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Traveling out of town these days isn’t simple. Packing extra masks and sanitizer and making sure chaos doesn’t ensue in the back seat is difficult enough, and the wellbeing of your home should be the last thing causing you to reach for another White Claw at dinner. We asked Rhodes & Co. realtor Pat Phillips for some tips on keeping your house protected while your family is away on vacation so your mind can be at ease. Well, you know, as “at ease” as it can possibly be.

Invest in a security system.

Alright, maybe this is an obvious one. If you don’t have a home security system already, it’s well worth the investment. If you do have one — make sure you advertise it. Even if the CPI sign doesn’t match your landscaping decor, you want it out there to warn any possible intruders that you’re not messing around.

Utilize your neighbors.

If you haven’t befriended anyone in your neighborhood, now’s the time to bring over those brownies. Having a neighbor whom you can trust is crucial while you’re away.

Ask your neighbor to:

  • Watch for any strange cars in your driveway.
  • Bring in your mail and/or newspapers. An overflowing mailbox is a dead giveaway that no one is home.
  • Put out your trashcans on pickup day and bring them back in. Trash doesn’t start smelling any better when it’s been sitting for a week.

Invest in a safe.

You already know why a safe is important, but make sure it’s fire proof. If something were to happen and your house went up in flames, you don’t want to lose those important documents.

Turn up the thermostat.

You don’t have to turn your home into a sauna, but if you’re gone for a week or more, your furniture isn’t going to care if the thermostat is set at a crisp 68 degrees. Utility bills are high enough during the summer months. Cut that ish up to 77.

Keep a low profile on social media.

As tempting as it may be to post a play by play Facebook album of little Tommy boogie boarding in the ocean, it’s also a dead giveaway you aren’t home. And it’s a dead giveaway that your house full of valuables is unattended. Maybe this one is a little excessive, but it’s 2020. Anything can happen.


For more home tips and for information on buying and selling a home in the area, contact Pat Phillips at 910-639-1550. Or, you can browse her listings here.

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