Homeowners: You just invested in a place to rest your head and create endless memories with your family. While you spend the next couple of decades paying off your home loan, there are preventative measures you can take against pesky neighbors and Mother Nature. Maybe you enjoy surprises—but not the ones that create the need to file an insurance claim on your home. According to the Insurance Information Institute, about 1 in 15 insured homes has a claim each year. Here are the most common causes of claims made, and preventative measures against them.
|1. Fire damage||1. Avoid all fire hazards. Keep watch on burning candles, remove clutter around your stovetop, avoid using appliances with frayed cords. Be careful with fires and be sure to dispose of ashes outdoors in a metal, lidded can.|
|2. Thieves||2. A security system is your best bet to prevent break-ins and save you cash on home insurance. Also, simply make sure your home is locked—both doors and windows. Keep your small, valuable assets in a safe.|
|3. Exterior Wind/Hail Damage||3. Keep your foliage trimmed to help prevent breakage of limbs on a windy day. During a storm, double-check your yard to make sure all loose items such as outdoor furniture and toys are stored in a garage/shed to prevent flying objects damaging your home.|
|4. Other weather-related damage||4. Keep your gutters clean. Do not pour grease down your sink to prevent clogged pipes leading to floods in your home. Investigate leaks as soon as you notice them.|
|5. Vandalism/Mischief||5. Some things are out of your control—eggings, others’ pets digging up your garden, spray paint, whatever the case, keeping a video surveillance of outside your home can scare off neighbors.|