Tips on child proofing your home

Renovating a house is the ideal time to consider how child-friendly your home is, especially if you have young children or are expecting to add to your family.

Toddler standing at child safety gate looking back over his shoulder
ARTICLE Julie Scanlon

Renovating a house is the ideal time to consider how child-friendly your home is, especially if you have young children or are expecting to add to your family.
Post-renovations there are a whole range of gadgets available that can help protect your children from harm, including socket covers, cupboard latches and stair gates. Thinking about safety when renovating can make your home safer still.
Building regulations stipulate the use of Safety Glass when replacing windows. To avoid kids mistakenly running into the glass of sliding doors or full length windows, choose designs with a horizontal divider. A temporary alternative is to add vinyl stickers at your child’s height.
If doors are on your renovations list, consider the old-fashioned Dutch door. They’re a fantastic alternative to a safety gate for external doors, allowing fresh air to circulate whilst restricting a toddler’s movements. Fit locks for any doors that access a garage, workshop or laundry. For external doors, a deadbolt at the top keeps your curious toddler from performing an escape act.
Sharp, angular lines on tapware and bathroom fittings are very trendy but can cause more damage when a splashing toddler slips over in the bath or on a wet floor, so opt for rounded edges.
Ask your plumber to fit in a tempering valve on your hot water system to reduce the water temperature at the tap to a safer 55 degrees and include lockable storage for medicines and cleaning products.

Other things to consider:

  • Installing a heat pump removes the danger that a fire or heater poses for children. If you prefer a fireplace, consider how you will secure a fireguard around it.
  • If you want to use a safety gate, make sure that you have a suitable opening into your kitchen and at the top and bottom of stairs with a stud positioned for fixing the gate to the wall.
  • If you’re fitting a new kitchen, choose eye-level ovens or cookers with controls that are positioned well away from little fingers.
  • Cords on window blinds pose a strangulation risk so either opt for cordless version or keep the cords well out of reach.
  • As we live in the shaky isles, remember to secure any free-standing furniture and televisions to the wall to avoid them topping over.
  • Plan a separate area for kids to play away from cars and access to the road. #### You might be interested in reading: Kid's room design ideas. Renovate Magazine Logo This article by Julie Scanlon featured on page 36 of Issue 013 of Renovate Magazine. Renovate Magazine is an easy to use resource providing fresh inspiration and motivation at every turn of the page.
      ### Get in touch with Refresh to discuss your home renovation project If you would like to discuss home renovation options and ideas for childproofing your home, please use the enquiry form on this page to provide us with your contact details. We will get in touch with you at a time that suits you to discuss your project. If you would like to provide us with more information about your project, we have a more comprehensive enquiry form on our "Get in touch" page too. *All information is believed to be true at time of publishing and is subject to change.

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