If you leave your home running smoothly and take care of a few things before you leave you can avoid the “did I shut the garage door” and the 30 other things that sneak into your head driving your stress level up. The first thing you should do is sit down and make a list of all of the things that you need to do before you leave.
8 Things To Do Before You Leave
I’ve created this list to help you, but we’re all different so my list may not look like yours but that’s okay! Some of the things on your list should be:
- Place a hold on your mail – There are three ways you can do this. 1. Leave a note in your mailbox with the dates that you’re leaving and when you will be back. Sign it. 2. Go online to USPS or 3. Go into your local post office and fill out a form. Even if you forget this with a computer you can do it from anywhere.
- Give your itinerary to a loved one – Give your itinerary to a trusted family member or friend.
- Create a plan to check-in – My daughter and I have a deal with each other. I can go as long as I want or as far as I want, but I check in with her every 24 hours. If not she knows there’s a problem and to start tracking me down or get help. With the itinerary that I leave her before we go will tell her where we are, where we’ve been and where we’re heading so that there is a starting spot to search.
- Pets – If you’re leaving pets behind make sure that your pet sitter will have everything they will need for the amount of time you’ll be gone and what to do in an emergency. Leave your vets name and phone number. If you’re taking your pooch along with you I suggest a trip to the vet for a checkup before you leave, bring your supplies and a few things from home can help calm a nervous pet.
- Contact Your Bank – There’s nothing worse than being out of town and your credit or debit card suddenly stops working. This is most likely your bank’s way of protecting you against theft or fraud which is awesome but can sometimes cause problems. Call your bank and credit card companies and explain when you’re going and a list of states or countries you will be traveling to.
- Make sure your home is secure – Leave your doors and windows locked of course, but also turn down your furnace or air conditioning or turn off altogether if possible to save energy and money. Things like video doorbells or alarms are also a great idea, but I have found that the very best resource is your favorite neighbor. Someone who lives within sight who can keep an eye on your home and also get in just in case there’s an emergency. Also, put things away that you would normally leave out like lawn furniture, grills. Anything that could be stolen or destroyed during a storm.
- Put Newspapers on hold – Are you one of the few, like me, who still get a real newspaper? Call your newspaper and place this on hold. A stack of newspapers on your front porch or yard is a billboard for thieves that you’re not home.
- Get A Checkup Before You Leave & Fill All Prescriptions – I also let the pharmacy know you’ll be out of town and if it’s a national chain (like CVS) find out their procedures for filling prescriptions out of town. Also, let your doctor know you’ll be traveling and could possibly need an emergency prescription called in. Being sick on the road sucks! Making sure you’re healthy before you leave can avoid problems later.