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10 Tips to Follow Before Leaving Home for the Holidays

Before traveling, safeguard your home and valuables. Take a few precautions before you leave town to ensure a happy return home.


Holiday Vacation Checklist

  1. Create an up-to-date inventory of valuables, such as TVs, jewelry, computers and other large-ticket items. Include detailed descriptions, photographs, makes, models and serial numbers. Store valuables in a fireproof vault or safe.
  2. Install automatic-light timers and set the timers to go on and off at logical times of the day.
  3. Stop mail and newspaper deliveries or ask your neighbor to pick them up for you.
  4. Turn down your thermostat to save on electricity or gas bills.
  5. Arrange for a lawn or snow-removal service to tend to the yard or shovel snow.
  6. Don't leave holiday gifts out where they can be seen through windows. Break down large appliance boxes, and place them in dark trash bags or bins when you take them to the curb. Leaving them out in the open will advertise what's inside your home.
  7. Check your holiday lights for fraying or damage.
  8. Trim shrubbery and trees. Overgrown shrubs provide the perfect cover for would-be intruders.
  9. As you leave, do a final walk-through of your home to ensure all windows and doors are locked, and unplug nonessential devices.
  10. Activate motion detectors and alarm systems. Download your alarm company's app onto your phone to monitor your home while you're away.
Good to Know

A home automation system can provide peace of mind when you're traveling. You can monitor and control your entire house through your phone, including:

  • Turning your lights off and on
  • Controlling your alarm system or thermostat
  • Ensuring the garage or front door is closed and locked
  • Turning your sprinklers off and on
  • Letting someone into your home (ex: dog walker)

Learn more about home automation.