Tommy Lloyd
Author: Tommy Lloyd, Managing Director

Tommy has over 15 years experience within the insurance industry, and his primary focus is helping travellers find the right cover for their medical conditions.

6 min read

How to Secure Your Home Whilst Away

During the holiday season, burglaries can be rife in the UK – particularly due to the nation’s penchant for updating their social media with shots of #beachlife. Yet, even if you keep schtum about your whereabouts on your platform of choice, it’s not too hard for the savvy opportunist to spot when a home has been left unattended.

Whether you’re planning a quick getaway or a longer break, there are steps you can take to help secure your home whilst you’re on holiday, allowing you to enjoy your downtime with as much peace of mind as possible. Read on to discover our top home security advice recommendations. 

How to protect your home on holiday:

  • Make it look like somebody's home
  • Install an alarm system
  • Lock your valuables away
  • Invest in new technology
  • Don't post your holiday online

Make it look like somebody’s home

While it may not be possible to set up moving mannequins a la Kevin McCallister in Home Alone you can employ plenty of achievable tricks to make your house look occupied. This can be one of the best security measures to guarantee crime prevention.  

For short trips, consider things like trying to set up automatic timers on lights to keep them turning on and off between the day and the evening. This can be an easy way to make a home look lived in and quick and simple to set up. Setting them to turn on and off at slightly different times each day can be ideal so they aren’t clearly on a set routine.

For longer trips, there are some more steps worth taking. Start by trying to minimise the number of deliveries and letters you get to stop post piling up – nothing says no one’s home like a pile of letters inside the door! Also, consider mowing the lawn before you leave to keep the exterior in good condition for longer. If you have a driveway outside the home, you could ask a neighbour, family member or friend to park there occasionally, ensuring it’s not left unoccupied for a long time.

If possible, asking someone you know and trust to swing by occasionally with some spare keys can be the most useful trick. This way, they can park outside the home, collect any post and parcels, turn the lights on for a period, and make the house look lived into those on the prowl for a target.

Home with Lights on

Install an alarm system

Although they can be more costly than other solutions, installing a home security system can be a good idea for those who are frequent travellers and away from the home.

Offering extra security, many of these systems mean that, should a break-in occur, the police can automatically be called, you can be informed, or a private security guard can attend the scene.

Lock your valuables away

Remove the temptation for a swift smash and grab by keeping all valuables away from your windows. It’s also important to secure your most precious possessions inside the house, just in case an intruder does gain entry.

Avoid the obvious hiding places such as the freezer, under the mattress or your trusty sock drawer, and divide up the treasure so your valuables are spread around.

You could even leave some cash and some inexpensive jewellery in a more obvious hiding place in the hope that an unwelcome visitor will be more concerned with getting out as quickly as possible with a prize rather than going through your whole home with a fine-tooth comb.

Otherwise, simply leave your valuables with a trusted friend in your absence.


Invest in new technology

Burglar alarms are an excellent deterrent to intruders, but they aren’t the only gadgets that can help keep your home safe. Smart security cameras can record 24/7 or are triggered by motion detectors, sending you an email or phone notification if anything untoward has been spotted.

Security lights, positioned outside, will put off the burglar who prefers to operate under cover of darkness. And if it’s the contents of your shed you want to protect, heavy-duty padlocks even come with their own alarms these days.

You can also use smart home technology to monitor the inside of your home, with indoor cameras available now at reasonable prices. With smart technology, you can also add timers to things like lights and even some blinds, making it easier to appear at home from anywhere in the world.

Don’t post your holiday online

Even if you’ve done everything in your power to make it look as though your home is occupied for the entirety of your trip, there is one thing that can instantly give you away – your social media.

Whether your social media channels are public or private, it can pay off to save your posting until you get home. This way, you aren’t showing the world where you are (and therefore, where you aren’t), but you’re also able to properly enjoy your holiday and live in the moment.

No matter how many precautions you take to keep your home safe when you’re on holiday, it’s still essential to invest in robust home insurance, just in case. The same can be said of taking care of yourself and your loved ones while on your travels.


From investing in travel medical insurance to preparing your home to look lived in whilst you’re away, there is plenty to do in the lead-up to your holiday. For more tips and advice, be sure to check out our travel insurance guides and our blog.

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