The holiday season is upon us, meaning it's time to be jolly, gather with friends and family, and, hopefully, stay safe. But in addition to the things we're all wishing for, the holidays can bring some unwanted gifts in the form of accidents, damages, or injuries that might result in an insurance claim. So what are the most common holiday-related insurance claims and how can you avoid them? Read on to find out.
Fire damage: The holiday season can bring a very real uptick in potential fire hazards, including Christmas trees and decorations, those shiny gifts under the tree, and the increased use of electrical outlets and fireplaces, just to name a few things.
How to stay safe: Make sure your tree, gifts, and other decorations are placed well away from outlets, space heaters, and other potential fire sources. Use outlets appropriately: never overload them or use adapters to bypass what the outlet can safely handle. Make sure all cords and wiring (including Christmas lights) are free from damage and working properly.
Accidents and injuries: When celebrating the season involves climbing on the roof to put up lights and inflatables, standing on a tall ladder to put the star atop the tree, and consuming more alcohol than you might at other times of year, All while there's ice and snow everywhere, there are bound to be some accidents. And if someone outside of your family is injured doing any of these things on your property, you're the one who could be liable.
How to stay safe: Use ladders correctly and always have a buddy to help you out and keep watch, especially if you're placing decorations outdoors. Keep your walkways free from ice and snow to protect yourself and your neighbors. Serve alcohol responsibly, and don't allow guests to engage in rowdy behavior or unsafe practices at your home. And never let your guests drive home if they are intoxicated.
Theft: With increased travel and social activities, there are unfortunately more opportunities for theft to occur, both at your home and while you're out and about.
How to stay safe: Always secure valuable items if you are hosting people at your home. Use motion lighting and an alarm system to keep your home protected. Make a habit of locking your car, especially when you're out shopping for gifts.
Car accidents: Icy roads and boozy gatherings can make for a dangerous combination. Winter weather, driving at night or while tired, and multiple other factors can make accidents even more likely.
How to stay safe: Keep your car well maintained. Plan for the weather and give yourself plenty of time to get wherever you are going. Never drive while intoxicated, and have a backup plan if you are going to celebrate. Travel with enough gas, a spare tire, and an emergency kit, just in case.
As we dive into the holidays, make sure you have adequate insurance coverage on your home and property, and that your liability coverage is appropriate to your risk. That way, no matter how the season unfolds, you'll know that you are safe and protected.
For all of your insurance questions, call or contact Executive Insurance & Financial Services today.