Owners of properties for sale across the UK may be of the opinion that they need to keep their house well heated in order to stave off the threat of winter illnesses such as colds.
However, it is also important that they are protecting their building from the threat of damage by extreme weather, such as floods.
A new report released by Direct Line has discovered that there are many issues which can occur in the UK throughout the winter months, with the failure to protect homes when people are on holiday a key problem.
It said that 93 per cent of claims for major damage to houses came at times when people were leaving them unoccupied for a period of time, for example when they are seeking some sun on the continent, with the majority of these being burst pipes and flooding.
Martin Egan, national claims manager for Direct Line home insurance, said: "It is not a surprise that there is a correlation between unoccupancy and the extent of damage for those affected by the freezing weather last winter.
"If you are going away, leave the heating on low or turn off and drain the system. Ask a friend or a neighbour to check on your house regularly while you are away."
Direct Line also said that broken down boilers were a big problem in winter, while in Scotland, one in five report damage to their house as a result of adverse weather.
Posted by Zoopla staff writer Frances McDonald