Setting off on your travels can be quite an exciting moment – especially if you’ve been looking forward to your trip for a long time. But it’s crucial to protect your home while you’re away. The last thing you need after a successful trip is to come back to a burgled house.
For some extra peace of mind, follow our tips on how to keep your castle secure when you’re not there.
Arrange a watchful eye
Work out an agreement with your friends, family or neighbours to stop by your home a few times while you’re away.
Make sure that whoever you choose as your watchdog knows how to deal with urgent situations like gas and water leaks. It’s a good idea to hand them the contact details of your local plumber, engineer and electrician.
Create the impression that someone’s home
One of the most effective ways of simulating occupancy is to use timer switches for lamps, televisions and radios. You can even buy ‘burglar deterrent’ CDs for your home stereo, which play recordings of common household sounds.
Leave your curtains and blinds as you normally would, and if you have a gardener or window-cleaner, make sure they stick to their usual schedule.
Before you leave, spare a few minutes to take photos inside your home so that you have a record of how you left it. Save these photos online for future reference.
Be sure to study your home insurance policy and familiarise yourself with the claim procedures, so you know what to do if anything goes wrong while you’re away.
Remember to do one final check before you set off so that every window, door and gate is safely secured. If you have a security alarm system in place, don’t forget to use it – your insurance policy might be invalid unless it’s switched on.
Avoid broadcasting your comings and goings online unless you’re completely confident in your security settings. Consider waiting until you return to spread the word about your trip – along with uploading all those holiday photos!