The Home Safety Checklist For Seniors

If you or a loved one are living at home and you're looking to age in place for as long as you can, you'll want to assess the safety of your home to make sure it meets your needs now and into the future.

Going through the checklist below will help you identify any risks and make the necessary improvements to your home to ensure you can enjoy your space independently and problem free for as long as possible.

How To Use The Home Safety Check List

Any questions that receive a NO check mark should be addressed and rectified. In some cases you may want to hire a professional electrician or home modification contractor to help you. In other cases a caregiver can help over come shortcomings in the home through hands on care.

You can also see if your local fire department can come over and do a review of all of your smoke alarm, carbon monoxide and fire extinguishers to ensure their located correctly and functioning properly. Many fire departments will do it for free.

If neither a home modification, nor a caregiver, can help overcome a challenge that poses a significant risk to a senior, that's when you might want to consider exploring an alternative living environment like an assisted living community.

Please feel free to share the list with your friends and family members if you think the list can be helpful to their security. If you have any additional tips please share with all of us.

Home Safety Checklist For Seniors

Outside

Yes

No

Do all entrances to the house have a light?
Can you easily see your door lock and fit your key into it?
Do all outdoor stairs, ramps and pathways have railings?
Do all outdoor stairs, ramps and pathways have good traction?
Are all the outdoor steps free of clutter, leaves, snow or ice?
Are all outdoor steps straight and solid? Do they need repair?
Can you access your mailbox / newspaper easily?
Is the outdoor address well lit and easy to read from the street day and night?
Is there an easily accessible key lock box for emergency entry?

Inside

Yes

No

Are all hallways in the home well lit?
Do you have night lights in corridors traveled at night?
Are all area rugs and mats secured in place to avoid shifting or slipping?
Are all the lips of area rugs secured to the floor to avoid tripping?
Have you removed clutter from the floor of your high foot traffic areas?
Do you use non-slip floor wax?

Stairs

Yes

No

Are your stairs well lit?
Do you have light switches at the top and bottom of your stairs?
Are your stairs even and solid? Do any need to be repaired?
Are your stairs free of clutter?
Are there handrails on both sides of the stairway?
Are the handrails solid, at a good height and in good condition?
Is there any loose or torn carpeting on the stairway?

Fire & Emergency

Yes

No

Do you have a First Aid kit that is easily accessibile?
Do you have a smoke detector on every floor of your home?
Have you had your smoke detectors tested recently?
Do you have a carbon monoxide detector in your home?
Do you have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen?
If you use a space heater, is it far away from flammable items?

Bathroom

Yes

No

Do you have a scald protector for the shower / bath to prevent burns?
Is your hot water temperature set to the recommended 120 degrees farenheit?
Do you have non-slip surfaces, tape or mats in the shower / bathtub?
Do bath mats next to the tub have rubberized backing to prevent slipping?
Are there grab bars for getting into and out of the shower?
Are there grab bars for getting onto and off of the toilet?
Does the bathroom have a night light?
Does the bathroom door lock have an emergency release?
Do you have a raised toilet sit (if you have trouble getting on or off the toilet)?
Do you have (need) a bath seat in the shower?

Kitchen

Yes

No

Are all pots & pans within easy reach? i.e. between your knees and shoulders
Are heavy items stored lower and lighter items stored higher?
Are the stove Off and On switches easy to see and read?
Do you have a pair of oven mits and are they within east reach of the stove?
Do you make sure to avoid wearing loose fitting clothes while using the stove?
Do you have a fire extinguisher in your kitchen, opposite your stove?
Have you had your fire extinguishers tested recently?
Do you have a step stool with a bar handle to hold onto?

Bedroom

Yes

No

Is there a light switch next to the entrance to your bedroom?
Do you have a lamp or light switch next to your bed and is it easily accessible?
Do you have motion sensored night lights in your bedroom?
Is there a clutter free bath between your bed and the bathroom?
Is there a clutter free path between your bed and your bedroom door?
Do you have a phone and list of emergency #'s accessible from your bed?
Is there a flashlight on night stand in the event of a power outage?

Garage / Basement

Yes

No

Is your garage and basement well lit?
Do you have a telephone in your basement, with a list of emergency numbers next to it?
Are all flammable items clearly marked?
Are all flammable items kept away from heat sources like the furnace and radiators?
Are all foot traffic areas clutter free?

Other Ways To Prevent Falls

Yes

No

Do you exercise regularly?
Do you review your medications with your doctor regularly?
Do you check your vision annually?
Do you get up slowly when sitting or lying down?
Do you wear sturdy shows with no heels?
Do you wear slippers with a backing that secures to your heel?
Use bright tape or paint at the top and bottom of all your stairs and thresholds?

Other Safety Tips

Yes

No

In the event of a fall, is there a communication device or medical alert system to call for help?
Are medications clearly labelled?
Are medications easy to access?
Are medications easy to take at the proper times in the right doses?
Is the thermostat easy to access and program at the desired temperature?
Is it easy to exit the house in the event of a fire? (avoid complicated lock system)