There is nothing more important than the safety of the guests at your vacation rental property. A simple furnishing error could turn the perfect vacation into a nightmare. As the old saying goes, “Safety comes first,” and in this case, increasing safety will also increase bookings. Here’s how to assure safety at your vacation rental by avoiding these 13 death traps:
1) Bunks Beds
Bunk beds should probably be avoided for a variety of safety reasons but if you’re short on space or otherwise just insist on having that kind of bed, make sure that it is structurally sound and put together. Try to get a bunk bed that has a ladder attached. The fewer moving pieces involved, the better.
2) Sharp Corners
If possible, steer clear of furniture that features sharp edges. Coffee tables, cocktail tables, dressers, nightstands, and other common furniture can usually be found with rounded edges. By opting for rounded edges, you’ll decrease the likelihood of anything from a scraped knee to a bump on the head.
Glass furniture pieces can pose a very serious risk of injury. A running toddler could create a terrible mess at best and a horrible injury at worst. Instead, opt for wood or other solid materials. If you insist on using glass, make sure it has smooth edges and is tempered to reduce the chance of injury.
4) Small decorations
Try to avoid loading up your shelves, counters, and other surfaces with little trinkets and knickknacks. They can be cute, but choking hazards aren’t! Never underestimate children and their ability to chew or eat anything they find.
Also, having small decorations on every surface could put off potential business from parents with young children.
5) Real candles
Candles are a great way to offer a cozy feeling for guests but the threat of a fire is a real serious issue. Candles cause an estimated 15,600 house fires, 150 deaths, and 1,270 injuries each year.
If you already have candles, remove the wicks to reinforce that they are only for decoration.
Alternatively, consider buying electronic candles. They are usually scented and feature a flickering light to give the same cozy feeling that a regular candle does, minus the danger.
6) Hanging Art
Without hanging artwork, photos, prints, and paintings, a vacation home can look dead and boring both in the listing and in person. These decorations are not only encouraged but in some ways required. When hanging art, use standard hotel hooks. These will prevent art from being moved and can help avoid an accident.
7) Rugs & Mats
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, slip and falls account for over 12 million emergency room visits per year. To avoid this, it’s important to use mats and sectionals properly. Mats should be placed at all entrances and exits in the home as well as in wet areas like bathrooms and patios.
8) Window looped cords
Be sure that all window treatments and vertical blinds don’t have closed looped cords that hang from them. This is a strangulation hazard for small children.
If your home is a two-story home, consider using or offering a baby gate. This will keep small children from crawling up the stairs on their own and can prevent a serious injury.
10) Swimming Pools
Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death among children in the United States.
Reduce the chances of a tragedy like this occurring by having secured patio doors with alarms and a ladder easily accessible in the pool.
It can also help to post a couple of signs such as “No Running” and “Parental Supervision Required”. These signs are expected in pool areas and as such won’t be considered offensive or off-putting.
11) Garage Doors
Believe it or not, garage door-related injuries do occur. If your garage doesn’t come with doorstoppers, get some. The sensor prevents the door from closing if a person’s movement is detected. If you have them, make sure they work and inspect them regularly.
12) Home Security System
Vacation homes are commonly used in a seasonal fashion. That means that there usually aren’t people there all the time. There are even entire communities made up of vacation homes these days, and there’s little, if any, supervision for your vacation home. All these factors make vacation homes an ideal place for burglars to target.
Even resorts that have gates and guards still get broken into. Invest in a proper security system for your vacation home that will deter potential burglars and also keep a sense of privacy and protection for your guests. Most security companies will also supply a sign to place on your lawn that notifies potential burglars of the security system. Place this at front and center of your property to make the system known.
Each year, thousands of people end up in emergency rooms after serious chair accidents. People fall when chairs collapse and hands get crushed between seats and their bases. Make sure the chairs you buy for your vacation rentals have smooth finishes and cannot be modified, e.g., folding chairs. Folding chairs should only be used as outdoor furniture, and even then, you should opt for chairs that have a lock system in place so they don’t collapse.
With these safety precautions in place, you’ll find that your home is safer and more accessible to potential guests. Remember, it’s your investment so protect it!
If you have any more safety suggestions, please share below.
And For Do’s & Don’ts of Decorating your rental, check out my previous post: http://villamarketers.com/decorating-vacation-rental-homes/