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When should your kids stay home alone? How do you know if your child is ready to stay home alone? Today I am partnering with Alarm.com to bring you some tips to keep your family safe.
As a mom to four kids, I know that the day is coming when our oldest will ask me those words that I dread: “Mom? Can I just stay home while you run to the store?”
As a mom, we keep our family close. We want them to always be safe & happy…
I can remember the first time that I stayed home with my brother. I remember thinking “Ahh… I can watch TV for a full 30 minutes!” lol!! My brother & I literally laid on the couch and watched TV the whole time. I’m pretty sure that it was Garfield & Friends, but that’s beside the point. 🙂
I think that I was about 9 when I stayed home with my 11 year old brother for 30 minutes…
Now that our oldest is ten, I know that the time is getting closer, so I have really been thinking about it:
1- How many more years do I have before he asks?
2- How will I keep him safe?
3- How will I check on him 100 times in the 10 minutes that I am gone?
Is he ready?
- There is no “agreed upon age” to leave your kids home alone. Children mature differently. I see it every day in our kids. I see it in their friends.
Some states have laws on when you can leave your child home alone, so check yours: Maryland (age 8), Illinois (age 14), Oregon (age 10)
- Is your child able to physically & mentally care for himself?
- Does your child do what you ask (example: not watch things that aren’t allowed, or not open the door)?
- What if something unexpected were to happen (Doorbell ring? What if he gets hurt walking down the stairs? What if the dog gets out?)
- Would he be scared to be alone?
Is he safe?
- Are you able to watch him? We use Alarm.com in our home to see what is going on, but I plan on using it WAY more when our kids start staying home. Essentially it turns your house into a smart house, so you can lock the door while you are away, put the garage door down, see a video of your house, adjust the temperature & more.
- Check your alerts if the door is opened. It will look like this (and then you can watch the video that was recorded):
- Real-Time alerts notify you if you’ve forgotten to lock any of the doors or if the garage door was left open. If your child comes home from school, but forgets to shut the garage door… shut it for him after you have watched the video to be sure that he is in safe & sound.
- If your power is out, you will be notified right away. I would never want to leave my child home during a power outage, so this would let me know that I need to go home ASAP. (you are also notified if it’s just your home or a neighborhood outage.)
- Go over the rules: do not open the door, do not answer the phone unless it is me, do not go outside. (And my crazy rule would be Do Not Eat because if they choke I am not there to help. I know that I am an over-worrier… no need to tell me. 😉 )
I would never leave my child alone without using this, because these Alerts allow you to feel in control of your family’s safety by reminding you to lock the front door or letting you know when someone has arrived, etc.…
I hope this helped! I’d love to hear what you think is the perfect age for leaving your child home alone & some safety tips that you give to your child.