Home Insurance covers your house from the uncertainties of life such as accident, fire and extreme weather. The houses with fireplaces are to be taken special care of, while applying for a home insurance.
Fireplaces are prone to hazardous house fire that is capable of endangering human lives. So almost all home insurance companies have it a mandatory requirement to get your annual chimney sweep done.
There are quite a few chimney sweep associations that provide chimney sweep training to individuals to become a certified chimney sweep. These are the skilled work forces, that are well acquainted with basics of chimney sweep. They are well trained and capable of noticing potential problems with your chimney. The wood burning fireplaces often causes creosote deposition on the inner walls of chimney. The creosote is flammable substance, capable of producing a fire due to high internal heat. The chimney sweep work to remove the creosote, in addition to working on maintenance and repair of structure of chimney. This prevents the potential hazards to take place, which in turn assures house safety.
So yes, if you haven’t had your chimney sweep done, then start a hunt for the same as without this, your home insurance may be of no use. This is needed because there is an actual fire burning in your house and the dangerous effects of the fire can’t be overlooked. Your insurance company would want to make sure that the possibility of potential fire is ruled out already. Do check the requirements regarding frequency of chimney sweep.
The frequency of chimney sweep varies from once in a three month to once a year or once in two years. Know type of chimney and the fuel you are using. Read through the terms and conditions of your insurance provider and complete the formalities. As an evidence, they would want you to keep the chimney sweep certificates on file. Do keep a log of the chimney sweep done in the past as you won’t afford losing valuable insurance cover due to lack of documentary evidences. Also, all the possible damages are not covered under home insurance. It is also dependent upon the age of your chimney. It might happen that if an insurer investigates your claim and finds out that the periodic chimney sweep is not carried out or there is minor repair work which was not taken care of, then you are not going to receive any compensation.
Bad weather constitutes of extreme rain and wind which could blow of the roof and cause potential damage. While you can not control the bad weather, you can take care of your fireplace safety. For most policies, exclusions are things such as general wear and tear, costs of home maintenance, and damage or breakdown that occurs as a result of poor workmanship.
So, in generic sense, do take care of your chimney on periodic basis. Hire a certified chimney sweep to get the potential hazards notified and worked on beforehand and enjoy the Winter.