Have you started preparing your home for spring? Once the weather warms and the snow starts melting, it’s time to examine the interior and exterior of your home for maintenance issues. According to the Insurance Journal, weather damage causes over 50 percent of all homeowner insurance claims, with wind damage accounting for half of those claims. These spring preparation tips can go a long way to reducing your risk for weather-related homeowners insurance claims.
Homeowner Spring Maintenance Tips
Most expensive claims are weather-related. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), wind and hail damage cost more than $8,000 on average. Water damage from leaking roofs and bursting pipes are closer to $9,000 in cost per incident.
By proactively inspecting and repairing your home before and during spring, you are effectively reducing your risk and out-of-pocket expenses from typical seasonal damages.
1. Inspect Your Roof and Gutters
One of the first things you should do in preparation for spring is examine your roof and gutters. If you see missing, curled or discolored shingles, it’s time to hire a professional roofing contractor to inspect your roof and make any needed repairs.
While you are examining your roof, you should also look inside your gutters and downspouts. If you see any debris, leaves or twigs, you should clean your gutters to ensure proper water flow.
If you notice that your gutters are loose, dented or otherwise damaged, you should plan to have them repaired before they leak water down the exterior walls of your home. In many cases, the roofing contractor can repair both your roof and gutters.
2. Trim Your Trees
Falling branches and trees can cause mild to severe damage to your home and property. Prevent this by inspecting all of your trees for loose or extremely large branches, rot and insect infiltration. You should trim large branches and remove loose branches. If you encounter any dead or rotten trees, you should have them removed from your property.
3. Have Your Plumbing Pipes Checked For Leaks
Burst pipes and drain pipe clogs can cause extensive flooding throughout your home. To prevent a plumbing system catastrophe, have your home’s plumbing system inspected by a professional plumber. A camera inspection of your drain lines can help detect clogs and a water pressure check can help find leaks and determine if there are any problems in your water supply lines.
4. Eliminate Air Leaks Around Doors and Windows
Air leaks around doors and windows can lead to water damage from rainstorms and might also increase the amount of money you spend on cooling your home this summer. As part of your spring maintenance checklist, examine the caulking and weatherstripping around your doors and windows. If is it missing or damaged, have it replaced.
5. Inspect Your Home’s Foundation
Leaking gutters and settling earth can cause cracks in your foundation. To make sure your foundation is in good repair, take a walk around your home and look for foundation cracks and crumbling concrete or bricks. If you have a basement, check your cracks along your walls and along your basement floor. If you spot any damage, it is best to have it repaired before it starts affecting the structural integrity and safety of your home.