Your Summer Vacation Checklist- for your home!

Now that we’ve officially passed the first day of summer, it’s definitely time to think about getting ready for that summer trip you’ve been looking forward to! Your trip might be a month long endeavor – or maybe just a nice long weekend away, either way it’s never too early to start getting ready.

You probably already have an idea of what you want to pack for your trip, but do you know how you’re going to get your home ready?

Most people are in such a rush to get out of town, they forget to make sure their house is prepared for vacation as well. Taking a little time to get your home ready for vacation can help decrease your chance for potential burglary, shrink your unnecessary utility costs and help save you from returning to a homeowner nightmare!

Your Summer Vacation Checklist – for your home!


  • Yard. Mow your lawn, or arrange for your lawn to be mowed. Bring in any extra equipment, chairs, etc., don’t leave anything lying about in your yard.
  • Bank. Notify your credit card company you will be gone (where and when). This will help you avoid any freezing on your account during your trip.
  • Pets. Don’t forget to reserve your favorite kennel or dog sitter. If your pet is staying in your home, you will want to adjust your thermostat accordingly.
  • Garage. Unplug your garage door opener. These are extremely easy for thieves to hack and gain easy entry into your home.
  • Trash. Take out your garbage if necessary. Depending on your where your garbage days falls, ask neighbor to bring in & take out your garbage can, so it doesn’t look like you are not home).
  • Water. There are a lot of mixed opinions on this one, but we recommend turning off your water for your short trip or week away. If you are not sure how to do this, or you never have, don’t be afraid to ask your plumber– better safe than sorry!
    • Reminder: Turning off your water will not allow your sprinkler system to work during your time away.


  • House Alarm. Make sure that your alarm is properly set for your departure. Notify your security company that you will be on vacation.
  • Windows. Make sure all of your windows are closed and locked.
  • Doors. Make sure your all of your doors are locked and closed.
  • Electronics. Unplug all of your electronics or switch off your power strip.
  • Water Heater. Change your water heater over to vacation mode. If not possible, switch to your lowest temperature setting to still save $!
  • Dishes. Make sure to take care of those dirty dishes, then clean out your dishwasher and/or sink.
  • Lights. While it’s important to have some kind of light on during your time away, just try leaving your lights on a light timer so that only certain lights will be on for a shorter period of time. (These are very inexpensive at your local home improvement store).
  • Thermostat. Turn your thermostat to vacation mode. Do NOT turn off your air conditioner. You want to keep the air moving in your house, so condensation does not take place. Condensation can impact any of the wood in your home (ie. floors, doors, cabinets, etc.)
  • Refrigerator. Empty your fridge of all perishables. For your trip, you can either a.) clean it out completely and unplug it (leave cracked open) or b.) keep the bare minimum of items in it and keep it running.
  • Kitchen. Clean out your pantry by discard any opened bags and boxes of food, or giving to friends and family. Check expiration dates for all food

For a longer trip…

  • Plumbing. If you will gone for a greater period of time (a few months), have your neighbor or friend come in and use everything every once in a while. (Ie. flush toilets, run dishwasher, etc.). In this case, you would leave your water on.
  • Mail. Depending on the length of your trip, you might want to put your mail and deliveries on hold. If a longer trip, consider forwarding your mail.
  • Plants. Again, depending on how long you will be away, you might want to have someone water your plants.

We hope you have found this checklist to be helpful, and we wish you a pleasant trip!