How to Safeguard Your Home During the Holidays

   Planning a holiday is a wonderful feeling but did you calculate how much that break could cost? Not only the price of the trip itself, but the cost of replacing valuables and repairing your home if there is a break-in while you are away. The financial cost of burglary can be extremely high – and the emotional cost can be devastating too. Do all you can to protect your home and your finances while you are away with these crucial tips.

Keeping Up Appearances

The last thing you want to do is advertise your home as empty for a few weeks. It is essential that you make it look like your home is still lived-in as normal. If thieves get the idea that there is no one home, it is much more likely they will decide to target your property over someone else’s where someone is still in residence.

Don’t tell people you are going to be away from home, other than your trusted family and friends. Refrain from talking about your upcoming trip, for example, in the line for the bank or while you are shopping in a local store. And never post your status on social networks as being away – you never know which friend of a friend will take advantage. When it is time to leave, pack your car discreetly, preferably in the garage away from sight.

While you are away, have a friend come in to check on the house every day. Get them to empty the mail box, open and close curtains and switch lights on and off. If you are away for a long time, have someone mow the lawn or clear the snow in winter. If you can’t have anyone come to the house, set lights and electronic goods on timers.

Arranging Financial Protection

Make sure your household insurance is up to date – take a look at //www.santam.co.za if you need to renew – and check that all the security systems like alarms are working. Have copies made of any important documents and store them away from your house in a safe or bank deposit box. Let your private security company, if you have one, know when you are going to be away.

Final Checks

Before you leave, check every lock to make sure it is functioning. Don’t leave keys in the locks. Don’t leave any valuables on show and put away electronic equipment. Use your home safe to secure cash, weapons, and valuables or have them put in a bank deposit box.

Once you are sure that you have done all you can to protect your home and your finances, go away on holiday and relax – it is a waste of your hard-earned vacation if you spend the time worrying about the property back home. With insurance and security measures you have done all you can to make sure your house is no easy target for thieves.

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