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Home improvements can seem daunting, often with a long to-do list followed by a trip to the local hardware store. However, not all home projects have to be complex! 

We’ve compiled a few quick ideas you can do today to make your home safer, prepped, and organized for your busy life. Taking the time to take preventative safety measures around your home can make a huge difference when it matters most. 

Inspect smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

Five minutes can save your life. Test your alarm’s functionality, and switch out the batteries. While you’re at it, schedule a reminder in your calendar to test alarms monthly and replace the battery. The Ontario Office of the Fire Marshal recommends battery changes at least once a year, or when the low battery alarm beeps (whichever comes first!).

Secure area rugs

Due to the make or position of your rug, it may rumple, wrinkle, or roll-up during everyday activities. This poses a huge hazard, especially for seniors in your home, who may trip and fall. Grab some carpet tacks or double-sided tape to ensure your carpet is locked and loaded.

Check your hot water

Very hot water can easily scald children if they turn the faucet a little too far, so it is important to examine the temperature control on your home’s hot water heater. The Canadian Paediatric Society recommends a maximum of 49º C (120º F). You can dial the temperatures down at the heater itself, or install a scald protector at the faucet.

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Organize essential documents

In an emergency, protecting and accessing important documents can be critical. Gather all insurance policies, property information, vehicle ownership documents, personal identification, health information, and any other important documents in one spot  ideally a fire and flood-proof box. Create digital backups using a scanner, and save them on a protected hard drive or secure file management cloud.

Do an outside review

Get outside, and check out your home’s exterior. Note down any trees that are dying, roof shingles or eavestroughs that are loose, downspouts that may flood your basement, and walkway stones that may have shifted. Having a full review of your home  especially after the winter  is a good way to start a spring-cleaning list while also preventing damage to your home. 

Create a home maintenance calendar

Certain upkeep at home may happen monthly, seasonally, or annually. Develop a calendar for the basics, and add to it as you go along. Make sure to include furnace upkeep, gutter cleaning, snow removal, fire extinguisher checks, and more. Taking care of these simple tasks now can prevent a major headache later. 

What do you do to keep your home safe? Share your top tips with us on Twitter

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