Thanksgiving is over and the holiday season is in full swing.
You’ve been imaging all the ways you can decorate your new home to celebrate the season, so to keep you and your family safe in your new place we’ve gathered this list of dangerous decorating choices to avoid:
- Don’t over crowd your space. In the same way that you plan which furniture to fit into a room, make sure your decorations fit in the space you have planned for them.
- Make sure there is space between your tree and the wall.
- Keep trees and other décor away from fireplaces.
- Likewise, keep decorations away from heaters and vents.
- Do not overload your circuits. That means not plugging all the lights into one lightweight extension cord. Spread your electrical use among several circuits if you can.
- Hide cords along walls or under furniture so that visitors and family don’t trip over them.
- If you have small children or pets, consider putting a fence or barrier around the tree so that curious little ones or anxious pets cannot tip the tree over.
- Avoid using decorations that look like candy if small children might mistake them for the real thing.
- Keep candles away from greenery or other flammables.
- Don’t use a space heater near where wrapping paper might be discarded.
- If you’re using a ladder to hang lights or decorate the tree, have a second person there to hold the ladder steady.
- When hanging lights from gutters, use gutter clips to avoid damaging your gutters or nailing holes in your roof that might later cause leaks.
- Use outdoor rated extension cords, timers and decorations outdoors.
- Avoid wrapping handrails with prickly decorations. Visitors to your home need to be able to use the railing for safely.
- If you have a fresh tree or plants, keep them watered so that they don’t become over dry and turn into a fire hazard.
- Keep fragile ornaments far out of reach of little hands.
- If using a menorah or kinara in a window, make certain window coverings are tied out of the way. Protect furniture from candle drips and keep flame at least 12 inches away from anything flammable.
- Make sure that older family members keep medicines put away out of sight of smaller family members.
- Keep holiday plants (especially those with bright berries or that might be poisonous) out of reach of pets and children alike.
Since you are new to the neighborhood, if you plan to have lots of guests, check with your new neighbors to make sure they know who belongs and who doesn’t. Make sure your guests have plenty of room to park on cleaned driveways and have dry sidewalks to walk on.
Most of all, have a wonderful holiday.