by Cheryl DeBartolo Direct from the Designers’ Contributing Writer
You've picked out your costume, you have the candy bowl ready, and you are excited for the sun to set on October 31st so you can begin your Halloween fun. But while you are planning a fun filled ghoulish night it is important to remember to keep your home safe whether you are hosting the party or taking out your children for neighborhood trick-or-treating. Taking a little time to prepare for what could happen on Halloween will prevent headaches later. Here are a few tips on how to make your Halloween safe and enjoyable for everyone involved.
Don’t Turn Your Yard into an Obstacle Course
It’s tempting to fill your yard with lots of decorations for the fall holiday. While a graveyard or a scarecrow might be a fun attraction for trick-or-treaters, make sure you keep a clear pathway or walkway for visitors to get to your house. Illuminating your walkway with path lights will also make sure that your guests avoid any stumbles or falls.
Forego the Use of Candles
One of the biggest hazards, particularly on Halloween is the risk of fire. Since many Halloween decorations are flammable a tipped over candle or luminary can easily ignite your favorite decorations.
Instead of using a traditional candle, consider substituting them with flameless candles. Flameless candles give you the same effect without the risk of injury. You can even use them in your jack-o-lanterns.
Lock Up Your Pets
Even the friendliness animal can get a little unpredictable when oddly dressed folks keep coming to your door. Try to keep your pets confined to the rear portion of the house. You could use a baby gate to keep your pets in one room, or if you have a dutch door you'd be able to hand out candy over the top while keeping Fido inside.
Check Your Security Systems and Fire Alarm
Halloween is also a popular night for pranks. Regardless of whether or not you will be home for the evening you should make sure your fire and smoke alarms work and are connected to the authorities.
Installing a home security system will help deter burglars, who are less likely to approach a well-lit home. You can also use motion activated lights that will alert you or neighbors to outside activity.
Additionally, smoke alarms provide peace-of-mind and a vital safety link. Should a fire start accidentally you can take quick action if you are home and if not, the fire department would be able to respond more quickly.
Check Your Homeowner’s Insurance
If you are planning an event at your house for Halloween, you might want to check with your insurance provider. In the unlikely event of a problem, you don't want to discover that you're not covered after the fact. So call your insurance agent and take a look at your policy and make sure your liability coverage is adequate.
Of course these tips don’t just benefit your home on Halloween, but all year-round. Though Halloween is unfortunately a popular night for burglars and vandals, the fact is that things could happen anytime so investing in some functional outdoor lighting and keeping security and fire alarms systems in good standing is a good idea in any event. In the meantime, following these tips will help ensure that your Halloween is a safe and happy one full of treats instead of tricks.