How to get your home ready for winter

With the cold weather on its way, taking some time to get your home ready for winter could help you avoid unforeseen costs.

Plunging temperatures, torrential rain and howling wind – winter weather can be harsh on your home.

As well as the financial cost of clearing up the effects of winter weather, there’s the time, hassle and emotional impact to deal with. But taking some time now to get your house winter weather-ready can give you reassurance for the coming months.

Roof Tiles

Repair loose roof tiles and slates to reduce the risk of them falling off in high winds and causing damage. 

Roof Insulation

If you don’t have insulation, you could lose up to a quarter of your heating through your roof. If you do have loft insulation, check it’s still in good condition and the right thickness. 

Gutters & Drains

Gutters and drains blocked with leaves and debris can stop heavy rain from draining properly. Clearing them before winter can help prevent water damage to your house and potential damp.


Get your garden fit for winter by trimming any trees and removing dead branches so they don’t damage your building or injure someone if they fall because of ice, snow or wind.

Going Away

If you’re going away over winter, leave your heating on low or set it to come on periodically to prevent frozen pipes. You should also check your home insurance covers you for extended absence, as many polices don’t if your house will be empty for more than 30 days. 


A broken boiler could mean living without heating or hot water while you wait for a repair. Consider having your boiler serviced before winter and check that your heating is in good working order. Bleeding your radiators to get any air out of the system and repairing any leaking radiator valves can improve the efficiency of your heating. If you have an open fire or wood burning stove, check whether the chimney needs to be swept. 

Frozen Pipes

Cold weather can cause water in pipes to freeze, leading to cracks and potentially damage caused by water leaks. Insulate your water tank and pipes with lagging wherever possible – you can buy it from most DIY stores 

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We’ve chosen Legal & General as our home insurance provider because they’re trusted experts, offering award winning cover with over 90 years’ experience insuring homes.

Legal & General paid out an average of £1,519 for over 20,000 ‘escape of water’ claims - often caused by frozen & cracked pipes

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Skipton Building Society Home Insurance Protect and Protect Plus is sold, administered and underwritten by Legal & General Insurance Limited. Legal & General Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Registered in England and Wales Number 423930. Registered Office: One Coleman Street, London, EC2R 5AA.
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