Winter in Michigan can be brutal, and we know a lot of our clients like to get away to warmer climates. While on vacation, the last thing you want to be worried about is your house, so we compiled a list of tips to ensure your house is protected while you’re away.
Invest in a Monitored Security System
This is the number one defense method for your home while you’re away. Ring or Nest are great options while you have access to your cell phone, but if you’re on vacation and want to unplug, a monitored system gives you an extra sense of security. Sensors in your home will be able to tell you if there is movement in the home or if a door or window has been opened, which will activate an alarm and send a message to your security company who will alert the police.
Ask Someone to Keep an Eye on the House
Having someone you can trust check in on your home every few days is a great way to keep everything in order. They can make sure all the doors are locked, windows are closed, and even water plants or pick up your mail. This is an easy thing to do, and it’s extremely effective in protecting your home.
Get a Timer for Your Electronics
Nothing says “someone is home” like the lights being on. You can order timers online or pick them up at a hardware store, they plug into your regular sockets, and you can plug in your lamps and other appliances and set a timer for when you want them to turn on and off. Some timers even have random time settings that give the home a more natural “lived in” look.
Lock up Your Valuables
This one is self-explanatory, it’s a good idea to put anything valuable that you’re leaving behind in a lockbox or safe. This is an easy way to add another layer of security.
Don’t Hide a Key
A lot of us do this as a fail-safe for losing a key to our homes, but this is not a good idea if you’re going to be away for an extended amount of time. Doormats, fake rocks, and even gutters are all typical hiding places for keys, and criminals know that. Do yourself a favor and don’t leave a key behind if you’re going away for a while.
Shut Off the Water
Shutting off the water and draining the water from the pipes will help prevent freezing in the winter, and flooding from a burst pipe. If you know where your water valve is, shut it off before you leave, and leave the faucets on a slight drip to help drain the pipes.
Check Your Smoke Detectors
We’ve talked about water being a potential issue, now it’s time to talk about fire. Check the batteries in all your smoke detectors before you leave, and make sure they are working properly. Experts say smoke detectors should be replaced at least every 10 years. To further help mitigate the risk of fire, you can unplug any unnecessary electrical appliance in your home such as a TV, radio, coffee maker, fan, etc.
If you’re planning on going somewhere warm this winter, we hope these tips help put your mind at ease so that you can relax while you’re on vacation.
In the event that you do need to file a home insurance claim, call our office at 248-363-5746 OR visit our website at https://www.ins-advisors.com/companies-we-represent , find your insurance carrier, and call the claims number.