Choosing condominium ownership over buying a plot of land and building a house from scratch has become an attractive option for many families as the Philippines experiences continuous growth in its housing market. The increasing popularity of condominium living can be attributed to several factors:
- They offer a more cost-effective solution, allowing families to enjoy various amenities and facilities without the substantial expenses associated with land acquisition and individual house construction
- Condominiums often provide a sense of community and security, with shared spaces and 24/7 security personnel, which is particularly appealing to families with young children
- Condominiums typically offer professional property management services, freeing up time for families to focus on their daily lives
- They are often in proximity to schools, hospitals, and commercial centers, providing added convenience and accessibility for families
As the condo unit becomes a more popular choice among families, especially those with children, the most natural step to take is to make sure that the unit is child-friendly. While not much can be done about the floor plan and existing furniture, there are a number of things that can be done to make your home safe for you, your children, and your pets.
Child-proofing a Condo Unit
“Child-proofing” refers to taking measures to ensure that certain elements within your condo unit are inaccessible to children, minimizing the risk of harm or accidents. It involves implementing safety precautions and modifications to create a secure environment for your children to explore and play in. Here are a few things to double-check once you move in to ensure that the safety of your condo is sound.
If your condo has a balcony, consider installing something to ensure that the gaps are narrow enough to prevent a child or a pet from slipping through. This could be done by installing a new railing, placing a baby gate, and/or adding a safety mesh. You should also avoid placing things that your child will climb on near the edges of the balcony. Consider adding extra security by getting safety locks and a door alarm for the balcony door.
Remember, never leave your children unattended, especially on your balcony.
Make the Kitchen Safe
Children are naturally curious and your kitchen contains some of the most dangerous objects in your home, so it is crucial that you secure this room first. Here are a few suggestions to childproof this room:
- Use cabinet and drawer locks to prevent your child from accidentally handling hazardous and sharp objects
- Cover stove knobs or lock them to prevent your child from accidentally turning the stove on
- Secure heavy appliances to keep them from tipping over or sliding
- Likewise, secure tablecloths and placemats so that your child does not pull on them
- Lock away hazardous materials and keep sharp object locked away
- Tie up cords so that they do not hang within arms reach of your child
Like balconies, windows pose a significant fall hazard and should be properly childproofed to prevent accidents. Young children may lean, push, or climb on windows, unaware of the potential dangers. By implementing appropriate childproofing measures, such as window guards, locks, and screens, the risk of falls and injuries can be significantly reduced. Here are a few other things to keep in mind:
- Use safety bars or window stoppers to prevent your kids from accidentally opening the window
- Keep furniture away from windows
- Install a window alarm to alert you when a window has been open or tampered with
- Tie up curtain/blind cords so that they are out of reach
Ensuring Your Bathroom is Safe for Your Family
Regularly inspect your childproofing measures to ensure they are functioning properly, especially in the bathroom where multiple cleaning chemicals are typically stored. Here are some things to keep in mind when child-proofing your condo bathroom:
1. Lock the Toilet
Install a toilet lock or latch to prevent young children from opening the toilet lid or reaching into the water, reducing the risk of drowning or exposure to harmful bacteria.
2. Secure Cabinets and Drawers
Use childproof locks or latches on bathroom cabinets and drawers that contain potentially hazardous items such as medications, cleaning supplies, or sharp objects. Ensure that these items are stored out of reach or in locked cabinets.
3. Keep Electrical Appliances Away
Store hair dryers, curling irons, electric razors, and other electrical appliances out of children’s reach when not in use. Unplug them and store the cords safely to prevent accidental burns or electric shock.
4. Adjust Water Temperature
Set the water heater to a safe temperature to avoid scalding accidents. The recommended temperature is around 120°F (49°C) or lower. Consider installing an anti-scald device on faucets and showerheads to regulate water temperature.
5. Install Faucet Covers
Use faucet covers or soft covers on the bathtub and sink faucets to protect children from bumps or burns and to reduce the risk of them accidentally turning on hot water.
6. Slip-Resistant Surfaces
Use slip-resistant mats or adhesive strips in the bathtub or shower to prevent slips and falls. Ensure that the bathroom floor is dry and free from water or soap residue to minimize the risk of accidents.
7. Store Medications Safely
Keep medications, vitamins, and other healthcare products in child-resistant containers and store them in a locked cabinet or high shelf out of children’s reach.
8. Cover Electrical Outlets
Use childproof outlet covers or install ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) in the bathroom to prevent electrical accidents.
9. Monitor Water Usage
Always supervise children during bath time and avoid leaving them unattended even for a moment. It only takes a few inches of water for a child to drown.
10. Educate and Supervise
Teach children about bathroom safety rules, such as not playing with electrical appliances, not drinking or playing in the toilet, and always asking for assistance when using the bathroom.
Ensure That Your Condo is Safe for Your Kids by Educating Them on Safety
Ensuring that your condo is safe for your kids goes beyond physical childproofing measures; it also involves educating them on safety. By providing your children with the necessary knowledge and guidance, you empower them to make safer choices and avoid potential hazards.
Teach your kids about the importance of not playing with electrical outlets, not climbing on furniture near windows, and not tampering with household appliances. Educate them on the proper use of locks, childproofing mechanisms, and emergency procedures in case of accidents or emergencies. The above tips are useful throughout your condo and are not limited to the rooms we listed them under.
Be sure to emphasize the importance of fire safety, the dangers of hot surfaces, and the importance of water safety. Encourage open communication and create a safe environment where your children feel comfortable asking questions or expressing concerns.
By educating your children on safety, you equip them with the tools and awareness needed to navigate their condo environment confidently and responsibly.
Always Supervise Your Children
Regularly inspect your childproofing measures to ensure they are functioning properly. It’s important to remember that childproofing measures are not a substitute for adult supervision. Always keep a watchful eye on children in the bathroom and provide appropriate guidance to promote their safety and well-being.
In addition to regular inspections, it is just as important to maintain an open line of communication with your child so that they can feel comfortable sharing their concerns or experiences. By fostering open communication, you can better understand their perspective and tailor your childproofing efforts to their specific needs.
Learn more about Condo Living With Our Asterra Blog
Take advantage of our Asterra blog to learn more about taking care of your condo, real estate ownership and its pros and cons, as well as discovering services and resources available in your community. Our blog is a valuable resource that provides in-depth information on a variety of topics as it relates to condo living. If you have any more questions, do not hesitate to reach out to our representatives so that they can assist you.
Written by: Angela V. DelosReyes | AVDLR