Whether it's a summer holiday or a winter break, we've put together 10 tips to consider before you leave your home.
1. Unplug unnecessary electricals – Save money on your energy bills and be fire safe by unplugging electrical items such as TVs, lamps, microwaves etc. Unless you are emptying your fridge or freezer, you can leave these plugged in and switched on.
2. Hide your valuables – Protect your property while you are away by ensuring all your valuables are stored safely, out of sight from windows and doors or locked away.
3. Pet care – Pets are part of the family and we all want them to be looked after in the best way. Ensure you have a pet sitter or boarding kennel lined up for them so they are well looked after during your holiday.
4. Pay bills – Make sure all outstanding or upcoming bills are paid or a payment method set up in advance. The last thing you need after paying out on a holiday is to return with overdue bills or no hot water.
5. House sitter – Consider asking a close friend, neighbour or family member to check on your home every 2-3 days while you’re away. Items such as post and plants will need to be taken care of and rubbish bins may need to be put out and brought back in while you’re away.
6. Bedding – Do you really want to have to wash and change your bedding on the first day back? You’ll have plenty of washing from your holiday so consider stripping the bed and washing your bedding before you leave. Put clean bedding on straight away to save a job on your return.
7. In case of emergency – Always let your closest friends or family know where you staying and ensure they have emergency contact details for you, should an emergency occur while you are away and they need to contact you.
8. Check cupboards - Check your cupboards and fridge for any food that could soil while you’re on holiday, especially if you’re going away for more than a week. It wouldn’t be pleasant return to mouldy food and a bad smelling kitchen.
9. Think about the heating – If you are going on holiday during winter, consider leaving your heating on low or setting a timer. The last thing you want is to return to frozen or burst pipes!
10. Don’t tell everyone you’re away – Avoid telling everyone you speak to you are going on holiday. The less people that know, the less risk there is for your house and possessions. The same applies for social media – it is not a great idea to update your status to tell everyone you are on holiday abroad. Instead, share photos and let everybody know where you went and what you did once you’ve returned.