Are you leaving beautiful Yardley, Newtown or Bucks County, PA to take a well-deserved summer vacation? Don’t forget to safeguard your home for the time that you are away. Here’s a list of 3 easy ways to have a happy return to your home after your trip:
1. Keep home looking lived in - If you reliably get your newspaper every morning at 7 AM, mow your yard every 3 days, and go to bed at 9 PM, then make sure you don’t advertise your home’s emptiness with a pile of old newspapers, unruly grass and the living room light on all night. Have mail and newspapers temporarily stopped, and put your lights on timers that can mimic your usual activity. Better yet, have a friend or neighbor retrieve mail or mow the lawn. The presence of an actual person around the house helps to deter thieves. If you have a pet, consider utilizing a pet sitter, who will also take care of your house, water plants and bring in any door flyers that might also alert to your absence.
2. Secure doors and windows – Almost one third of home break-ins are “no-force” entries, meaning that the thieves simply come in an unlocked door or window. Although a determined thief can enter a locked home, the first line of defense is to make it uncomfortable and time consuming. Check all doors and windows before you leave. Add a metal bar or wood broom handle to the base of sliding glass doors to inhibit entry. Make sure that there is a deadbolt on all exterior doors. Consider adding a double cylinder deadbolt lock (uses a key on both sides of the door), especially for doors with surrounding windows. Most importantly, remove your outdoor spare key. Thieves know all of the good hiding places, like under the mat or in a decorative rock.
3. Don’t promote your vacation – No matter how excited you are about your upcoming trip, keep the information to a minimum, whether it is on your online social media or in person. Facebook “friends” can prove not so friendly, and have been known to burglarize homes of their online acquaintances. Even a discussion in a restaurant or parking lot can be overheard by the wrong ears. Only give out as much information as necessary.
Hopefully, these simple tips will give you better peace of mind on your next vacation, and have your Bucks County home just as you left it when you return.