Going On Holiday? Make Sure Your Home Is Safe

A little wooden house - red, white and blue - being cradled between a pair of hands

You’re heading off on a lovely holiday and the last thing you want to worry about is the house you’re leaving behind.  Corgi HomePlan have put together a few important tips to keep your home safe and give you peace of mind.

Don’t  leave your house looking empty

There are obvious tell-tale signs that a house is unoccupied, so make sure you don’t fall into the trap. There are simple measures you can put into place before you head off to fool potential burglars.

  • Leave your blinds and curtains open. If your curtains are drawn during the day, this is an obvious sign that no one is home. If you have a trusted neighbour, ask them to pop into your house in the evening and morning to open and close your curtains.

  • Ask your neighbour to also remove any post that is stacking up at the door. Alternatively you could sign up to Royal Mail’s Keepsafe service, which safely holds your post for anywhere between 14 to 66 days.

  • Invest in a light timer that comes on automatically in the evening. Make sure the lamp is out of view from the window – a big giveaway if someone was looking through your window.

Hide all valuables in a safe place that isn’t obvious

Keep all valuables out of sight if someone was to look through the window. Don’t entice burglars by having all the latest gadgets in view and think smart about where you hide things. In the unfortunate event that a burglar does try and rob you, spread your valuables out around the house and don’t hide them in your sock drawer or under your bed. A smart tip is to wrap jewellery in tin foil and hide it among other food items in your freezer.

Make sure you have the relevant home insurance

Before you head off, make sure you have the home insurance cover you need and that it’s valid when you’re not there. Make sure you inform yourself of the exclusions in the policy too, as you don’t want to be caught out by any surprises! It’s also useful to find out how long your house can be empty for and take note of important contact numbers – just in case you need to call them when you’re away.

Don’t post on social media that you’re going on holiday

We’re all guilty of it, that airport check-in on Facebook before you jet off, but be aware that this information is public and could be seen by an opportunist burglar. Only tell close family and friends that you are heading away and for how long. If you can, try and wait until you get home to upload your holiday photos. Former England captain John Terry was targeted by burglars recently after he shared images of himself on holiday with his wife and family, losing more than £400,000 of designer goods while they were away.

Turn it off

Ensure all electrical appliances are switched off at the wall before you head off on holiday. It’s not enough to simply turn the power off. This will not only save energy and money, but it will reduce the fire risk in your home too.

Declutter your gutter

Your guttering provides drainage which in turn protects the windows, doors, siding and even foundations of your home from water damage caused by rain and storms. Make sure your gutter is clear of leaves before you head off on holiday,  as overloading may cause your gutters to collapse. No one wants to come home to a flooded house.

Make sure your boiler is in good working order

If your boiler packs in when you’re on holiday, you could return to no hot water or heating – not the best situation to come back to after enjoying a sunny holiday abroad. Make sure you’ve had your annual boiler service to ensure your boiler is in good working order.

For more information on how to keep you and your street safe . . .

Moira Chisholm

I'm the Health Editor on My Weekly and am always interested to hear what's new in this fascinating field. I also deal with the gardening, shopping pages, general features, our website content and the Ask Helen problem page. I have a special interest in Christmas content because I'm on the team for Your Best Ever Christmas Magazine, too!