Do you love to travel? Have you got property assets that you don't want to sell? Being away from your home for weeks or months at a time can come with a few challenges that need to be addressed prior to your travel plans. When leaving on a long vacation, it's rather important to make sure that your home and property is ready and prepared for your long absence.
Having a home where you enjoy your families company can make people think that owning it ties them down a little bit as they have a responsibility for its maintenance. This is true, and so while people who have no financial investments that tie them down to one location, people who do, will have a tendency in having to take some extra precautionary considerations into account.
Another option for secure homeowners who are looking for a longer vacation or lengthy worldly travel is to release some equity from their property and rent it out temporarily to make up the payments towards the financed borrowed money.
So say for example if you applied and got accepted; like homeowner loans from Evolution Money, you could use that money to travel and pay it back from the rental fees you charge to tenants to live there.
Here are some things to consider if you left your home empty to be ready for your arrival, whenever you chose.
Set Your Thermostat
If the travel includes leaving the house unattended during the winter months, ensure that your programmable thermostat is set to a function that is auto set to room temperature. This will keep your house warm enough to prevent any plumbing pipes freezing which could result in damages and bursting water pipes; which can cause severe flooding and water damage.
On the contrary, If you're taking a trip during the warmer weather, there should be considerations to program the AC unit to turn on every now and again in order to prevent the formation of mould, mildew, and other conditions caused by trapped damp environments - usually caused by heat and humidity. If you have not got air con, measures could be taken to open any vents on your windows to allow air to circulate.
Turn The Water Off
Whilst on vacation for a considerable amount of time, remember to turn off your incoming mains water. This can prevent any damage from plumbing leaks that could occur in your absence, which can result in significant water damage and costly repairs.
On a side note, If you have a sprinkler system that needs to run while you are away, or if your central heating system functions with steam radiators or hot water, then it is not a good idea to shut your water off at the main valve. Always check what types of systems you have, knowing how to turn it on correctly before isolation.
Empty Your Fridge-Freezer
A good idea to rid the fridge of all perishable goods so you can completely defrost and unplug the appliance if you're going to be gone for a very long time. Apart from not wanting any food in your refrigerator to turn into a mouldy, this will also conserve energy as the fridge won't need to be left running while it's not in use.
Forward Your Mail and Cancel Newspaper Delivery
Having a PO Box from your local post office can help you postpone any mail you receive whilst away, to help any unwanted leaflets and fliers hanging out of your letterbox; advertising to the world that you are not in..
If you're one of the few people who still get the rolled up physical newspaper delivered to your doorstep each morning, you'll want to contact the papers’ subscriptions department and halt delivery through the time you're gone. Otherwise, you'll be coming home to an Everest sized mountain of unread newspapers on your porch!
Keep a Few Lights On
At night, usually you will have lights on in your home with blinds and curtains and to the pedestrian, they will see your occupancy.
While it's usually a good idea to save energy by isolating your electrics leaving everything including keeping the lights in your home turned off when they are not in use, an extended period of travel is an exception to the rule.
Keeping one or two lights on in your home while you are away could deter any thieves from planning to do a break-in. Saving on your energy usage while you are away though can be difficult if you are starting to leave lights running 24-7. Though, many of todays lighting systems offer automation and timers. There are plenty of brands from timing plugs to lighing fixtures that are available on the market to help you turn lights off and on in your home, no matter where your location is! A great perk to some models is that you can set light timers to turn lights on at specific times each evening, and can vary the lights you turn on and off for a more realistic look that keeps the bad ones at bay.
Arrange for Pet (and Plant) Sitters
One of the biggest fallbacks to embarking on a long vacation or holiday is having to say goodbye to your pet(s) for weeks or even months. It's important to their welfare to find the right pet sitter to make your dog or cat's experience pleasant so they don't miss you too much when you're away.
If you don't have a family member or friend you can leave your furry companion with, there are plenty of reputable pet-sitting services and boarding kennels that can be found online or local directories. Make sure to meet with the sitter in advance of your trip though, this is so both you and your pet can get a feel for the sitter so they can feel completely at ease.
The freedom of travel gives you the ability to see the world, it is one of the most exciting ways to meet new people, create and share new experiences, and learn about different cultural traditions.
Making a plan that maintains your home during a long absence will allow you to concentrate on expanding your horizons and enjoying fantastic adventures without having to worry about what will be waiting for you when you get back.
Do you travel while your home is empty or rented? Or are you looking for your first long holiday? What will you do to help make the dream trip a reality? Let us know in the comments below!
Header Image by Scott Webb.
This post is a contribution to HandZaround.com