With winter coming around the corner, September is a great time to winterize your home while the weather remains warmer. Though this does not always seem related to insurance, many of the tasks completed while preparing your house for colder weather can also reduce risk of future claims. Though tasks may vary depending on your home, some of the general tasks are similar from home to home.
1 – Roof Checks: Though we do not recommend a homeowner doing an extensive inspection of their roof; that is best left to the professionals, we do think general checks can be beneficial. If you see shingles that are out of place, broken, or have been blown off by wind, it is good to hire a roofing professional to repair or replace these shingles. This may be a sign of deeper problems occurring that could cause future claims. Additionally, inspecting in crawl spaces or attics after a heavy rain may reveal trouble spots where leaks may be occurring.
2 – Gutter Cleaning: Gutter cleaning is another task we prefer our clients outsource to professionals, it is important to clean gutters, or install gutter shields. This may be a task you wait until October after the leaves have fallen, but it is important to make sure it is performed until it is too late. The strain of leaves and other debris on the gutter can cause the nails to pull away from the house or building, causing damage to roof and siding.
3 – Chimney Clean: This task must be performed by a professional. The cleaning of the chimney is important to prevent fire issues. The backup of soot and ash, which can be called creosote, can cause problems when using the fireplace in the future. This creosote can cause a “puff back”, which can create smokey residue in the living area that can result in odor issues and staining.
4 – Window and Door Insulation: A general check of insulation can prevent increased heating and cooling expenses. Though this may be difficult to test and judge, there are services provided by the state that send professionals to your house to conduct a full energy efficiency analysis. We suggest you contact the state agency to determine whether you qualify for these programs.
If you have any questions about your homeowner insurance – please contact your H&K agent or reach us at email@example.com or (617) 924-5600.