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Summer home protection tips

March 30, 2015

The summer season not only ushers in that glorious warm weather and blue skies, but it also brings out a more relaxed mood, which isn't always a good thing. You might crack the windows to let a nighttime breeze cool down your home, or perhaps you leave the door unlocked so the kids can run in and out of the house to play. You're also probably likely to take a family vacation, leaving your home unoccupied for a few days. All of these occasions, as common as they may be, create an easy target for thieves looking to burglarize your home. Follow these home protection tips to keep your home safe this summer:

Follow these tips for a fun and safe summer.

When you're on vacation

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the year 2013 saw 1,289,030 residential burglaries. Invasions were more likely to happen during the day than at night. This is probably because during the summer days, families are either at work or on vacation.

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to make it look like your family is still home, even when you're out of town. First, know what burglars see as a welcoming invitation to an empty home:

  • Overstuffed mailbox
  • Phones ringing without being answered
  • Newspapers sitting for days on the driveway
  • No cars parked in front of the house
  • No lights on in the home

These are all signs that no one is home. In order to combat this, either have a trusted neighbor bring in your mail, or ask the post office to stop delivery until you return. Additionally, unplug the phone lines so they aren't ringing off the hook, and set a timer on the lights to turn on periodically. Another major mistake people will make is posting about a family vacation on social media. Never share information on when you'll be out of town over the Internet. You never know who's reading what you post.

When you're home

Though most home invasions happen during the day, a burglar probably won't walk into your home while you're hosting a summer barbeque. During the day, if you keep the door unlocked or the windows open, just be on a higher alert and teach your children to never let strangers into the home.

At night, some extra precautions should be taken. When you're asleep, it might seem like a relaxing idea to open the windows. Some families even feel safe enough in their neighborhood to leave the doors unlocked. This is never a good idea. If you must keep the windows open, make sure only those that are on the top floor are left unlocked, so they remain out of reach for anyone trying to get in. All doors to the house should always be locked. You might trust your neighbors, but you never know who could come walking into your town.

Be smart with insurance

How well is your personal property protected? Some home insurance companies only provide limited coverage for your fine jewelry and expensive technology. Review your insurance policy to understand how you'll be covered in the case of a home invasion.

The summer months will bring a lot of fun in the sun, but it's always a good idea to remember safety. Following these home safety steps will keep your family prepared in an unplanned emergency.