Childproof checklist: How to prepare your home for kids

If the stork is on the way, it is important that you take the time to think about every room in the house and how to make it safe
Story by: Dakota Murphey
It's time to baby-proof your house. child, cockapoo, companion dog, dog, dog breed, dog clothes, dog crossbreeds, dog like mammal, puppy, snout, toddler, gray, white
It's time to baby-proof your house.

One thing that all soon-to-be-parents need to think about is childproofing the home. Seemingly innocuous things around the house can present dangers to small children so it is important that you take the time to think about every room in the house and how to make it safe.

Remember that when you are pregnant, having a child who can walk around and make their own decisions can feel like a long time away. But it will come around much sooner than you think, and with a baby in the house you might not be especially motivated to be carrying out home improvement works. That’s why it’s a much better idea to make changes with forethought well before the baby arrives.

Here are some important changes that you can make to your home in order to prepare it for having independent children allowing their curiosity to guide them.

In the kitchen

Obviously it is best to ensure that children are never allowed in the kitchen unsupervised. But you can’t always guarantee that you will be able to overcome a curious child’s intent to discover new things, so it’s right to keep practical steps to take a high risk area like the kitchen as free from potential hazards as possible.

You might keep cleaning products and other chemicals in the kitchen so ensure that they are kept in a locked cupboard or out of reach. Additionally anything sharp – knives, food processor blades, scissors – should be kept in high cabinets or drawers with latches. The same goes for plastic bags, glasses and anything else that can be dangerous for children.

advertisement

It's time to baby-proof your house. child, cockapoo, companion dog, dog, dog breed, dog clothes, dog crossbreeds, dog like mammal, puppy, snout, toddler, gray, white
It's time to baby-proof your house.

Bathroom safety

Children have disproportionately large heads compared to the rest of their body which means that they are top heavy. This puts them at risk with toilets, as they can lean over and fall into the bowl. Small children can drown in just one inch of water so this can be extremely hazardous for them. It’s a good idea, then, to install a toilet lock to keep the lid down.

If you store any medicines in the bathroom you should be aware of this and place them somewhere out of read of children.

Get the garage ready

You might not assume that your child will find their way into the garage, but remember that young children are natural explorers – as soon as the can move around they will be looking for new environments to navigate. That means if you have a garage attached to your home, it needs to be as child-proof as the rest of the house. Garages can be full of hazards for children, so it is important to keep them both inaccessible and out of reach.

The first thing to note is that doors leading to the garage should be kept locked when not in use – this might involve adding a lock to the door, but it will be worth it. Also make sure if you have a garage door that it has a sensor to stop the door from closing on top of someone. While this is good practice generally, it is especially important with a child in the house.

It's time to baby-proof your house. child, cockapoo, companion dog, dog, dog breed, dog clothes, dog crossbreeds, dog like mammal, puppy, snout, toddler, gray, white
It's time to baby-proof your house.

Around the house

There are actually a surprising number of things to think about around the rest of the house – to your eyes they might not seem dangerous, but they can be for children. One of the most obvious is a gate for the stairs, and these can be easily installed. But also remember that every house is different and you may need to check across yours thorough for dangers.

Any furniture with corners or sharp edges may need to be repositioned. Additionally remember that cords for blinds can be a strangulation hazard, so they should be replaced with versions that do not have loops. It can also help to ensure that furniture is never positioned in a way that allows children to climb to high positions from which they can fall.

Finally, remember that it may now be necessary to anchor furniture in place. Tall or heavy pieces of furniture such as bookcases and chests of drawers can be surprisingly easily topped by children putting their weight against them to attempt to get up. This can pull the furniture down on top of them. Securing them to wall removes this possibility.

Feb 15, 2018

Gallery

advertisement

advertisement

advertisement

advertisement

Similar stories

Glenn Hyland MS Trust - Taupo Cycle Challenge

The Glenn Hyland MS Trust was founded in 2006. It’s named after a longterm employee & director of Trends Media Group. The GHT aims to raise money that will benefit MS sufferers, raise awareness... Read more

Position of garage frees up design options for this contemporary new home

Natural materials, strategic facade design and light-filled, open interiors ensure this family home connects to its seaside setting Read more

Upmarket showhome showcases expertise of high-end custom design-and-build company

Natural materials, crafted detailing, quality appliances and smart technologies all feature in this luxury home by Chancellor Construction Read more

Latest books

Home Trends 3402

Placing the kitchen at the heart of a home is not just about creating a convenient zone for easy food preparation and eating meals.Just as important is the way it's seen as an attractive place where family can spend time togeth... Read more

Home Trends 3401

If you're designing a bathroom for a new home or renovating your existing one, you'll quickly discover how involved the process can be.It's not only the challenge of how to fit the different functional zones into the often limi... Read more

Home Trends 3307

While we might all have ideas for the home design that we want, consulting a good architect or designer will also open us up to other design possibilities that we haven't thought of.To help get you started on creating the home ... Read more

Related profiles

Warmup

Established in South Africa in 1983, Warmup has grown into an international company providing quality underfloor heating solutions to homes and businesses worldwide. Read more

Louvretec New Zealand Ltd

Explore Louvretec's signficant range of Opening Louvre Roofs, airfoil shaped Sun Louvre Systems, Window Shutters, Window Blinds, weather board shaped Louvreline Panels and Gates, Fences and Screens and Outdoor Blinds ... Read more