The official start of summer is June 21, and that means it’s time to start planning your vacation. But before you head off to the beach or go on a cruise, you’ll want to make sure your home is burglar-proof. Make your house secure by taking a few simple precautions and leave the stress behind.

Have a Neighbor or Friend Watch the House


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An easy way to become the target of crooks is by allowing your house to look unkempt. Ensure your house doesn’t look like you’re away by having a neighbor or friend do a few simple tasks while you’re gone. Have them pick up your mail and newspapers every day so it appears as though you’re home, and make sure someone cuts your grass while you’re gone.

Untidy lawns and overflows of mail are obvious signs that you’re away. And if you’re feeling particularly paranoid, you can even invite your neighbors to use your driveway while you are gone. These are just a few steps to prevent home burglary.

Use Your Smart Phone Wisely


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Smart phones can be both a blessing and a curse when it comes to vacations. The benefit of having a smart phone is that you can now use it to monitor your home. Several security companies like LifeShield even offer smart phone apps for keeping a watchful eye on your home by installing a camera or using one on your home computer. This will help you maintain surveillance should the unexpected happen.

Also, make sure not to blab too much on social media sites about your vacation. The wrong posts could get into the wrong hands rather quickly, and strangers could know you’re away.

Keep Your Valuables Safe


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Most thieves are after the obvious: money and jewelry. To keep them at bay, take a few simple precautions. Lock your house, including all doors and windows. Put pieces of wood inside the sliding-door tracks as an extra fail safe. Remember not to put your spare key in an obvious place, and perhaps avoid leaving the spare anywhere around your home.

As an extra preventative measure, put all valuables in a safe, or go to your local bank and invest in a safety deposit box. There’s a small fee, but it’s hard to place a value on peace of mind (especially while you’re on vacation).

It’s All About Timing


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Timing can be the number one determinant of avoiding burglaries. The key factor is to plan ahead. Tell neighbors of your upcoming vacation weeks before you go, so you are both on the same page.

Set timers for both interior and exterior lights. If possible, vary the times so lights don’t go on and off at the same time every day. The same system can also be used to activate radios, TVs, and other electronics at random times.

With the economy still experiencing tough times, burglaries continue to be on the rise. But by being pro-active and taking a few extra precautions, there’s no need to worry. What safety measures are you taking to make sure your home is burglar proof?