It’s that scary, spooky time of year again. Halloween is right around the corner and so are the tricksters that like to vandalize your home and car. To keep your peace of mind and enjoy the holiday with your littles, be sure that your homeowners’ insurance is up to date. Is should provide the coverage that you need to protect you from any scary Halloween mishaps. Learn more about what your policy should cover and a few tips to stay extra safe this Halloween season.
Goblins and witches and werewolves, oh my! It’s that spooky time of year again, and Halloween is only a few weeks away. You’re busy carving pumpkins, decorating your front yard, and buying Halloween treats.
Your kids, and maybe even you, look forward to haunting the neighborhood and collecting oodles of goodies. Parties, costume parades and trick or treating are all fun and games until someone trips over a crack in your sidewalk and breaks an ankle. If you don’t have reliable homeowners’ insurance coverage, you’re in for a prolonged legal battle.
Before the big night, it’s a good idea to check your homeowner’s policy to be sure that your covered for potential scary mishaps.
Be Sure that You’re Covered for Halloween Horrors
If you have concerns about your homeowners’, renters’, or condo insurance coverage, speak to a Your Policy agent to put your mind at ease.
Injuries to Trick or Treaters
If you’re expecting a lot of trick or treaters, be sure that you check your property for safety hazards. Turn on all of your outdoor lighting, especially around entrances and walkways. Clear your yard and driveway of tripping hazards like extension cords, or decorations that are difficult to see in the dark. If you have holes in the driveway or sidewalk, get them repaired before halloween.
In the event that there is an injury on your property, your homeowners’, renters’, or condo policy will pay medical bills and legal expenses. Check with your agent to see if your policy includes no-fault medical coverage so that you can avoid being sued.
Fires Caused by Candles or Electrical Decorations
According to the National Fire Protection Association’s most recent statistics, Halloween decorations have caused 840 home fires and $11.6 million in property damage each year from 2011 through 2015. It’s estimated, unfortunately that there were two fatalities and 36 injuries during that time.
If a Halloween candle is knocked over or your decorative lights cause a fire then renders your home uninhabitable, your homeowner’s insurance will cover your living expenses. You won’t have to worry about costs for hotels, food, and gas while your home is being repaired or rebuilt.
Vandalism or Theft
We’re all too familiar with Halloween mischief. Trees covered with toilet paper, eggs thrown at your home or car, and stolen decorations or lawn ornaments are all . Standard homeowners’ policies will cover theft or damage to your home. Depending on your deductible and the amount of damage, you can weigh your options as to whether you want to file a claim or pay out of pocket.
Your sweet pet may be your friendly, docile buddy most of the time, but he or she may not be able to handle the excitement of Halloween. When the doorbell starts ringing and your pet sees scores of strange people in even stranger costumes, he or she can be frightened. This could possible lead to a biting incident, especially if a little one tries to pet you pup.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, dog bites and other dog related injuries accounted for nearly one-third of all homeowners’ liability claim dollars paid out in 2019, costing nearly $797 million.
This falls under the auto insurance rather than homeowner’s category, but it could be a devastating turn of events on what should be a happy Halloween evening.
You’re carefully driving home from the office on Halloween. As you pull into your driveway, a little trick-or-treater runs in front of your vehicle. You swerve to avoid hitting the child and crash into the lamp post at the end of your driveway. This would, of course, be covered by the collision portion of your auto insurance. If any one is hurt, the liability coverage kicks in to cover treatment and other costs.
Tips to Avoid Unexpected Risks
While your childrens’ safety is your main concern, don’t forget about your own liability. To keep you kids and your property safe this Halloween season, here are a few suggestions.
- If your children are elementary age or younger, you should accompany them on their trick-or-treat adventure.
- Be sure that everyone uses sidewalks and crosswalks. Don’t cross in the middle of the road, where a driver may not see a child dart out in front of their vehicle.
- Carry flashlights and/or glow sticks to enhance visibility
- If possible, costumes should be light in color. In any case, decorate costumes with reflective tape or stickers.
- Keep pets indoors and out of the way so that they don’t become frightened or excited and bite visitors.
- Use battery-powered lights instead of actual candles in jack-o-lanterns and make sure electronic decorations are up to UL safety standards. As an extra layer of safety, check your smoke alarms.
- Keep your car in the garage, or in a well lit area. According to the Highway Loss Data Institute, Halloween is the biggest day of the year for insurance claims related to vehicle vandalism.
Enjoy Halloween, but be safe. Keep your kids and your home protected, and be sure that your insurance is up to date. Talk to a Your Policy agent to make sure that you have the coverage that you need to protect you from vandalism, injury, and other risks. Happy Trick or Treating!