Are you planning an extended trip away from home and want to know how to properly close up your house for six months? Look no further! This comprehensive guide will cover everything you need to know to make sure your house is properly closed up and secure for your extended absence. From checking your insurance coverage to winterizing your plumbing, this guide will help you make sure your house is in tip-top shape for your return. We’ll also discuss essential safety precautions and tips to keep your home secure and free from potential damage or theft. So, whether you’re heading off on a six-month sabbatical or just want to make sure your home is safe and sound while you’re away, this guide will provide you with the information you need to protect your home and keep it in good condition while you’re away.
How To Close Up A House For Six Months?
Assessing Your Home Insurance Coverage
Before starting with any home closure checklist items, you should review your home insurance coverage, as this may affect some of your closure decisions. Your insurance company will most likely have specific recommendations on what to do (or not do) while your house is vacant, so it’s important to understand their requirements. If you don’t follow the right procedures, you could be at risk of losing your insurance or paying higher premiums in the future. Some common insurance coverage-related closure questions that you should ask your insurance agent include: What type of coverage do I have? Standby coverage – If you’re closing up your house for less than 30 days, you’ll probably want to make sure you have standby coverage.
Winterizing Your Plumbing
First, take care of any plumbing issues that might arise during the winter months, especially if you’re closing up your house during the colder months. This is especially important if you live in a climate that regularly experiences freezing temperatures. One of the biggest risks associated with closing up your house during the colder months is damage to your home’s plumbing. Frozen pipes are one of the most common hazards in the winter, and you can help prevent damage to your pipes by taking some simple precautions. First, make sure your water is turned off at the source, either at the main shutoff valve or at the valves serving each individual fixture. You’ll also want to drain your water pipes. You can do this by opening a faucet at the highest point in the system. At this point, water will drain from your entire house.
Turning off Your Electricity and Gas
Next, you’ll want to turn off the electricity and gas at the main source. You can do this either by contacting your utility providers to schedule the shutdown or by installing a manual switch, which runs from your home’s wiring to a nearby switch. Turning off your electricity and gas will also help protect your home from potential damage, such as fire. It is also a requirement for some insurance policies, which will only provide coverage for an empty house if the utilities are off. Turn off your gas at the main source. This will help prevent gas leaks that could result in an explosion. Furthermore, if you’re planning to rent your house out while you’re away, landlords usually require that you turn off your gas at the source.
Cleaning Your House and Grounds
Finally, clean your house and grounds. You may also want to hire a professional cleaning service to make sure your house is thoroughly cleaned. Cleaning your house and grounds can help prevent certain pests, insects, and fungi that can pose a health risk to your home while it’s unoccupied. Cleaning your house and grounds can also help protect your home from potential damage. For example, an unkempt lawn can be more susceptible to weeds and other pests. It can also be more prone to storm damage from high winds and heavy rainfall. You should also make sure to power wash your home’s exterior. This can get rid of mildew and another buildup that can leave your home looking unkempt.
Securing Your Home from Potential Damage or Theft
Next, secure your home against potential damage and theft. To do this, you can: Install security systems – Security systems are key. Whether you have an old-fashioned alarm system or a newer smart-home system, make sure it’s fully functional. Enlist the help of a security company – If you want to beef up your home’s security, you can hire a reputable company to install security cameras, set up security lighting, or perform any other security-related tasks you need. Lock up your home – Make sure all the windows and doors are locked. If you’re going to be away for longer than three months, you may want to consider boarding up your home.
Setting Up Automated Home Monitoring
If you’re away for a long period of time, you may also want to consider setting up automated home monitoring. This can be a helpful way to remotely monitor your home while you’re away, providing you with peace of mind knowing that you’re not missing out on any potential issues. There are a few different options for automated home monitoring. You can use a smart thermostat or other Internet of Things (IoT) devices to keep tabs on your home’s temperature and energy usage. You can also use smart door sensors or flood sensors to notify you when something goes wrong. If you’re in an area with frequent power outages, you can also set up battery-operated backup systems to switch on your lights automatically in the event of a power outage.
How To Dealing with Unexpected Maintenance Issues?
- This could include fixing a broken appliance or repairing a leaky roof. To do this, you’ll want to make sure you have enough money set aside to cover any unplanned repairs. You can do this by setting up a maintenance fund.
- This can be a dedicated savings account specifically for repairs and maintenance. If you have homeowners or renters insurance, you can submit a claim to get the money you need to make repairs.
- Keep in mind that insurance companies will usually only pay for the minimum amount necessary to repair the damage. If you want to do more extensive repairs, you’ll probably need to pay out of pocket.
Tips To Close Up A House For Six Months
- Change the locks: It’s always a good idea to change the locks on all of the doors and windows before you leave for an extended period of time. This will help keep your home secure while you are away.
- Shut off the water and turn down the thermostat: To avoid any water damage while you are away, shut off the main water valve and turn down your thermostat so that it is not running unnecessarily while you are gone.
- Clean out your refrigerator and freezer: Make sure to clean out your refrigerator and freezer before leaving for an extended period of time so that food doesn’t spoil or attract pests while you are away.
- Empty all trash cans: Empty all trash cans in the house so that they don’t attract pests while you are away.
- Check the exterior of your home: Make sure to check the outside of your home for any signs of damage or wear and tear that may need to be addressed before leaving for an extended period of time. This includes checking the roof, siding, windows, and doors for any repairs that may need to be done.
- Set up a security system: Setting up a security system is always a good idea when leaving your home unattended for an extended period of time. This will help keep your home secure and can provide peace of mind while you are away.
Closing up your house for an extended period of time can be a daunting task. However, by taking the necessary steps to secure your home and valuables, you can rest assured that your home will be safe and secure while you’re away. Additionally, by setting up a maintenance fund and arranging for property management services, you can make sure that any unexpected issues that arise will be taken care of in a timely manner.