Fall has Arrived Be Aware Of Increased Risk Both in Home and On The Road - Capstone Brokerage

By: Mary Thompson, Capstone Brokerage President, October 31, 2017

Fall has arrived in many parts of the country, leaves are changing color, weather is getting cooler and interestingly this means insurance claims will also see a change. Surprisingly, fall and winter months are known for more automobile and home insurance claims; perhaps it’s the weather?

Water Damage Claims increase during the fall and winter months due to an increase in precipitation, freezing pipes, leaking water heaters, or any supply or appliance that uses water that can cause a water leak.

Prevention is the first line of defense:

• Clean gutters
• Check for roof damage
• Check your water heater
• Cover exposed pipes to prevent freezing and in extreme cold weather have sink running with a small amount of water moving at all times.

Automobile Claims are on the rise as well in the fall and winter months due to the changes in weather, rain, snow, sleet and ice can be blamed for skidding, rear end crashes and accidents in general.

Check your car for the winter months:

• Check tire thread
• Check Tire Pressure (Note: Cooler weather can change the pressure in the tire causing tire to need an adjustment)
• Keep the tank at least half full to prepare for any unexpected snow, or traffic delay.
• Drive the speed limits or slower during harsh weather.

Home break ins and theft claims typically rise in the fall and winter months as well. Perhaps the holidays are to blame for increased criminal motivation. Usually when it is dark more crimes take place and during the fall and winter months, the days become shorter and the night becomes longer.

Be smart and protect your home and belongings this winter:

• Be sure to lock the doors all the doors to your home.
• Leave the porch light on
• Start a neighborhood watch
• Be conscience of your surroundings and report any suspicious behavior in the neighborhood.
• Don’t leave packaging to holiday purchases on your curb rather discard in a bin or bag.
• Consider motion lights or lights on a timer

Fire incidence and claims increase during the winter, as well. Be mindful of fire risks and refresh on our guide to fire safety here.

In addition, follow these tips to reduce your risk of incidence:

• Turn off holiday lights
• Be sure the electrical/gas fireplaces are safe, it is smart to have them inspected every few years.
• Log fire places should be completely out prior to leaving the home or heading to bed.
• Inspect and clean chimneys
• Be sure not to overload electrical outlets above their recommended capacity.
• Never leave the stove top or oven unattended

In addition, car theft and break-ins are also on the rise around the holidays many thief’s will walk parking lots to examine contents of the cars during the shopping season.

Protect your purchases and Car this shopping season:

• Be mindful and place all purchases in the trunk of the car.
• Take photos of high value items when you purchase them and keep your receipts to prove ownership.

Use your best judgement and be mindful of the increased risk in the fall and winter months to avoid being an insurance claim victim. Follow these tips and tricks and enjoy the cooler weather and the holidays.