The AA have urged homeowners to MOT their homes as well as their cars to prepare for the winter months ahead.
As many motorists do, checking their car is ready for winter is a good way of avoiding any bills before Christmas, the same goes for their home.
Every year homeowners are suddenly faced with problems caused by winter including frozen pipes, burst pipes and boiler issues.
According to AA figures last year homeowners had to spend on average around £343 for home emergencies as a result of winter weather.
The main problem that people are faced with during this time of year is a burst water pipe which could lead to a very expensive bill.
Tom Stringer, Head of Home Rescue for the AA said: “Help yourself by spending an hour giving your home a basic 'MOT' – as with your car, it does make a difference and could save you from the cost and distress of a household emergency."
It is important for homeowners to do a few checks on their home for any problems before the winter months start to set in.
As well as checking pipes for missing insulation to help prevent a burst pipe, there are a number of other quick and easy ways to prepare the home for winter.
If a home has a gas-fired boiler, it’ a good idea to get it serviced regularly to make sure it's up to the demands of a long winter; bleed radiators to improve their efficiency; check windows for any draughts and seal as necessary; and knowing where the water stop valve is important in case water needs to be switched off quickly.
As motorists would with their cars checking the exterior of the home is also beneficial to see if there are any problems such as broken tiles on the roof, checking for cracks in walls and checking drains.
Stringer added: “The checks are all common sense and easy to do but with Christmas on the horizon, they are easily overlooked.
“If you haven't got the time or are unsure what to do, call for professional assistance."
Research that was taken in a poll between 15th -23rd October 2010 revealed the problem that was most feared by homeowners was a burst water pipe.
For homeowners carrying out the MOT it could make it easier for homes to deal with the cold that is about to start over the months to come.
© Copyright Autonet Insurance
By Amanda Bainbridge