Do you worry about your home when you leave for vacation? Do you wonder if your house might get broken into or vandalized? Maybe you worry about your pipes freezing in the winter, or your house not staying warm enough inside to prevent damage during a longer vacation.
All of your concerns are valid. Being away from home for a while can be nerve-wracking. To mitigate your concerns, try the following ideas.
1. Program Your Thermostat
If you’re concerned about maintaining the temperature in your home, make full use of your thermostat’s programming capabilities. Even with older units, you can program your thermostat to run different temperatures at different times, and newer units let you run timed programs for each day of the week.
Better yet, if you install a smart thermostat you can control the temperature from a smartphone app. This will allow you to change your temperature settings based on the current weather. If there’s a particularly frigid night, for example, you can turn up the heat to better protect your pipes.
Saving money on your electric bill is another benefit to controlling your thermostat from your smartphone. There are times when you won’t need the heat at all, but if you can’t control your thermostat remotely, it will run regardless. With a smart thermostat, you can change the temperature if there’s a heat wave to prevent the heater from turning on, thereby saving you some cash.
2. Get an Interactive Home Security System
Home security systems have come a long way, and now you can get interactive security systems that are quite powerful. For instance, when connected to smart door locks, you can lock and unlock your front door from a smartphone app. This feature is convenient when you need a friend to stop by to check on your house.
Another great feature you’ll love is a two-way intercom connected to your security cameras. You’ll be notified when someone approaches your porch, and you can view them through the camera and activate the intercom to speak to them. This feature has actually been effective at scaring off would-be thieves.
3. Hire A House Sitter
Hiring a house sitter while you’re away is ideal if you’re concerned about leaving your house empty while you’re on vacation. Sometimes people can house sit during the day or just overnight, but it’s great when you can find someone to live in your home. If you have pets, having a house sitter will likely be cheaper than boarding them.
The only thing you need to be concerned about is would-be burglars knowing your house sitter doesn’t really live in your home. However, there are ways to make it clear they are living there and not just stopping by to check in.
If you left a vehicle behind, have your house sitter drive your car to the store and back and park in a different spot every day. This will let people know that your home is actively occupied. This will help deter anyone who might be watching your home, knowing you’ve left for vacation.
4. Install Smart Lights
Of all the home automation devices on the market, smart lights are one of the most versatile. It’s convenient to control the lights in your home on a regular basis, but it can also be a security feature. For instance, when you’re on vacation and the sun starts to go down, you can use a smartphone app to turn on the lights in your bedroom, kitchen, and living room to make it look like someone’s home.
Smart lighting systems can be programmed to turn on and off at certain times, but if someone’s watching your home, they might notice the consistency. Some systems have a program that will randomize the lights turning on and off, and that’s ideal for when you’re on vacation. If you can’t get a randomized program, you can still control the lights from your smartphone and turn them on and off at various times.
5. Insulate Your Pipes If You Leave During Winter
If you’re leaving your home in the winter and you can expect temperatures to drop, consider insulating your pipes before you leave. You can get foam tubes to place around exposed pipes and you can also insulate the areas where you can’t get to your pipes.
Installing PEX pipes is the best solution, but if you can’t replace your pipes before your vacation, insulation is the next best thing.
These Tips Will Help You Enjoy Your Vacation
You shouldn’t have to worry about your home while you’re on vacation. Follow the tips outlined in this article and you’ll be able to enjoy your vacations stress-free.