It’s the busiest time of the year for most.
And with all manner of event and celebration going on, it’s easy to forget about some of the basic precautions for keeping your home safe during Christmas.
As the big day approaches, homeowners are advised to thoroughly review the fine print of their home and car insurance policies to ensure they are covered for any holiday-related incidents.
“Households throughout the country will be at greater risk of fires in the home around Christmas time – which is understandable given how much our houses are adorned with Christmas lights and flammable decorations,” said Paul Walsh, CEO of Peopl Insurance.
“We’re definitely not trying to put anyone off festive décor, but we are just advising people to be aware – take safety precautions and make sure their home insurance cover is adequate and up to date.
“Standard home insurance policies will of course cover you in the event of a fire but it’s worth noting insurers typically don’t cover for damage or loss resulting from faulty workmanship, design flaws, wear and tear, or careless placement of lights.
“So, if you are unfortunate enough to have a fire in the home and it’s found that any of these exclusions were at play, then you could be in a difficult position when it comes to an insurance claim”.
Here are five top tips for home safety when decorating this Christmas:
- If you are dusting off last year’s decorations, you must check your tree lights for any defects, including any loose connections or frayed wiring, as these could potentially trigger a fire hazard.
- Only buy Christmas tree lights with a genuine CE mark on them as this means they comply with European safety standards.
- Steer clear of purchasing lights from second-hand stores unless you are planning on getting them professionally checked. Instead, buying from reputable stores is advised.
- With multiple plugs connected to a single socket, there is also a risk of an overloaded socket causing a fire or heat damage to the socket. Overloaded sockets draw excessive power to a single area which can lead to overheating. To minimise the risk of fire with overloaded sockets, distribute the energy load across different areas of your home. This might mean a few less lights on your Christmas tree but it’s worth it to ensure your home is safe.
- Check your outdoor lights for any faults before you put them up particularly if you have used them before, as these fixtures endure the harsh winter elements and are susceptible to damage and wear and tear.