The time for spring cleaning is at hand. Warm weather and sunny days make way for your outdoor to do list. Most homeowners probably already have an idea of some aesthetic updates that need your attention but often they neglect some important maintenance items. Believe it or not home maintenance can affect your insurance positively and negatively. Insurance is designed to protect you from catastrophic losses like earthquake or tornadoes. It is not designed to cover losses resulting from maintenance/wear and tear. A claim resulting from wear and tear could be denied by your insurance carrier.
But, in order to provide you with protection from catastrophic losses, insurance carriers periodically inspect homes and make recommendation on items that need maintenance to prevent loss. The carrier recommendations can be pretty extensive or they can be relatively minor. Also, just because they inspect does not mean they will necessarily make recommendations. The recommendations are based off of your specific residence and risks that you might be susceptible to. Not complying to a carriers recommendations could force you into a sub-standard market that will cost you more premium for the same coverage.
We have compiled a list of 6 things we see fairly often on inspection results from homes in Paducah, Kentucky. The items on this list are things that homeowners are definitely aware need to be maintained but may get overlooked since they are not in your direct line of sight and damage from poor maintenance does not surface immediately.
HOME MAINTENANCE SUGGESTIONS
1.) Inspect roof for damages and leaks
2.) Clean Gutters
3.) Repair or replace windows and window screens
4. )Redo areas with peeling or damaged paint
5.) Trim trees and shrubbery away from the house removing dead plants and shrubs as well
6.) Add handrails to any indoor/outdoor stairway with 2 or more steps
WHY? A good roof, clean gutters and a good coat of paint act as sealants to prevent water damage.
Clearing out dead landscaping can reduce risk of fire and prevent trees from falling on your home.
Adding a handrail to stairs can prevent falls and save you from liability claims.
If you are not an expert in the areas above then look at hiring a contractor to do a routine, yearly inspection. You can also follow the Bradshaw & Weil, Inc. Pinterest page for links to information from experts on signs of roof damage, ideas to prevent gutters from getting blocked and cost effective ways to add handrails.