Property damage can prove devastating and expensive. Unfortunately, it’s a surprisingly common occurrence—almost 1 in 20 homeowners make a property damage claim every year. Many things can lead to property damage, though some are more common than others. Here are some of the top causes of property damage and some tips on how to prevent them from harming your home.
Wind and Hail
A pleasant breeze and a dime-sized chunk of hail might not seem very threatening. But wind and hail can cause a shocking amount of damage to your home. A fast-moving hailstone can dent your gutters and downspouts, warp the siding and windowsills, crack the shingles on your roof, and even damage your car, garden, and outdoor furniture.
Hail occurs most often in the late spring and early fall months. Most hailstorms are difficult to detect on radars, which means you may not receive any alert until less than an hour before they strike. Thankfully, there are few ways you can protect your home from hailstorms—you can install shutters or a hail-resistant roof, for example.
Water is another one of the top causes of property damage. It can facilitate the growth of harmful mold, making it more difficult for your home to retain heat, or warp the walls, floors, and ceilings. Most insurance policies cover water damage as a result of inclement weather, but water damage caused by other sources, such as damaged pipes or leaking appliances, doesn’t usually receive coverage—not without an addendum, at least. The most effective way to prevent this kind of damage is to inspect the interior and exterior of your home for problems that could potentially lead to water damage. This includes holes and cracks on the roof, clogged drains, and grubby HVAC units.
If you were to poll homeowners on their greatest fears, break-ins would secure a top spot on the list. While break-ins aren’t as common as other forms of property damage, they can prove devastating. A hailstorm might damage the windows or siding, but those are relatively simple to repair. A burglar might swipe objects that are harder to replace, such as jewelry, clothing, furniture, and other invaluable personal items. Even though your homeowner’s insurance will cover the monetary value of these items, they can’t make up for the lost sentimental value. Thankfully, there are many measures you can take to deter thieves from breaking into your home. A robust security system, locks on doors and windows, and other safety precautions will make your property a less attractive target for robbery.