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Before You Leave Home

Going away for the long weekend or February vacation? Local real estate broker Marilyn Messenger offers this checklist to help you keep your belongings safe while you're gone. Have a great vacation!

The last thing you want to do while you're on a trip is worry about someone burglarizing your home. Use this checklist to add some peace of mind to your travel plans.

  • Ask a trusted friend - to pick up your mail and newspaper and keep the yard free of trash and advertisements.
  • Stop your mail but maybe not your newspaper - you can easily handle this online by going to the US Postal Service's Hold Mail Service. A recent story implicated an employee from a major newspaper who was passing customer hold requests to burglars.
  • Don't post about your trip on Facebook and Twitter until you return - some burglars actually look for this type of announcement to schedule their activities.
  • Do notify police and/or neighborhood watch - especially if you're going to be gone for more than just a few days. Let your monitoring service know when you'll be gone and if someone will be checking on your home for you.
  • Light timers make it look like someone is home - use several set for different times to better simulate someone at home.
  • Do unplug certain appliances - TVs, computers, toaster ovens that use electricity even when they're off and to protect them from power surges.
  • Don't hide a key - burglars know exactly where to look for your key and it only takes them a moment to check under the mat, above the door, in the flower pot or in a fake rock.

These easy-to-handle suggestions may protect your belongings while you’re gone while adding a level of serenity to your trip. Have fun!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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