Ten Condo Security Hacks to Prioritize Before Going on Vacation
“There is nothing more important than a good, safe, secure home.” -Rosalynn Carter.
“Planning a vacation or an extended holiday can be an exciting prospect.
“Your suitcase is packed, your itinerary is all lined up, your tickets are ready, and your hotel is booked. You could not be any more prepared for this long-awaited vacation that you and your family have been planning for quite a while now.
“However, no matter thrilling the thought of going on vacation may be, there will always be that nagging feeling about adequate home safety and security when leaving our homes for protracted periods. Needless to say, we feel compelled to protect one of our most significant investments as homeowners. Before leaving for a trip, ensuring that homes are safe and secure is paramount. In fact, it should be your main priority before hopping on a plane and going off somewhere. Regardless of how much you trust the security of your condominium buildings, it does not hurt to take a few simple steps to ensure your homes are safe when going away for longer periods of time. In this way, you can better protect your investments and properties.
“While it is inevitable to feel concerned about break-ins while you are gone, it should never get in the way of you having a great time. So, if you have recently secured an affordable condo for sale in Cubao or elsewhere and are looking for ways to secure it, below are some of the failsafe tips condo owners live by:
“1.) Replace your locks
“Depending on your condo, there is a likely chance that the door locks in place when you moved in may not be completely secure. Even if they were, it would not hurt to add an extra layer of protection. Also, if you did not buy your condo unit brand new, then there is a chance that someone else might still have a key. All that considered, it is a good idea to talk to a professional regarding installing new locks on your condo doors. If you are serious about home security, invest in electronic higher-quality locks, which will make it more difficult for someone to break into your home.
“Just be sure to secure permission from the HOA before changing your locks. If you are renting your place, talk to your landlord first. Even if you own the property, you. You may still be required to check with your building administrator before changing your condo locks.
“2.) Set a timer for your electronics
“A great idea to deter potential thieves from breaking into your homes is to give it the impression of being lived-in. This means your home needs to appear as if someone is there. While most homeowners would choose to have someone house sit for them, you can still give your homes the appearance of being lived in no matter how far away you are. Do this by setting a timer for your electronics, such as your lights, lamps, TVs, and radios. Modern models of these electronics may already have the timer feature built in. If you are using an old one or a model that does not come with a timer feature, you can easily order these timers in your local hardware or grocery store. Just place them in your regular sockets and plug in your electronics, then you can set the timer to tell each appliance when to come on.
“3.) Invest in a quality safe
“If you will be leaving any valuables behind once you go on vacation, it is a good idea to have somewhere safe to keep them in. The safe you choose should be large and heavy enough that it cannot be easily moved. Also, you may want to make sure it is durable enough that it would be difficult to break into.
“4.) Beef up security systems
“You may already have basic home security in place, and if you do, this may be the perfect time to contemplate upgrading it—especially since you are going to be away for an extended period. To ensure that burglars would be deterred from marking your home as a potential target, install additional cameras outside your unit as a way to let them know that your home is well-protected. If you have a monitored security system in place, inform your alarm company ahead of time that you will be away for quite a while. On the other hand, if you have opted for a smart system, assess how much coverage you have for your entire home. That said, be sure to have a backup device to continuously view footage from wherever you are in the event your cellphone fails.
“5.) Do not post vacation plans on social media
“While it can be a bit tempting to post updates about how your vacation is going on social media, it is also seen as an open invitation to would-be thieves to target your home. Sure, snapping a photo while you are at the airport may seem like a subtle way to flex your upcoming holiday on social media, but this is just a way of telling people that your home will be devoid of people for the next few weeks. All that said, you may want to keep your vacation photos private until such time that you can come back home to share them.
“Also, it is a good idea to make sure that your home address is not seen anywhere on your social media pages. If they are, make sure to delete them. Nobody needs to know where you live. The ones that do need to know already have your contact and can easily ask you for it. After all, you would not want strangers to know your address.
“6.) Have a neighbor check your house for you from time to time
“Give a trusted neighbor the heads up that you will be on vacation. In this way, you can ensure that someone always has a pair of eyes on your home for you. They do not need to be physically present at your house; they can just take a look at it from time to time.
“When your neighbor knows that you are away and see something unusual in your home, they can quickly notify you and be a little watchful of what is going on in your home as they know that you are not there. Be sure to leave your contact number with them so that they can easily message you should they have any suspicions or concerns.
“7.) Do not stash your key
“Living in condominium developments tends to give you this false sense of security as you feel like you are surrounded by trusted friends and neighbors. As a result, some homeowners may leave a key hidden in their property just in case they need someone to quickly pop into their homes. However, this is something you should not do—especially if you are planning to be away for an extended period of time. Burglars and thieves are already well-aware of a homeowner’s usual hiding places, which means that doormats, plant pots, and even gutters are easy prey for them. In fact, there is no hiding place that you can think of that they would not think of investigating when trying to break into your home. If you feel like you must leave your house keys, be sure to lend them to a trusted friend or family member instead.
“8.) Install a sensor light
“One of the cheapest and easiest ways to beef up security is to install sensor lights. The affordable light fittings are incredibly useful for alerting you (when you are home) or your neighbors (when you are not) if someone is approaching your house. It is also an excellent way to deter burglars and thieves from targeting your home.
“Sensor lights are activated by motion and will switch on when someone walks to your door. Typically, burglars and thieves do not want to be bathed in light when they are trying to break into your home.
“9.) Check security devices before leaving
“You may have beefed up your security systems and upgraded them a long time ago, but if they are out of cameras or are defective, then they might as well be not there at all. Before leaving, survey all of your security systems and devices, which will give you enough time to replace batteries, and repair or replace broken parts whenever they are needed.
“10.) Hire a house sitter
“If you really are concerned about leaving your condo unit empty while you are away, consider hiring a house sitter. They may just be a family member or trusted friend who has extra time. Alternatively, you can reach out to a company or agency that offers professional house-sitting services. House sitters are great as they can take care of your regular domestic duties while you are away. These duties include feeding pets if you have any, watering your plants, cleaning, and keeping your house occupied to discourage thieves.