How to keep your home safe while on holiday
Jetting off on your summer holiday and worried about keeping your home secure? Safeguard your house with our top tech tips…
When you’re soaking up the sun on a golden beach, all you want to be thinking about is topping up your tan and what you’re going to choose off the menu at dinner. What’s less appealing is worrying how safe your home is while you’re away.
Get peace of mind this summer by setting up some smart security tech.
See who’s coming and going
Setting up home monitoring is a great way to keep an eye on what’s happening at home – whether you’re on the other side of the world or just out for the day.
Smart doorbells alert you if someone’s ringing your bell, and some also allow you to see who’s at your door. Security cameras record 24/7 so you can check in on your home at any time. If anything untoward occurs, you’ll receive a phone or email notification to alert you.
You can get indoor and outdoor cameras to cover every inch of your property – see how to secure your home with smart tech
Why not try…
The Ring Video Doorbell 2 streams live video and audio via your home Wi-Fi directly to your smartphone if motion is detected at your property. Infrared LEDs also let you see anyone lurking at night.
If a courier you’re expecting turns up, you can chat back to them to let them know where they can safely leave your parcel.
Another good option is the Nest Outdoor Cam. Mount it to an outside wall and it will record in Full HD, storing 30 days of footage securely online.
You can use a password-protected stream to share live footage with neighbours and even create clips to download and send to the police.
Plus, with Nest Aware your camera will differentiate between people and animals so you won’t be bothered by false alarms when the neighbour’s cat strolls past.
What about indoors?
There’s a Nest Indoor Cam too. All it needs is a plug socket and a Wi-Fi connection and you can view a live feed on your smartphone, tablet or PC wherever you are in the world. When it detects motion, you’ll get an alert on your phone.
Fool burglars with remote lighting
Leaving the hall light on when you go away is a classic burglar-prevention technique. The trouble is, it wastes energy if you have the lights on all day. And burglars can get wise to timers if lights come on at the same time every day.
With smart lighting, you can control the lighting as if you really were at home.
Controlled with your phone or tablet, you can use pre-set timings for the lights to come on while you’re away, or you can manually flick the switch in real-time if you want full control.
Use your indoor and outdoor security cameras to check everything is working as it should be.
Why not try…
Philips Hue wireless lighting lets you control up to 50 lights from the Hue app. Turn them on and off from wherever you are and set lighting schedules for when you’re away. They play nicely with Nest cameras too.
Need to think about it a bit more? Here's everything you need to know about Philips Hue smart lighting
Keep tabs on your heating
Returning to a damp and drizzly UK after sunning yourself in temperatures of over 25°C for a fortnight can be a bit of a shock to the system to say the least. Make sure you come back to a lovely warm home by using smart heating.
Why not try…
The Nest Learning Thermostat can be accessed remotely so you can prepare your home for your arrival.
It will also turn off the heating automatically when you leave the house using sensors and your phone’s location to save energy – ideal if you forget to switch it off before you go away.
It’s designed to work with the Nest cameras too – learn how Nest products work together