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Holiday Home Security Tips: Don’t Leave Your Home Alone for the Holidays

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During this time of year, I always enjoy watching the 20th Century Fox Movie, “Home Alone.” In this movie, two home invaders, “The Wet Bandits,” target homes to rob in a Chicago suburb because they know the families will be away for the holidays. However, due to a twist of fate, 9 year old Kevin McCallister is left home alone, and finds a way to defend his home and foil the Wet Bandit’s’ plan. To prevent a Home Alone situation, use these holiday home security tips to ensure your home is safe.

While this holiday film is very comical and heartwarming, it does bring up an important point…. Home robberies are higher during the holidays, especially if you plan to travel at all during the season. 

I have always been quite paranoid and protective of my home, belongings, and especially my family. I used to be too afraid to stay home alone at night, with or without the kids. Sure, the extra noise and distraction of the kids would help – until bedtime came. Then with a quiet home, I would sit and listen to every single noise, and worry someone was trying to break in. When my ex-husband lived away for 3 years, during school, I learned I needed to put on my big girl pants and take precautions to ensure my safety and well-being. I have also learned that having a home insurance policy can provide homeowners with peace of mind knowing that if anything happens, you won’t have to shoulder everything on your own.

Holiday Home Security Tips

Holiday Home Security Tips

Luckily, you don’t need to go all “Kevin McCallister” laying traps around your home to keep it protected this holiday season. Just follow these simple holiday home security tips to keep your home is safe while you are home and away: 

  1. Ask a  neighbor: if you plan to travel this holiday season, ask a neighbor to keep an eye on your home for you. Tell them the dates you will be away, and give them a phone number to contact you if they notice anything suspicious. 
  2. Time it: Add timers to your holiday lights (both indoors and outdoors) to give the appearance that someone is in the home. Also consider adding a timer to a lamp someplace in the home, for the same reason. 
  3. Don’t leave expensive gifts under the tree: In the case of a break in, an expensive gift wrapped under the tree is an easy target. Keep electrics or other expensive items hidden till Christmas morning.
  4. Trash Talks: Be aware of how you throw away your empty boxes after Christmas. To a criminal, an empty box from an expensive item, is an advertisement of what items you have in your home and can make your home a potential target. 
  5. Install deadbolts on front, back and garage doors. These kits can be purchased at any number of hardware  stores and are very user-friendly. 
  6. Install exterior lights in poorly lit areas. You don’t want to leave places around your house where a potential  intruder could hide. I especially recommend motion-censored lights! 
  7. Cut a piece of wood to fit in the track of sliding glass doors. This prevents the door from being able to slide  open, even if they break the lock. I just use wooden dowels. I use a closet rod for my sliding door and smaller dowels for each of my window tracks.
  8. Install an alarm. There are many kits available that allow you to install it yourself. You can also purchase window sensors.
  9. Simply trim and clean up bushes around your house to prevent intruders from hiding or using as a makeshift  step ladder to crawl through windows. I make sure my plants are maintained and kept small enough that I can see around them through my windows.

Lastly, protect your home with home insurance. Whether you are renting or own, MetLife Auto & Home can help make sure your belongings (within home and auto) are insured. You can get a free quote to see if they are a good fit for you. Just make sure you are keeping you and your loved ones safe!

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Emily Buys

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