Prepping Your Home for Fall Season Is Claims Deterrent : Dear Insurance Agent...
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Prepping Your Home for Fall Season Is Claims Deterrent

by A. Montalbano on 10/22/15

In Texas, cool weather brings out the joy of outdoor fun.  But for a home owner, fall is a reminder of weather-proofing or ongoing maintenance to deter claims. 

Falling Leaves:  The first sign of cool weather is falling leaves, and boy, can they cause a yard to look like havoc.  When there is a drought, dry leaves are a major hazard. So its highly important that leaves are rid of properly and a must to adhere to the burn bans in your county.  

Pests:  Look for warm places to hibernate and what a better place than your home.  This is the time to call in pest control to spray for bugs and to diagnose those areas likely for mice or even raccoon to squeeze through.  Pests like to create holes and damage your home.

Windows/Doors:   Your home experiences weather penetration from the beating hot sun and storms throughout the spring and summer.  Cracks are likely to appear on exterior siding, even brick, and around doors and windows.  This is a job for caulking and possibly touch-up of paint.  Paint seals the exterior while caulk insulates the windows and around exterior doors from those breezy autumn winds.

Fireplace:  If you haven't checked the flute, early fall is the right time to do so.  Most often, families want to use the fireplace during the fall season.  It is warm and comforting and can lower your electricity bill.  But maintenance is required because you may need repair or even worse, find an unwelcome guest living in your chimney.

Gutters/Roof:  Cleaning out your gutters is essential to upkeep of your home.  Meanwhile, maintenance of your roof is a must-do when owning a home.  Leaves and debris cause wet spots in your gutters and on your roof.  Not a good thing to delay because water causes rust and forms decay on your roof.  This is troubling for insurance companies since claims caused by slow leaks can be preventable.  Periodic leave blowing will be on the agenda for the fall season.  However, its important that you understand walking on your roof is hazardous to your well-being.  Its dangerous and not advisable.  It also wears on the shingles so hiring a professional may be in order.

Take note:  Your insurance company may send out an inspector to do a quick review of how you maintain your home anytime throughout your policy period.  If they are insuring your home for thousands of dollars, you bet, they have every right to make a report.
Not many notify their insureds before the visit, unless there are locked gates or security-monitored neighborhoods for access.   Some companies can flat out cancel a policy without allowing for the insured to make the changes.  Other companies will give 30, 60 even 90 days to make the changes.  So be a responsible home owner and keep your home in order.  You homeowners insurance company won't wait for the seasons to change to check off your home from possible claims.

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