Many Americans travel and take vacation during the holidays. We stress about packing and making sure we have everything that we may need including all the of the wonderful gifts we have sought to find for our loved ones. We stress about leaving work behind, even if it is a slower time of year, due to the holidays. We stress about leaving our home and precious belongings unattended for an extended period of time. Luckily, there are precautions that can be taken to lessen the stresses that come when leaving our homes. Here are a few ideas to prep for this holiday season that will hopefully put your mind at ease and allow you to enjoy your time away.
- Be sure to give your house a thorough cleaning before heading out on a trip. No one likes to come home to a dirty house.
- Clean out the refrigerator of food that may expire but remember to stock up with breakfast items for your return.
- Take out the trash.
- Put a light or two on a timer so the house looks lived in.
- Set the thermostat to a temperature closer to the outside temperature but not too extreme that it would harm plants or pets that will be left behind.
- Water the plants.
- Unplug small appliances.
- Check windows and doors to be sure all are locked and there are no unlocked entry points.
- Run a check on security system to be sure it is working properly.
- Leave unused cars in the garage and ask a neighbor to park in the driveway on occasion to make the house seem occupied.
- Have the mail and the newspaper stopped or have a friend pick them up.
- Add motion sensor lights to the floodlights outside.
- Take the trash can to the street and have a neighbor bring it back to the house once it has been picked up.
- Consider installing devices such as Ring to monitor who may try to enter your home.
- Leave emergency contact numbers with family, friends, and close neighbors.
- Call the credit card company to inform them of your travels so there won’t be the inconvenience of a card being declined due to security precautions.
- Do not post about your trip on social media. There are those who take advantage of that information.
- Do not leave a hidden key outside.
Having a secure home adds to a more stress-free and relaxing holiday season. Holidays are about family, food, and fellowship not the constant fear that someone is plotting to vandalize your safe space. Have faith in knowing that you have done all you can to protect the inside and outside of your home and that you will return to the home you love just the way you left it.
I hope you enjoyed Cathy’s Tuesday Tip this week. To view more of Cathy’s Tuesday Tips, visit our blog.