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A Home Safety Checklist - How Trusting Are You?
Your home safety checklist used daily, can very easily become your routine. But have you analysed what you do, to see how safe you leave your home on a daily basis? Are you more meticulous if you are closing up a rental property for the last time? What about if your selling your home or going on Holiday?
When talking to different people, it has become more apparent that the act of physically leaving a building for some duration or forever, will bring out the stronger vigilance in ourselves. If we are just nipping to the corner shop, it is then that any home safety tips seem to go out the window (left ajar of course!).
Here I aim to document the routines of my family, how we manage our home safety. A checklist or two make this easier to manage, so I have split the listing to incorporate our Daily Home Safety Checklist and our Holiday Home Safety Checklist.
DAILY HOME SAFETY CHECKLIST
You may well take this as given, subconsciously always doing the following. However if you are home alone for the first time, or locking up someone else's house, you may find that you are actually more thorough!
- Close all doors and windows, and lock them - yes the most obvious, but not always done. Windows, especially smaller windows, people can and will get complacent about. Do you leave on open for the cat to come in and out of? Not a wise solution, if a cat can get through then so can someone.
- UPVC doors - these are becoming more and more common place, and yes, I have one on my house. My own doesn't have a handle on the outside, whereas some do, but a neighbour of mine suffered a break in, with this door offering little or no obstacle. Not wishing to offer tactics to those of less scruples, I do however strongly suggest keeping this sort of door locked, with a key, despite where you live.
- Key Storage location - Make sure your keys are not stored near your front door. I know your thinking "but this is the most obvious place to put them". However burglars and similar don't really have any scruples, and really aren't going to think twice, about hooking your keys through the letterbox, to then let themselves in.
- Sheds, Outhouses, Stables etc - A treasure trove of you goodies no doubt. Perhaps these are your workhouses, or provide you somewhere to store your houses excesses. Either way, ensure that you have appropriate security on these buildings, appropriate to it's contents. Unless you have specifically stated, these structures may not be covered by your household insurance, so think before stashing.
- Flat roofs - typical on single storey extensions, however don't take them for granted! They require maintenance, and frequent re-sealing, but do you check them at other points in the year? Don't think an upstairs window is "safe" to leave ajar if you have a flat roof below it.
- Keys to Gas, Electric, Water meters - Make sure these cupboards or meters are kept safe and secure. If these are tampered with the cost will fall to you.
The next to have a good look at, as you leave your property would be of course your perimeter boundaries. Are they looking safe and secure? You haven't had fence panels vandalised or there are no gaps in the hedges? Making sure everything is correct as you leave, will mean on your return, you will spot things straight away - however do make a point of looking and checking.
HOLIDAY HOME SAFETY CHECKLIST
Adopting your daily routine may take a little time to adapt, though it is achievable. What about when you go on holiday? Will you look for the same things? Should you considered anything different, safety after all is safety isn't it? Well for my husband and I, we go that extra mile when preparing to be away from home for any length of time.
I have therefore called this our holiday home safety checklist where we ensure the following occurs before we leave the house:
- Room by Room - Go through a each room of the house, and ensure the following things are done:
- Windows all closed, or locked vented
- Ensure all blinds / nets are down
- Close curtains
- Put any dustcovers over your furniture
Other things to check:
- Safe - have you got all your travel documents? Make sure you have locked and secure your safe Medicines - ensure that you have everything that you require for your vacation, including any routine medication. Close, and lock your cabinet / box.
- Money and Valuables - Make sure these are safe. Any money should be located in the safe unless this is to be taken with you. Any other valuables make sure you know where they are - if you have moved them, write yourself a note and take it away or leave it in the safe.
- PC's, laptops and other electricals - make sure these are all powered down, and turned off. Make sure they are not viewable from the window.
- Sheds and Outhouses - often a treasure trove of bits and bobs. But what is your security like on it? Close any windows, and lock up. Observe your routine for valuables in here too. Don't leave things on view from the window.
- Garage and vehicle security - are you leaving one car at home? Make sure it is safe. Parked responsibly, any theft prevention activated and that there is nothing left in sight on the inside of the vehicle.
There are many sorts of home safety checklists that are available, finding them to suit your needs are key.
For those with small children, you may like to consider reviewing what your-checklist.com has to say about babyproofing.
Then there are the substances that are held in your home, do you keep them safe and secure, you may like to view our House First Aid Kit just to double check. Then finally, perhaps you are finding that you are needing to move on, changing home is a big up heaveal. What do you consider about houses when you move home, take a look here.