Planning and organising travel arrangements for the summer holidays comes with its own set of stress and headaches. Itineraries, fellow travellers, and being away from home will can be stressful and may wear you down, even on holidays. I know myself it takes me a few days to relax into it all. The last thing you need is the added stress of worrying about the safety of your home.
Here we have put together 4 practical ways to keep your home secure while you travel, in Ireland or overseas. The following list of easy actions is vital for any homeowner. Before heading out the door, take some no-nonsense steps to ensure your home is safe.
Some Smart Security Tips
Almost every electronic device has smart capabilities these days. And so those that aren’t can potentially be hooked up to your integrated control system to grant you complete control. Intelligent, automated systems are great for convenient use, energy savings, and security.
Smart home systems can be remotely monitored and controlled. Homeowners can set up cameras and sensors to track movement or sounds. All data can be saved in case you catch anyone in the act with cloud recording.
You can also set up lighting routines that mimic your usual daily schedule with smart lighting, including inside and outside lights. To all intents and purposes, it appears that you are home and so they’ll be less inclined to approach.
Smart appliances can alert you if problems occur, such as a power failure or open doors. There are even smart systems, like Control4, for the entire house. These can control heating, water systems, and more, which can come in especially handy in the event of a power surge or burst pipe. You can stop anything from overseas with integrated, automated systems.
The objective is to avoid actions that are out of the ordinary. For instance, don’t draw all curtains and shades if they’re usually open or leaving a car parked in the driveway while you’re away.
Installing cameras both inside and outside your home will help deter criminals. Many cameras are inexpensive, come with cloud storage, and can be viewed remotely from an app. Also, it is a good idea to have professional security signage in plain view. This front-line defense can stop burglars before they even step foot on your property. The home doesn’t have to be professionally monitored to benefit you.
Don’t Advertise Your Absence
Thousands of homes are burglarized every year. While not a guarantee, keeping your plans to yourself is one of the best steps you can follow to avoid becoming a statistic.
Avoid creating unsafe scenarios that will alert others your house is empty. Ask your neighbours or a family member to pick up the post and any packages that may be delivered in your absence. If you will be gone for an extended period, ask them to care for home maintenance, including mowing the lawn and putting the bins in and out on the relevant days. Nothing says “empty” clearer than an overgrown lawn, curtains drawn, and bins left out.
Aside from the select few close friends and family, don’t tell anyone about your holiday plans. Avoid posting any details on social media; particularly specific dates, times, and locations that could create a readymade schedule for burglars to follow.
Keep your pictures off the web until you are home. You might think it fun to check in with a picture of you on a coastal boat trip in Majorca, but burglars will only see an empty home ripe for the picking.
Invest in a Backup Power Source
Without power, your home is a sitting duck. Even your smart automation will be useless without electricity. And with continuing climate change, you can’t rely on usual weather systems anymore.
Even without the threat of burglary, a home without power is a disaster waiting for your return. Like a fridge with things growing in it! In the winter, pipes can freeze and burst without heat. Mold can form from a lack of fresh air. No power can lead to tricky outcomes.
Protect your home by investing in a backup generator, specifically, a CARB-compliant generator. These generators ensure fewer emissions, and they are safer around the house as they use higher-quality components. Of course, they must be appropriately installed to function correctly.
Make sure the power potential of the generator can meet your wattage needs. Home-standby generators can produce up to 20,000 watts, which is enough for an entire home. The system can also default to just lighting and security in the event of a power outage.
Make the Necessary Repairs
When you plan a vacation, always take some time to note what needs to be repaired around the house. Focus on safety and function above anything else. Replace any burned out bulbs inside and outside. Replace HVAC filters and clean the ducts so you don’t come home to stuffy, stale air.
Make sure that your windows are in working order. Old, weathered windows are easy to unlock. They will also list which windows are best for the price. It may cost a bit to replace a window, but that will still be far less than losing your valuables.
You’ll also want to test your existing systems and features. Make sure your smoke and CO₂ monitors are in working order. Some models will alert your phone if smoke or fumes are detected. Don’t neglect the small things, like making sure your floors are clear if you’ve got a robotic vacuum. Unplug unnecessary electronics. You can leave some plugged in to create mock routines, but you can avoid damage from surges by unplugging most electronics from the wall.
Holiday preparations don’t just end with a full suitcase. Making sure the home is ready for your absence is just as important, if not more so. Keep details out of the public eye, and only tell your trusted circle of your plans. And to be perfectly covered, bring in an emergency generator to ensure security systems and lights stay on.
Automation can address many issues that homeowners face while away. These systems will not only protect your home while you’re gone, but they can also make your life much easier when you return. Whether building or renovating, why not speak to one of our team at Luxavo about your custom designed intelligent automation system. One of our team will be happy to brief you on all the necessary possibilities for a bespoke custom designed integrated control system to suit your specific lifestyle.
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