How to Keep Your Home Safe During the Holidays

There’s a reason they say “there’s no place like home for the holidays.” Over the coming months, many people will come together with friends and family to celebrate the season together. Whether you’re traveling to Grandma’s house or opening your own doors, homes are a big part of the holiday season. Check out some of our top holiday safety tips to ensure your home is ready for the holidays!

If You’re Traveling

  • Take Steps to Deter Thieves: Many thieves are looking for crimes of opportunity, so taking a couple easy steps can go a long way in preventing theft. Setting your lights on timers can make it appear that people are still home. And before you leave, double check that you’ve locked all doors and windows to make it harder to get inside.
  • Avoid Showcasing Travel: While we all want to talk about the holidays, sharing travel plans on social media can make your home a target. Wait to post until you’re back home or only share with close friends and family instead of the public. You can also put a hold on your mail service to prevent a pileup while you’re gone: a big signal that no one is home.
  • Protect Your Pipes: This time of year, cold weather can sneak up on you. Before you leave the house, make sure your thermostat is set to prevent it from getting too cold while you’re gone. Typically, 55 degrees or higher is recommended during winter weather. You can also insulate or wrap vulnerable pipes in the attic, basement, garage or outside water spigots. Taking preventative measures could save you a lot of trouble if an unexpected cold front hits while you’re traveling.

If You’re Hosting

  • Minimize Fire Risks: Many people use candles during the holidays, whether it’s a part of your traditions or to create a cozy feeling in the house. However, this also means there are more candle fires this time of year than any other time! Make sure that any candles used are out of the reach of kids and pets, and placed on a steady surface away from any potentially flammable decorations.
  • Clear the Pathways: Your holiday celebrations may involve multiple generations. For both our oldest and youngest family members, it’s important to make sure that homes are clear of fall hazards. Before guests arrive, make sure walkways have been shoveled of leaves, debris or ice and snow. Take a look to identify areas of the house that might be hazardous. This means picking up rugs that might impede walkers, tying up the cords on blinds, and putting covers over outlets.
  • Cook Safely: With all the hustle and bustle of guests, it can be easy to get distracted while preparing food but it can take seconds for your big holiday meal to turn into a big mess. From grease fires to hot spills, there are a lot of potential hazards in the kitchen during the holidays. It’s important to never leave cooking unattended and to turn off the stovetop if you’re stepping away. While you’re in the kitchen, turn pot handles away from the stove edge, keep fabric items like oven mitts away from the stove. Once you’re done cooking, make sure to fully turn off the stove and oven before you enjoy your holiday feast! You can read more holiday safety tips here before hosting.

We’re Here to Help

As the holidays approach, keep these holiday safety tips with you for a fun and safe season!

Whether you’re a long-time policyholder or just starting to look for insurance options, we have team members who can help. If you have questions or concerns that you want to discuss, connect with your local OKFB agent today. If you have any insurance-specific questions, we would love to help you find the coverage that best meets your home, auto, commercial and life insurance needs.

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