Let’s be honest, no one can secure a home better at the holidays than Macaulay Culkin in”Home Alone.” Unless you’re planning to leave your cunning and creative 8-year-old at home to ward off intruders, you’ll need to enact a few other actions to ensure a secure season.
Here a re a few holiday home safety tips for the upcoming season. Many are common sense, but with the craziness this season brings, we could all use a little reminder.
First and foremost, lock your doors! Even if you feel like your neighborhood is Mayberry, always double-check your locks when leaving your home day or night. This includes any vehicles you may have outside. If you live in a home with a pedestrian door through your garage, be sure it’s locked, too. And while you are locking, don’t forget the windows!
Everyone enjoys a winter wonderland display, and children especially love the large inflatable snow globes, Santa’s and presents. When using items like these in your yard, be mindful they are not blocking windows or doors. It’s easy to hide behind large items like these, so if you don’t already have motion detectors, consider installing them.
Use caution with your social media posts. Announcing you are out of town can alert a prospective criminal your home is vacant. In addition, be careful posting about what gifts you receive, particularly if they’re expensive or one of the season’s more sought after items.
Be mindful what you are drawing attention to about your home. Make sure onlookers can see only your tree and not the gifts underneath. After the presents have been opened, don’t be to trashy. Leaving boxes from televisions, computers and gaming systems can attract thieves. Dispose of those boxes at a local recycling center instead of leaving them out with your trash can.
Here are two other seasonal safety items to be mindful of, starting with cyber safety. If you are shopping online this season, be sure any online shopping you do comes from trusted sites starting with an https:// instead of just http://. Also, be sure to look for the small padlock icon in the lower right corner of your screen.
Finally, be cautious when decorating. From stringing up lights to hanging wreaths, take precautions when using a ladder. Be sure to inspect your lights, and avoid a potential fire hazard by not stapling or hanging the lights with nails.
Here’s to a safe and secure holiday season!