How to prepare your house before going on vacation

How to prepare your house before going on vacation

We are now into vacation season, that time of year when families head off to the beach for some rest and relaxation, head south to spend some time with Mickey Mouse and his friends, or take refuge from the daily grind at a quiet peaceful get-away.

Regardless of your destination, the fact for all of us is that we will be leaving behind our home; the place where most of our personal belongings will remain while we take this excursion.  When leaving home, you should always take a few simple steps to ensure that your home is as safe and secure as possible.  And if you are like some of us, you constantly second guess yourself about whether or not you turned off the coffee maker or shut off the water supply to the washing machine.

Step 1: The start to a great vacation begins with leaving your home in a safe and secure manner.  Burglars look for homes that appear vacant so take some steps to not draw attention to your home.  A pile of papers on the driveway or an overflowing mailbox is a clear sign that you are out of town.  Ask a trusted neighbor to bring in your paper each day and put your mail on hold with the post office.  Inside the house, you can set up timers on certain lamps in your home to come on in the evening and go off at night.  If you have an alarm system, make sure it is set before leaving.

Step 2: Make sure that you have reset the thermostats.  When you are not home, your house does not need to be a comfortable 75 degrees.  However, you do not want to turn off the air conditioning unit in the middle of the summer and allow your house to get too hot.  Remember, most of your worldly goods are still inside, so resetting to a higher temperature addresses practicality and efficiency.

House prep checklist before going on vacaction

House prep checklist before going on vacaction

Step 3: Make sure that you have secured all other items in your house.  A checklist can be very helpful to ensure that you have done everything necessary to head out and be able to relax while away; avoiding any worries about whether or not you turned off the coffee maker.

Here is a sample of a simple checklist:

* Blinds closed.

* Lights and lamps off.

* Windows closed and locked.

* Water off (toilets not running, sinks off, showers off).

* Water supply to washing machine off.

* Thermostat set to higher setting in summer.

* Small appliances off/unplugged (coffee maker, toaster oven).

* Stove and microwave off.

* Front and rear doors locked with deadbolt.

* Alarm system activated.

If you have or use a checklist to prepare your house for some time alone while you are on vacation, share your checklist ideas with us.

About Alejandra

About Alejandra

Since 2008, organizing expert & certified life coach, Alejandra Costello has taught thousands of students in 132 countries how to get organized through her video-based training programs. Her YouTube videos have been viewed 100+ million times. Named 1 of the 5 most organized people in America by HGTV and “The Decluttering Queen” by Good Morning America, Alejandra’s expertise has been featured in The New York Times,, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Good Housekeeping, Family Circle, Woman’s Day, Parents Magazine, and CBS. 


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