Are you Prepared for Winter?
Winter is upon us and with it brings the risk of cold snaps, high winds and excessive rainfall. You need to take action now to protect your holiday home from the impact on your unoccupied property during these winter months.
There are a number of simple but effective steps you can take to reduce the impact of winter conditions on your holiday home.
- Check your stopcocks
Being able to locate the stop cock is essential to the prevention of damage from water during cold snaps. Make sure they can be turned on and off with ease and that there is no sign of water escaping from the tap or seal. Ensure that the location of the stop cock is clearly communicated to your guests.
- Check your taps and insulate your pipes
Ensure that your taps and pipes, inside and out, are well maintained and check for any cracks or signs of a leak. Whilst the slow drip from a tap or pipe may seem relatively innocuous in isolation, it could cause significant damage in your holiday home over time if not dealt with or in periods of freezing weather. Check that your loft space, water tank and pipes are sufficiently lagged to reduce the risk of damage in cold periods.
- Programme your heating
It is likely that your occupancy over the winter period will be low so you need to ensure that your holiday home is sufficiently heated to maintain a minimum temperature to reduce the risk of frozen pipes, keep condensation at bay and should you get a last minute booking this will ensure you holiday home is warm and welcoming for those guests.
- Check gutters, gullies and drains
Regularly checking your gutters, gullies and drains will ensure that water can flow freely, in the right direction and into the right location during periods of heavy rain. If gutters, gullies and drains are blocked by leaves and other debris this will lead to a build-up of water which will eventually cause damage. If a downpipe is blocked and water builds up in periods of cold weather the water can freeze and crack the pipe. If you notice soil or debris at the base of walls this can be an indication that gutters and pipes are not draining properly.
- Check your roof
Loose or missing tiles will mean that water can make its way into the roof space and in turn make its way into walls and ceilings causing damage to the fabric of the building. Falling tiles or debris from your roof can also be a potential hazard to your guests, housekeeper and anybody carrying out work on your behalf at your holiday home.
Whilst these simple checks may seem obvious they are all too often overlooked causing significant damage to your property resulting in lost income whilst the damage is being rectified.
Always remember to check your insurance policy for periods when the property is unoccupied and what you are expected to do under the terms of the policy.
This blog was provided by Cornish Traditional Cottages