Preparing Your Household For A Long Vacation Away

Vacations are wonderful experiences and can help us reset our energies and perspective either once or multiple times a year. But most ardent travelers would agree that the process of holidaymaking is a vast logistical effort. Sure, it’s a fun one, and so the practical planning and work effort is hardly an unpleasant experience.

It’s wise to prepare your household for your absence, too. This might sound like an “of course” suggestion. But the truth is that depending on where you live, the kind of household you run, and the extent of your trip, minor or major preparations may need your attention.

So, let’s discuss the end point of this spectrum. What if you’re heading on a long vacation, perhaps for a month or more? In this post, we’ll discuss how to contend with that, some requests you can make of your neighbors, and wise purchases or bookings to make.

Without further ado, let’s get started:

Woman putting a bag in the trunk of a car

Plan For Pet Care

It’s always important to make sure your pets have a place to stay while you’re gone. This excellent guide on what to do before boarding your dogs is essential. You can research the local kennels or shelter to ensure they’re properly cared for while you’re away.

If you have any farm animals on your property such as chickens, then it’s important to pay a neighbor to help out with them. Most retirees or trusted friends will be more than happy to help you.

This could involve feeding, filling their water each morning and night, and closing the chicken door for the night. You can also pay a local farmer to come and help clean the coop and collect the eggs. They can also keep an eye out for any signs of predators.

Mail Handling 

When preparing your household for going away you should consider the mail also. Mail can be rerouted if necessary. Letters you be left in a locked mailbox for when you return. You may also want to implement a package holder or redirect packages to lockboxes for a few weeks.

Of course, if paying a neighbor and trusting them with the key in the spirit of looking out for your house, you might ask them to take all your mail into their home for safeguarding.

Locking mailbox

Notify Your Neighbors

It’s healthy to notify your neighbors, or rather those you trust, that you will be away from home. This way, they can help out in the small ways that count. You might pay your neighbor’s teenager to mow your lawn once every two weeks. Or ask your neighbor to park their cars on your driveway to give the illusion of people being home.

If there’s noise at your house, or if they hear anything, they know that this is unlikely to be you and can notify the authorities.

Secure Your Home & Used Time Lighting

Locking your home and external buildings is important when preparing your household. However, it’s good to consider additional measures for keeping your home secure.

Motion-sensitive floodlights can be great, as any trespasser can quickly lose their courage when bright lights suddenly turn on.

Make sure all windows are properly locked, and no accessways even as small as your doggy door are left open. You can give a trusted neighbor a key to come and feed your fish or water your plants if necessary. Just pay them or provide them with a meal out and a bottle of wine when you return. 

Motion light

Turn Off Appliances & Utilities

It’s wise to turn off all of your electronics even those on standby mode, in order to save on your power costs. You may even be able to talk to your utility providers to negotiate a discounted bill for that month if you’re not going to be using their services.

For example, if your home broadband service is going to be off for the month, they may offer you a discount and switch off your services for that period.

You can also invest in appropriate smart home appliances that you will keep on during your time away. It’s generally acceptable to keep your main breaker on while you’re gone, provided you’ll be back within a month or so. You can implement lighting timers so that your home looks lived in at night. If your home is in pitch-black darkness for a month, that send a sign that the house is empty.

Leave Emergency Contact Information

Of course,  it’s always good to make sure you let those you’re relying on know where to reach you at all times. This might be to help inform you of something they’ve noticed on your property (like water pooling in the rain signifying poor runoff), or if they need to inform you of goings-on in the neighborhood. 

It’s unlikely to happen, but if you desperately need to return to your household then allowing those trusted neighbors to contact you, or perhaps contact your relatives who live nearby, will enable you to address issues that need your attendance.

If nothing else, this can help your peace of mind while you enjoy your travels around the world.

Preparing your household for a long vacation away does take some preparation time. But in the long run, it will certainly make a profound difference to your stress levels. And to the state of the home you return to. A moving inventory and checklist can ensure you prepare everything before you leave.

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