Home Safety Checklist

Keeping your family safe doesn’t mean getting all crazy-paranoid — hiring armed bodyguards or keeping rabid pit-bulls as pets. Just be smart, use some common sense, and follow this step-by-step checklist — your family will be well protected against injury, burglary, or attack.

Avoiding Household Accidents

Checkmark-Iconfasten carpet edges and tuck cords away to avoid falls

Xmark-Iconlock poisonous items away where children can’t reach them

Checkmark-Iconput non-skid mats or appliqus in tubs and showers

Xmark-Iconalways clearly label household cleaners and chemicals

Checkmark-Iconinstall at least one smoke detector on every floor

Xmark-Iconkeep several fire extinguishers throughout the house

Checkmark-Iconuse shatter-proof glass on all windows and shower doors

Xmark-Iconuse ground-fault circuit interrupters with your outlets

Checkmark-Iconput a fence around your pool to keep children out

Xmark-Iconmake sure all stairways have adequate lighting and handrails

Checkmark-Iconwipe up spills immediately and salt walkways when it freezes

Xmark-Iconuse night lights to help prevent falls

Burglar-Proofing Your Home

Checkmark-Iconlock doors and windows at night and when you aren’t home

Xmark-Iconinstall dead-bolts and pick-proof locks

Checkmark-Iconput in motion-detector lights around your house

Xmark-Iconinstall window bars or a home alarm system

Checkmark-Iconcreate a barrier under windows with prickly shrubs

Xmark-Iconmake sure your home exterior is well lit with no deep shadows

Checkmark-Iconput a piece of wood in the track of sliding windows and doors

Xmark-Iconjoin your local neighborhood watch

Checkmark-Iconset timers for lights, TV, and radio when you aren’t home

Xmark-Iconkeep expensive items where they can’t be seen from outside

Checkmark-Iconhide valuables in an unusual places — freezer, false wall outlet, bathroom

Xmark-Iconconsider buying a home safe for smaller valuables

Checkmark-Icondon’t hide keys in a planter or under the door mat

Xmark-Iconlet someone you trust know when you will be gone

Checkmark-Iconsuspend your subscription or have your newspapers picked up if you’re not home

Xmark-Icondon’t leave a note for visitors — leave a voice message

Checkmark-Iconhave a neighbor accept package deliveries when you go on vacation

Xmark-Iconinform the police and neighborhood watch when you will be gone

Checkmark-Iconleave a car parked in your driveway when you’re out of town

Xmark-Iconhire a house sitter to stay in your home when you’re out of town

Childproofing Your House

Checkmark-Iconget down on your hands and knees to detect child-sized hazards

Xmark-Iconplace outlet covers on all empty electrical outlets

Checkmark-Iconshorten drape and blind cords when not in use

Xmark-Iconinstall window guards or locks

Checkmark-Iconuse gates to keep kids out of any “off-limits” rooms

Xmark-Iconinstall gates at the top and bottom of stairs

Checkmark-Iconstore medicines in childproof containers and in locked cabinets

Xmark-Iconput childproof locks on cabinets

Checkmark-Iconclose and lock each toilet lid

Xmark-Iconput a fence around your yard to keep kids out of the road

Checkmark-Iconplug up openings of 3+ inches that could trap a child’s neck

Personal Safety

Xmark-Iconfind out who it is before opening the front door

Checkmark-Iconmake sure you have a wide-angle peephole

Xmark-Iconhave your keys our before you approach your front door

Checkmark-Iconstay alert to your surroundings when entering your home

Xmark-Iconbe particularly wary when coming home alone or at night

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Ramona Creel is an award-winning 15-year veteran organizer and member of the National Association Of Professional Organizers. As well as having birthed “The A-To-Z Of Getting Organized,” Ramona is also the author of “The Professional Organizer’s Bible: A Slightly Irreverent And Completely Unorthodox Guide For Turning Clutter Into A Career”—and the creator of more than 200 “quick-start” business tools and templates for use by productivity professionals. She writes seven different blogs, has worked with hundreds of clients, and has delivered scores of presentations on getting organized. Ramona resides on the roads of America as a full-time RVer—living and working in a 29-foot Airstream. Learn more at and RamonaCreel.com.

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