Before you head off on your holiday, you likely cover the security basics: ask a neighbor to keep an eye on the place, grab your mail, and make your home look occupied.
But that can only go so far.
Smart tech can do what neighbors can’t. If you’re wondering how to secure your home while on vacation, use these technologies to give you that extra peace of mind.
Today’s smart alarm systems are so much more sophisticated than the ones that proceeded them, so if you already have a basic alarm, it’s time to think about upgrading.
Smart motion detectors, for example, can be told which areas to monitor and which to ignore. They can sense which movements are caused by a potential threat and which are from passing cars or animals. They can also sync with an app on your smartphone, sending alerts directly to you—and the police, if needed—in case of an emergency.
To get the most protection for your dollar, check out the Google Nest Secure Alarm System. The Nest Secure Alarm might look like just a small keypad, but the full system is so much more. It includes an alarm, a smart motion sensor, a door and window sensor, and a key fob that you can use to activate or deactivate the system without needing to enter a PIN.
For only $299, you get the full security effect, and you can rest assured you won’t come home from vacation to any surprises. The accompanying Nest app gives you up-to-date monitoring and will send you alerts when your home system is activated. If you’ll be basking on the beach on an extended holiday, you might consider adding professional monitoring to your system to ensure a human is there to back your tech up.
If you don’t need a full security system while you’re on vacation, try installing a smart camera. Like smart alarm systems, these cameras monitor for motion and send alerts to your smartphone when there’s unexpected activity. They can also send you a live video stream so you can see your front porch for yourself.
Some cameras are even smarter, too, using face recognition technology to determine if the person on your doorstep is friend or foe. The camera won’t alert you to a family member, friend, or neighbor, but it will holler if it spots a strange face!
When it comes to top-notch security cameras, our recommendation stays in the Google family. The Nest Hello combines a smart doorbell with HD video to let you know who’s at the door at any given time. The Nest Aware is also a great option. It’s new to the market, but it’s poised to take the Hello to the next level with 24/7 continuous recording.
Either option is great for protecting your home when you’re on vacation, since you can tap into the streaming feed to keep an eye on things while you’re away.
With smart automatic lights, you can schedule certain areas of your home—your kitchen, living room, or bedroom, for example—to light up at specific times of day. You can even activate them based on the sunset and sunrise times.
Cameras and alarms might seem like obvious protective devices, but lights can also help secure your house while you’re away. Your lights turning on and off signals that someone is home—even when they’re not. And intruders are far less likely to tap a home when they think its occupied.
Automatic lighting is a simple way to create such an illusion. With smart automatic lights, you can schedule certain areas of your home—your kitchen, living room, or bedroom, for example—to light up at specific times of day. You can even activate them based on the sunset and sunrise times.
For the best smart lighting, opt for Philips Hue. The Starter Kit lets you select different colors, control your lighting via voice commands, and adjust lighting via a smartphone app—perfect for the vacationing homeowner!
Intruders aren’t the only thing to protect against when you’re away from home. Smart smoke alarms can monitor your home and send you alerts if they detect smoke. The Google Nest Protect is the way to go in this department. It connects directly with your smartphone to let you turn the alarm off from miles away before you wake the neighbors.
It also tests itself periodically, knows the difference between steam and smoke, and alerts you to potential fires before they even happen. It’s a small device that can give you true peace of mind while you’re away.
Once you know how to secure your home while on vacation, your trip can be even more relaxing, as you’ll know the technology is keeping an eye on things for you. No need to panic about intruders or house fires—these devices have you covered.