Home Security for Families with Kids
Protecting your children is every parent’s priority, and home security is part of that equation. Home security for families extends far beyond covering electrical outlets and locking away cleaning supplies. In fact, security can be a shared family responsibility, one you begin teaching children from an early age. Start with these age-appropriate tips to help keep your young ones safe.
Security for Families: Tips for Kids
Security starts at home. You’re responsible for making your home is a safe place, but your kids can help. Below, you’ll find tips and progressively more advanced security skills segmented by your child’s age (or developmental level).
Tykes (18 Months–4 Years Old)
Even toddler and preschoolers can learn the basics of home safety. Start simple and grow their knowledge as they grow.
- Water safety: Teach them how to be safe around water. For example, they should only take a bath or go swimming when caretakers are present.
- Fire safety: Share basic fire safety information. First, teach them that fire can be dangerous—remember, they might not realize this without getting hurt first! Remind them to stay away from fireplaces, candles, and the like.
- Boundaries: Set expectations about where they can and can’t go, such as staying away from the street unless they’re holding an adult’s hand. Help them learn what’s part of their home (the yard, the sidewalk) and what’s not (the road, the neighbor’s yard).
- Meeting helpful heroes: Cultivate a friendly, respectful relationship with police, firefighters, and other first responders. Point out where the police and fire stations are as you drive around town. If your local departments participate in a community event like National Night Out, take your kids to say hello. You get the idea: your child should know who’s there to help them in an emergency.
During this phase of your young children’s life, your focus should be on helping them identify and avoid dangerous situations. As much as you can, explain why a certain thing is dangerous so they can apply this knowledge in the future. (An example? Learning that fire is hot and can hurt will help them understand that other hot items like stoves might also hurt.)
At this age, it’s also important that your child see you consistently demonstrating safe behaviors. Your kids are copycats, so set a good example.
Grade Schoolers (5–10 Years Old)
As children develop a sense of cause and effect, they can learn more advanced security habits.
- Locking doors: Kids should understand why it’s important to lock the door. Teach them the location of your spare key, reminding them to keep it a secret. If you have a smart lock, consider creating a custom code for your child.
- Not opening doors: It may conflict with using good manners, but instruct children to keep the door shut unless a caretaker is present. When someone knocks, they should either not answer or ask who’s there and say mom or dad is busy if asked. Also, teach them not to be swayed by people wearing uniforms—a legitimate worker can return later.
- Stranger danger: Teach them not to talk to people they don’t know on the phone, at the door, or in person.
- Staying home alone: When your children are old enough to be left at home, instruct them to lock the door and close the curtains. They should never share that they’re alone, even to friends.
- Safe word or phrase: There may be situations that require a friend or family member to come to the house. Establish a secret phrase that only trusted people know. Require that your child hears this phrase before opening the front door, for example.
- Emergency drills: Practice makes perfect. Teach them how to dial 911, recite their address, and escape the house in an emergency.
- Privacy: Kids need guidance about what information is safe to share. For example, they should keep quiet about your recent TV purchase or when the family is going on vacation.
- Advanced fire safety: Teach children to respect fire alarms, when to use stop-drop-roll, and how to exit the house quickly and safely. Emphasize the importance of staying outside once they’ve escaped.
Tweens and Teens (11 Years Old and Up)
You can entrust older children with additional home security responsibilities. Set them up for success in the future, when they have a place of their own.
- Watching younger kids: Your teen or pre-teen can keep a watchful eye over younger siblings. Beyond babysitting, this is a good way to reinforce everyone’s security habits. For example, ask your older child to double-check that the door is locked and remind young ones if they forget.
- Online privacy: Learning how to stay safe online should start as soon as your kids have internet access. Reiterate the importance of not sharing personal details online. And they should know not to meet up with anyone they’ve only spoken to on the internet.
- Memorization and observation: Play memory games to help them remember important information like family phone numbers, neighbors’ names, and access codes. This is also a good way to test and build their awareness of their surroundings. What type of car just drove by? What was the clerk at the store wearing? Observation skills and solid recall can literally save your child’s life.
- Basic self-defense and first aid: Build upon their emergency response skills. Does your child know what to do if somebody grabs them? Can they assist someone who’s choking? Check for classes at your local hospital, library, or community center. And you should sign up, too.
- Using home security devices: Educate older kids about how to arm and disarm your security system, if you have one. Many systems are rendered meaningless by improper use or incorrect codes. The beauty of a Deep Sentinel video surveillance system is that you don’t have to disarm it every time someone goes outside. AI is always watching for trouble.
By setting a solid foundation now, you help your children become security-savvy adults.
Security for Families: Tips for Grown-Ups
What can you do to make your home safer for your children? Here are a few security tips specific to families with kids.
- Consider installing a peephole at their eye level so they don’t have to climb onto a chair to see who’s at the door.
- Purchase emergency escape ladders for second-floor bedrooms.
- Lock up dangerous items like chemicals and kitchen knives.
- Create a central “command center” with important phone numbers, the family calendar, and so on.
- Always supervise dangerous activities, such as swimming or cooking.
- Give children a secure place to lock up toys and bikes, rather than leaving them around the yard.
- Set parental controls on your online accounts to limit access to potentially dangerous websites.
- Create and practice a family emergency plan with clear instructions about where to meet up in the event of an evacuation.
- Run background checks on any potential babysitters, nannies, or caregivers.
- Install home security cameras with remote access so you can keep an eye on your kids and your property at all times.
Most importantly, set a good example and offer clear, consistent communication about staying safe.
Deep Sentinel Offers Unbeatable Security for Families
Collectively, these proactive efforts can help keep both your home and its most important contents—your family—safe and secure.
The Deep Sentinel team is dedicated to safeguarding homes through sophisticated technology and proactive monitoring. Deep Sentinel’s smart camera surveillance solution offers AI-driven monitoring with live guards at the ready 24/7. Give your family the best protection money can buy: live security monitoring from Deep Sentinel.
Need a Solution that Prevents Crime?
Deep Sentinel is the only security technology that delivers the experience of a personal guard on every customer’s home and business. Call 833.983.6006 for your free security consultation.