The New Year is often viewed as a clean slate, a time to finally accomplish the goals you have yet to complete. From losing weight and starting a family, to falling in love or traveling, no one is left without a New Year’s resolution. This being said, often times our ideas of what should change are too broad. It is important to make your New Year’s resolution realistic and attainable so that you don’t end up ditching them before your New Year has even started! Consider kicking off 2014 by improving the safety of your home. Here is a list of 14 home-safety resolutions that will help you start the New Year right!
1. Increase Outdoor Lighting
Install additional lighting to ensure walkways and other areas like stairs are well lit. This will help to prevent accidents and discourage suspicious activity.
2. Test Smoke Alarms
Take some time to test all of the smoke alarms in your home. Replace batteries and be sure each one is working properly. Assign one member of your household the duty of performing this check again in 6 to 12 months.
3. Install Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Carbon monoxide is odorless, colorless, and deadly. Carbon monoxide alarms can detect levels of carbon monoxide in the air; potentially saving lives.
4. Post Emergency Phone Numbers
Create a master list of important emergency phone numbers and save them to your cell phone. As a backup, print a few hard copies of the list as well. This way, you and your family will easily be able to reach emergency contacts.
5. Secure Chemicals and Medicines
If you have small children or live in an area with natural disasters such as storms and cyclones, it’s important to secure chemicals and medicines in your home. Make it a priority to store chemicals and medicines out of children’s reach and in spill-proof containers. Spilled chemicals can result in slips and falls or even fire.
6. Test Your Home
Mould, lead paint, and other toxic chemicals could already be in the air in your home. Order a home inspection to ensure that your home is free of dangerous fumes.
7. Lock Your Doors
Always keep your door locked whether you are home or away. Even if you are visiting the neighbor next door and will be “right back,” don’t take a chance.
8. Install the Latest Pet Doors
Want your pet to start the New Year right too? Maintain access for your pets while protecting your home at the same time with the latest in pet door technology. Pet doors are now designed to provide selective access, granting access to your pets only through the use of their existing microchip. Even a large size dog door for your Labrador is a far better alternative than leaving your door ajar, and most dog doors are lockable. These special doors can be installed for you making this resolution easy to cross off your list!
9. Know Your Neighbors
Introduce yourself to your neighbors, if you haven’t already. If your neighbors know who normally goes in and out of your home, they’re more likely to notice if a suspicious person should show up.
10. Change Your Front Door
If your front door has a mail slot, you may want to consider replacing it.
Burglars often use these slots to slide in tiny cameras, to get a good look at your stuff.
11. Dust More Often
Dust can exacerbate allergies and carry germs. Try to dust countertops and other dust prone areas at least twice a week.
12. Close the Curtains
Especially when you are out of the house, keep your curtains closed. If a burglar can’t see your expensive computer, jewelry, and flat screen TV, they’ll be less likely to break in.
13. Discuss Safety with Your Family
Arrange a time to discuss safety with your family. Evaluate your home for potential safety hazards and work together to correct them. Assign regular maintenance tasks to each family member. Discuss different safety issues such as a break-in or natural disaster and what the emergency plan would be for each.
14. Pick Up Your Mail and Newspapers Promptly
Burglars and robbers look for signs that families are not at home. When a burglar sees stacked newspapers, this can be seen as a sign that you haven’t been home for a while. If you are planning to go on vacation, ask a neighbor to pick up your mail and newspapers or arrange for a temporary hold on incoming mail.
New Year’s resolutions are a promise we make ourselves in order to help improve our life in the coming year. Regardless of the resolution, our goals must be concrete and practicable. From installing a pet door for your furry friend to testing your smoke alarms, creating a safe home environment can be the first step towards an improved New Year! Now it’s time for you to set your goals, so why not make safety a priority this year!