Just when we thought that we had seen the back of the cold weather, the forecasters are stating that it’s about to become colder again, leading to more misery for home owners. There is a definite correlation between the cold weather and the rise in home insurance claims. During the winter months, there is a definite spike in claims, in essence, the colder the weather, the more weather related claims are received. The situation is not being helped by the state of the economy and the cost of fuel to heat homes.
Many hard pressed families are cutting back on heating and alas, colder houses, do tend to suffer more from burst pipes and anyone who has been unlucky enough to suffer from water damage at their home will tell you, its a very unpleasant experience.
The up shot of all of this, is that beleaguered home owners, face another drain on their finances, as home insurance premiums creep up following a number of years of bad weather claims and a freezing cold end to the year.
Many insurers are facing dwindling reserves following an influx of claims and the only way to replenish these reserves is to increase premiums. From the 4th of January 2011, the government increased taxation on home insurance products by 1% and although this is not a major increase, it doesn’t help, when premiums are rising anyway.
There are a number of ways to help keep your premium as low as possible and surely the simplest and easiest is to not to have to make a claim from your policy unless absolutely necessary. Many insurance companies now offer generous no claims bonus discounts which of course are lost if a claim is made.
Implementing a program of maintenance to make sure that pipes are well lagged and that drains are clear of debris and rubbish may help you prevent a loss at your home. Having your boiler serviced on a regular basis can help to ensure that your device does not break down as soon as the weather turns cold and of course, a service will also keep you peace of mind as to the safety of the apparatus.
If you are unlucky enough to suffer a loss, you will need to notify your home insurance company as soon as possible of the occurrence. Full claim instructions are usually found in the policy document.