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How to Prepare Your Home for an Extended Absence


How to Prepare Your Home for an Extended Absence

As winter starts to roll in, many of us long to get away and thaw our overworked minds. Whether you are vacationing for a week or move away for the winter, preparing your home before your departure is imperative to saving money and preventing accidents.


Scare off burglars

Before heading out, plan to have a trusted friend, family member, or neighbor stop by your home occasionally while you are away. This creates activity at the home so it’s not an easy target for burglars. Have the mail and newspaper stopped, picked up, or forwarded so it doesn’t pile up.




Secure a home security system

Now is the time to spruce up your home security. Burglars hate outdoor motion-censored lights and that’s why love them! Set up cameras at entry points and install motion detectors throughout the home to catch any unwanted visitors. It doesn’t hurt to let the local authorities know that the home will be vacant for an extended period! Check out these tips to further secure your home!



Prevent water damage

Security may be top of mind, but preventing damage from water is just as important. To avoid the possibility of bursting pipes or leaks you have two choices: turn off the water supply and drain the pipes, or keep the temperature above freezing and have your home properly insulated. Your choice depends on when you are traveling, how long you will be gone, and how harsh the winters get. Water damage may come from other sources such as a storm.


Prepare for a potential hurricane

If your home is in a coastal territory, close and secure storm shutters in the event of a hurricane. Be sure to bring in all patio furniture, keep your car in your garage if possible, and secure any loose objects left outside. This not only helps prevent theft, but can prevent damage in a storm.




Take another look at your policy

Last but not least, review your insurance policy. What does your homeowners policy actually cover while you’re on vacation? Depending on your carrier, some policies may not cover losses if the home has been vacant for more than 60 days, however, the definition of vacant may be different than what you are thinking. Your homeowners insurance agent can give you details of your specific policy, but many insurance carriers declare a home vacant only if the home is partially furnished or does not have enough furniture for someone to live there. Speak with your agent to determine what’s considered vacant and to ensure you are covered properly!

No matter the length of your travels, always prepare your home for extended leaves. Speak with your insurance agent about your homeowners insurance policy and what additional coverage you may need in your absence. By taking the time to prepare your home, you can rest easy knowing you are protected and ready for whatever comes your way!