Every year, fires, burglaries, and scams ruin the holiday season for thousands of Americans. While no one can prevent every possible tragedy, getting prepared for the season can help keep all of us safer.
These tips can help you stay safe this year:
Slow down to avoid scams
Cyber and phone scammers like to create a sense of urgency in their targets. A sense of urgency inspires impulsive decisions. No matter how good a deal sounds or how soon the deal will expire, take a few minutes to think about it before buying. If the deal seems too good to be true, it probably is! If you are in the process of buying or selling property, be aware of these tips to prevent wire fraud.
Don’t overload electrical outlets
Holiday decorations grow more elaborate every year for some homeowners. Before you add another strand of lights, make sure your existing outlets can handle the load, and pay attention to the warnings on the lights’ packaging. Don’t string together more strands than recommended.
Keep your real tree watered
Nothing beats the smell of a real Christmas tree, but real trees create a fire danger when they’re not watered regularly. As long as you’re still lighting your tree, keep watering your tree.
Double-check all locks
Most burglars are opportunistic. They like homes with easy access. If your doors and windows are locked, a burglar may move on in search of an easier target. Take a minute to double-check all the locks on your windows and doors, especially those on ground level.
Install cameras or a security system
You don’t have to buy an expensive subscription to keep an eye on your home while you’re away. You could install the cameras yourself and monitor them on your smartphone. Of course, a professional security system adds advantages — like off-site monitoring and automatic 911 calls.
Keep valuables out of plain sight
Whether you’re out of town for a week or just off to work for the day, try to keep your valuable items away from plain sight. This will help take your home off burglars’ radar. To discourage theft of packages, try to time deliveries for when you’re home, or ask delivery drivers to place packages behind your home where they won’t draw as much attention.
Stop the mail or arrange for pickup
Piled-up mail, packages, and newspapers outside your home tell burglars you’re out of town. You can stop packages while you’re away by visiting the website of the U.S. Postal Service and other delivery services.
Ask your neighbors to help
Before you leave home, tell a neighbor you trust that you’ll be away. Ask the neighbor to watch out for anything unusual at your home.
Use light timers
Programming lights to turn your lights off and on while you’re gone helps tell would-be burglars you’re home as usual. Be sure to program the timers to match your normal routine. You could also program a smart speaker or TV to turn on and off every day as sounds coming from inside your home help deter crime.
The Butler Title team wishes you and yours a happy and safe holiday season! 🎄
Butler Title is a full-service, attorney owned and operated title insurance agency. We keep it simple and focus on what we do best: real estate closings. From first-time buyers to local moguls, BT provides an industry-leading fee structure and unparalleled experience.
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