How to Avoid Having to Make Claims on Your UK
Insurance cover can help you enjoy peace of mind about your property
but should not substitute for common sense. Some personal items are
irreplaceable if they are unique or have great sentimental value.
When you file a claim, your premiums will increase in the future, so
it is important to discourage accidents and intruders from causing
the kind of mischief that would require you to file a claim. When
your home is reduced to ashes from a fire, insurance is not really
very comforting. Your entire life has gone up in smoke and could
have been avoided by installing smoke detectors and keeping a fire
There are a number of general security steps to take to reduce
the likelihood of accidents or home intrusions. They include the
- Fire prevention. Have you boiler and appliances inspected
each year. Make sure flammable material is not stored near the
boiler. Fit each room with a smoke and carbon monoxide detector
and check the batteries frequently. Home fire extinguishers can
stop most small fires from escalating and are a cheap
- Keep your oven and grill clean to avoid possible grease
fires. Fill pans for frying only one-third full. Never place
toasters near drapers or curtains.
- Keep home heaters away from soft furnishings. Never leave
candles unattended and always extinguish them before sleeping.
- Protect your home with an alarm system. Perimeter lighting
on timers can discourage would-be criminals.
- Lay gravel on your driveway so you can hear approaching
traffic on foot or by vehicle.
- Cancel milk, newspapers and postal service when away on
business or holiday. When these papers accumulate, they are an
open invitation to thieves. You may also choose to have a
neighbour look in on the property and remove items, but make
sure the person you select is trustworthy. If the neighbour is
covered in tattoos and body piercings and appears strung out on
drugs, they may not be the best choice.
- Invest in a wall safe for valuable jewellery and critical
deeds and documents. For items that you seldom need, consider
placing them in your safety deposit box for added protection. Do
not write down the combination to your safe and leave it your
desk drawer. Protect your computer and accounts by requiring a
password for access.
- Do not place valuable items where they can be viewed by
passers-by, especially near Christmas.
- Make sure all outbuilding such as garages or sheds are kept
locked when not being used. Most crimes are acts of opportunity,
so anything you can do to minimise opportunity will discourage
Insurance Cover Must be Accurate
- Too much insurance will just result in you paying far more than necessary. Insurance companies are
delighted to write these policies because they only need provide
replacement value. However, If you choose cover that is insufficient,
then you may not be able to cover your losses should an accident
take place. The
following tips will help ensure you are insured properly.
Keep an accurate list of your property with photographic
evidence to support any possible claim that may arise. Make sure
the items are appraised and your insurance cover is sufficient
to provide replacement value. This will change over the years
and must be updated.
- Insurance may have exclusions that could invalidate your
policy. Have your insurance agent explain the terms of your
policy and check your it personally to verify that all
particulars are spelled out in writing.
- Buy an invisible UV security pen and mark all your property.
- Carefully check your flood insurance policy because if you are
in a flood plain, it may be required that you take certain
preventative measures. These common sense precautions can
protect property or minimise damage. When severe weather
threatens, keep sandbags on hand to place at entrances. Move as
much furniture as possible to the second floor.
- If you live in a Neighbourhood watch area, inform your
insurance agent. This fact could reduce your premium, unless you
enjoy supporting struggling multi-million pound companies.
If you own a home, you should understand
that insurance is not a maintenance contract. You may consider a
pre-winter checkup by a competent local builder if you are unable to attend to routine service
You can minimise potential damages or insurance claims by
understanding that routine maintenance is important.
- Your home is highly susceptible to home invasion and
winter damage if unchecked during the season. Storms and high
winds can cause damages that can escalate.
- Damaged chimneys and roofs can cause water damage inside that
is far more extensive than the exterior damage, which can go
- Gardens should be monitored for potential hazard. Trees should
be kept free of dead wood and should not be near your home or
- Windows, gates and shutters should be latched to prevent
- Pipes can burst and cause severe flooding if the damage
remains undiscovered. A minimum amount of heat should be
maintained throughout the winter months to protect against this
- Blocked gutters and drains can cause leaks and water damage.
They should be regularly cleaned, or you should consider
installing gutters that are covered to prevent debris from
- You could be liable for walkways that are not kept clear in
winter, if someone slips on ice and sustains an injury. You
should arrange with a friend, relative, neighbour or local
contractor to keep your walkways
shovelled and salted during winter months if you are unable to
see to the task yourself.
- Most criminals choose to commit crime when opportunity arises.
Minimise the risk by providing secure locks on doors and
windows. An alarm may help deter invasions, but if the property
is located in a rural area, that may be insufficient. Grills and
shutters may be more effective for deterring criminals in this
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finance-1.co.uk 2000. Last updated: 6/11/11