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Shutting Down Your Home

Water Floods

All those little hoses and lines -- in the kitchen, bathroom, or utility room -- that bring water to your sinks, toilet, and washing machine are also potential causes of floods in the rooms they serve. They create a messy problem if they break while you're at home.

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Your Turn-Off Checklist

When you prepare to be away, go through the house and think about the following items. A few extra minutes can prevent both major and minor disasters.

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Preventing Break-Ins

Beyond issuing an open invitation to intruders by leaving things unlocked, some homeowners often make things even more inviting by providing shrubbery to conceal actions and the cover of darkness to work within. A few simple guidelines can afford you greater safety while you're home and when you're away.

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Making It Look Like You're At Home

Even amateur thieves know to look for tell-tale signs that the owners are away. What do they look for? First and foremost is a home that is dark, quiet, and appears to be unoccupied at the moment. Other signs are more subtle but very disguisable.

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Long-Term Considerations

Being away for really long periods of time requires even more planning toward prevention. After you take care of the basics think about what maintenance you might perform on an ongoing basis if you were to be home during that period of time. Do that maintenance before you leave.

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