Whether you're going out of town for two days or a few weeks, there are things you can do to prepare your home for both your absence and a smooth return.
1. Clean out your fridge
The last thing you need is to come home to a science experiment sitting on your top shelf. Before you leave, throw away all food that will expire while you’re gone, including leftovers.
2. Tackle the laundry
Most of your suitcases will be full of dirty clothes, so you’ll want to wash and put away all your current laundry before you leave. This will save you a few loads after the trip, and make packing easier too.
3. Tidy up
There’s nothing better than coming home to a clean house after a long vacation. Sweep/vacuum your floors, do the dishes and wipe down counters with Pledge® Multi Surface Everyday Wipes.
4. Prep your plants
Ask a friend or neighbor to water your plants, and be sure to leave them a list of all plants, their locations and watering instructions. Otherwise, invest in self-watering plant stakes.
5. Leave a light on
Lights out, burglars in. If you won’t be gone long, leave a few lights on throughout the house so it appears occupied. If you’re planning an extended trip, invest in automatic timers, or have your plant-waterer switch up which lights are on.
6. Spray for bugs
Don’t let bugs use your house as a bed and breakfast. Spray an insecticide like Raid® Ant & Roach Killer so they steer clear while you’re gone. It kills on contact and keeps working for up to four weeks.
7. Unplug appliances and reset the thermostat
Power down the house while you’re gone - it will lower the risk of freak electric accidents. And to save on energy, adjust the thermostat so the air conditioner or heater isn’t running in an empty house.
8. Hold the mail
A pile of mail and magazines by your door is like painting a target on your front door. Call your post office to put all your mail on hold, or ask a friend or neighbor to pick it up for you while you’re gone.
9. Plan your first breakfast back
Hopefully, if you cleared your fridge before you left, you won’t come home to any surprises. But you also may wake up to no breakfast. Before you leave, stock your kitchen with cold cereal, coffee and a container of shelf-stable milk so you’re not left scrambling the morning after. Or, make these breakfast burritos to have at the ready in the freezer!