Make sure your house security is in order before the holidays begin
With the Festive Season fast approaching, we’re left with many decisions to make before packing our trailers and heading to our holiday destinations. Ensuring the security of family and property is a key focal area for the season.
“Statistics clearly show that criminal activity increases during the ‘silly season’ and it is therefore imperative for homeowners to take certain precautions and not let their guard down,” says Theunis Kotze, ADT General Manager Inland Region.
According to Kotze there are several handy tips to bear in mind, which can help alleviate the risk to family and property. Below are some tips on things to consider prior to leaving for holiday:
3-4 WEEKS TO GO…
- Ensure that your alarm is in working order. December is traditionally a busy period for security companies so homeowners should test their alarms at least three weeks before going on holiday and should the system require servicing this should be arranged as early as possible.
- Confirm any provision that you have made for your pets while you are away.
- Ensure there are no gaps in your fence or unintentional points of access to your home which may need additional security.
- Connecting outdoor lights to timers and motion sensors act as an additional deterrent.
2-1 WEEKS TO GO…
- Advise your security company of your holiday plans – should something happen while you are away, it is essential that they have the following updated information on your holiday form:
o all keyholder information
o details of domestic workers, gardeners or housesitters who may be staying on the property while you are away
Kotze says this information should be given at least 2 weeks prior to departing.
- Inform your neighbours and Neighbourhood Watch of your holiday plans so that they can keep an eye on your property while you are away.
- Stop all newspaper and other deliveries (if applicable) and arrange that someone collects your post while you are away – a bulging post box is a clear indication that you are not home.
- If you have hired a housesitter, teach them how to use your alarm system correctly.
1-7 DAYS TO GO…
- Make sure that all bushes or trees close to your doors and garage are trimmed, to avoid the possibility of intruders hiding behind them.
- Be discreet when packing your car – do so behind closed doors, if possible in your garage. Never leave a message on your answering machine stating that they’re out of town.
- Before locking up, check all water outlets and electric sockets.
- Ensure that cell phones, valuables and remote controls for automatic gates and garage doors are not left lying around.
- Leave a key with a trusted neighbour in case of an emergency.
“The festive season should be a time of relaxation and giving, but let’s ensure that we are not giving our belongings to criminals on a golden platter. Think like a burglar and take these preventative measures to ensure the safety and security of your belongings,” concludes Kotze.