Now that it’s summer, vacation is common. You may even have summer travel plans to leave Iowa. Packing and making sure your home is secure while you’re away can be a lot of work. Use the following checklist to help your pre-trip planning run smoothly.


Detectors and Security

Give yourself some extra peace of mind while you’re traveling.

  • Test your detectors before you leave. Don’t forget to replace the batteries.
  • If possible, use smoke and CO2 detectors that send updates directly to your phone.
  • Tell your security company that you’ll be away.



Save some money and energy with the following tips.

  • Unplug appliances like your coffee maker and toaster. Even small appliances use electricity when not in use.
  • Your water heater should have a vacation mode. Set it to that mode or turn down the heat before you leave.


Clean Your Home

Cleaning before you leave not only ensures that you arrive home to a serene and organized environment. It can also help you avoid attracting critters and the damage that often follows.

  • Put away dishes and run the disposal.
  • Sweep floors and vacuum carpets.
  • Throw away perishable food and take out the trash.
  • Wipe down surfaces that may have food residue on them.


Pet Care

Choose the right care for your pet while you’re away. Whether you go with a pet sitter or border, there are a few tasks that will provide a smooth stay for your four-legged friend.

  • Create an instruction sheet for your pet’s caregiver.
  • Tell your pet sitter or boarder your pet’s emergency plan so that your wishes will be followed in case of an accident.
  • If you have a pet sitter, place all supplies like toys and treats in one area.


Other Maintenance

There are many maintenance items that you can try to complete before your vacation, but these are the important ones.

  • Walk the outside and inside of your home. Check for damage or existing leaks.
  • Make sure your exterior windows and doors shut securely. An unexpected rainstorm can cause serious damage if your home isn’t prepared.
  • Set your thermostat to a temperature that protects your belongings without running up your utility bill.


Make Your Home Look Occupied

Empty homes are targets for vandalism and theft. Make it seem like you never left with these tips.

  • Park cars in your garage or driveway.
  • Ensure your yard looks maintained throughout the length of your trip.
  • Pause your newspaper delivery and any subscription services you have.
  • If you have a neighbor you trust, ask them to bring in your mail and water plants or turn lights on and off every day.
  • If you don’t have a house sitter, set interior and exterior lights on a timer.


We hope these tips help you enjoy a summer free of disaster. If you come home to fire or water damage after your summer trip, contact us at (844) 338-5447. ServiceMaster Restoration by Bailey is your local fire and water damage restoration expert in Des Moines and Ankeny, Iowa. We’re available any time day or night for emergency restoration services. Our team also provides pack-out and storageconstruction cleanup and hard flooring care The sooner you call, the more damage we can prevent.



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