As it’s a time of year when a lot of people go away for a while, we thought it would be useful to summarise the most common tips that experts such as An Garda Siochana, alarm companies and house insurers typically agree on.
- Post, milk, and paper deliveries: The most obvious give-away that you are not at home is an accumulation of post inside your door, or junk mail stuffed in the letterbox. If you can, ask a neighbour or relative to call by every few days to move your post further inside your house. Similarly, make sure you cancel any paper or milk deliveries.
- Locks: it sounds obvious, but make sure to double check that all entry points such as doors and windows are actually locked. One tip is to do this the night before you leave so that you are not rushing on the day of departure.
- Internal activity: Put some lamps on timers inside rooms that can come on in the early evening and switch off at bedtime. This may give the appearance to the casual observer that someone is at home in the evening. Try and avoid rooms being lit that can be observed from the outside through curtains.
Consider also setting a timer on a radio so that it switches on and off at a specified time. As with the lights on timers, it may trick the casual observer into thinking that the residents are at home.
- Car in your driveway: Consider asking a family member, friend or neighbour to park in your driveway if you are taking your car on holiday. The regular movements of a vehicle may create the illusion that the residents are still home.
- Avoid the dark: Thieves like to go about their work in the dark. Having exterior lights activated by motion sensors can light up the dark areas around your home at night. Being lit up may just deter criminals from targeting your property.
The chances are your house will be just fine while you are away!