Six Tips to Keep Your Home Safe During Spring Break

Spring break safety tips word graphic by Strauss Security Solutions

It’s finally starting to feel like spring in Des Moines, Iowa, and people are well into their spring break plans. Remember, though, that burglars don’t go on spring break and will target homes that appear to be unoccupied. Follow these simple safety tips to protect your home and belongings while you’re on vacation.

Take a break from social media

Announcing your spring break plans or posting pictures while you’re on vacation increases your risk of being burglarized while you’re away. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, over 65% of victims knew the person who burglarized their home, and criminals certainly know how to find easy targets through social media. As tempting as it may be to tell your Facebook friends your exciting travel plans, refrain from posting pictures and revealing your spring break destination until after you return home.

Lock all windows and doors

While this tip may be stating the obvious, one-third of thieves enter homes without using force. Walk through your house before leaving on vacation and lock up or seal any access points, including windows and openings you may have for pets. If you have an attached garage, make sure the utility door and the door that leads into your house are locked as well.

Ask a trusted neighbor or relative for help

Tell a neighbor, friend, or relative whom you trust when you’ll be traveling so they can keep an eye on your house. It’s even better if someone is able to stay at your home while you’re away, but having a person frequently check your house usually generates enough activity to deter would-be burglars. Whoever you ask to house sit should keep all mail and newspapers in a safe place indoors, bring garbage bins to the curb on trash day, and leave lights on in your house. If you use street parking and are leaving your car behind, give a spare car key to the sitter so they can move your car periodically. Try to avoid having packages delivered while you’re away, as this is a tell-tale sign that no one is home; however, a house sitter can bring the package indoors when they check on your house. It’s best to personally give your key to a house sitter rather than leaving it in a hiding place outdoors, since many thieves are privy to hiding places for spare keys.

Set timers for lights and suspend deliveries

If you can’t find someone to check on your house, set timers on your lights and television to go on and off during certain times of the day. Outdoor motion-sensitive lights are particularly effective at deterring burglars. It’s also possible to temporarily suspend mail and newspaper deliveries if you do not have a house sitter. Check with your mail carrier or newspaper service provider for more information.

Keep valuables out of sight

Store valuable items such as electronics and jewelry away from windows and preferably in a secure location such as a trunk or safe. Many thieves prefer to “window shop” before attempting a break-in, so it’s best not to make your house enticing or an easy target for criminals.

Get a home security system

There have been so many advances in home security technology in the last ten years that it is becoming a must-have item for homeowners. Houses without an alarm system are three times more likely to be burglarized than homes with one. Home security systems are increasingly more affordable, and with options such as mobile security and smart house technology, the security experts at Strauss are happy to help you choose the alarm system that is right for your home and your budget. But it’s not enough to simply have a home security system installed–you have to remember to set the alarm!
By following these six simple safety tips, you’ll have peace of mind while you’re away so you can actually enjoy your vacation. From Strauss Security Solutions, have a fun, safe spring break!

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