Renovating your home is an exciting time. You’re finally getting around to installing the new kitchen or bringing the bathroom into this century and there's so much for you to think about and do. There are a thousand and one things that need to get done, not to mention the stress of hiring contractors, selecting paint colours and choosing fittings.
To take some of the stress out of a home renovation, have you stopped to think about how you will secure your home and belongings during the reno?
It can be easy to get lost in the whirlwind of your home reno and caught up in the hassle of managing or living on a construction site, but it is so important to consider the safety of your home and belongings while renovating.
If budget permits, it's a great idea to rent a home for the duration of your renovation so you can get away from the noise and stress of the renovation site. Assuming you've opted to vacate the premises for the reno here are seven handy tips to keep your home and belongings secure while you're away.
7 handy hints to help secure your home reno:
1. Portable storage on site.
If you’re worried about or unable to store your belongings in a locked cordoned off area of the house consider a portable option that can be temporarily located in your yard and securely locked. This makes it easier to put everything back into its place once the renovation is complete and keeps sticky fingers away from your most prized possessions.
It may not be possible to locate portable storage at your site if space is limited so you may want to consider a short term self-storage solution. Choose a reputable supplier, such as Fry’s Storage or Storage King, and organise your things as you would if you were moving house. Make sure that you protect the fragile items and clearly label all of the boxes so they are effortless to unpack when they are returned to the house.
3. Change the locks.
You may love the convenience of one key fitting all of the locks in your home, but this handiness isn't ideal when you have a lot of relative strangers traipsing through your home during a renovation.
Try changing your main locks during this time to restrict access to only the necessary areas. Another option for extensive renovations is installing a key-less entry that you can monitor remotely if needed.
4. Clean up outside.
The presence of tools and materials outside your home at the end of the day and on weekends can be tempting to burglars. They also indicate that your home is sitting empty and that your property will be an easy target to break into after hours. Ask your building contractors to clean up after work every day and either lock up their tools securely onsite or take them home with them.
5. Motion sensor lights.
Having motion sensor lights in your garden, whether you're renovating or simply living in your home, is a great idea for home security. Bright lights flicking on in the middle of the night discourages anyone that is not meant to be on your property by increasing visibility from the street and making it look like people are at home.
6. Your security system.
Modify your security system to fit with the changed status of your home. You'll need to talk to your provider about the best way they can work around the contractors to ensure that the security at your home is maintained.
For instance, if there will be no electricity for a period of time you can use wireless motion sensors - this also allows you to monitor your home 24/7 on your mobile device. You may want to consider video surveillance to protect your home but also to help you keep an eye on the progress of your renovation.
7. Reliable contractor.
Last but definitely not least, check out the credentials of your contractor before you hand them the keys to your home. Ask for references and memberships of industry associations. Were they referred to you by a friend or family member or did you just pick a name out of the phone book? Who are the people working for the contractor? What safety measures will the contractor have in place to ensure the security of your home? These are all important questions to consider and ask in terms of keeping your home and belongings secure during a renovation.
Sara Anderson works as a content strategist at Five Star Locksmiths (Melbourne). Five Star Locksmiths provides 24-hour locksmith services in Melbourne’s CBD and its suburbs.
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