Planning a summer holiday? While it's great to have the chance to get away from it all and escape everyday routine, leaving your home unattended for weeks at a time can be a major worry in itself. There are many easy and affordable security measures that can be put in place before your holiday to keep your home secure and put your mind at ease. Don Shulsinger from Blinkforhome, the manufacturer of the video home security and monitoring system Blink, has shared his top tips to keep your home safe.
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Keep your holiday a secret from social media
Don't post travel plans or photos while you're away as this will publicly notify people that you have an empty home. Be sure that your kids also understand that they should wait until after you have returned home safely to share those holiday selfies. Recently the footballer John Terry was burgled after he posted holiday photos on his social media feeds.
Tell trusted neighbours and friends
Let them know you will be away so that they can keep an eye out for any suspicious activity while you're gone. Leave them your contact details, a spare set of keys and the code for any alarm so that they can drop by to close curtains, switch lights on and off, water plants and the lawn if needed and make sure there is no post poking out of the letterbox or parcels left on the doorstep.
Cancel any regular grocery, newspaper, milk and other deliveries while on holiday. If you forget to do this, these could be left on your driveway or by your front door, making your home an obvious target for a break-in.
Wireless home security and video monitoring system
Believe it or not, some of the most sophisticated wireless home security systems can cost less than the hotel room you've booked. A home security monitoring system will provide an enhanced level of security and peace of mind while you're away. An easy to set up wireless option is Blink, which sends temperature and motion alerts along with recorded or live video clips to a smartphone, anytime and from anywhere. You can be instantly alerted to a break in through the Blink app on your iOS or Android device. You can even find out what the cat is up to while your family is away!
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Hi-Tech door locks
Keyless locks offer amazing security features, like Bluetooth and the ability to see who's knocking at your front door on your smartphone's screen. Many of these locks allow you to give access by simply inputting a phone number or sending a text from anywhere in the world.
Thanks to automatic switches, you can make it appear as if you're home when you're not. Set up some internal and outdoor lights on automatic switches, and be sure to pay special attention to entry points. These lights are generally inexpensive and easy to install, but double-check that they are working properly before you go.
Check insurance and banking services
Ensure that your policies are paid up for homeowners, car, and medical insurance. If necessary, advise your bank and credit card companies that you will be away so that they can alert you to any unusual account activity.
Contact your alarm company
If you have the more formal home (and expensive) surveillance service instead of a DIY system, be sure that they have the current key holder details in order to prevent any false alarms interrupting your holiday. Has the alarm been serviced? Update the local authorities if you've registered your alarm with them.
Get inspiration for your next holiday with our travel features.