Are you preparing to go away for the holiday season? Before leaving town, take steps to improve home security for the holidays. Thieves see this time of year as a prime opportunity for break-ins. Residential homes provide the perfect storm of vacancy, new possessions, or both. Be proactive about safety before leaving for the holidays.

Keep the Lights on

Burglars are drawn to a dark home that appears unoccupied. Create the illusion of someone being home by leaving at least one light turned on. Use motion-detecting lights to illuminate the back yard. Set some of your lamps and the TV to turn on and off with a timer. When lights are left on, they are a deterrent for home invaders, who like to work quickly and in the dark.

Hold Your Mail to Improve Home Security for the Holidays

Even before thieves visit your home, they’ll watch the area to see if your property is an easy target. Burglars look for tell-tale signs that the house is empty. An overflowing mailbox is an indication that no one is around.

Mailbox theft also substantially increases during this time of the year. Mail is more valuable during the holiday season because of items like gift cards, money orders, and in some cases, holiday cards filled with cash. Help prevent mail theft by asking your local post office to hold your mail while you’re away. Fill out a request at your local post office or complete the “Hold Mail” request online.

Don’t Share Holiday Plans Online

It’s tempting to want to share your holiday plans with your friends online. However, for home security, wait until you get back home before you share details and post photos. Your blogs and your social media profiles can be exploited by would-be home invaders. Even if you think your social media is private, your friends may accidentally expose you by sharing your posts and photos with their connections. Your private posts can easily become public information and put your home at risk.

The key to protecting your home while you’re away on vacation is to make it look like your home is occupied. Burglars want to get into and out of houses quickly, so they’ll avoid properties where they think they’ll run into trouble.

Homeworx Services, Inc. provides home inspections to Northern Virginia. Contact us to request our services.