Remember to Stay Safe and Secure During the Holidays

All of the cooking, decorating, shopping, and traveling which make the holidays the most wonderful time of the year are the same things which make it the best time to put an emphasis on safety and security. Although no one wants to think about house fires or robberies as they celebrate, these disasters will instantly ruin the good times spent with family and friends. Luckily, following just a handful of simple safety and security tips can help to greatly reduce your chances of ending the year on a bad note. Keep reading to learn how you and your home can stay safe during the holidays!

Only you can prevent house fires

A house fire is almost certainly the most disruptive, dangerous, and expensive disaster which commonly occurs during the holidays, so preventing one from happening should be your top priority. The good news is that most house fires are caused by mistakes which are easily avoidable. Here's what to watch out for:

  • Never leave the stove or oven unattended while cooking. Cooking fires are the leading cause of house fires in the USA and they are most common on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.
  • Never leave lit candles unattended. The proportion of house fires started by candles triples during December as a result of the holidays.
  • Make sure that all of your smoke alarms have functional batteries.
  • Don't string together a large amount of Christmas lights on one extension cord.
  • Unplug or turn off all of your lit decorations (tree lights, house lights, displays, etc.) whenever you leave the house or go to bed.

Use the internet wisely

The internet offers a huge amount of convenience for everyone, including both shoppers and thieves. Here's how to keep your info and purchases secure:

  • Track packages online so that you know when they are out for delivery. This will help minimize the time they spend sitting outside as targets for thieves.
  • When shopping online, only give your information to well-known retailers and never click on unknown or mysterious email links.
  • Install an internet-connected security camera or video doorbell to help monitor your home while you're away.
  • Don't post vacation plans on social media ahead of time or while you're away. This can let thieves know when your house is unoccupied. Instead, wait until you return to put up photos.

Keep thieves guessing

Thieves want to rob easy targets, which means that simply keeping them uncertain about your home is often enough to deter them.

  • Burn or rip up expensive gift packaging, rather than simply throwing it away. Thieves will make note of that huge, brand-new TV box sitting at the curb.
  • If you go on an overnight trip, place a couple of house lights on timers to make it seem like the house is still occupied. Also, ask a friend or trusted neighbor to stop by the house while you're away.

These are some of the best ways to keep your house and information safe during the hustle and bustle of the holidays! For even more tips, check out this article from Realtor Magazine.