Winter Vacation Home Security Tips: Insights from Security Experts

by | Nov 30, 2023 | Featured Post, Home Security

Vacation home security

We hate to say it, but winter is almost here! This means many of our customers are packing their beach and summer vacation homes for the season. They’re putting away beach chairs, cleaning our refrigerators, and (hopefully) setting their security protocols. After all, it’s important to remember that vacation homes are often left unattended for long periods during this season, making them vulnerable to various security risks. Whether you need a security plan or are looking to bolster your current strategy, this blog post provides winter vacation home security insights straight from CPI security experts. 

The Vulnerabilities of Vacation Homes in Winter 

Vacation homes face a unique set of vulnerabilities during the winter season that can jeopardize their safety and security. One primary concern is the increased risk of break-ins. With many homeowners away for extended periods, vacation properties become prime targets for thieves looking for easy targets.  

On top of the increased threat of break-ins, the harsh winter weather can pose significant risks to unattended homes. Heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures can cause property damage, such as burst pipes or roof collapses. These weather-related hazards not only result in costly repairs but can also create safety concerns for homeowners and their guests. 

Given these vulnerabilities, vacation homeowners need to prioritize security and safety measures. By taking proactive steps to address these specific vulnerabilities, vacation homeowners can ensure the protection of their properties throughout the winter season.  

So, what can you do to mitigate these security risks? CPI experts have you covered!  


5 Expert Winter Vacation Home Security Tips 

  • Tip 1: Install a Monitored Security System 
  • Tip 2: Utilize Smart Home Technology 
  • Tip 3: Enhance Exterior Lighting 
  • Tip 4: Secure Windows and Entry Points 
  • Tip 5: Engage Neighbors and Local Resources 


Expert Tip 1: Install a Monitored Security System 

Installing a professionally monitored security system is a crucial step in safeguarding your vacation home during the winter season. With a monitored system, someone always watches your house, even if you’re hundreds of miles away! You can enjoy round-the-clock protection and have peace of mind knowing that any potential threats will be immediately identified and responded to with the proper authorities. 


To keep your winter vacation home protected during your off months, we recommend that your monitored security system is made up of these components:  

Video Surveillance: High-definition cameras strategically placed around your property provide real-time monitoring and recorded footage for evidence purposes. 

Door/Window Sensors: These sensors detect any unauthorized opening or tampering of doors and windows, triggering an alarm and alerting the monitoring center. 

Motion Detectors: Sensors that detect movement inside your home, even in low-light conditions, alerting you and the monitoring center of potential intrusions. 

Control Panel: The central hub of your security system, allowing you to arm and disarm the system, receive notifications, and communicate with the monitoring center. 

When it comes to monitored security systems, CPI offers exceptional 24/7 monitoring services. Our team of trained professionals constantly monitors your vacation home, ready to respond to any potential threats. Whether it’s a triggered alarm, a video feed showing suspicious activity, a fire, or carbon monoxide detection, CPI’s monitoring team can promptly dispatch the appropriate authorities or emergency services to your property. 


Expert Tip 2: Utilize Smart Home Technology 

Smart home technology has revolutionized the way we secure and manage our homes. When it comes to winter security for vacation homes, leveraging these innovative devices can provide an extra layer of protection and convenience. 

A key advantage of smart home technology is the ability to control and monitor your home remotely. Smart locks offer a convenient solution by allowing you to lock and unlock your doors remotely, granting access only to authorized individuals. This is especially useful for vacation homes when you may need to provide entry to guests or service providers while you’re away.  

Another smart device to consider is a video doorbell camera. These devices provide a live video feed of your front door, allowing you to see and communicate with anyone who approaches. If an unexpected visitor or potential intruder appears, you can speak to them in real-time or capture footage for future reference. 

During the winter months, freezing pipes can cause pipes to burst, leading to significant water damage. To mitigate water damage, you can utilize water sensors and a Smart Water Shut-Off Valve. When water sensors detect a leak, the Smart Water Shut-Off Valve will automatically cut off the water to mitigate the damage.  


