Taking precautions to ensure your home is safe while you're away is important - be it for a week or for a few months. Many of the following tips are simple tasks that you can do to prevent break-ins and minimize damage:

An image of a young family walking out the front door, in the beginning of summer vacation.

  • For long vacations, unplug all electronics and shut off the main water valve. This will significantly reduce your utility bills while you're away.
  • Test your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors before leaving. Replace batteries if necessary. 
  • Make sure all of your windows and doors are properly closed and locked. This includes basement windows, garage doors, and shed doors. 
  • Avoid leaving any valuables out, where one could see them by peering in the window. Closed curtains and blinds are an obvious choice, but windows without privacy shades are commonly visited by those looking to *ahem* assess a home's appeal. 
  • Never leave spare keys in hiding places! Thieves know where to look, and they keep an eye out for fake rocks or disturbed landscaping. It's a better idea to leave the spare with a trusted neighbour, friend or family member. This way, they can check up on the house while you're away - collecting mail, watering plants, mowing the lawn, etc. With this kind of activity, it'll look like someone is still home - one of the biggest deterrents to break-ins. 
  • If you have a smart lighting system, place your lights on a timer. With a natural cycle, this will also look like someone is home. 
  • Install motion sensor lights near your front, back and garage doors. Shining a light on movement evokes an immediate retreat response, an excellent deterrent for suspicious characters. 
  • Repress the urge to post about your vacation WHILE you're still on vacation. If you're with friends and tag them, you compromise their safety, too. Wait until you're home to share photos and videos on social media. Safewise, a safety initiative based in America, released survey results earlier this year which stated that 60% of burglary victims were active on social media daily or several times a week while away. Canadians have similar online habits, so it's important to take note of this alarming statistic. 


  • Install an alarm system, security cameras, and/or a doorbell cam. 

And that's it! With these tips, we hope you have peace of mind on your summer vacation.

Posted by Admin Staff on


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