Damage-limiting preparation for your home
If heavy winds and rain are on the cards, it’s a great idea to make preparations to limit any damage to your home, not to mention help protect you and your loved ones. These six handy tips are provided by our home insurance partner, RSA. They believe that your home and lifestyle are as individual as you are and that your insurance should mirror this. This is why we, as a partnership, offer ‘Take Your Pick’ home insurance where you can build a policy that covers the things that are important to you whilst only paying for what you need.
1. Check the forecast
Monitor local weather reports for updates. If you have an idea when the storm will hit, you should try to be indoors or somewhere sheltered, and if you can, carry out the following checks on your home;
2. Secure loose items
Ladders, garden furniture, bins and hanging baskets could break windows or damage cars if they blow around. Wherever possible, make sure they’re put away or secured down before the storm starts.
3. Gates, garages and sheds
Strong winds can blow open or unlocked doors off their hinges. This could leave you with costly damage to repair as well as compromising the security of your belongings. Check sheds, garages and gates are shut and locked before the storm hits.
If you use an open or wood burning fire, then you should have the chimney and flues swept every year. This will clear the potentially dangerous build-up of soot and any obstructions that may have occurred over the warmer months.
5. Drains and guttering
Clearing leaves and debris that could cause a blockage will help heavy rain flow freely away from your home avoiding potential floods.
6. The roof
If you suspect your home has loose roof tiles or an unstable chimney stack, it’s worth getting these fixed before the storm hits. Under no circumstances should you attempt to repair damage while the storm is in progress.
A great final tip to make sure you’re prepared is to make yourself a fact sheet of all of the useful phone numbers of trusted tradespeople that you may need such as plumbers or electricians. This sheet should also have your home insurance provider’s phone number and RSA would recommend having your policy number to hand. If you end up needing to make a claim this will speed up the process. Maybe think about laminating your fact sheet if your house is prone to flooding! If you have had a flood or you know that it could potentially happen in a storm, read the RSA’s flood guide.
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