Eight Can’t Miss Safety Tips for the Holidays

by Shea Homes Arizona on November 16, 2011

Well, we are officially getting into the holiday season. Whether you like to kick it off with an early morning of Black Friday shopping, sipping out of a Starbucks Christmas cup or studying for final exams—the holidays are almost upon us. 

As a home builder, we like to provide suggestions and tips to help our readers live safer, happier and healthier lives. Here are eight ways to keep your home safe during the holidays if you plan to travel. 

1.       Don’t post about it online
Even though you may want to alert all of your 568 Facebook friends that your big New York City trip is just 6 days away, that may not be the safest for your home while you’re away. Sharing this kind of information online can tip off potential thieves that you will out of the house for a prolonged period. 

2.       Tell a trusted neighbor
Do you have a neighbor you know well and trust? Or a good friend who lives nearby and will be in town? While you’re away, give them a spare key, your itinerary, as well as the number where you can be reached in case of an emergency. 

3.       Ask someone bring in the mail and newspaper – or cancel them while you’re gone
Have you ever seen a neighbor with a full mailbox or a pile of newspapers on the front porch? That’s a dead giveaway that no one is home and may leave your home vulnerable to break-ins. If you’ll be gone for longer than 10 days, you can also have your mail held at the post office until you return. 

4.       Keep your lawn mowed
This is another tip for anyone who will be gone for several weeks (and lives in a warmer climate like Phoenix). An over grown lawn is another tip off that no one has been home for a while. Why not ask a neighborhood boy to come by and mow once while you’re gone? 

5.       Timer for your lights
Setting up a timer to turn your outdoor Christmas lights can also be convenient even when you are in town. Either way, keeping your house lit can be a great way to discourage potential break-ins and keep your neighborhood looking festive while you’re away. 

6.       Use your alarm system
An alarm only works when it’s on, so if you plan to leave a house key with a neighbor or friend, don’t forget to teach them how to arm the alarm after they bring the paper in or feed the dog. 

7.       Lock all doors and windows
It’s easy to forget to check each one in the rush of getting ready to go out of town, so don’t forget to check upstairs and down for any open or unlocked windows before you leave. 

8.       Don’t leave live Christmas trees lit while you’re gone.
Live Christmas trees can dry out if left lit for long periods of time and can quickly become a fire hazard. Be sure to turn off the lights before you go, or use an artificial tree that can be lit while you’re away. 

Do you have any other safety tips you’ve used in the past? How do you keep your home safe when you are out of town?

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