Just a couple tips today to make your home less of a target if you are traveling for Thanksgiving (or any other time).
- I suggest against canceling your newspaper delivery if you have any other alternatives... Too many local people would know that you were out of town. I suggest having a trusted neighbor pick it up each day for you.
- With the post office, you can hold your mail for a few days and they will deliver it all later. I think that overall, post office folks are pretty honest. They full access to checks, identity documents, etc... already. I just learned today from my boss that you don't need to go to the post office and fill out a form to have your mail held anymore, you can simply go to this website and click on the hold your mail tab.
- Back in the day, folks used a simple mechanical timer on a lamp to fool burglars. It was pretty ineffective, just turning on one lamp for a couple hours each night. These days, programable timers can be set to rotate lights throughout the house, and the TV has an alarm clock and sleep timer you can program as well. Just make sure you set them for realistic times.
- Going back to that trusted neighbor that takes in your paper, get them to move your cars around the drive way a couple of times and have them lined up to shovel the sidewalk and porch if it snows. It's also a good idea to have them tromp around your yard and put tire tracks in and out of the driveway in the snow too.
- If you have a landline, see if you can forward it to your cell phone while you are gone.
- You might want to have the local sheriff's office or police department do property checks, but that is more of a feel good measure than effective.
- Finally, make sure your valuables like guns, jewellry and precious metals are secured in a safe that is extremely heavy or bolted down.