Whether you’re going on a long vacation, relocating for a job, or simply downsizing, you may need to leave your home vacant for an extended period of time. While this can be a daunting task, there are a few things you can do to protect your property and make sure it’s in good condition when you return.
Here are 10 things to do before leaving your home vacant for an extended period of time:
- Secure your home. This is the most important step you can take to protect your property. Make sure all doors and windows are locked, including those in the basement, attic, and garage. You may also want to consider installing a security system or hiring a security guard.
- Empty your home of valuables. If you can, take all of your valuables with you when you leave. If that’s not possible, store them in a safe place, such as a safety deposit box or a friend’s or family member’s home.
- Turn off unnecessary utilities. If you’re going to be gone for an extended period of time, you can save money by turning off unnecessary utilities, such as water, gas, and electricity. If you have a pool, you may also want to drain it or have it covered.
- Clean your home thoroughly. This will help to deter pests and make your home look its best when you return. Be sure to vacuum, dust, and mop all surfaces, and take out the trash.
- Get a home warranty. A home warranty can help to protect you from unexpected repairs that may occur while your home is vacant. This can give you peace of mind knowing that you’re covered in case something goes wrong.
- Have someone check on your home regularly. Ask a trusted neighbour, friend, or family member to check on your home every few days while you’re gone. They can make sure everything is in order and report any problems to you immediately.
- Use a home watch company. A home watch company can provide peace of mind by regularly checking on your home while you’re gone. They can also perform minor repairs, such as changing the oil in your furnace or watering your plants.
- Keep your mail and newspapers on hold. A stack of unopened mail and newspapers is a dead giveaway that your home is vacant. Put your mail on hold and have your newspapers delivered to a friend or family member’s home.
- Let your neighbours know you’re going away. Give your neighbors a heads up that you’ll be gone for an extended period of time. This will help them to keep an eye on your home and report any suspicious activity to you.
- Take pictures of your home before you leave. This will come in handy if you need to file an insurance claim or report a crime.
By following these tips, you can help to protect your home and property while you’re away. The Queensland Police recommend doing a home security assessment. Read More
Using a Home Watch Company
A home watch company can provide peace of mind by regularly checking on your home while you’re gone. They can do things like:
- Check the locks on all doors and windows
- Make sure the appliances are turned off
- Water the plants
- Collect the mail and newspapers
- Report any suspicious activity to you
Home watch companies typically charge a monthly fee, but this can be worth it for the peace of mind they provide. When choosing a home watch company, be sure to get quotes from several different companies and compare their services and fees. You should also ask about the company’s experience, training, and background checks for their employees.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when using a home watch company:
- Make sure the company is accredited by a reputable organization, such as the National Home Watch Association (NHWA)
- Get references from previous clients.
- Ask about the company’s security procedures.
- Make sure the company has a plan in place in case of an emergency.
By following these tips, you can be sure to choose a reputable home watch company that will provide the peace of mind you need while you’re away.