Away from Home

Protect your home and property against fire, theft and damage even in your absence by following these simple tips:

Before You Leave

  • Tell a trusted neighbor when you are leaving and when you'll return.
  • Leave a travel itinerary with a friend or colleague.
  • Arrange for a neighbor to pick up your mail, newspaper and parcels or have the post office hold delivery until you return.
  • Set timers and lights.
  • Clean out refrigerators.
  • Unplug nonessential electrical appliances.
  • Leave your answering machine on.
  • Close curtains.
  • Lock doors and windows.
  • Set fire and burglar alarms.

While You're Traveling

  • Carry expensive items with you on board planes, ships or trains.
  • Lock expensive jewelry in a hotel or ship safe.
  • Avoid carrying large sums of cash.
  • Do not wear or carry valuables at the pool or on the beach.

During a Winter Vacation

  • Set thermostat at 60° F and have the house inspected at least every other day in case of furnace malfunction.
  • Make sure there is enough oil in the storage tank to heat the home while you are away.
  • Leave the doors of bathroom vanities and the kitchen cabinet for the sink open. This will allow more heat to get to the plumbing.

Other Considerations

  • Cut shrubs below window level and trim trees away from your house.
  • Obscured doors and windows are targets for forcible entry.
  • Arrange for someone to check your house periodically.

Next: Historic Homes