For most homeowners, their home is one of the biggest investments they will ever make. Additionally, it is a place to be comfortable, sit back and relax. isure believes that in order to get the most out of your home, it is crucial to make sure it feels safe and is protected! Why make such a large investment without the peace of mind? So, whether you live alone or are raising a family, isure is here to help with our list of home safety tips below.
1. Invest in a good security system
Investing in a proper security system for your home is a great way to protect yourself and your loved ones. Unfortunately, the amount of break-ins in Ontario has risen in recent years. A good way to protect yourself from a break-in is to invest in a good security system. There are many different types of security systems for your home, all with their own perks. Home security systems have come a long way in recent years, with many systems coming with phone applications. This is a great way of making sure your home is safe while you are away, both short and long term. On top of this, security cameras can be installed discreetly in places, such as your doorbell. Regardless of the option you choose, having a good security system is a crucial step in home safety and can help you lower your insurance premium.
2. Make sure fire alarms and detectors are working
This home safety tip is another crucial way to keep you, your family and your home safe. Always make sure that your fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are in working condition with fresh batteries and are up-to-date. Although most of these devices will beep or make a noise when they are low battery, it is still important to replace the batteries every couple of months. Most houses in Ontario will already have these detectors installed upon purchasing. If not, you must get multiple throughout your home immediately. Not having smoke and carbon monoxide detectors is against the law in Ontario, and can be a possibly fatal mistake. If you are installing new fire alarms or carbon monoxide detectors, make sure to put them in safe areas. Avoid putting them close to bathrooms, cooking appliances, windows and ceiling fans. In case a fire does occur, you should always have a fire extinguisher handy.
3. Always lock your doors
Although this one may seem obvious, you’d be surprised to know many people don’t lock up regularly! It is important to make sure all make sure your door is locked whenever you leave the house. On top of this, locking when you are home is also very important, especially when you and your family are asleep! To be extra cautious, it is also a good idea to install locks on your windows. As mentioned above, the number of break ins in Ontario has risen. According to SGI Canada, a residential break-in happens every 90 seconds in Canada. More than 80% of these occur during daylight hours as well. This is why it is important to lock up whenever you can!
4. Make your home baby and pet-friendly
If you have a little one or pet in your life, it is important to make sure your home is safe for them! Even if you live alone or without children or pets, a lot of these tips are an overall best practice to ensure your home is safe for anyone who enters. Some things to include when making your home baby and pet-friendly include:
- Covering electrical outlets with safety plugs
- Installing baby-safe gates, especially near stairs
- Install corner protectors on tables, etc.
- Make sure choking hazards, such as small objects, are safely stored away
- Make sure your floor is free of slipping hazards
- Safely store chemicals, cleaning products and batteries out of reach
5. Always have a First Aid Kit handy
Let’s face it, sometimes accidents happen! Having a first aid kit handy at all times is a great way to make sure you are prepared if an accident does occur. This is especially true in the event of a power outage. In order to be completely prepared, you should make sure your first aid kit has all the necessities in order to to treat you and your loved ones in the event of an injury. A proper first aid kit should include the following:
- Emergency telephone numbers
- Sterile pads / rubbing alcohol
- Polysporin for cuts
- Adhesive tape
- Safety pins
- Antiseptic wipes
For additional home safety tips, check out our ultimate winter safety kit for your car and home.
6. Regularly maintain your home
Maintaining your home on a regular basis is super important in keeping your home safe. You should regularly check on your appliances, especially your oven and dryer, to make sure they are in working order. Additionally, make sure you immediately clean up any spills that happen while regularly cleaning your floor to avoid slipping and falling. You should also make sure your HVAC, plumbing, and chimney are regularly cleaned and maintained to avoid any blockages or hazards.
When it comes to the outside of your home, especially in winter months, you should regularly be clearing your driveways and walkways of snow. Do not forget to salt them, as well! In the summer and spring, regularly cut your lawn and make sure your driveway and walkways do not have any cracks where people may trip or fall. It is also a good idea to secure any railings and ensure they are properly installed and maintained.
7. Have a safety plan
No matter what you do to make your home safe, it’s crucial to prepare for the unexpected. In order to do so, you and your family should be informed of what to do in case of an emergency. Identify a safe meeting spot for both inside and outside of your home in the event of an emergency evacuation. Be sure to alert your family of the proper phone numbers to call and direct them to a trusted neighbour for help. To make things easier, you can also take the time to map out your plan. This home safety tip will help ensure that everyone knows what to do in case an emergency does happen.
8. Update your insurance coverage
When accidents do occur, it’s important to have confidence in knowing that you have the proper insurance coverage. A good insurance plan is key when needing to make a claim for something that is damaged or stolen. Insurance will also have your back in the event that an accident or injury occurs within your house or outside of it.
If you are in need of home insurance coverage or wish to switch insurance companies, feel free to contact isure for a quote or if you simply need clarifcation on an existing policy.