Setting off on a road trip is often the journey of a lifetime, but there’s nothing worse than the thought of a home intrusion while you’re away. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to give yourself peace of mind, and taking the time to carry out some basic checks and preventative measures could make all the difference. Here are 5 ways to keep your home secure when you’re away for long periods of time.
- Get a house sitter
One of the best ways to keep your home secure when you’re away is to organise a house sitter to stay at your home. This should be someone you trust, such as a friend or relative. If you don’t know anyone who could housesit for you, there are websites where you can hire a house sitter. Ask your house sitter to water your plants, feed any pets, and pick up your mail for you. Most importantly, they will make your home look lived-in while you’re away, which is a good deterrent to burglars. If you can’t get a house sitter, ask a trusted neighbour or relative to check on your house every few days. They can pick up any junk mail and make sure there is nothing amiss, like a broken window. Give them a key so they can let themselves in to bring your mail inside, and make sure they have a copy of your travel itinerary so they can contact you if anything comes up.
- Make the house look lived in
If you can’t organise someone to stay in the house while you’re away, you can still deter burglars by making them think someone is home. An overstuffed letterbox can be a dead giveaway that nobody’s home, so ask the post office to hold your mail or get a trusted neighbour to collect it while you’re away. If you have a daily newspaper delivery, cancel it until you’ve returned from your trip. Light switch timers can turn lights on and off automatically to make it appear as though somebody is home at night. If you’re away for a long period during summer, organise for a friend or neighbour to mow your lawn. You can also ask a neighbour to park in your driveway while you’re away, to make it look like people are coming and going.
- Lock everything before you leave
It might sound obvious, but a surprising number of break-ins occur from unforced entry. Before you set off on your trip, give yourself plenty of time to check and double-check all doors and windows. Secure the dead bolt on any external doors, and place a wooden or metal rod in the tracks of sliding glass doors so they can’t be forced open. Lock and secure your garage door – if it has an electric or automatic door, unplug the power source. Don’t hide a spare key outdoors, as burglars are familiar with all the usual hiding spots like under pot plants or above a door frame.
- Invest in security features for your home
Protect your home by taking advantage of the latest in modern home security technology. An alarm or home security system can monitor doors and windows with motion sensors and glass-break sensors. If the house is breached and the alarm is triggered, this is often enough to send would-be burglars running. Plus, if your home security system is monitored by an alarm company, they will be alerted automatically if a problem occurs in your home. Before you go on holiday, tell your alarm company that you’ll be away and make sure you set the alarm properly before you set off.
- Install good quality roller shutters
Protecting your home’s windows is the first line of defense against break-ins. Installing strong roller shutters will prevent burglars from breaking or forcing open windows. Not only do roller shutters increase the security of your home, but they also act as a visual deterrent. Given the choice of a house with roller shutters and a house without shutters, burglars will often choose the easy target, as it’s less hassle for them to get in. They offer a degree of privacy not allowing people to know whether you are or are not away from your home. If you frequently travel or are looking to go away on long trips, Roller shutters are a perfect security solution.
Nu-Style Shutters is a 100% WA owned and operated company with 20 years’ experience supplying high quality, secure roller shutters in Perth. They offer a seniors’ discount and a 10-year warranty on all roller shutters, so it’s never been easier to keep your home secure when you’re away for long periods of time. For a free measure and quote, call 1300 798 776 or visit www.nustyleshutters.com.au to find out more.