Safer Holiday Gatherings — A Homeowner’s Checklist

Safer Holiday Gatherings — A Homeowner’s Checklist

Before you hold your event, take a different prospective —Walk through your home where your guests will enter, congregate and exit – Think about how you can be an alert host or hostess; step back and take a bigger view of your home inside & outside.  Begin with the front entrance of your home and then go from there.



Walkway/drivewaysdebris & water free? No hoses? (Roll up hoses & drain them)

Apply moss-retardant on decks, patios and walkways to prevent slick surfaces 

            Gutters cleaned so they will not over flow?

Holiday décor & lights – no bare wires & clear from walking areas? How old is the wiring? Décor attached to the house so not be affected by the wind?

Door entry matts to wipe your shoes

                Pipes & faucets insulated and not dripping?

                Outside well lit and is the address easily readable from the street?


Security – Close doors to areas where your guests are not to enter. Put away your    personal valuables: i.e. credit & debit cards, wallets, etc. (don’t tempt others)

Entry ways into your home: Are they well lit? A floors non slick? Are loose rugs affixed to the floor?

Holiday décor – secure & out of walking areas?

Xmas trees – is your tree dry? Lights & wiring on the tree in good condition? –

            No Smoking in the house

Pets – corral them in a specific area: excitement causes problems; children are never to be left alone with dogs and some other pets; loose animals cause a trip & fall hazard to all people; exotic pets should be in a separate area that is not readily accessible

Fire places clean chimney? Fireplace screens in place? Do not leave   unoccupied

Kitchenhot ovens, ranges, and open flames are potential opportunities for injuries; frying turkey also additional hazards and special handling and spacing

Helpers for your events: are they your employees? Or, are they employees of others? Do you have certificates of insurance from the company you hired before the event?

Alcoholic beverageshost/hostess needs to be alert (maybe you should not drink?) greet each guest (get a sense of how they are); watch out for over indulgence? (How would you feel if a friend/family member got hurt or hurt others because of your party?)

Food preparation – keep dairy & other food refrigerated to prevent spoilage (let’s not get any one sick)

Swimming Pool fencingtoo many tragedies occur in or around swimming pools; they should always be adequately fenced

For further assistance contact me at or call 916-265-3837. This list was created by Michael Carroll, VP of Claims Safeco & myself to share with others so that they may  enjoy holiday and other events at their homes with family and friends by avoiding preventable unpleasant occurrences.

Listen to “Insurance Matters” Tuesdays 8 a.m. Pacific Time on Sacramento’s Money 105.5 FM and first Saturday of the month on Sacramento’s 1380 AM KTKZ – Online on




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Tom Bone
Risk Insurance Advisor
ISU Insurance Services
2266 Lava Ridge Court
Roseville, California 95661
Phone 916.960.8758 or 800.823.4852 ext. 8758
Fax 916.773.4484
Mobile 925.285.6790
License #0306692