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Homeowners advised to protect properties against the ravages of winter

By Joseph Jeffries, on 12 November 2010

Now is the time for homeowners to ensure that their properties are ready and protected against damage over the cold winter months, according to a leading insurance company.

Legal & General has revealed that 60,200 home insurance claims were made as a result of damage caused last winter, with a total of £194 million paid out by insurers.

To prevent a similar situation this winter, homeowners have been advised to carry out checks around the house and make sure that the risk of encountering expensive problems is kept to a minimum.

Frozen or burst pipes and central heating issues are among the most common problems. However, homeowners can steer clear of trouble by getting reputable plumbers to check that everything is in order before the big chill sets in.

"Burst pipes can be a very stressful experience, especially during the winter months as it can mean extensive damage and no hot water," Legal & General's Malcolm Cooper said in a statement on Easier Property.

"It is worth taking the time to check that your heating is in good working order and that all pipes and tanks, which may be liable to freeze, are fully lagged."

Another simple step homeowners can take is to fill any gaps around windows and doors, as not only do these allow heat to escape, but rain can also seep through and cause dampness and rot.

While most of these pre-emptive steps require little DIY experience, doing it wrong can have serious consequences so those who do not feel confident should always call on a reputable tradesman for help.



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