4 Home Security Tips for Back-to-School Season
The new school year is officially underway! As kids head back to school, one of the things on the minds of many parents is what their children will be doing after school, especially if they will be home alone for any length of time.
If you are the parent of older children who will be on their own after school, take a look at these tips and helpful products that you can use to help children stay safe at home.
1. Teach children basic safety rules.
If children are going to be home alone, it’s crucial that they have a clear understanding of specific basic safety rules.
Teach kids to lock the door and not open it for anyone. Ensure they understand that they should never open the door while they’re home alone, even for deliveries or if a neighbor comes knocking on the door. Instruct kids that if they must speak with visitors, do so without opening the door. They should merely yell or talk through a mail slot. Of course, the most important thing to stress to kids is that they should never under any circumstances let unexpected visitors know that they are home alone.
Layout age appropriate guidelines and rules around the use of potentially dangerous appliances, such as stove ranges or toaster ovens, while they are home alone. Since they can be a huge fire hazard, using those appliances should depend a lot on age and how kitchen-savvy children are. Younger children or those who don’t know their way around the kitchen should be prohibited from using appliances.
2. Establish plans for handling specific events.
It’s important to make sure that children have a thorough understanding of how certain security events should be handled if they do happen. Some of those events can include:
- A break-in: Teach children not to go inside the house if there are signs of a break-in. Be sure they know that if a door is left open or if there are broken windows, they should not go in the house. Let them know what you would like them to do, whether it’s getting help from a neighbor or calling you or calling 911.
- Lost keys: A lost key is a potential security threat. Let kids you know that you understand things happen and that you aren’t upset they lost the key, just concerned with getting it back. Provide instructions about how to get a spare key from a neighbor, family member or from you.
- A fire: Work on an emergency plan together that determines how your child will exit in case there is a fire. Make sure they understand that the number one priority is that they get out safely, nothing else matters.
3. Show kids how to use your alarm system.
You had your home security system installed for a reason, to protect your home and the people in it. However, if it isn’t being used properly by all members of your family, the system is not doing its job.
Make sure children know how to properly use the alarm system, both arming and disarming it. If you can, test the various alarms including burglar, smoke and carbon monoxide so they can recognize what each alarm sounds like and know how to proceed if they do happen to hear one.
4. Use technology to help keep kids safe.
If you don’t have one already, consider getting an alarm system that has some type of app integration, like our SupremeConnect. This type of integrated system provides you with remote access and instant notifications sent right to your mobile device. Using the app, you can:
- Get instant alerts when the system is armed or disarmed.
- Use live feed from security cameras to check in and see if your kids got home ok and are doing what they are supposed to after school.
- Receive instant notifications in the event of an alarm trigger.