In early spring each year, Seattleites trade their winter boots for flip-flops, and take off in search of warmth and sun. Before you order your Uber to SeaTac, use these 7 simple strategies to protect your home while you are away.
- No one wants to come home to find out that a pipe burst and flooded the interior of their house. Turn off your water before you leave to go on vacation. Find your main water shut off and turn off the water on your way out the door.
- Some kitchen stoves have a safety lock feature on the control panel. You can temporarily disable the gas flow to the stove, should something unexpected, like an earthquake, happen while you are away.
- Set a timer, so that a lamp or two turns on every night, giving the appearance that someone is home. If you are missing trash day while you are away, ask a neighbor or friend to bring your trash cans in from the curb.
- If you participate in a weekly meal service such as Blue Apron, or if you use a monthly personal shopping service like Stitch Fix, pause their delivery while you are away on vacation. Have a friend pick up any packages delivered to your home while you are away. Alert your house cleaners and any other regular service providers, of your vacation days.
- Pay any bills that will be due while you are away. When you come home, you will have less paperwork to catch up on, and you won’t come home to any late notices. When going away for a longer period of time, you can have your mail forwarded to your travel destination.
- It is very simple to put your mail on hold. You can choose to pick up your mail when you return, or have it all delivered at once when you come back. Don’t forget about the newspaper! Stop delivery for the duration of your trip.
Finally, as my mother always reminds me, lock the doors and windows, and don’t forget to water the house plants! Taking care of these few simple tasks to protect your home, will ensure your post vacation re-entry will be (mostly) painless.