Vacation Proof Your Home!

The following list has been compiled to assist you prior to leaving on your vacation. Please review this checklist to make sure that when you return your home will be in the same condition as you left it.

1.  Cancel all delivery services, such as mail and newspapers, or ask a neighbor to collect them.

2.  Set a timer for your lights (inside and outside).

3.  If you have an answering machine, don't change your message to mention you'll be away.

4.  Leave blinds and shades in normal positions. Burglars are attracted to homes with windows that remain covered day and night.

5.  Don't forget to lock all windows and doors, and bring in extra keys from outside.

6.  Mow your lawn and trim tall hedges to unblock windows. If you're going to be gone for an extended time, arrange for your grass to be cut.

7.  Ask a neighbor to care for your plants and pets.

8.  Unplug unused appliances.

9.  Turn off your washing machine's water valve to avoid accidental flooding.

10 . Clean the kitchen and bathroom so insects don't move in.

11.  Set a house alarm and make arrangements with a neighbor to keep an eye on your house. Leave your neighbor a key and a number where you can be reached.

12.  In the summer, set your air conditioner to a higher temperature, but don't turn it off. A silent compressor on a blistering day is a sign a house is unoccupied.

13.  Have a neighbor park in your driveway while you're away. If you're leaving a car at home, park it in the driveway instead of the garage and ask your neighbor to move it from time to time .

14.  Unplug your automatic garage-door opener.

And don't forget the sunscreen!

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