Tuesday, December 11, 2012

While You're Away: Keep Your Home Safe and Running Smoothly Over Breaks

Alex Newby, Marketing Intern
Nicole Brown, Marketing Intern

As the semester winds to a close and students head home for the holidays, many leave their houses or apartment unattended for long periods of time, putting their house in danger. Not only are houses more likely to be broken into when they appear empty, but the possibilities of winter weather and general upkeep issues put homes at risk.

Officer Alan Saylor of the University of Kentucky Police Department (UKPD) said that houses on or near campus might even be at more risk during the holidays than other homes in Lexington.  “Students leave at a certain time and they return at a certain time over Christmas Break and people that are looking to break into homes or steal things know that your house is going to be empty” said Saylor. It’s very timely and very predictable,”

Even if you are in town over the holidays, take extra precautions. Just because you’re home doesn’t mean something can’t happen while you’re away during the afternoon.
To help keep your house safe from intruders and other dangers this holiday break, we’ve compiled a list of ways to help look out for your home and belongings while you’re gone!
  • Take everything home that you wouldn’t be able to replace. Grandma’s antique pearls, the watch your dad gave you, or any of the other things that have sentimental value and would be hard to replace shouldn’t be left alone.
  • If you’ll only be gone for a few nights, leave a TV flickering near a window. If you’ll be gone the entire break, buy some light timers to turn your lights on and off occasionally. Either option will help make it look like someone from your house is coming and going. Don’t leave easy-to-steal things out: cash, iPods, laptops, jars full of coins, anything that would be easy to grab and go with should be hidden or taken home.
  • Consider purchasing renter’s insurance or checking with your parents to see if your apartment/house and the belongings in it are covered under their plan.
  • Don’t publicize or post on Facebook or Twitter when you’re leaving or when you’ll be returning. Even though your page might be private, there are still people that could take advantage of that information.
  • Stop your mail and newspaper delivery. An overflowing mailbox shows that someone hasn’t been home for a few days.
  • Double check that you’ve locked all the windows and doors and taken any spare keys inside.
  • Hide your ride by bringing in your bike or parking your car off the street.
If you suspect a problem or notice any suspicious activity, call the Lexington Police Department at 859) 258-3600 or UKPD at #UKPD (8573), free from any cell phone.

Another part of protecting your home while you’re away is keeping it running smoothly. Proper planning and cleaning will keep your house in better shape and help keep the bills down. Try these tips:
  • Leave the heat on! Set your thermostat to no lower than 60 degrees to keep the pipes from freezing.
  • Rid your pantry and fridge of any perishables that would expire while you are gone.
  • Take out any trash and recycling.
  • Make sure to remove any clothing from the washer and dryer.
  • Insulate doors and windows to keep the potential cold out. An easy way to do this is to roll up a towel and place it along the seam.
  • Unplug any appliances to save energy.


  1. It has been some time since I visited website with such high quality information. cottage home plan Thank you so much for providing such helpful information. This is really informative and I will for sure refer my friends the same. Thanks.

  2. No doubt, first priority for a student must be the safety of its things when he is living on a rental accommodation. These tips are good tutorial for students who are careless about their things.

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