Top Ten Tips to Protect Your Home Against Water Damage This Spring
TORONTO, April 10, 2013 /CNW/ - With a heavy spring thaw underway,
Canadians are seeking various ways to protect their homes this season.
Approximately 40 per cent of all home insurance claims are the result
of water damage, according to data from Aviva Canada Inc., one of the
country's leading providers of home, auto, leisure and business
The data also shows that the average cost of water damage claims rose
117%, from $7,192 in 2002 to over $15,500 in 2012, a year in which the
company paid out over $111 million in property water damage claims.
Last year's spring thaw was unusually uneventful, due to the dry winter
that preceded it but with a more normal snow-filled winter winding
down, Canadians should be more proactive in 2013.
"With so many Canadians making a significant investment in their
basements as more of a comfortable living space than a grungy storage
room, a greater value in belongings in a high-risk area of the home has
led to an increase in number of water damage claims," said Wayne Ross,
Vice President of Property Claims for Aviva Canada. "We strongly
encourage homeowners to take matters into their own hands in order to
protect their homes."
The top ten steps Canadians should take this spring to safeguard their
homes and possessions from water damage are:
Inspect your roof: To prevent leaks, get the roof inspected every few years to check the
condition of the shingles and replace when necessary.
Clear out gutters: Prevent blockages, such as leaves and other debris that could force
water into your home.
Install a backwater valve: These valves close automatically if the sewer backs up and can prevent
thousands of dollars in damage.
Scope out your sump pump: If your basement has one, examine it and conduct a test run if it
doesn't get used frequently.
Divert snow away from your home: Ensure that snow is removed from around your home, its foundation, doors
and basement windows.
Check your foundation: As ice melts, if you notice water pooling in certain areas, clear the
liquid away from your home.
Ensure your window wells are debris-free: Clear any accumulated garbage or leaves to allow water to drain
Ensure street catch basins are not blocked: These prevent snow from building up on the street level, protecting
water from seeping towards your property.
Protect your valuables: If your home is prone to water damage, consider moving valuables away
from high-risk areas, such as the basement, or place items on high
shelves or risers.
Start right: If you are finishing your basement, make sure to seal your exterior
Without taking such precautions, homeowners could put their homes and
family belongings at great risk. A provincial breakdown of the
increase in the average cost of water damage claims from 2002 to 2012
is included below. The data highlights that BC and Ontario have seen
the highest percentage in the average cost of a water damage claim over
the last ten years.
% increase in average cost of water
damage claim from 2002 to 2012
Newfoundland and Labrador
* Saskatchewan, Manitoba, PEI and the territories were not broken out
due to small number of claims.
Consumers are encouraged to speak with their insurance broker or insurer
to understand what types of water damage are covered in their policy.
For examples, many Canadians are unaware that overland flooding, such
as water swells from nearby rivers or lakes is not covered under
standard home insurance policies and that this coverage is not widely
About Aviva Canada
Aviva Canada is one of the leading Property and Casualty insurance
groups in Canada providing home, automobile, recreational vehicle,
group and business insurance to more than three million customers. A
wholly-owned subsidiary of UK-based Aviva plc, the company has more
than 3,000 employees, 25 locations and 1,700 independent broker
partners. Aviva Canada and its employees invest in positive change
including through the Aviva Community Fund and Eva's Initiatives, its
partner in Aviva's global Street to School program to help homeless and
other at-risk youth reach their potential.
For more information visit AvivaCanada.com, our blog or our Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages.
SOURCE: Aviva Canada Inc.
For further information:
Senior Manager, Public Relations and Social Media
Aviva Canada Inc.
Desk: (416) 288-2685
Mobile: (416) 523-3225
Kaiser Lachance Communications
Desk: (647) 725-2520 ext. 207
Mobile: (647) 400-0538