January is National Baby Safety Month! Whether you’re looking to buy a home or build a home, there’s one item that tops both lists: a safe, healthy place for your children to live, learn, and play. Here are new construction and home design musts for child safety.
Home Design ‘Musts’ for Child Safety
- Well-Built and Structurally Sound. A well-built, structurally-sound home will naturally be safer for your family. When buying a home, hire a home inspector to check for these issues. If you’re building a new home, a reputable builder will ensure that your home meets these criteria.
- Drainage. Proper drainage under your home not only prevents damage from water seepage and flooding, but it also protects your family’s health and safety by preventing toxic mold growth. If your building a new home, make sure a qualified architect has approved the site plan and that access water flows away from the home.
- Wiring. Most wiring is hidden out of sight and one of the most difficult hazards to identity, especially in older homes. New construction homes should have the wiring inspected before the builder closes up the walls.
- Outdated, Toxic Materials. New homes should be free of outdated toxic materials. However, this is a real hazard of buying older homes. Ask your real estate agent if these materials were used or have been removed entirely.
It’s no surprise that one of the most common accidental injuries among children is a fall. Certain types of flooring may be better for children learning to use their growing bodies. Use carpet in areas that your children will use the most. Incorporate rugs into rooms with hard floor surfaces. However, rugs can be a tripping hazard. Ovoid throw rugs that could fold underfoot or rugs with curled edges. Secure rugs to the floor with a rubber rug mat to prevent unwanted movement.
Doors & Windows
Children love to explore, which makes them drawn to windows and doors. Ask your builder to include these built-in safety features on your doors and windows.
- Locks. Doors and windows are used more than any other feature in the home. Use childproof doors and window locks in areas where your children aren’t under constant supervision such as bedrooms and playrooms.
- Screens. Invest in window guards if your child’s bedroom or playroom isn’t on the main level. Unlike screens, these guards won’t give way under your child’s weight.
- Door Alarms. Set your alarm system to chime when a window opens to alert you. Or, install door and window alarms separately.
- Dutch Doors. Dutch doors are built-in, locking half doors at the top and base of the stairs and are more secure than after-market safety gates.
Children are brilliant escape artists! There’s no way to guarantee they won’t accidentally hurt themselves at home. However, incorporating these home design ‘musts’ for child safety lessens the likelihood of serious injury or fatality, making them well worth the investment.
What other ways did you add child safety measures to your home design? Let us know in the comments
Built by the Finest Craftsman
Are you looking for a new home in Bentonville? Every one of Scissortail’s beautiful luxury homes is carefully and skillfully constructed by some of the finest builders in Northwest Arkansas. Our eight exclusive builders have decades of experience and are known throughout NWA for excellence and attention to detail in the home building business.