All property owners, including homeowners and landlords, should start thinking about how to protect their property for the winter, before the cold weather arrives.
Following last year’s shock bad weather, which saw dreadful storms and floods hit the country, specialist landlord insurance provider Just Landlords has put together some tips on protecting your property for the forthcoming season.
If you don’t know where to start, take a look at this list and start ticking some tasks off now:
Check for signs of damp
One of the most devastating consequences of bad weather is damp. Not only can this lead to expensive repair bills, but it can also affect your health. If damp isn’t addressed, it can lead to mould growth, which is difficult to remove and can cause health issues. Check around your property for signs of condensation or damp and be sure to sort them out immediately. If you need advice on reducing damp, then this free guide will help.
Prevent Christmas burglaries
In the months before Christmas, the amount of burglaries of UK homes soars. Homeowners and tenants should take preventative steps to ensure that their properties are as secure as possible. If you’re a landlord, remind tenants to keep the home locked up whenever they are out and make the property look occupied if they go away. It is also a good idea to keep holiday plans off social media, so that your home isn’t targeted.
Put an emergency plan in place
Although you may feel like you’d know what to do if extreme weather hit your property, you never know how you could be affected. Homeowners should put an emergency plan in place now, should you live in a high-risk flood area, so that you are not left panicking if the bad weather arrives. Landlords should also offer advice to their tenants if they live in a high-risk area. Always monitor weather warnings and have an evacuation route set out that all occupants are aware of.
Make any necessary repairs
Any damage to your property, no matter how minimal, could always be worsened by the winter weather. To avoid facing hefty repair bills, check both the exterior and interior of your property now. This will help you identify any jobs that need completing before the days and nights get colder. Putting in some work now could prevent further damage in the future, which is always worth it! The most important things to look out for are: loose roof tiles, damaged gutters/drainpipes, and condensation.
Put the right cover in place
After suffering damage, the last thing you want to discover is that your property is not insured Homeowners and landlords should always look for the widest insurance on the market, to ensure that you are protected against a host of scenarios. Landlords should also note that it is important to find an insurance provider that will cover alternative accommodation for tenants if the property becomes uninhabitable.
Keep it warm
If you’re trying to save money this year and think that keeping your heating off will cut your costs, you may be wrong. If your property becomes too cold over the winter, you could face more damage in the long-term. It is advised that you keep your central heating on at a minimum temperature of 15°C throughout the day and night, to prevent your pipes from freezing. This will also help to avoid problems with damp and condensation. Remind your tenants to keep the property warm throughout the winter if you’re a landlord. Now is also a good time for a boiler service, to ensure it doesn’t break down during the colder months.
All responsible property owners should start thinking about how to protect their homes now – it’s never too early to start taking preventative steps!