Home Safety During the Holidays | Murray Lampert
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Home Safety During the Holidays

The Holidays are times for celebrating, but should also be approached with care. Protect your home and keep your family safe this season by following these tips:

Christmas Lights

• Make sure you use the right kind of lighting, depending where you are using it. Outdoor lighting is made to withstand elements like water and dirt. At the same time, you do not need this kind of power when you use them indoors. Read the packaging carefully and choose the appropriate lights for your decorating tasks.

• Have your heating system inspected now to avoid any problems further into the season. Have fireplaces and chimneys cleaned to avoid one common holiday-season disaster: a chimney fire. If your home features central heating, have ducts cleaned and maintained for optimal air quality. Have furnaces checked. Make sure to keep any flammable decorations a good distance from all heating sources.

• If you have children or pets in the house, be aware of holiday items that could prove dangerous to them. Some common choking hazards include tinsel, ornament hooks, and edible items used as décor, like candy canes. Parents and pet owners should also be aware of nickel batteries, like the ones used in LED candles and other decorations. These small power sources are more than a choking hazard; if swallowed, they can fatally poison users.

• Most homeowners do not have the budget to hire a professional holiday decorator and sometimes this means decorations are not properly hung or put in place. Secure any large decorations that hang, and make sure your Christmas tree is stable in its stand. If you are not sure if you have your decorations safely in pace, err on the side of caution and take them down.

• If you will be out of town, resist the urge to post that information on social media profiles or post photos of your family at the airport or in another state. You may think just your “friends” will see these things, but in reality, strangers often have access too, if they are connected to your friends or followers. Don’t hang a giant, proverbial “we aren’t home” sign through your actions online. Have a neighbor or trusted friend keep an eye on your place and save your holiday travel photos and updates for when you are safely back home.

No one likes to focus on the negative during the holiday season but a little bit of smart thinking can prevent any dangerous situations in your home. Protect your investment and the family that lives in it by being safety-savvy as you celebrate the most wonderful time of the year.

What tips can you add to this list?

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Gregg Cantor, a third generation contractor and owner of Murray Lampert Design, Build, Remodel has successfully remodeled thousands of homes in San Diego County. Gregg's is experienced in all phases of construction and home remodeling including design development, project management, best building practices, code requirements, and contract law. He also writes articles for examiner.com and is co-host of The Home Pro Show Saturday's at 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on A.M.600 KOGO San Diego. Follow Gregg's posts.

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