Hurray! Its almost summer vacation time! But before you pack up the fam and head off on some exciting adventure to some faraway place, remember that no home likes being left alone. 

Keep it safe and secure 'til you return. But what can you do? Glad you asked!

Stop delivery on your newspaper. Nothing says "I'm away, won't you please rob me?" more than a stack of papers by the door. In most cases, the post office will hold your mail if you ask. What about other deliveries? That's a bit tougher. There are multiple delivery firms out there, plus those folks who hang fliers on your door. This is where a helpful neighbor or nearby friend or relative can help. Ask them to pick up these items on a daily basis.

Ask a neighbor to park in your driveway. If they usually park in the street, they'll be so pleased that upon your return, they won't want to leave.

Turn off the ringers on your phones. Bad guys sometimes stand outside and call your phone. If they hear it ring and ring and no one get the drift.

Putting several lights on timers set at various times gives your home a more lived-in look.

Facebook and other social media might be fun, but why announce to the world that you aren't home and won't return for some time. Save posting those pictures from that fantastic voyage until you're back safe and sound.

It is a good idea to let your trusted neighbors know you'll be away in case they see any suspicious activities. Just tell them in person or over the phone, not on Facebook or Twitter (LOL).

Hide any stuff that's especially valuable in an inconspicuous, safe location.

Turn your AC down or off, and feel those energy savings. Close and lock all your windows, especially on lower floors. Newer windows often have a feature that only allows them to open a couple of inches to prevent unwanted entry. You can modify older styles yourself by locating a screw partially in the frame to prevent the window from opening  more than just enough to let in a bit of air and nothing else.

Unplug any device that won't be needed while you're away. This will minimize the risk of fire. Do leave your sump pump plugged in for obvious reasons. Unplug your garage door opener. Open it manually upon your return.

Hopefully if you make it difficult for the bad guys to get in, they'll go away -- or at least go somewhere else.

Have a super, safe summer vacation!