When it comes to remodeling, safety is a priority. Power tools, piles of dirt, plastic covers, holes and more beckon to children as their next play area, and pets are simply curious what that new thing is. It can be very easy to turn your back for one second and have something go wrong, so here are some tips to keep your family safe during your next remodel.
1. Talk to Your Contractor and Family
Talk to your contractor and establish the following:
- Work hours
- Who will be in your house
- When they’ll be in your house
- Who will have access
- Make sure they take their tools and materials at the end of the day
In return, tell the contractor how many children there are, who is mischief prone and if you have any pets. Introduce your whole family to the contractors, subcontractors and foremen so they’re not startled seeing new people in the house. Don’t count on them to keep the primary watch, but it’s understandable to ask contractors and workers to keep an eye out should your children or pets wander into an unsafe area.
Just remember that the contractors are not babysitters. Similarly, children will then know it’s ok if a worker comes into the house to turn off the electricity, for example.
2. Establish Safe Areas
The best way to keep your kids safe is to establish boundaries with the construction site. Make sure they know the area is off limits, and if your kids are particularly rambunctious, maybe add a buffer zone. Teach them to never touch the building materials or tools, and show them where a safe play area is.
For your pets, set up gates where possible. If not, keep them safe in a familiar room, crate or backyard and be sure to give them extra attention so they don’t feel threatened by the changing environment.
These are just two main precautions to take during a remodel. Make sure that your contractor takes necessary measures to do the work safely, such as setting up plastic sheeting, ventilating the area and containing hazardous materials. But on days that seem especially hazardous, if they’re using extremely toxic materials or heavy equipment, consider getting your family out of the house for the day.