School is out and many families plan a vacation over the summer. In the excitement, it’s often overlooked how important it is to clean and organize your home before you set out on your vacation. Here are four of the most essential tips to help you to prepare your home before a vacation.

Clean Out Your Refrigerator

How long you’ll be gone will determine which perishable items in your refrigerator should be cleaned out before you leave. If your vacation only takes you away for a couple of days to a week, the items that are most likely to go bad during that time are milk, vegetables, bagged salads, and other dairy products such as yogurt and cottage cheese. If your vacation has you leaving your home for more than a week, there are other refrigerated items that may need to be used, thrown out, or given away to prepare your home before a vacation. These items include thawed meats, bread items, fruits, cheese, and eggs.

Remove Your Garbage to Prepare Your Home Before a Vacation

One thing you do not want to come home to when you return from your relaxing vacation is a smelly home with flies and insects that were attracted to the garbage that you left sitting in your kitchen. The night before you leave for your vacation, be sure to visit each room in your home and collect all of the trash to prepare your home before a vacation. Once all of the trash in your home is collected, tie it up and toss it outside in one of your large garbage cans. This will ensure that there’s no decaying material left to stink up your home or to attract insects during your absence. It’s also a good idea to put your trash cans out on the curb so they can be collected by your local sanitation workers while you’re gone.

Save On Your Energy Bill

While you’re away on vacation, appliances in your home will still be drawing electricity and running up your bill even though you’re not home to use them. A great way to prepare your house before a vacation and to save money on your monthly energy bill is to unplug all of your electronic devices from the wall or from surge protectors. This not only saves you money on your energy bill, it will also help to protect your electronic devices from damage should an unexpected power surge occur in your home while you’re away. Unplug every electronic device in your home except necessary ones such as your refrigerator, freezer, some lights, and your home security system.

Prepare Your Pets

While some people decide to take their pets with them when they leave for vacation, this isn’t always a viable option. If you find yourself getting ready to take a vacation where your beloved pets are unable to tag along, begin preparations for their care and boarding during your absence. Making arrangements for friends, neighbors, or family members to care for your pets while you’re on vacation is a very common first option for most pet owners. If circumstances prevent you from being able to find a trusted acquaintance to care for your pet, there are pet boarding services available as well as professional pet sitters that can be hired through reputable websites like

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