Home safety tips for the hol­i­days

Lesotho Times - - Property -

Stor­age: Be it stor­ing things bet­ter for every­day ac­cess or to keep items out of the way in the long-term, we didn’t plan enough space. It’s some­thing we are re­minded of when we need to pull ev­ery­thing out of the cor­ner cup­board in the kitchen to get some­thing from the back.

I wish we had fac­tored in a rub­bish bin in a cup­board so we aren’t look­ing at our rub­bish, or see­ing all the stor­age boxes in the garage.

We have ac­cess un­der the new house, and will use it for stor­ing our gar­den tools. In­stalling clips on the un­der­side of the floor will give us a place to keep brooms and han­dled equip­ment, such as the rakes and shov­els.

My ad­vice: Con­sult the spe­cial­ists. Ask your de­signer what stor­age so­lu­tions are avail­able to make use of ev­ery bit of space.

Much like built-in wardrobes are de­signed to take care of all your clothes, con­sider what you can put in your kitchen to ac­com­mo­date all your ap­pli­ances, cook­ing gad­gets and even herbs and spices.

Not only does it make the most of space, it saves you time if you can ac­cess things when you need to.

In­stall a pull-down at­tic stair in WITH the hol­i­days just around the cor­ner, home­own­ers are busy buy­ing those last minute gifts, dec­o­rat­ing twhe house and pre­par­ing the home for fam­ily and friends. Sched­ules tend to get more hec­tic as we get closer to the New Year, but nonethe­less, home­own­ers need to al­ways have home safety at the top of their minds. Whether it is hang­ing Christ­mas lights, set­ting up the tree, cook­ing a big hol­i­day din­ner or leav­ing for va­ca­tion, there are im­per­a­tive safety pre­cau­tions we must all take dur­ing the hol­i­days. 1. Turn Christ­mas lights off at night

I know they look so much bet­ter at night and that is the real rea­son you bought Christ­mas lights. How­ever, it is not only ex­pen­sive to leave your Christ­mas lights on at night, but it is also dan­ger­ous for you and your en­tire fam­ily. In ad­di­tion, you need to turn off LEDs: We may have been guilty of choos­ing aes­thet­ics over func­tion when it came to light­ing in our first home.

Hav­ing in­vested a lot of money build­ing the house, it was easy to choose stan­dard light­ing rather than spend more on LED lights.

But we didn’t fac­tor in our time, and the has­sle of chang­ing bulbs more of­ten, let alone the dif­fer­ence we could have made to our elec­tric­ity bills. Cable in­stal­la­tion: Ma­jor struc­tural builds should last more than 15 years — but tech­nol­ogy is mov­ing faster than that. When we built in Whangarei, ev­ery­one was talk­ing about Wi-fi and we en­sured we had com­puter area where we could see what the kids were do­ing.

If we were in the same house now, the ca­bling wouldn’t be enough for the lights you put on your tree as well. The lights can short at any time and start a fire. While sleep­ing com­fort­ably, there is no telling how much the fire could spread be­fore you leave the home. 2. Don’t over­bur­den elec­tri­cal sock­ets

I would like to re­it­er­ate that De­cem­ber is the dead­li­est month for elec­tri­cal fires. With Christ­mas lights il­lu­mi­nat­ing, ex­tra kitchen ap­pli­ances op­er­at­ing and most likely, a bunch of new gad­gets en­ter­ing your house, home­own­ers tend to over­bur­den their elec­tri­cal sock­ets. You should never plug in more than one ex­ten­sion cord or power strip per socket.

We un­der­stand that you need to have din­ner ready or want to use all the Christ­mas lights you have lay­ing around in the base­ment, but elec­tri­cal fires do hap­pen and you are in­creas­ing your odds quite a bit by plug­ging in mul­ti­ple power strips into one out­let. If the power strip is hot or you start to smell a weird odor around the out­let, turn all elec­tron­ics off and cut back on the out­let’s us­age. 3. Pre­pare home for va­ca­tion

As is the case ev­ery year, many home­own­ers visit loved ones or go on va­ca­tion dur­ing the hol­i­days. Even though you are not home, your house is still at risk.

First and fore­most, ask a neigh­bour to check in once and awhile. In case some­one breaks in, some­one needs to alert the po­lice ASAP. Speak­ing of the po­lice, no­tify them of your va­ca­tion plans. They should check in once a day if they know you are gone. Fi­nally, pause your mail and news­pa­per. If th­ese start to stack up on your yard or mail­box, you are pretty much broad­cast­ing your vacancy for the hol­i­days. Bur­glars love this.

— Im­provenet

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