It’s summer! School’s out, and it’s time for a vacation!
Whether you’re leaving for a few weeks, a couple of months, or just a day or two, it’s essential to remember how to lock up your home properly.
Below, we’ll go over some tips for doing just that and remind you of how homeowners insurance can help you with a loss, should you still sustain one after taking precautionary measures.
How to Protect Your Home From Loss While You’re Away
The first thing to know about protecting your home from loss while you’re on vacation this summer is that it can be done. However, making sure your windows and doors are locked is not the extent of what you’ll need to do.
In addition to properly locking up, you’ll want to:
- Make sure you have a comprehensive home inventory. Take pictures and video of everything in your home so that if anything is lost or damaged while you’re away, you know exactly what it is, and you have proof of its state when you left.
- Consider a home monitoring system. Video cameras, sensor lights, alarms, and other security gear can scare potential criminals away. Just make sure to advertise your security on your lawn or in your windowpanes.
- Keep your home properly maintained. Doors, windows, and other areas that are susceptible to easy break-in should be fixed right away.
- Hold your mail and newspapers so they don’t pile up at your front door and make it obvious that you’re gone.
- Hide that hide-a-key in a safe vault or safe somewhere inside your home, and put all your other valuables in there while you’re at it.
- Don’t post your vacation plans and whereabouts on social media accounts. If that’s too much to ask, at least keep your vacation posts private and only viewable by those you completely trust.
Understanding How Insurance Handles Loss
Crafty burglars or vandals can foil even the best-laid plans. If you take all of the precautions listed above but still experience a loss while on vacation, remember that that’s what home insurance is for.
Most homeowners insurance policies will help with financial losses from burglaries or damaged property from vandalism. In terms of lost property, the majority of policyholders will opt for what’s called replacement cost coverage on their lost personal property. This is in contrast to the actual cash value and means that your insurance company will pay out however much it costs to replace a like/kind item that is damaged or lost.
You also need to remember that a deductible will be charged by your insurance company when they pay out your claim. Whatever your total claim amount is will be reduced by this deductible amount, which is generally between $1,000 and $5,000.
Prevent Burglary Losses While You’re Away
While most people think of physical property loss and physical damage when it comes to burglaries and vandalism, it’s also important to remember that there is an emotional cost to these unfortunate events as well. It can be scary to know that someone entered your home and was in your personal space when you weren’t there. Furthermore, it’s possible to have valuables that aren’t replaceable stolen, meaning you may never truly get back what you lost.
When you plan ahead before leaving on a trip and remember to guard against such intrusions, you are helping yourself, and your family prevent this emotional loss.