From June 29th, many people are likely to take short trips across the country visiting family members or friends that they haven’t seen during the COVID-19 lockdown. Having spent so long at home lately, it can be easy to forget about keeping your home secure when you’re away. To help you and your home remain safe this summer, we’ve put together some tips for home safety this summer if you’re heading away:
Don’t be the #blessed person who posts pictures throughout their holiday with captions like:
‘Loving our time away from our home (123 Wallywood Avenue, Dublin 12 Eircode D12 SC23) where the back door is a bit broken and doesn’t close properly. We’ll fix it when we get back but for now we’re enjoying #familytime for the next 12 days, 17 hours and 23 minutes. FYI our flight number is EI 152 and I’ve stored my engagement ring in the freezer as it’s gotten too big.’
It should go without saying that posting detailed social media updates on your two weeks in Fuertaventura in real time is not wise. Take all the pics you want holding a cocktail up to the sunset with the caption #metime, but you better make sure your home is completely secure before you do so. Leave the news updates to Sharon Ní Bheoláin. Stay #blessed.
Ask a trusted neighbour to drop in and remove letters from the front porch or hall while you’re gone. Giving them a spare key also means they can switch off your alarm if it keeps ringing and shows there’s someone keeping an eye on the place.
If you’re going away for an extended period of time, perhaps arrange for a friend to cut your grass halfway through and water your plants. If you don’t want to bother your neighbours, then you can always add timers to your indoor lights and install sensor lights outside.
It seems obvious but if you have an alarm, make sure you’ve turned it on! Little things can be easy to forget to do when you’re rushing around the house before heading to the airport. Read our post on house alarms and other security tips here.
Investing in doors, windows and locks can make a big difference to the security of your home. Adding bolts and extra secure locks on your windows and doors is relatively easy to do and will give you greater peace of mind that your football sticker collection is safe.
Plus, don’t forget to double-check that all your windows and doors are locked before you leave for your break. You should also check the condition of all your external doors and door frames to ensure they could withstand the force of a determined burglar.
We hope that the worst thing you come home to is gone-off milk. However, if things have really gone wrong then it will make claiming on your home insurance that bit easier if you’re already organised.
It’s helpful to keep receipts, guarantees, instruction manuals, valuations or photographs as these can support your claim. You may also be asked to provide estimates or invoices for claims. If the claim involves a building repair, normally two estimates are required.
Keep in mind that there is a difference between home insurance and contents cover.
Home insurance covers the cost of rebuilding your home should something happen to it. Contents cover includes items such as furniture, carpets, appliances, ornaments, clothes and sports equipment.
It’s important to keep your contents cover up to date. A simple way of working out how much you should insure your items for is to go room-to-room and write down how much it would cost to replace everything. Expensive items such as jewellery or antiques should ideally be professionally valued.
If something has been stolen from your home or your house has been broken into, call the Gardaí and make a note of the crime reference number they give you.
AA Home Insurance is clever because you can claim up to €3,000 without losing your no claims discount. And, you can get €60 off if you buy online. Get a quote online or give us a call on 016740444. Our call centre is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 6pm and on Saturdays from 10am to 3pm.