'Tis the season to be jolly! And safe.
The holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year. While preparing for family gatherings, decorating your home and lawn and traveling to events, it is easy to forget incorporating safety.
Thankfully, there are simple ways to make sure you and your valuables are secure.
1. Fire safety
You fire up your chimney and some candles and turn on your Christmas lights to cozy up your home. However, did you know that the peak time for home candle fires occur in December? Make sure to place candles where children and pets can’t reach them and far from nearby objects, such as curtains, trees and decorations. If you have a fireplace in your home, check and clean your chimney at least once a year. Also, check your Christmas lights for any loose wires and don’t overload your electrical outlet. Most importantly, make sure you are protected against house fires through your home insurance.
2. Protect your tree
Yearly, Christmas trees are responsible for approximately $13 million in property damage. Don’t let your Christmas tree cost you a fortune. Practice safe Christmas tree habits, such as picking out fresh trees, watering your tree and making sure it is not near a heat source.
3. Keep your valuables safe
Thieves know the holiday season fills homes with new and expensive valuables, such as TV's, computers, and jewelry. The hustle and bustle of gift shopping and traveling makes it easier for robbers to take advantage. To avoid theft, customize your package delivery with the shipping carrier or ask your neighbors to pick up your mail and packages. Thieves are also aware there will be plenty of empty homes while homeowners are traveling. Setting up your Christmas lights with an automatic timer may give the appearance of an occupied home. Make sure to lock up your home, vehicles and storage at all times and check with your home and automobile insurer for theft protection. In addition, turn on all security equipment, such as surveillance cameras and alarms.
4. Protect you and your guests
As you try to prevent injuries in your home for your family, did you know you may be held accountable for injured guests visiting you as well? An increase of guests in your home during the holidays will consequently increase the chances of home accidents. Confirm with your homeowners insurance that you have liability protection and medical coverage against guest injury.
5. Practice safe driving
The holiday season is the time for celebration, not paying for car accidents. Each year, thousands of Americans choose to drive to visit their families. In addition, shopping malls, businesses and highways will experience an increase of vehicle and pedestrian traffic. This December, make the effort of being more aware of your surroundings while driving to ensure everyone arrives home safely this holiday season. For security, talk to your independent agent to discuss your auto insurance needs.
If you need help preparing for holiday safety, feel free to contact Sturdevant-Beach and Associates. Our team is readily available to help you and answer any questions. Most importantly, we wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season!