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Leaving Town

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You’re off on a well-deserved vacation! Make sure you do all you can to safeguard your home while you are away.

Use this checklist to mark off things as you do them – that way nagging doubts won’t interfere with your holiday!

  • Suspend newspaper delivery and arrange for someone to pick up your mail
  • Ensure all doors and windows are locked – for sliding doors, use specially designed bars or locks to prevent the door from being lifted out of its track
  • Use timers to turn lights, and possibly the TV or radio, on/off during the day and night
  • Have someone cut/water the lawn
  • If it is winter turn off your water supply or have someone enter the home and check on things daily to ensure your pipes haven’t froze (this is a requirement of your policy to ensure coverage will extend)
  • Turn the volume down on your telephone so anyone outside can’t hear it ringing
  • Leave a generic message on your answering machine – never say that you are away
  • Secure all tools and ladders so that they can’t be used to break into your home
  • Trim shrubbery around doors and windows so there’s nothing to conceal the actions of intruders
  • Leave blinds or curtains in normal position – don’t close them completely
  • Consider installing security bars on basement windows especially those shielded from view or in the back of the house
  • Close and lock the garage door and unplug your electric garage door opener
  • Remove anything of extreme value and put in a safe place while you are gone
  • Make sure your home insurance doesn’t expire while you are away and that it will provide coverage for your belongings
  • Tell someone where you are going and how to reach you in an emergency
  • Ask a reliable neighbour to keep an eye on your home and report anything suspicious
  • Consider asking someone you trust to house sit, especially if you plan to be away for an extended period
  • If you notice signs of forced entry when you return home, do not go inside, call the police from a neighbour’s home
  • Enjoy your holiday