Public Safety

Going Out of Town? Sign-up for Free Vacation Checks

Video by José Eli Villanueva
The Sheriff Senior Volunteer Team conducts free vacation checks on your home and will also check on older adults who live alone.

Wish someone could keep an eye on your home while you’re away for the holidays? The Sheriff’s Department offers free vacation checks. If you live in the County’s unincorporated area or one of the Sheriff’s Department contract cities, you can sign up to have the Sheriff Senior Volunteer Team stop by your home.

The Senior Volunteer Team has 700 members and they check homes throughout the year. If you sign up for a vacation check, the team will stop by Monday through Friday to see whether anything looks amiss. They’ll check to make sure doors, windows and the garage are locked. They may also hide newspapers and/or packages inside a side yard fence or on a back patio.

If the patrol sees anything suspicious or unusual, like broken windows or open doors, they’ll call a deputy to investigate.

To sign up for the service, visit sdsheriff.net. Click on the Vacation Home Checks box to get to the form and then take it into your nearest Sheriff’s station or substation to verify your identification.

Here are some additional tips from Sheriff’s Crime Prevention Specialists on how to lessen your chances of becoming a victim while on vacation:

  • Lock up your home and activate your alarm.
  • Don’t share your plans on social media.
  • Buy a timer for your lights and set them in a random pattern
  • Hold the delivery of your mail and newspaper or ask a trusted friend to pick them up for you.
  • Ask a neighbor to occasionally park in your driveway.
  • Watch this San Diego Sheriff’s Department video to learn more about free vacation checks.
  • Crime prevention specialists also remind people who are staying home to stay alert and maintain the security around the house.
Tracy DeFore is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact