Summer Safety & Security Tips
As we head into the summer months, the last thing we often think about is how to keep ourselves and our homes safe. We are ready to kick back and relax – but sometimes that comes at a significant cost.
In fact, most home burglaries occur during the summer months of July and August while families are out on vacation. Below are some tips for you to consider while enjoying the warm weather:
- Remind your children never to open the door or let anyone in without proper ID. Furthermore, adults should be on the watch and look out for one another. If you notice something fishy, don’t hesitate to warn the neighbors or call your local police department.
- Be wary of email or social networking scams offering free airline tickets, hotel discounts, phishing emails around frequent flyer mileage, or offers for discounted excursions. Also, look for “trust seals” like the Norton Secured seal verifying the site’s security before making travel purchases.
- Lock the screen door if you keep the main door open. It's easy for a thief to sneak into your home through the screen door while you're not looking.
- Close the windows before leaving. It's nice to open the windows to let the summer breeze fill your home – but make sure you close them when you leave your house to run a quick errand.
- Stop delivery of your mail and newspapers if you will be away from your home for more than a day or two — or have a friend or neighbor pick them up for you.
- Use timers on lights, televisions and radios to provide sound and lights the inside of your home. In addition, keep the outside of your home well lit, as thieves prefer not to be seen.
- Continue to have your lawn maintained if you will be gone for more than a few days. It's worth the small amount of money it would cost to make it appear as if someone is home, versus a yard that has not been attended to in some time.
- Have a neighbor or relative stop by and enter the home to ensure things are OK and to show activity on a regular basis. If this isn't possible, check with your home security system provider to see if there's a smartphone application that allows you to monitor your home while you're gone.
- Leave the air conditioner on. A silent compressor on a hot day is a good indication you aren’t home.
Summer is prime time for evildoers selling “free” security systems or other services just so they can check to see who may or may not be home for extended periods of time. Be aware. You can find other travel safety and security tips in my previous column.
Have a great Fourth of July and don't forget the sunscreen!