Traveling away from home

How to Prepare Your Home for an Extended Absence

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As winter and the holidays start to roll in, many Floridians are gearing up for vacations, leaving their home unattended for an extended period. While a worry-free getaway is the goal, it’s crucial for homeowners to take proactive steps to safeguard their property.

Scare off burglars

Before heading out, plan to have a trusted friend, family member, or neighbor stop by your home occasionally while you are away. This creates activity so it’s not an easy target for burglars. Have the mail and newspaper stopped, picked up, or forwarded so it doesn’t pile up.  Check out these additional tips on limiting the risk of being burglarized.

Secure a home security system

Now is the time to spruce up your home security. Burglars hate outdoor motion-censored lights and that’s why you should love them! Set up cameras at entry points and install motion detectors throughout the home to catch any unwanted visitors. It doesn’t hurt to let the local authorities know that the home will be vacant for an extended period!

Prevent water damage

Security may be top of mind, but preventing damage from water is just as important. One of the most effective ways to prevent water damage is to shut off the water supply to your home. Locate the main shut-off valve and turn it clockwise to stop the flow of water. You can also take advantage of VYRD’s Smart Home Water Protection program, that provides you with advanced sensors that monitor for leaks in real-time.

Perform preemptive appliance checks

Before embarking on your vacation, conduct a thorough inspection of major home appliances. Ensure that items such as the refrigerator, oven, and HVAC system are in proper working order. This not only helps prevent potential malfunctions in your absence but also contributes to overall energy efficiency. Unplugging non-essential appliances can also reduce the risk of electrical issues. By addressing potential concerns before you leave, you minimize the chances of returning to unpleasant surprises and ensure the longevity of your appliances.

Take another look at your policy

Last but not least, review your insurance policy. What does your homeowners policy actually cover while you’re on vacation? Depending on your carrier, some policies may not cover losses if the home has been vacant for more than 60 days, however, the definition of vacant may be different than what you are thinking. Your homeowners insurance agent can give you details of your specific policy, but many insurance carriers declare a home vacant only if the home is partially furnished or does not have enough furniture for someone to live there. Speak with your agent to determine what’s considered vacant and to ensure you are covered properly!

No matter the length of your travels, always prepare your home for extended leaves. Speak with your insurance agent about your homeowners insurance policy and what additional coverage you may need in your absence. By taking the time to prepare your home, you can rest easy knowing you are protected and ready for whatever comes your way!

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