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With the winter weather set to begin, many homes will experience frozen pipes, heating not working and several other seasonal issues. For landlords, it’s vital to understand which insurance cover(s) they need, and what each policy covers.

NLA Top 5 Winter Tips

Prevent frozen pipes

According to Hamilton Fraser, tenants should know the location of the stop cock so that they can turn the water supply off in the event of an emergency such as burst pipes. For more information about burst pipes take a look at https://hamiltonfraser.co.uk/knowledge/burst-pipes/.

Ensure your tenants know how the boiler and thermostat work. If they're away over the festive period, advise them to leave the heating on low or set a timer so that the heating comes on regularly. That should reduce the likelihood of condensation and burst pipes.

Ensure your boiler has been serviced

A common problem during the winter is that boiler parts fail. Make sure your boiler has been properly serviced by a professional engineer belonging to the Gas Safe Register. Not only will a boiler service save you a headache by not having to consistently spend time resolving heating problems, but it can help improve landlord/tenant relationships. Having good boiler cover will definitely be useful during the winter.

Be smart with your house temperature

The average room temperature is between 18-21 celsius. You can set the thermostat to a higher temperature during periods of severe cold, but it’s recommended you only do so for a short time to keep your bill from increasing. Using a smart thermostat might be a good idea to help with energy efficiency, which will have a positive, indirect impact on your homeowners insurance. Using energy efficiently can reduce the chances of problems occuring in the house during winter, resulting in fewer claims needing to be made.

Protect yourself during the winter

Once your driveway becomes icy, the risk of slipping and injuring yourself increases. Gritting your driveway can help reduce these risks. If you are responsible for maintaining the garden, ensure your tenants have the tools to do this themselves, and encourage them to keep walkways well lit and free of leaves and moss. You should have landlords liability insurance, which is a form of public liability insurance. Having this insurance means that you’ll be able to assist your tenants should an accident or injury occur.

Protect your home during the festive season

Properties become a lot more vulnerable to theft during the holiday season, especially if your tenants are out of the house visiting family or friends. Aside from the basics of keeping windows closed and the alarm on, check you have valid landlord insurance to cover damage to the property or theft if your properties are let furnished.

For any landlords looking to switch insurance providers, the NLA offers property insurance specifically designed for landlords. Feel free to take a look here (insert link). NLA members save 15 percent on their policy, and NLA Property Insurance is also available for non-members.

 

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24 October 2018 - 11:21am