Now that the weather is cooling down and summer is over, you may be looking for a little get away to combat the "back-to-school blues". However, before you immerse yourself in the pleasures of hot sun and cold Mojitos, make sure you take the necessary steps to safeguard your Ridgewood home while you're gone. Follow our tips to protect your slice of Ridgewood, NJ real estate heaven, and you'll be even more likely to relax and lose yourself in a state of worry-free, vacation bliss.
5) Enlist The Help Of Someone Trusted
The first thing you should do is the enlist the help of someone you trust. Whether a friend, neighbor or family member, pick someone reliable who can check in on your home while you're away. You can also have them help with picking up your mail, being a point of contact for the alarm company or holding on to your spare key. Be sure to ask them to visit your home periodically to ensure nothing looks out of place and that there have been no unforeseen emergencies (like an appliance fire or burst pipe).
4) Double Check Your Security System
Once you are ready to leave your Ridgewood property behind, take the following steps to ensure your security system is working while you are travelling.
1) Contact the alarm company to inform them of the date you are leaving and the date you are returning. You can give them a way to reach you while on vacation, and the contact information of the trusted neighbor or family member who is handling your affairs while you are gone.
2) If you already have an alarm installed, but it hasn't been in use for a while, now is a good chance to get it tested to ensure it is fully functioning for when you are ready to take your well-deserved vacation.
3) Ensure you turn it on, and give the disable code to the person who is checking in on your home while you are away.
3) Hide Your Spare Key
Whether it's under your dirty floor mat, plastic rock or heavy flower pots- your spare key does not need to be there while you are on vacation. Without you in the house to notice somebody lurking around, lifting up your flower pots, thieves have plenty of time to find your usual spare key hiding place. If someone is going to try and enter your home, at least make it harder for them by not providing a key. Instead, give it to a trusted next-door neighbor, in the event that somebody needs to get in.
2) Conceal The Fact That You're Gone
Nothing says "no one is home" like envelopes spilling out of your mailbox, or a backlog of newspapers accumulating at your front door. Ensure you head down to the post office and request that they put a hold on your mail for the duration of your trip. Remember, if you get newspapers delivered, call your local newspaper delivery company and ask them to pause delivery for the time you are away.
Alternatively, you can ask that trusted friend who is watching your house to also pick up your mail and newspapers.
It is common for people to leave a light on while they are gone to lead others to believe that someone is home. However, the truth is that nothing screams "empty house" quite like a light on 24 hours a day. Instead, opt for those affordable light timers that turn your lights on and off at pre-set intervals. The idea is to make it seem like everything is business as usual within your home while you are away.
1) Keep Your Vacation A Secret
No matter how badly you want to announce to the world that you're going to an incredible destination, it's much safer to not mention your trip until you've returned. Unless you are completely comfortable with strangers knowing that your home will be empty for a long period of time, avoid bragging about your holiday on your social media accounts. It can be difficult to tell what is public and what is private, and unless you are completely trusting of all of your friends/followers/connections, it would be better to err on the side of caution and wait till you're back to upload photos that turn your acquaintances green with envy.
We hope our tips will ensure that your vacation is stress-free and blissful, knowing that you'll come back to your Ridgewood home in the exact condition that you left it.