How to keep your home safe during the holidays.

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With lockdown well and truly making its presence known, we’re hoping for an ease up in restrictions this Christmas. If you were previously planning on spending the holidays somewhere other than your home, it’s quite possible that you’ll still be able to. You might be intending on visiting family, friends or maybe just getting away to a cosy Air Bnb with your partner.  One thing you must consider prior to shutting up shop at home this Christmas however, is safety. Research shows that the highest amount of burglaries typically takes place during the summer albeit, with a sharp spike in December.

Remember not only is Christmas a common time of the year to go away, it’s also a time of the year when people are likely to have homes filled with expensive presents and goodies. A burglary can occur during the day or the night so it’s important to take precaution with both. At insuremyhouse.ie we want to help you minimise risk and save you from having to call your home insurance company. Follow these steps to make your home less susceptible to burglary this year.

1.Ensure you have a house alarm fitted and enabled.

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If you have been questioning the necessity of a house alarm for some time now, let us be the ones to tell you that they are essential. House alarms help to provide you with peace of mind, not just while you’re on holidays but while you’re at work or even asleep. Modern house alarms are incredibly intuitive, and you can even set some alarms through your phone!

Regardless of the type of alarm you decide to invest in, it will help to secure your home and attract the authorities if someone successfully breaks in. Even the presence of an alarm is often enough to detract burglars, so bear this in mind.

If peace of mind isn’t enough motivation to purchase an alarm system, it can also have a positive impact on your home insurance premium. An alarm system reduces the risk of breaking and entering and subsequently reduces the risk of theft, so when you have one installed it’s worth mentioning to your broker.

Just always remember to set your alarm when you leave the house!

2.Ask your neighbours to keep an eye on your home.

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One of the best ways to ensure your house is protected over the holidays is to ask a neighbour to keep an eye out. There’s no security like a set of eyes. Have your neighbour come over and take out your bins or put them away.

If your neighbour has a key, ask them to pop in every evening while your gone to draw the curtains. This will give the impression to anyone who might be watching houses in your area that your house is occupied. Having your curtains closed when it gets dark will also help to ensure that no one can look in the windows and become enticed by what they see inside.

Ask your neighbours to remove post or deliveries away from your door too, if they have a key, they can put them inside or if not they can keep them for you. An accumulation of letters and parcels outside of a house is a sure sign that it is vacant, so ask a friend to take care of this.

3.Set your lights on timers.

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At Christmas, everyone’s homes are lit up far and wide. If your house is in darkness, it’s going to stick out to burglars and it might increase your chances of a B&E. Buy timers in your local hardware shop. Then do a bit of rearranging and ensure that a number of your lamps are in front of windows.

Time your lights to come on when it gets dark in the evening and to go off either in the middle of the night or in the morning. Do not time your lamps to come on midday or to stay on too long in the morning. This will look suspicious and might give rise to the fact that your house is empty.

4.Don’t update your social media.

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While it might be really tempting to share some holiday snaps from your new location or upload pictures with family, this is not advisable while you’re still away. Social media is a public space and you don’t know who will encounter your post by chance and use it to their own advantage.

Take all the holiday snaps you like but it’s best to wait until you are firmly back in your home before you begin sharing them on social platforms.

5.Put up Christmas decorations in some capacity.

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While it’s understandable that you might not want to go all out with the Christmas decorations when you’re not even going to be home, it’s a good idea to minorly commit. A house vacant of decorations in Ireland is a tell-tale sign that no one is home.

Consider investing in some electric candles for your windows that you can time to come on, or a small plastic tree that you could hook to your timer either.

There are a  number of cheap and small decorations that you can invest in to give the illusion that someone is home. This will help to give you peace of mind on your travels and will simultaneously help to deter any wandering eyes who might become suspicious of the lack of activity.

At insuremyhouse.ie, we want to ensure that all our customers are safe and have peace of mind over the holidays. If you’re looking for great home insurance cover at a great price too, why not contact us?