Absolutely correct on the safety issues. When I renovated my basement, number one of the list was fire exits. I used casement windows in the basement as they allowed the best exit ability for my application (met the fire code and was easy to use. My thoughts on this were to be able to open it easily in the dark, in a hurry). In my home there are no less than 6 smoke detectors, including 3 in the basement, and a 5-lb extinguisher on each level. I have electric heat so CO is not an issue, and I added a basement kit to my air exchanger (which had the extra capacity to handle it). All in all, it is a little extra work to make it safe and comfortable, but well worth it. If you have any doubts, switch with the kid and you sleep in the basement :) Dave PS - I was a volunteer firefighter for 10 years and have been an industrial firefighter for over 15. Trust me, do whatever it takes to make the place safe.