New listing in Fairway Mews, Spring Lake Heights!

Feb
08

Preparing Your Home for Vacation

There is nothing like living on the Jersey Shore – all four seasons offer their own special brand of pleasure and enjoyment. In the summer, there’s no need to go away for a vacation because living by the beach is like being on vacation all summer long! Sure, it can get a little crowded and at times those who live here wish all the “vacationers” would go home, but for the most part summer living at the Jersey Shore is amazing. Memorial Day, July 4th, and Labor Day celebrations; marathons, sidewalk sales, fireworks, movies on the beach; Sandcastles, biking, boating, kite flying – there’s just not a whole lot of reason to leave the warm, sunny Jersey Shore!

And then there’s spring and fall at the Jersey Shore…both wonderful seasons! Pick up the kids from school and head to the beach for some fun in the sun. It’s usually not warm enough for tanning or swimming in the ocean (plus, no lifeguards) – but flying kites, throwing frisbees, playing some touch football? Oh, yes. Breathing in the cool, salt air is a liberating feeling – especially when you can enjoy the beach without the summer crowds. And, a Spring or Fall walk or run on the boardwalk…aaahhhh!

Even winter at the Jersey Shore is just beautiful. If you are lucky enough to live on the water, watching the flakes waft upon the jetties is spectacular – and building snowmen on the beach is as much fun as building sandcastles. But I have to admit, the blistering cold winds that come off the ocean in the winter months can wear on you. I would think that whether it’s to the mountains of Vermont for some powdery ski slopes, the Caribbean for some sun and warmth, or the “happiest place on earth” Disney World, winter is probably the most common season for year-round residents to take a trip.

But no matter when or where you decide to vacation from the Jersey Shore, preparing your home for that vacation is very important. It can be stressful to leave your home unattended when you go on vacation – but if you take the proper precautions, it doesn’t need to be.

  1. If you have neighbors that you are friendly with, give them a key, your cell phone number, and an emergency number. Let them know when you will be gone and ask them to keep an eye on your house.
  2. Make sure someone you trust has a copy of your itinerary.
  3. You can arrange for your mail and newspaper deliveries to stop while you are away, but I prefer to ask a trusted neighbor to pick them up and hold them for me until I return. I usually also ask them to put a garbage can out on garbage day to give the appearance that someone is at home.
  4. Empty the refrigerator of any food that may spoil while you are gone – I actually put it in the very can that I ask my neighbor to take to the curb on garbage day.
  5. Set your thermostat so you don’t use too much energy to warm (or cool) an empty home. You don’t want to turn off the utilities completely, but you don’t want to waste money or energy having them run more than necessary for an unoccupied home.
  6. If it is expected to be very cold, leave the faucets slightly dripping. This will prevent the pipes from freezing and bursting.
  7. Put some inside and outside lights on automatic timers – again, this will give the appearance that someone is living in the home. Remember to arm the alarm if you have one.
  8. Be sure to lock all the doors, including the garage. If you have automatic garage doors, unplug them.
  9. Arrange for the grass to be cut if you are vacationing in the spring or summer, or for someone to shovel your driveway if it should snow when you’re away on a winter vacation.
  10. Hide your valuables, lock them in a safe, or give them to someone trusted to hold for you until you return.
  11. Leave a car in the driveway if you can, or ask a neighbor to occasionally park theirs in your driveway.
  12. DO NOT use social media to announce you are going on vacation. It’s much safer to wait until you return to post your photos to Facebook or Instagram. There will be plenty of time to tweet when you get home.

Living at the Jersey Shore, you may find that there is no need to ever leave. But if you decide to go on the occasional vacation, following the above steps will allow you to go away with the peace of mind that your home is protected.