You can mitigate the impact of rising premiums on your budget by following proven home maintenance tips. Here are four common claims for home insurance along with tips on how to avoid them.
1. Exterior Wind Damage
Exterior wind damage leads to many home insurance claims. Where you live often determines your exposure to high winds. No matter where you live, trim your trees to minimize the risks posed by loose and broken branches. When the weather turns windy, safely store your patio furniture, cushions, gardening tools, and anything else that may become airborne. You can also replace loose shingles or tiles every year. Additionally, trimming shrubs and bushes prevents dead branches from damaging your home when the wind picks up.
2. Water Damage
A broken water heater or damaged pipe can lead to water damage in your home. Overflowing dishwashers and washing machines also result in home insurance claims.
There are several things you can do to help prevent this type of water damage. For example, fresh caulk around tubs prevents plumbing leaks. A water sensor and alarm placed near water-reliant appliances alerts you when a problem occurs. You can also set appliances to shut off automatically when you aren’t home.
Inspect hot water heaters and other appliances for leaks and caulk around sinks and to stave off plumbing leaks. Also, remember that pouring grease and throwing food down the drain can clog your pipes, leading to overflows.
3. Weather-Related Water Damage
Rain and snow may lead to water damage in your home. To avoid a home insurance claim, clean out your gutters and remove heavy snow from your roof before it can cause a problem. Direct storm runoff to an area of your property that slopes, if possible. Keep your downspouts free of twigs, leaves and debris, so water drains away from the property instead of flooding the basement.
4. Loss Due to Theft
Security systems deter thieves and may help you avoid loss due to theft. Also, make sure to lock your windows and doors before you leave the house — double check that you have secured the garage and garden shed. Keep in mind that a garage door opener in your unlocked car gives intruders an easy way to invade your home.
Outdoor motion sensors light up pathways when someone approaches your property after dark. This could keep thieves at bay. Finally, it’s important to have a security system to sound the alarm in the event of a home invasion. Installing a security system often lowers your home insurances rates as well.