It’s the holiday season, which for many means vacationing and traveling. However, traveling can leave your home vulnerable to burglaries. Here are some ways to protect your home while you’re gone. Securely Lock Everything You know to lock the doors, but it’s also important to secure the windows, garage, and sheds or other structures. Many burglaries occur because these things are unlocked or poorly secured, so this simple step can go a long way in protecting your home. Ask the Neighbors Another way to protect your home is to have a trusted neighbor pick up your mail and packages while you’re gone. They can also put out and retrieve trash barrels and check the inside of the house. It will appear like your family is home—or at least that someone is watching. Remove the Spare Key It’s convenient to stash a spare key or garage door opener outside. But those fake rocks and similar hiding places won’t fool criminals. Instead, install an exterior door lock or garage door opener with a keypad entry. Don’t Post Although you want to document your vacation by posting photos on social media, it is safer to wait until you return home to post. Posting that you’re away alerts potential burglars that your home is empty and a good target for a robbery. Install Smart Home Devices Everything from HVAC systems to lights to music can be controlled remotely. Whether according to a schedule or via your phone, you can make it look and sound as if you’re home. You don’t even have to make a big investment—a few old-school timers can create similar effects.