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Tips For Having Your House In Order Before Leaving For Vacation

EAST BRUNSWICK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- As people get ready to walk out the door for their summer getaway, they should have their house in order before they depart.

Risa Cooper told CBS2's Meg Baker she is mostly concerned about just getting out the door on time when heading out for vacation, but since moving into a townhouse, she realized if something goes wrong in her house it could have an effect on her neighbors.

Michael Jackson, a technical field trainer for home-service company Gold Medal, is helping Cooper prep her home.

"One of the best ways to prevent an incident is to turn off the water main down in the basement," Jackson said.

Jackson said to check for any leaks on faucets before leaving because it will not only save you money, but some major headaches.

"I think it's important we minimize what we are spending at home while we are not here, so we can purchase more souvenirs while we are away," Cooper said.

Jackson suggested turning the water heater's dial to vacation mode before leaving the house.

"This will leave the pilot light lit, but when you get home you can just turn it right back on and in no time you will have 120-degree water," Jackson said.

Installing a WiFi thermostat lets people control the temperature from the phone anytime.

"You can raise the temperature to 78," Jackson said. "That way you don't have stagnant air smell when you come home."

A big vacation no-no is leaving a light on while away, because that can indicate to people that your house is empty.

"We normally suggest you have a motion sensor, usually by the driveway for outside lighting. That way anybody pulls up the light automatically comes on," Jackson said. "It kind of adds a safety feature to your house, even if you are not going away."

People can also add timers on lights inside.

"The last thing would be if you had a couple of lights in your home put on timers, so they come on during different increments during the vening," Jackson said.

Jackson also suggested to mow your lawn before going on vacation because tall grass could tip burglars off that you're away.

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