Home Insurance Quote | Looking both ways before crossing the street, not running with scissors, keeping our hands off of oven burners – those are just a few lessons our parents instilled in us as children to keep us safe.
But how about as adults? No doubt you've got that whole hot burner thing down by now, but what about other habits that can protect you, your loved ones and your stuff from injury or loss?
Here are five great safety habits to adopt right now (and ways to beef up at least one or two you may already be practicing).
1. Leave a (high tech) light on
Today’s home security system is as close as your smartphone. New apps and phone-based home security systems let you do everything from remotely controlling your indoor and outdoor lighting to keeping an eye on Fido while you're at work. (Quite a few doggie cams have also caught burglars in the act.) Share this
And that's just the start of what these high tech systems can do. Smart systems can lock and unlock your doors from across town or across the country. Some will alert you if someone has climbed over a garden wall or when the sound of breaking glass is detected. You can even put sensors on your flat screen TV or other valuables that will send an alarm if they're touched. Costs are variable, but one thing's sure: Nobody's safe from the possibility of a break-in.
Did you know? American Integrity home insurance policyholders can qualify for discounts up to 10 percent of their annual premium for eligible home security systems. Let your insurance agent know if you install a home security system.
Related post: Home Safe Home: Protect Your Home By Installing a Home Security System
2. Know where your water shutoff valves are
A burst pipe or failed water heater can send thousands of gallons of water flowing across your floors in a matter of minutes!
Every sink, toilet and water line in your house has a shutoff valve. There's also a main water line shutoff and a shutoff on your hot water heater. Do you know where all these valves are? If not, it's well worth the time to locate all shutoffs in and around your home and let everybody know where they are (including your house-sitter and your nanny). Don't wait until water is spewing all over the place to figure out how they work. Practice turning them on and off so you'll be ready in an emergency.
Delays in getting the water turned off can be messy and pricey. Water heater failures cost nearly than $4,500 on average after the deductible is paid, according to diastersafety.org. Share this
How your Florida homeowner insurance can help: Water damage from burst pipes or appliances is covered by your Florida homeowners insurance. However, sewer backups, underground line repairs and the failure of built-in systems require special coverage. Learn more about home systems coverage from American Integrity Insurance.
Related post: 5 Questions Every Homeowner Should Ask When Choosing a Deductible
3. Put poisonous attractions out of reach
Laundry detergents, especially the ones in brightly colored single use capsules, should be put on high shelves or in cabinets kids cannot access. In 2014, poison centers received close to 12,000 calls related to laundry packet exposure in children ages five and under.
If you have young ones in the home or grandkids or other little ones visiting, remember to keep all toxic agents including detergents, bleach, and cleansers safely out of reach, most especially any that look like candy! Share this
4. Keep stairs safe
Falls are among the most deadly accidents in the home. One great way to prevent them is to make sure your stairs are safe. Stairways and steps inside and out should be well-lighted and in good repair. Don't have loose rugs near the top, bottom or on the stairs. Install or replace handrails to meet local building codes.
Sounds obvious but: Sometimes the one at risk is you! Don't read, run, carry large loads or talk on the phone while going down stairs -- and use the handrail!
Accident coverage: Personal liability coverage and medical payments are benefits of your homeowner insurance. They protect you in the event of accidental injury to others on your property. Talk to your independent agent to make sure you've got the liability coverage you need.
5. Practice parking lot safety
Parking lots are dangerous places, mostly because we assume they're safer than the open road. What could happen in a parking lot? Plenty. More than 14,000 people are injured every year by being backed over: Nearly 300 die from their injuries. Don't be, or create, a statistic.
- Do a thorough 360-degree check whenever you are pulling in or out of a parking space. Do not rely solely on a backup camera.
- Check nearby cars for people in the driver's seat: They may be ready to pull out too.
- When driving in a lot, go slowly and watch for speeders or people cutting across parking spaces. Always watch for pedestrians, especially children.
- Don't drive distracted in a parking lot. Your car is still in motion, so this is no place for texting or checking messages.
The best place to park to avoid dings on your car? At the end of a row next to an island. The best for security: Under a light. The parking lot with the most accidents? The post office, according to the AAA. Share this
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