Yulee, Fla. – During the summer months many of Nassau County citizens will be taking vacations and traveling out of town. Vacations are typically a time to unwind and have fun. But there’s absolutely nothing jovial about returning home from vacation to a burglarized home. So, if you plan to venture beyond your own backyard this summer, the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office offers a few recommendations to make sure the home you leave is the same one you return to.
- An empty house is a tempting target for a burglar, so make sure you do your best to have your home look occupied while you are away. Find a trusted friend or neighbor to watch your house. Give them your contact information in case they need to get a hold of you.
- Never broadcast your travel plans on a community email group, blog, Facebook, or other social networking site and remember if you check-in on foursquare or Facebook, everyone knows you aren’t home!
- Install good locks on the doors and windows and use them.
- Engrave your valuables with your phone number.
- Never leave a house key hidden outside of your home. If it is hidden in a pot, under the mat, beneath a rock or in a fake rock, someone else may find it and enter your home while you are away.
- Stop all deliveries or arrange for someone to pick up your mail, newspapers, and packages.
- Arrange for someone to mow your lawn and maintain the yard while you are away. This keeps your home looking lived in.
- Place your inside lights and a radio on timers so that they go on and off periodically in the evening hours.
- Hide your garbage cans out of sight. If your garbage cans are empty when everyone else’s is full, it is a sign that you are not at home.
- Turn the ringer on your telephone down low or off so that people outside of your home will not hear the phone ringing go unanswered.
- Be sure to close and lock the garage door too. When possible, have a friend or family member park a car in your driveway occasionally so that it looks like someone is still at home.
- Leave your blinds and drapes in their normal position on second floor windows (closed on ground level so no one can look inside and view an empty home).
- Remember, when you return home if it looks like someone has entered your home – Do not go inside! Instead use a cell phone, go to a neighbor’s house or other safe location to contact the police. Let the police check the home first.
“Whether you’re home or away on vacation, following these few simple precautions can make your home less attractive to burglars” said Sheriff Bill Leeper.