If you plan on running a home business, chances are you’ll be likely to set up your own home office where you handle all your transactions. Setting up a home office can be challenging sometimes, especially if you are to observe the safety guidelines observed on all traditional office settings in a commercial space.
Although you are not required by law to observe these safety guidelines in your home business, it’s a good idea to be prepared for any disaster or accident such as fires to power outages, or worse. Here are a couple of home safety tips you should consider when running a home business.
It’s a good idea to secure your home business, especially your equipment and valuables from criminals. Thieves, intruders, and other criminals may try to steal something from your home business, as such, it is your job to ensure its safety from outside elements. Installing motion-sensitive lights outside and a security system inside your home can be smart a thing to do, but these are usually expensive. There are more fundamental and budget-friendly ways you can ensure the safety of your home business like:
- Installing some window treatments in your home business that obstructs the view from outside. For example, criminals won’t be able to see clearly inside your home if your windows have window films.
- Don’t bring in clients to your home business, especially if you don’t know him/her yet or if it’s your first time meeting with the client. It’s a good idea to meet your clients first in a public place like a coffee shop or a restaurant to get to know them. Because who knows if that person might be a criminal posing as a client.
Crime prevention should be on your priority list when running a home business. This way, you’ll not be putting your home and your family at unnecessary risk just because of your business.
Another essential part of a home business is emergency exits, especially for your home office. It’s important that you have clear, multiple exits from your home office in case of an emergency.
Use the following questions as a guide for setting up emergency exits for your home business.
- If your home business is located on the second floor of your property, do you have a fire escape or a safety ladder perhaps so that you can exit through the window?
- Are the floors free of clutter or trip hazards?
- Are the aisles, doors, hallways, walkways unobstructed?
While your home business may not be required by law to have emergency exits, it would be a benefit for you and your family to have accessible, multiple exits in case of an emergency.
Fire and Electrical Safety
According to the Electrical Safety Foundation International, over 51,000 house fires happen each year because of electrical problems, with 3,300 of those fires are caused by extension cords. So it’s imperative that you should also include in your safety checklist, the fire and electrical safety of your home business.
How to ensure the electrical safety of your home business:
- Ensure that the all the outlets within your home office are not overloaded.
- Your computers must be connected to a surge suppressor in case of abrupt power interruptions.
- If possible, install arc fault circuit interrupters on all your outlets.
These are receptacles that help prevent fires by detecting electrical breakdowns and disconnect the power before the problem can start a fire.
How to ensure the fire safety of your home business:
- The first step you want to do to ensure the fire safety of your home business is to install a functioning smoke detector inside your home office and that you have easy access to a working fire extinguisher.
- It’s easy to install a smoke detector in your property nowadays for a reasonable price. Fire extinguishers can also be purchased easily from Amazon for about $50.
- You should also ensure to keep any space heaters or radiators away from flammable items to help prevent the fire from spreading once it starts.
Emergency Power and Lights
You should also consider what happens if you lose power in your home and ask yourself what you will do in case there’s a power interruption?
- Almost all businesses on commercial establishments have backup generators to give them power in case of an outage. Your home business will also benefit from backup generator, especially if you can’t afford to stop your daily operations because of a power outage.
- It’s also important to have emergency lights ready in case the power goes out. Be sure to install LED emergency light fixtures inside your home business or office to prevent slip and falls and other accidents because of darkness.
Even though you’re looking to start a business within your home, you still need to create a business-like work environment where you and your employees can work freely. Your home office should be a dedicated space for your home business. Limit access to other family members to ensure their safety, especially your children and to prevent them from causing any trouble that may delay your daily operations. You may also want to create an office space within your home that’s safe for your clients or customers. Keep in mind, that you’ll be responsible for the safety of your clients and customers if you bring them in into your home office. Click here to know more about this.
About the author: Irene Wall has been writing about law for more than a decade. She writes pieces on various law topics that she hopes could help the common reader with their concerns. She enjoys playing basketball with her sons during her free time.