Home safety checklist
Walk through each room in your home using this checklist to find out what you can do to make your house safer.
Stairways and walkways
- Stairs are well-lit and free of clutter.
- Sturdy handrails are on both sides of your stairs.
- Sidewalks are level and clear of any debris, including leaves, ice, and snow.
- Wooden steps have a nonslip finish.
- Night light is in your bathroom.
- Non-slip mats are in bathtub and shower.
- Sturdy grab bars are next to your bathtub and toilet.
- Toilet seat is at least 24 inches high. (If not, install a raised toilet seat.)
- A seat is in your bathtub or shower to make bathing and showering easier.
- Bathroom floor has a nonslip finish.
- Night lights are in your bedroom and hallways.
- Telephone is near your bed.
- Flashlight is within easy reach.
- You have an exit route planned in case of fire.
- Clutter, such as stacks of magazines and newspapers, is out of the way.
- Furniture is arranged so you can move easily through the room.
- Floor coverings are nonslip and nonskid mats are under throw rugs.
- Carpets lie flat on the floor.
- Carpets with thick, shag-type pile have been removed.
- Telephone and electrical cords are out of the way.
- Your address and phone number are written down near the phone.
- If you have a fireplace, there is a spark screen in front of it.
- Water heater is set between 120° and 125° F to prevent burns.
- Smoke detectors are installed on every floor of your home.
- The battery in your smoke detector is changed every year and checked once a month.
- Cabinets are arranged so that common items are within easy reach.
- Thin rubber mats are placed in front of the sink and stove.
- A sturdy step stool is handy so that you can reach items in your cabinets.
- Knives and other sharp tools are stored in protective racks.
- Counter space around the stove is clear so you can put hot items down quickly.
- Kitchen timer is near the stove as a reminder to turn off the oven and burners.
Clinical review by Debbie Brunner, MD
Making changes to prevent falls
Falls are the leading cause of serious injuries for older adults.
This room-by-room guide will give you tips on how to make your home safer.