Your bags are packed, the car is loaded and your tickets are in hand. You’re finally ready for that relaxing summer getaway you’ve been anticipating all year – or so you think…
In the last minute hustle and bustle of planning for vacation, many Canadians leave their homes without planning for their proper protection. Empty houses are attractive targets for break-ins, which is a real threat for homeowners.
“Planning ahead is essential to ensure that you don’t return home to unfortunate surprises,” says Glenn Cooper from Aviva Canada. “The key is to take a few simple steps to make it look like you haven’t left at all.”
Cooper suggests these five tips the next time you travel:
1. Keep it to yourself: Posting holiday plans and live updates on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram could alert potential thieves of your empty house. Keep the details of your vacation plans off social media and save the sharing for when you return home.
2. Get a house-sitter: Arrange for a house-sitter while you are gone, or ask a neighbour that you trust to check-in daily. Give this person the key to your house, but don’t hide it around your home where it could be found by a potential burglar, especially not under the flower pot or door mat!
3. Set timers: Program the lights in different rooms of your home to switch on intermittently.
4. Make arrangements for newspaper and mail: Piled up mail or newspapers on your doorstep are an obvious sign that you are out of town. You can cancel, temporarily divert deliveries, or ask your neighbours to pick them up for you.
5. Maintain your yard: An overgrown yard could be a telling sign that your home is empty. Arrange to have your lawn mowed and your grass watered while you’re away.
With these tips in mind, you can concentrate on enjoying your summer escape and coming back to your home revitalized. More information is available from your insurance broker or from avivacanada.com.