Summer Holidays and Social Media — an Insurance Danger Zone
Do you post about everything you do on social media? If so, there could be consequences. Quite apart from notorious issues such as your boss not seeing the funny side of your antics, your social media posts could also damage any insurance claim you have to make on your home.
You home insurance will almost certainly contain a Reasonable Care clause, which allows your insurer’s Loss Adjuster to turn down your claim if your negligence has contributed to the situation. For instance, if you went out leaving your door wide open and came back to find your possessions gone, the likelihood is that you’d get nothing.
Lately, however, insurance companies have begun applying the clause to burglaries that happen while the owners are away on holiday. They’ll search through your social media, and if they find posts about what a great time you’re having in Florida or Thailand, they’ll refuse your claim.
Why is Social Media a Problem?
It isn’t just insurers and suspicious employers who check up on social media. Increasingly, police forces all over the country are warning that tech-savvy burglars are using Facebook, Twitter and the rest as part of their research. Your innocent post about what a great time you’re having on holiday is a big, flashing sign to the burglars — “This house is empty.”
Of course, if you have robust security at home, it might be enough to keep them out, but not necessarily. Burglars who are up to date enough to use social media are likely to also be pretty good on the latest anti-security measures.
If you are burgled after effectively advertising that your home is available, your insurance claim isn’t going to get a sympathetic hearing from the Loss Adjuster. So play it safe, and wait till you’re safely home before you share all those great holiday memories. Then, if despite everything you do get burgled while you’re away, Allied Claims will have a good chance of getting you the compensation you’re entitled to.
Summer and Your Home Insurance
We all look forward to summer. Whether you’re away on holiday or enjoying the long days and warm weather at home, it’s the time of year for getting out and enjoying yourself.
There are a few downsides, though. Every season has its own problems for your home insurance, and summer is no exception. But taking a few precautions should keep you safe.
Avoid Fires This Summer
The recent warm weather probably won’t last, but it’s a reminder that summer is on its way. Summer means a lot of great things — holidays, excursions, outdoor events, picnics, barbecues. The list goes on.
Unfortunately, it also means an increased risk of fire.
Every season has its own fire risks, but the summer risks are particularly acute outside. Last year’s dry summer produced plenty of high-profile fires on open moorland, but the problem can be closer to home, too. Barbecues are a major fire hazard, and they’re likely to be in your back garden, threatening your home.
Whatever type of barbecue you use, it’s vital to keep it away from trees, bushes or wooden fences, and never leave it unattended. If you have to make an insurance claim because your property has been damaged, you’ll have to explain how it happened. If the fire was caused by your negligence, the Loss Adjuster might turn down your claim.
Fire Hazards Can Be Indoors, Too
Although you’re not going to be using indoor heaters much over the summer, keeping cool can also cause trouble. If you have to use electric fans heavily, make sure they don’t overheat and cause a fire.
Another hazard we find is often behind an insurance claim for fire during the summer is glass. Glass can focus sunlight to such an extent that it can set fire to paper or fabric, so make sure you don’t leave mirrors or other glass devices in direct sunlight. And don’t leave anything flammable where the sun can shine on it directly on it through the window glass.
Of course, genuine accidents can always happen. If you take sensible precautions, though, you won’t leave any reason for the Loss Adjuster to deny you compensation. In that case, Allied Claims can help you win your claim.
All content within this column is provided for general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the Insurance advice of your own broker or any other Insurance professional. Allied Claims is not responsible or liable for any decisions made by a user based on the content of this site.
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