House remodeling compromises security in many ways, from increasing entrance points, to reducing the usefulness of security systems, to endangering children.
Here are some ways to reduce the risks:
Controlling Entrance Points
Since contractors are coming and going all the time, there is a good chance that they will leave doors unlocked or unwatched. If possible, limit this risk by designating a separate entrance for contractors. Then, if you can, use locks internally to separate access from the remodeling area from the rest of the house.
If this is not possible, take actions to reduce the chances of theft, by both thieves and by the contractors themselves. Anything small and valuable should be put in a safe when not in use.
Keeping Active Security
Contractors typically request that home security systems be deactivated while they are at work. This is sometimes unavoidable. If they have to call you every time they need to open the door or move around inside your house, they would never get anything done.
Just because some security systems cannot be engaged does not mean that all of them need to shut off together. Security system professionals can help you strategically deactivate, add, or adjust your existing system to continue to protect your home while you are away. You may be able to add additional circuit sensors on vulnerable interior doors, or keep motion detectors active in some parts of the house.
Take Action to Keep Children Safe
Construction sites are very dangerous for children, and contractors are not neither paid to be babysitters nor trained to do so.
If possible, children who are not mature enough to obey “off-limits” areas should not be left alone in the house. For younger children, you may also want to use internal locks or gates to keep children outside of the remodel areas. Children’s play areas should always be set up as far from the construction as possible.
Protecting your Air
Additionally, make sure that your contractor understands both which hazardous materials are present in your home, as well as how to prevent these hazardous materials from impacting your air quality. Constructors can use plastic tarps and spray bottles to keep dust and airborne paint to a minimum, and may take further action if necessary. Similarly, the contractor should do as much fume-producing work as possible outside; for example, the contractor should stain components before bringing them inside.
The vast majority of remodels go off without affecting the safety of your home. But it always pays to be careful.