Ghosts. Goblins. Hazards around the home: Halloween is filled with potential dangers. Not only do you have to make sure your kids are safe, teaching them to stay in groups and checking their candy before they eat it, but you also have to make sure your house is safe. The following are tips on how to protect pirates, princesses, cowboys, and any other trick-or-treaters who come your way.


Keep a Light on: The general rule candy seekers live by is simple: when a porch light’s not lit, the candy has split, when a porch light is on, the candy ain’t gone. Not only does this help trick-or-treaters know which houses to hit, but a porch light also keeps the pathway bright, allowing them to see where they are going behind their monsters mask.


Watch for Ice: Anyone who lives in a winter prone climate knows one thing: it always, always snows on Halloween. While this forces kids to take action, dressing in warmer costumers and carrying hot chocolate, it also causes home owners to react: the path, the driveway, and the sidewalk have all got to be shoveled. Not only do you need to remove snow, but you also need to de-ice: nothing will ruin a kid’s Halloween like a fall to the pavement. Doing something as simple as laying down gravel or salt can make all the difference.


Remove any obstacles: The path between the sidewalk and your front door may be filled with a variety of things: a garden hose, your child’s bicycle, a gnome. On a typical day these things might not serve as obstacles, but on Halloween it’s a whole different story. Filled with the excitement of candy, kids run up to porches, forgetting to watch where they’re going. Instead of leaving things for them to dodge, or more likely trip over, make sure the path between the street and the candy is completely clear.


Don’t leave the pumpkin lit overnight: You’ve carved the pumpkin. You’ve baked the seeds. You’ve lit the candle inside. Your pumpkin is all set to debut. As it sits on your front porch or your window sill glowing radiantly, you can’t help but be proud. No matter the pride, your pumpkin won’t last forever: avoid potential disaster and be sure to blow it out before you go to bed.


Take care of your pets: Pets aren’t big fans of Halloween. Not only are some placed in costumes and paraded around the dog park, but the repeated knocks on the doors and rings of the doorbell agitate them. Instead of subjecting them to a nervous breakdown, put them in the garage or the basement, somewhere they won’t be forced into perpetual guard duty.