50% of American adults take at least 1 vacation during summer, so it’s very likely you’ll be treating yourself to a nice trip in the upcoming months.
It’s easy to get carried away by the excitement of your getaway though. This means you might forget to carry out important tasks before you leave.
Knowing what needs to be done ahead of time can save your skin. So read on for 7 things you should do at home before leaving for vacation!
1. Adjust Your Thermostat
You might have your thermostat set to heat and cool accordingly so you feel comfortable inside. But since you’ll be gone, there’s no need to keep your current settings. It’ll just be a waste of resources and it’ll add to your utility bills unnecessarily.
The optimal settings will depend on where you live and the season it currently is. Make sure you do some research on this so you don’t come home to issues with your HVAC system or apartment. It’s important that you don’t turn off the entire system, as this can cause issues too.
2. Get Someone to Take Care of Your Plants
Chances are, you have some houseplants or maybe a few plants on your balcony. While these can fare alright without water and care for a few days, they won’t do well if you’re leaving for an extended trip.
So one of the most important things to do before leaving for vacation is to get someone to take care of your plants. Whether you get a friend, family member, or neighbor to do this, or you hire a housesitter, meet up so you can discuss details and also hand off your house key.
3. Get a Pet Sitter
Do you have cats or dogs, and they’re not tagging along? Leaving your dog for vacation can be difficult, so get peace of mind by hiring a quality pet sitter. That way, your furry friend doesn’t have to leave their familiar territory and the petsitter can look after your apartment as well.
Like with your plants, you should meet up with the pet sitter so you can discuss details regarding care for your dog or cat. This is also a good time to tell them any important details about your apartment and to also give them the keys.
If you’re not comfortable with people coming to your home, then consider putting your pets in a pet hotel while you’re gone. These will check in with you while you’re on vacation, so you can rest assured that your furry family members are well taken care of.
4. Prep Your Home So It Looks Like Someone’s Home
You don’t want someone to seize the opportunity while you’re gone and break in. So take the proper precautions to make your apartment look as if you never left.
First, you can either pause your mail or have someone pick it up for you so you get a pile of newspapers and your mailbox isn’t stuffed full. Also, put your lights and TV on a timer to match your regular habits. That way, for anyone casing the joint, it’s not obvious you’ve left.
And of course, before you say goodbye to your apartment, check that all windows and doors are shut and locked properly. Set your alarm system if you have one.
5. Pay Your Bills
In this day and age, most bills have autopay features so you don’t have to think about grabbing your checkbook, writing a check, and sending it out. But if you’ve got any bills you still need to manually pay, take care of these before you depart, even if they’re not due until after you get back.
When you check off this task, you won’t have the little gray cloud of bills hanging over your head when you take a vacation. And you won’t have to worry about forgetting to pay it when you get back either!
6. Clear Out Your Fridge
In the week leading up to your vacation, decrease the amount of groceries you buy, or don’t buy anything at all. Make perishables your top priority to eat so you don’t have to throw them away or accidentally have them rot while you’re gone.
Right before you leave, do another check to make sure nothing will expire or rot. Then wipe down the shelves and drawers so they’re fresh and clean.
If you’re having anyone over to water your plants, watch your pets, or apartment sit, then leave a note letting them know what they can or can’t take from your fridge so boundaries are clear.
7. Let Your Bank Know You’re Going Away
One thing to do when preparing your apartment for an extended vacation is to let your bank know about your travel plans. This is especially important if you’re going overseas, as any charges might seem fraudulent while you’re there. There’s nothing worse than getting your bank account access frozen while you’re taking a vacation!
This is also a good time to request foreign currency if needed. Bigger amounts will take a little longer to get, so make sure you put in your request in advance to have some wiggle room.
Have Peace of Mind Before Leaving for Vacation
Once you’ve booked it, all you’ll be able to think about is leaving for vacation. That makes it easy to forget about prepping your home before you depart.
However, with our handy list, preparing for vacation will be a cinch. Once you’ve completed the things on this list, then you can truly focus on being excited for your time off!
If you’re vacationing in Washington, D.C. or Maryland, and like it so much you want to move there, then get in touch with us. We’ve got a place for everyone to call home!