Before you travel, it’s important that you do a few things around your house to prepare. A few of my suggestions are merely for convenience, while others are for the safety of your home. Either way, doing these things will help you have an enjoyable time away!

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As we established in a previous post (here), packing is not my thing. However, we travel enough that I’ve got my whole house-prep routine down to a science.

Here are my top 5 suggestions for things to do at your house before you leave for a trip:

 1. Clean: Do a thorough cleaning several days before you plan to travel. It feels so great to come home to a clean house. Plus, you never know when you’ll have to unexpectedly ask a neighbor to walk through your house and check for the boogie man because you went out of town with your front door wide open. Yes, that actually happened and I’ll address that in my second tip.

Other than making all the beds and doing any last minute dishes, I always clean several days prior to our trip because leaving it until last minute never works.

Clean

2. Doors: Check all your doors to make sure they are closed and locked. I think I’ve already covered why that’s important.

3. Empty the Fridge: This isn’t as drastic as it sounds, but it’s probably the item on my list that takes the most forethought. I don’t wait until the day before a trip to decide what in my fridge will spoil while I’m gone.

I typically start taking my fridge into consideration 2 weeks out. I make sure my grocery shopping that week has very complete meals and I make my final purchase of our fridge staples (milk, eggs, yogurt, etc.)

The week before we leave for a trip, I rarely go grocery shopping. I will pick up some fresh fruit, but even then I usually count and only get enough for the few days leading up to our trip. Our meals tend to get a little wonky- we eat lots of leftovers, and random things that use up whatever is left in our fridge. For example- if we have lots of eggs I will make breakfast for dinner.

My final step is to open the fridge within hours of leaving and toss out anything that will expire while we’re gone. If I’ve done a good job in the weeks/days leading up to our trip, then I rarely have much to do.

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4. VIP Checklist: While my packing almost always has some element of “fail” to it, I do have a very short list of items that I absolutely can’t leave the house without. 
• Children’s “lovies
• Camera
• Cell phone chargers
• Husband’s medicine
• My purse/wallet- and yes, this actually has to be on the list to be checked
5. Walk Through: I always take one final walk through my house before we pull out of the driveway. Inevitably someone turned on a light, flushed a toilet that stuck, forgot to flush a toilet, or walked back into the house with a “lovie” that was previously checked off the VIP packed list.

I always wait until everyone else is in the car and then do my final walk-through. I turn the air conditioning up or the heat down. I make sure all lights are off, unplug small appliances (like my coffee maker and hair dryer) and grab all forgotten items. Lastly, I set our security system. 

 Do you have a routine for leaving your house for a trip? Any additional tips?

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