Securing Your Home During a Vacation: An Essential Checklist

A family is in vacation, make sure their home is safe and sound

Planning a vacation is always exciting, but it’s essential to balance the thrill with some practical considerations. While you’re dreaming of sandy beaches or mountain getaways, let’s make sure your home is safe and sound. Burglars often target empty houses, taking advantage of homeowners’ absence. This guide will walk you through a comprehensive checklist, ensuring your home is as excited for your return as you are.

Creating a Pre-Departure Checklist

1. Install Timers for Lights and Electronics
Before leaving, set timers for lights, TVs, and radios to create the illusion that someone is home. This simple trick can deter potential intruders by giving the impression of activity within the house.
2. Hold Mail and Newspaper Deliveries
A pile of newspapers on the doorstep or an overflowing mailbox is a clear sign that nobody’s home. Contact your local post office to temporarily hold mail and newspapers, or ask a neighbor to collect them for you.
3. Inform Trusted Neighbors
Share your travel plans with neighbors you trust. Having an extra set of eyes on your property can make a significant difference. Provide them with emergency contact information and ask if they can keep an eye out for any unusual activities.

Strengthening Entry Points

4. Reinforce Doors and Windows
It might sound basic, but double-check that all doors and windows are locked. If you’re feeling extra cautious, think about adding deadbolts, security bars, or even some smart locks.
5. Invest in Smart Security Cameras
Modern technology allows you to keep an eye on your home remotely. Invest in smart security cameras that provide real-time footage accessible through your smartphone. Some systems even offer motion detection alerts for added security.

Advanced Security Measures

6. Smart Home Automation
Embrace smart home automation to give the appearance of an occupied house. Program smart lights and blinds to simulate regular daily activities. This not only enhances security but also contributes to energy efficiency.
7. Secure Valuables in a Safe
Safeguard your important documents, jewelry, and valuables by placing them in a home safe. Choose a discreet location for the safe, making it less likely for burglars to find it quickly.

Environmental Design for Security

8. Evaluate Outdoor Lighting

Adequate outdoor lighting is a powerful deterrent against burglars. Ensure that exterior lights are functioning properly, and consider installing motion-activated lights near entry points.

9. Trim Overgrown Bushes and Trees

Overgrown vegetation can provide cover for intruders. Before your trip, trim bushes and trees near windows and entrances to eliminate potential hiding spots.


With these simple steps, you’re not just locking up your house; you’re telling potential intruders to look elsewhere. It’s your way of saying, “Vacation mode on, and my home is off-limits!” So, go ahead and enjoy your trip, secure in the knowledge that you’ve done your part to keep your haven safe and sound.