When setting up and managing smart devices for optimal security, be sure to follow these guidelines: 

  • Ensure your devices are connected to a secure network and keep them updated with the latest firmware.  
  • Regularly change your passwords and enable two-factor authentication for an added layer of security.  
  • Familiarize yourself with the features and settings of each device to maximize their functionality and customize them according to your needs. 

By utilizing smart home technology, vacation homeowners can enhance the security of their properties without having to be on site.  


Expert Tip 3: Enhance Exterior Lighting 

Well-lit exteriors are crucial in deterring burglars during the longer and darker nights of winter. Burglars prefer to operate under cover of darkness, making a brightly lit property a significant deterrent. It also creates an impression that the property is occupied and monitored, discouraging potential intruders. 

But with so many outdoor light options available, which do you choose? 

Motion-activated lights are an excellent choice as they activate when they detect movement, drawing attention to any suspicious activity. These lights startle would-be burglars and alert you or your neighbors to their presence. 

Another option is to use timers on your exterior lights, which can simulate occupancy even when the house is vacant. Timed lighting creates the illusion that someone is home, making it less likely for criminals to target your property. 

Remember, the placement of lights around your vacation home is vital to maximizing their effectiveness. Start by focusing on entry points like doors, windows, and garage areas. Also, consider placing lights along pathways, driveways, and in dark corners of your property to eliminate blind spots and provide a clear view of the surroundings. 

Remember to check your outdoor lights before leaving for the winter, replacing any burnt-out bulbs promptly. Additionally, it’s a good idea to vary the timing of your timers or the sensitivity of your motion sensors occasionally to avoid creating predictable patterns. 


Expert Tip 4: Secure Windows and Entry Points 

Before leaving your vacation home for the season, conduct one last check of your windows and entry points. In other words, lock your doors and windows. It may seem like rudimentary advice, but 30% of all burglaries happen via an unlocked door 


If you want to further improve the security of your windows and entry points, there are a variety of tools available including:  

  • Window and Door Sensors 
  • Reinforced Glass 
  • Glass Break Detectors 
  • Deadbolt Locks 
  • Window Pin Locks 

We recommend using a combination of all of the above technologies to help keep your vacation home secure during the winter months. Window/Door sensors and glass break detectors can also be integrated into your smart home security system – triggering an alarm with your monitoring service in the event of an incident.  


Expert Tip 5: Engage Neighbors and Local Resources 

Establishing good relationships with neighbors, participating in neighborhood watch programs, and utilizing local services can provide an extra layer of security. When you build strong connections with your neighbors, they are more likely to keep an eye on your property while you’re away and report any suspicious activities to you or local authorities. Likewise, you can reciprocate this goodwill by offering the same vigilance for their homes when they are away. 

Participating in neighborhood watch programs can also be highly beneficial for vacation homeowners. These programs involve a collective effort among residents to watch for any unusual or suspicious activities in the neighborhood. By staying informed and actively participating when you’re at your vacation home, you become part of a network of individuals committed to maintaining a safe environment. 

Leveraging local resources, such as property management services, can provide added security for your vacation home. Property management services offer professional oversight of your property when you’re not there, including regular inspections, maintenance, and even security patrols. 

Share your contact information with your neighbors and update them on your vacation plans. Inform them of trusted individuals accessing your property, such as house sitters or maintenance personnel. By maintaining open lines of communication, you can work together to ensure the security of your vacation home. 

Your Winter Vacation Home Security Partner: CPI  

Safeguard your winter vacation home by taking the above proactive measures. Remember, burglars often target vacation homes during the winter months, when they are more likely to be vacant. By implementing these expert-recommended tips, you can create layers of protection that deter potential intruders and provide peace of mind. 

We encourage you to put these tips into action and reach out to security professionals like CPI for assistance. With our expertise and advanced security solutions, you can enhance the security of your vacation home and enjoy a worry-free winter season. Learn more about our current offers and speak to a CPI expert here 



Remember, the security of your vacation home is in your hands. Take the necessary steps to protect your investment, valuables, and personal belongings. With the right precautions and the support of security experts, you can enjoy a secure and peaceful winter season at your vacation home. 

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