In the colder months, the mornings and evenings are much darker; there’s frost on the ground, and surfaces can become incredibly slippery. Insurance claims for homeowners dramatically increase in the colder months – whether it’s burglaries or damage to property. With that in mind, it’s a good idea to get started on making your home safer for the winter now.
And here’s how you can do it.
Check over your insurance
Of course, one of the best ways to protect you, your home, and your belongings is to make sure you have the right insurance. Your protection should outweigh the risks, so if you’ve moved property in the last year to a different area, it may be worth speaking to your insurance company about upgrading.
Time switch lights
Burglaries are much more likely to happen in the dark, as it is much easier to get away. However, just because the nights are darker, that doesn’t mean that everyone goes to bed earlier. There are still plenty of ways to socialize indoors in the evenings, either at your house or a friend’s house.
If you’re not going to be home before it gets dark, it’s a good idea to install time-switch lighting. This type of lighting will switch on when it becomes dark – giving the impression to onlookers that you’re at home. This can be just enough to deter burglars.
When working late or heading home after a nice evening, outdoor lighting could prevent you from slipping or falling on black ice or wet surfaces. It can also help to make the house look more inviting and safer.
If you have a steep driveway or a few steps at the entrance of your property, these can become increasingly dangerous as the cold weather sets in. Stone steps are the perfect place for moss or black ice to linger unnoticed – meaning you could easily slip and injure yourself when heading to work.
Stainless steel handrails are a great option to install to the front of your home. They offer support when you need it and may even help you catch yourself before you fall.
Insulation for piping
As the temperatures drop, it can wreak havoc on your pipes. In fact, without proper maintenance and insulation, pipes can crack under the pressure of the cold or burst if the water in the pipes has the chance to freeze and expand.
Before the weather gets too bad, speak to a specialist about your insulation. While you’re at it, it wouldn’t hurt to make sure insulation is intact around the rest of the house too because nobody likes to be cold in their own home.
Empty sprinkler devices
Anything that uses water should be thoroughly checked or emptied for winter. If you use a sprinkler system to keep the lawn or flowers hydrated, make sure to empty all stagnant water from the system for the cold months. It’s unlikely you’ll need to water the garden for a few months, but water left in the system could easily damage or crack the piping.
Thinking ahead can save you a lot of money and stress in the long run. Start now, so your winter can be pain-free and filled with hot cocoa and cozy firesides.