Home Safety Tips to Protect Your Family

Table of Contents

We all know people we care about who have been injured at home because of unsafe conditions. What a terrible experience for any family to have an overloaded power strip spark and catch the whole house on fire. Or for an elderly family member to trip on a rug and fall and end up with multiple surgeries.

It’s the perfect time to think about safety around your home. We’d like to help you avoid burns, electric shock, and falls. We also want you and your family to be healthy and avoid fires, injuries, and accidental poisonings.

Here are some tips to help you keep your home, loved ones, and yourself safe.

Burn prevention

  • Keep the water heater set at 120F
  • Always keep oven mitts by the oven
  • Keep young children and pets away when you are handling hot liquids
  • Avoid using a tablecloth around young children
  • Turn pot handles inward so they don’t hang out over the floor when cooking
  • Don’t allow young children to cook or handle fire or hot liquids 

Electric shock prevention

  • Don’t use electrical devices near water
  • Place child safety covers over unused outlets
  • Be sure to pet-proof cords 
  • Teach children not to touch electrical outlets or cords
  • Stay indoors and away from electrical devices during thunderstorms
  • Don’t touch a power line that falls
outdoor steps to a colorful apartment
Photo by Aneta Pawlik on Unsplash

Fall prevention


  • Install non-slip treads
  • Install sturdy railings on both sides
  • Paint the edge of each step a contrasting color or use colored tape
  • Install LED lighting along the stairs


  • Tack down any loose or wrinkled areas
  • Replace with hard flooring


  • Use non-slip backings or mats underneath


  • Use a non-slip tub mat
  • Install a bathtub grab bar


  • Install lights along the steps and along the baseboard in hallway
  • Install light switches and lighting at top and bottom of stairs
  • Install motion-sensing lights at all entryways
House fire with firefighter in grass with water hose
Photo by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

Fire prevention

Electrical issues

  • Extension cords
    • Check for fraying
    • Don’t use them long-term
    • Don’t run them under rugs
    • Replace after a few years or if any problems or recalls
  • Surge protectors and power strips
    • Check for warmth, sparking, or singed outlets or devices, and stop using any that show signs of danger
    • Don’t use any surge protector or power strip that has caused the circuit breaker to trip
    • Replace every few years or after they have reached their maximum surge load
  • Use the correct wattage for light bulbs
  • Don’t overload outlets, power strips, or surge protectors
  • Don’t piggyback power strips or surge protectors
  • Circuit breaker
  • Feel all the outlets in the home and check for warmth (which means something is wrong and needs attention ASAP)
  • Clean the dryer vent that goes from your dryer to the outside twice per year

Cooking safety

  • Don’t store flammable items on the stove
  • Don’t cook when sleepy or intoxicated
  • Don’t store flammable items on top of the stove
  • Use a timer when cooking and stay nearby
Red fire extinguisher with blueish background
Photo by Piotr Chrobot on Unsplash

Home maintenance

  • Keep proper fire extinguishers and replace them when recommended
  • Clean the dryer vent as directed
  • Have chimneys inspected and cleaned
  • Test smoke alarms/carbon monoxide alarms every month
  • Have an escape plan in case of fire with at least two ways to get out of each room
  • Purchase a rescue ladder if in a two-story home

Safe storage

  • Keep flammable liquids away from heat
  • Store matches and lighters out of reach of children
  • Don’t allow anything to be within 3 feet of a fireplace or space heater

Other fire risks

  • Use flameless candles
  • Don’t allow smoking in the home
  • Don’t use electric lights outside for holiday decorations that are marked “for indoor use only”
Green painted wooden door with brushed nickel door handle and deadbolt lock
Photo by Paweł Czerwiński on Unsplash

Home security


  • Install a deadbolt lock on every door
  • Install home security doors
  • Either don’t use pet doors or only use electronic ones


  • Install motion-sensing lights around your home
  • Keep lights on timers inside home if you are away

Home security systems

  • Place a security sign in the front yard
  • Install a home security system 
  • Use home security cameras

Deter intruders

  • Keep shrubbery trimmed low away from home
  • Use a keyless entry instead of keeping a spare key outside
  • Own a dog

Injury prevention

  • Install safety gates for children/pets
  • Keep sharp knives and tools out of reach of children
  • Store guns in a locked gun safe
  • Install a fence around the pool
  • Consider getting rid of trampolines
  • Always follow safety instructions for power tools
  • Keep children away from dangerous tools
3 Prescription bottles with different pills in them without labels
Photo by Gabrielle Rocha Rios on Unsplash

Poisoning prevention


  • Store with childproof caps if children will be around or lock daily pill minders away
  • Lock up narcotics and habit-forming medications so that other people can’t access them

Cleaning products 

  • Keep all cleaning products out of reach of children

Poison control hotline number (1-800-222-2222)

  • Add to everyone’s cell phone 
  • Post beside any house phones 

If you need help with installing a security system, motion-detecting lights, security doors, new locks, or safety equipment around your home, call a handyman business.

A handyman can also help with routine home maintenance, home repairs, punch lists (to get your home ready to sell) and other needs to help get your home in top shape.

Are you looking for a handyman near you in the Columbia, SC area?

At Punch List Pros, we’d love to help you beef up your home security and safety. 

We are licensed and insured and can help with home repairs, home improvements, your honey-do list, and many other types of jobs around your home inside and outside. We can even help you get your house ready to sell.

We pride ourselves in providing great customer service for our clients on all the handyman work we do!

Contact us today to make your home safer!


For Senior Adults, Using a Handyman Can Prevent Dangerous Falls

The Hidden Health Hazards of Clutter

Fall prevention programs

National Safety Council Home Safety Tips

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