve got a few ideas to start you off. You should be able to go on holiday and enjoy yourself, without having to worry too much about your home and business remaining safe whilst you are away. Holidays are meant to relax and rejuvenate us, not cause more stress!
Do you have any of your own top tips you can share? Feel free to add them in the comments section below.