Lack of TLC could leave homeowners vulnerable
Homeowners are warned to give their property some much needed TLC or else risk invalidating their insurance.
A quarter of people don’t know that a lack of maintenance, or ‘tender loving care’ for their property could void their home insurance. A recent survey found 23% said they had no idea that if their property was damaged and there was evidence of lack of care, that their insurance is unlikely to protect them.*
Many vital elements of a property need serviced at least once a year so January is a good time to kick off the new year by ensuring the home is healthy and ready for 2024.
Helen Rolph, home insurance comparison expert at Quotezone.co.uk says: “January is a great time of year to get your house in order, the decorations are cleared away and people want a fresh start, it’s ideal timing to tick off our checklist of key items in the home that need some extra TLC.
“Over the winter it can be tricky to keep an eye on what’s happening to your property, with the cold and dark evenings but we would urge people, when they get daylight hours at the weekend, to give the property a proper inspection.
“Ideally check roof tiles, gutters and pipes and start booking up appointments to service key items like the boiler and the chimney to make sure the house is safe.
“I know January can be tough, with 39%* saying it’s their most stressful month financially but homeowners need to safeguard their finances by making sure their insurance policies are intact and their home is protected. A lack of maintenance to the property could risk invalidating the home insurance should they need to make a claim, leaving homeowners vulnerable.”
The team at Quotezone.co.uk has pulled together their checklist of 5 key items in need of TLC;
- Boilers require regular maintenance by a professional to make sure they are safe and efficient. December is the most common month for boiler breakdowns so homeowners need to make sure it’s serviced. Some home insurance policies include boiler repair / replacement but chances are you have to add it as an extra – if it’s been years since your boiler was serviced and it breaks down, your insurance may not cover you as it wasn’t looked after properly.
- A chimney needs swept at least once a year to keep it safe and reduce the risk of fire, chances are over the winter and festive period there were lots of cosy fires lit, adding to the soot build up – lack of care and maintenance to a property can render the home insurance invalid.
- Blocked drains and pipes can lead to excess water, causing leaks, damp and flood damage. Your gutters need checked regularly and cleared at least once a year to ensure rainwater is carried away from the building and down into the drains – any damage sustained to the property as a result of blocked gutters and drains could see your policy invalidated due to lack of maintenance.
- The storm season could leave you with broken or missing roof tiles and slates, check for any issues and have them sealed as soon as possible to prevent leaks and water damage.
- Many people love a break to the heat in January, make sure if you’re away on holiday that the unoccupied details are accurate on your home insurance – if a frozen pipe bursts while you’re away for two weeks and your policy only covers you for seven unoccupied days, then you may not be protected. It might also be sensible to check key water pipes have insulation before jetting off.
As a price comparison site, Quotezone.co.uk helps millions of people in the UK save millions of pounds every year on home, car and personal finance products, it’s never been more important to compare and find savings.
*Quotezone.co.uk’s findings are based on a randomised survey of 1,600 respondents across the UK in November 2023, which represents a margin of error of approximately 5% at a 95% confidence level.
This article is intended as generic information only and is not intended to apply to anybody’s specific circumstances, demands or needs. The views expressed are not intended to provide any financial service or to give any recommendation or advice. Products and services are only mentioned for illustrative rather than promotional purposes.