How to prevent home insurance claims during the holiday season

It’s that time of the year! Christmas music blasting, Christmas trees in every store front, a menorah so beautifully detailed ready to buy. Let’s not forget about the lights, what will you choose: multi-colored, blue, or the classic gold?

During the holiday season there is a lot going on. Whether it is competing on your street to see whose home has the best outdoor lights, to who has the best Christmas cookies, or people will even go to extreme lengths to ensure that THEIR Christmas tree is the BEST decorated. (Not sure who they are competing against, but nonetheless, the HOLIDAY’S ARE HERE!)

While people get lost in the hustle and bustle of all the Christmas cheer, it can expose your home to holiday claim disasters.

To prevent your home from holiday insurance claims this year, here are some useful safety tips to utilize:

  • Before hanging lights up, make sure to inspect them and discard any with frayed cords or cracked lamp holders. Merry Christmas to you and upgrade those old outdated exterior lights with newer ones that have a better fuse plug!

  • Always remember to unplug the lights whenever you leave the house.

  • Make sure when buying a Christmas tree that it is fresh and not dry – fresh trees are more resistant to fire. Remember to water daily and keep the tree away from any open flames like a fireplace, space heaters, or any candles

  • Ensure that your home’s smoke alarm is on and functioning!

  • If you are using a candle to light up the menorah, remember to keep those candles at least 12 inches away from anything that is flammable

  • Remember to lock your home and take all necessary security measures when leaving your home

  • Keep an eye on the oven and remember do not leave the stove top unattended

  • Remember to clean your chimney before lighting that first winter fire

  • Consider adding new home valuables to your home inventory. If you have a high valued item, you want to make sure it is protected under your current home insurance coverage policy

  • The Grinch is real and so is theft this holiday season – always lock valuables, remove your belongings from the car, make sure to lock all your windows and doors when leaving the house, and do not leave valuables in view

  • If you use a ladder, be safe and make sure to inspect it before climbing on it

  • Do not burn your wrapping paper in the fireplace – this holiday season, try recycling it!

  • To ensure your pipes do not freeze this holiday season, make sure to keep the heat on, allow the faucet to drip, seal up any cracks or holes, apply heating tape, and add some extra insulation

  • Never leave a space heater unattended, make sure to place them out of high traffic areas within your home, and do not use an extension cord or power strip – plug them directly into the wall