Don’t let the glorious summer we’ve just had lull you into a false sense of security. The coming winter is just as likely to throw its usual quota of storms, rain and freezing temperatures.
So why not use these first days of autumn to do a few jobs around your home that might keep the worst of winter weather at bay?
Remember that keeping your property adequately maintained, with reasonable precautions taken against the onslaught of winter, is an underlying condition of any home insurance policy.
So, what are some of the jobs you might tackle?
- start at the top and work down, since your roof is likely to be taking the worst of any battering this winter;
- that means checking for dislodged, loose or missing tiles or slates and getting these fixed by a reputable roofer
- a job you might do yourself – if you have a head for heights – is to unblock and thoroughly clear all the gutters around the roof;
- blocked gutters are one of the major culprits for damp getting into the walls of your home after the rain has been lashing down all winter;
Downpipes and other rainwater goods
- the same goes for the downpipes and associated drains and soakaways – you need any rain that falls to be channelled well away from your home;
The roof space
- the roof space is one of the areas most often overlooked when it comes to ensuring pipes are properly lagged – an essential precaution against frozen pipes and fittings, and the inevitable escape of water when they burst;
- alarmingly, as many as three out of four households in the UK are unaware whether or not their pipes are insulated, according to a story that appeared in the Express newspaper on the 26th of October 2017.
With this month being National Home Security month, now may also be a good time to make sure your property is safe as well as sound.
Burglars and other intruders love the dark and, as the nights grow longer, their opportunities for getting up to no good increase. So, firstly, review the security of your home. Then:
- check the functioning of the locks on all external doors and windows – it’s likely to prove a false economy to skimp on quality with these – and make sure that they are closed and locked at night and whenever you leave the house;
- if you are going to be away for any length of time, an inexpensive security measure is to buy some timer switches and have the lights come on in various strategic parts of your home;
- motion detecting lights on the outside of the front and rear of your home may also be effective deterrents;
- don’t advertise your holidays on social media and avoid other obvious signs of your being away by ensuring that deliveries are cancelled or at least taken indoors by a neighbour;
- the same neighbour might also agree to parking their car on your driveway to give the appearance that there is someone at home;
- to discourage the more determined intruder, consider installing a burglar alarm system.
Few of these jobs are likely to take any time and may help to keep your home not only wind and water tight over the coming winter months but also provide essential backup to your home insurance.