Whether you’re going out of town for two days or a few weeks, there are things you can do to prepare your Chicago home for your absence and for your smooth return. Make sure your time away is worry-free and prepare your Chicago home with this vacation checklist!
Prepare for Your Departure
- Ready your pets: Give the pet sitter or boarding facility detailed care instructions. Make sure the one you choose has plenty of your pet’s favorite foods, treats, toys, medicines and other supplies on hand.
- Clean out the fridge: Throw away food that will expire while you’re gone. It’s also important to clean any spills and messes before leaving for your trip!
- Tackle the laundry: Wash and put away laundry before you leave. It will make your returning to your Chicago home much easier.
- Prep your plants: Ask a friend or neighbor to water your plants, and be sure to leave multiple lists of all plants and their locations. Otherwise, invest in self-watering plant stakes.
- Leave a light on: During a short trip, leave a few lamps on throughout the house to make it look occupied. For a longer vacation, invest in inexpensive automatic timers that can turn our lights on and off at staggered intervals, making your house look occupied. Alert your home-security service or a trusted neighbor so one or the other can keep an eye out as well.
- Spray for bugs: Spray an insecticide in key areas so bugs will steer clear while you’re gone.
- Unplug and reset the thermostat: Temporarily adjust the thermostat so the air-conditioner or heater won’t waste energy by running in an empty house. Unplug unnecessary appliances in preparation for your absence.
- Hold mail and newspapers: A call to your post office and news carrier will put your mail and newspapers on hold so they won’t pile up in front of your house while you’re gone.
- Make sure your lawn stays trimmed: An overgrown lawn will easily tip off that your household is empty. Scheduling a lawn trimming will stave off any potential intruders.
- Leave contact information with a neighbor: In the event of a home emergency such as flooding or fire, leave your contact information with a trusted neighbor.