Since Zack and I moved in together in college, he’s been a nervous nelly about leaving our home when we go on vacation and has always insisted that we, “leave a light on so people think we’re home.” He certainly had the best intentions, but since, we’ve learned that this can often signal the fact that no one is home just as much as a consistently dark home can if someone is watching close enough. While this line of thinking is definitely a step in the right direction, as our family has grown and we’ve welcomed more and more travel into our lifestyle, it’s become increasingly important that we take a more thoughtful and strategic approach to our safety.
Living in Brooklyn, in an apartment, honestly makes me feel much more safe than living in a stand alone home ever did, especially after our break-in a few years ago. There are plenty of doormen, friendly neighbors and generally good people around to keep an eye, but you just can’t ever be too safe. That being said, living in an apartment building simultaneously presents other issues; there are plenty of folks with access to our lobby, hallways and elevators and while I’ve yet to meet someone who made me feel uncomfortable, you just never know who might be keeping an eye on your place.
Which is why we never risk it. We take extra precautions so that our space is safe while we’re traveling as well as when we return. We know from experience how nerve wracking it can be to leave your home when you’re out of the country for an extended period of time, but these few methods have really helped calm any nerves and ensure that we are coming home to a safe space.
Learn more about how we keep our home safe while traveling in partnership with Logitech’s Circle 2 (our tried and true home security camera with a wide-angle lens, smart notifications when motion is triggered, and night vision that allows you the ability to take action from wherever you are) below.
- Hire a house sitter. This concept always seemed so fancy to me growing up and even up until the last year, but in all honesty it’s one of the best choices we’ve ever made. Since we started hiring house sitters I’ve never felt more comfortable while we’re away. Having someone stay at our place, take care of our pup, water our plants and give us updates along the way made the vacation so much more enjoyable. We’ve also found that this is a huge treat for any of our friends who live with roommates and so on. It’s a win, win situation.
- Install Logitech’s Circle 2 home security camera. If you’ve been following along here for awhile you know we love our Logitech Circle 2. It kept us safe while we were staying with family last fall in Phoenix, in our Brooklyn apartment and now while we venture into more travel again. Since we had a house sitter for this last trip to Europe we of course wanted to put trust in their hands while still covering our bases. That’s where privacy mode on the Circle 2 came into play. We were able to keep our camera plugged in and on the entire time, but when we knew our house sitter would be in our apartment we could flip it to privacy mode so that we weren’t getting alerts on their movement. It still streams so you can check in at any time if there was an emergency, but does not record any footage or notify you like the camera otherwise would. Having our Circle 2 there gives me more peace of mind than anything else.
- Manage your mail and other delivery services. If you have a house sitter this is obviously easier, but if not there are still other ways you can manage your mail while traveling. First and foremost I would avoid placing orders from retailers right before you leave unless you know packages will arrive after you return. As far as subscription services, like The New York Times, they have the option to pause while you’re on vacation so that newspapers or packages aren’t stacking up. If you live in an apartment building but aren’t using a house sitter, I would suggest making a copy of your mail key for a neighbor or doorman you trust so that they can keep up appearances for you. It might sound paranoid, but even with a doorman, our packages are displayed publicly. It wouldn’t take long for someone to catch on and see that we were gone based on that alone!
- Be cautious of sharing online. This is probably the one I follow the least because of the nature of this blog, but overall I think this is probably a smart way to go about things. This is especially true if you live in a small town where people kind of know where you live and could easily drop by your home. It’s of course exciting to share that you’re heading off to Europe or any other vacation destination, but when you do so you’re obviously also announcing that you will not be at home which could draw unwanted attention. I’ve known people who are even secretive about going on vacation all together, they typically wait to share until they’re home except with a few select people. Go with your gut!
- Give keys to a neighbor. If you don’t have a house sitter, giving keys to a friend or trusted neighbor can be a great alternative. We did this recently and I’m so grateful for it in our day to day on top of travel days. Having that extra set of keys handy has been so helpful! Even with a house sitter it was nice to know that we had someone else in the building looking out for our place with the ability to pop in if needed.
How do you guys keep your homes safe when traveling?
Photography by Amy Frances.
This post was sponsored by Logitech’s Circle 2.