Fortunately, an endorsement exists to cover that damage. Most policyholders don’t hesitate to add that endorsement when they take out their home insurance policy. But prevention is still the smartest approach. Here are a few tips to help you avoid having to make an insurance claim for water damage.

Maintenance: the magic formula against water damage

The best way to prevent water damage from infiltration is to take care of your home’s upkeep. Doing so gives you two major advantages: you’ll protect your investment and you’ll avoid an insurance claim.

Start with gutter maintenance. Twice a year – in the spring and fall – inspect your eavestroughs to make sure they’re clear and clean and that the weight of the snow and ice hasn’t caused them to collapse. What if you notice something unusual? Clean, clear and repair. Your efforts will ultimately be rewarded.

Your roof is obviously an important consideration when it comes to water seepage. It’s a bad idea to simply calculate the average lifespan of a roof and then forget about it until then. Unfortunately, people often wait until problems become evident after water infiltration has occurred. You can prevent that situation while at the same time extending the life of your roof.

If there’s too much snow or ice buildup on the roof in the winter, you may have to clear it. In that case, follow our safety tips. Be sure to inspect the roof in the spring to make sure it’s still in good shape after the winter. Are any of the shingles damaged or raised? Does the roof have a sinking or bending slope? If your roof is metal, are there signs of corrosion?

Lastly, take a look at your home’s exterior cladding and the doors’ and windows’ caulking. Any suspicious cracks need to be examined more closely.

Water damage is the most common home insurance claim

Damage caused by water represents about half of all home insurance claims in Quebec. Although it’s difficult (but not impossible) to prevent sewer backup, water infiltration damage is often the result of negligence in terms of home maintenance. That means it’s up to you!

Covered or not?

Determining whether water damage is covered by a basic home insurance contract isn’t easy. That’s why the Insurance Bureau of Canada’s infoinsurance.ca site provides a wealth of information about how to prevent water damage and even includes an interactive test so you can see how much you know about what’s covered in the event of water damage.

Are you not sure if you have enough coverage? That’s a sure sign you should talk it over with your insurer!