Keep Kids Safe After Your Big Move with a Home Safety Checklist

With all of the hustle and bustle that surrounds a move, settling into your new home becomes the top priority

Focusing on unpacking, cleaning, organizing and trying to squeeze in time to relax can be overwhelming to say the least! However, it’s important to remember that your new home is unfamiliar territory for your family, and having safety plans and best practices in place in the first few days is critical.  Follow this home safety checklist at your new home!

Emergency Safety

  • Keep your new address written and posted somewhere clear, on every floor.
  • Ensure children know where working phones are located and accessible without a lock code
  • Post local emergency numbers, even if they haven’t changed – the different surroundings can lead to confusion in an emergency
  • Meet the neighbors or ensure kids know where to go in an emergency
  • Unpack your first aid kit
  • Obtain a sticker or ID from local emergency departments to account for each member of your family and any pets

Home Security

  • Make sure all windows and doors lock, and that keys are accessible
  • Install window lock guards for young children to prevent the window from slamming or opening
  • Use safety bars on windows and sliders
  • If you have an alarm – update service details to activate your system.  Walk through proper operation with the service provider, ensuring all access points are covered and your family understands as well as hears the sound of the alarm itself

Fire Safety

  • Check fire and smoke detectors, replace unit or batteries if necessary
  • Check for or unpack fire extinguishers, one per floor
  • Install or check carbon monoxide detectors
  • Demonstrate the sound of all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors for your family
  • Plan a fire escape route with at least 2 meeting points
  • Place fire ladders in any upstairs rooms
  • Do a check of all appliances and outlets for any red flags
  • Spend time with your family reviewing emergency plans

Unpacking Safety

  • Ensure sharp utensils are out of reach – knives, scissors, etc.
  • Keep flashlights handy on all floors
  • Make sure cleaning products, makeup, alcohol, etc are all out of reach
  • Make sure medications are put away and not accessible to children
  • Proper storage of firearms, etc.
  • Double check assembly of cribs, beds, play pens and other child furniture if you did not assemble yourself
  • Restrict access or install mounts for dressers, book cases, TVs and stands
  • Restrict access to stacks of boxes and other household items that could potentially topple

General Safety

  • Check hand rails, light switches and carpet near staircases to prevent falls
  • Check for working exterior lighting
  • Locate water and gas shut off valves
  • Use cupboard closures, stove locks and dishwasher locks for young children
  • Secure cords to blinds and curtains
  • Check hot water thermostat and adjust if necessary

Use this home safety checklist as a guide in your new home, and be sure to refer to local emergency municipality best practices for fire, emergency and general safety instructions.  Make your new house a home, ensuring safety for your entire family!

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