My roommates and I are all going home for a few weeks during summer break. What can we do to keep our apartment safe?

My roommates and I are all going home for a few weeks during summer break. What can we do to keep our apartment safe?

Leaving your USF apartment unattended while you go on vacation can be stressful. You'll be running around, trying to pack and tie up loose ends before you leave. Before you head home for summer break, it's worth running through a checklist of things you need to accomplish before you leave the house. While you'll need your own list of stuff for the trip itself, our checklist encompasses everything you want to gloss over to make sure you keep your apartment safe and don't come home to a bunch of fruit flies or other grossness.

In order to keep your apartment safe, you must turn off everything before you leave. This includes lights, fans, and electrical appliances. If you left your lights on for 2 weeks straight for 24 hours a day, you are sure to be welcomed home by a massive utility bill. Before you leave, check all the bedrooms, bathrooms, and common areas and turn off all fans, lights, thermometers, and televisions. In addition, all electrical appliances need to be turned off. That means making sure you don't leave items like your straightener or iron on. What would be worse than coming home to an over the top apartment utility bill would be coming home to no apartment at all.

It is monumentally important to lock everything before you go on vacation! Whether you are going on vacation or running to the grocery store, this is something you should always check before leaving your apartment. I know this seems obvious, but it happens all too often to not mention. Lock all windows and doors into the house. Additionally, if you have a roommate that isn't leaving for summer vacation, make sure you lock your own room. While I'm sure you can trust your roomie, it is better safe than sorry. Not to mention, if they leave the front door unlocked, at least your belongings will be safe. Something else to keep in mind is that spare key. Don't leave it under the mat; it's too obvious. Following these instructions will keep your belongings in and intruders out!

Nothing is worse than coming home to a filthy apartment, especially when you weren't even home to make a mess. In order to minimize the risk of little critters invading your home you should: clean out the fridge, refrigerate all produce (even bananas and potatoes), take out the trash, and wipe down all surfaces. Fruit flies and pests love fresh produce and sticky counters, especially in Florida. As long as you tidy up before you leave, you shouldn't come home to any unwelcomed guests.

keeping your USF apartment safe should be a top priority. Adding items to your checklist before you go on vacation can seem like a lot of extra work when you're already so pinched for time. But, when you come home from vacation to a clean and safe apartment you'll be thankful you took the extra hour.

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