Losing your home may be unimaginable, but there could be something worse—losing your home with no insurance payment to cover your post-disaster living arrangements. Imagine staying in a shelter rather than a hotel while trying to rebuild your life.
Fortunately, this contingency is usually covered by your homeowners policy, in an aspect of coverage called “loss of use.” This refers to the needs you have besides the cost of replacing your home in the aftermath of a disaster. Rebuilding or buying a new home can take a year or longer, and it’s important that you and your family be secure during that time.
Continue reading ““Loss of Use” Insurance Lessens Effects of Disaster”
You buy insurance, but do you know why you pay what you pay? Insurance companies research a lot of data in order to price “personal lines” policies—what you buy for your auto and home. They take into account risks as well as safety and mitigating factors that reduce cost. Competition from the marketplace comes into play. Each company computes this differently, which is why finding an agency with good carriers can make a difference to your bottom line.
The cost of auto insurance, for example, can be based on individual characteristics such as gender, occupation, education, location, age, even relationship status—all because there is data associating risk potential with such characteristics. Continue reading “Figuring the Cost of Personal Lines Insurance”
The United States has more tornadoes than any other country in the world, and late spring and early summer are prime season in Ohio. Tornadoes usually arrive between 2 p.m. and 10 p.m. You can prepare so that if a tornado (or any other severe storm) hits, you can protect yourself and your family and minimize damage.
Listen and watch for storm updates: a tornado watch means a tornado is possible; a warning means a tornado has been seen and may be on its way to your neighborhood. Continue reading “’Tis the Season for Tornadoes”
Vacation is time to let go of stress and anxiety. Yet it can mean trouble if you leave your house vulnerable to break-ins. While there is no foolproof way to prevent theft, you can take these steps for safeguarding your home.
- If possible, have someone house-sit your home or check in on the house.
- Take steps to make the house look occupied, such as a light timer. If you can’t do that, consider leaving some lights on. Have the lawn mowed, snow plowed, leaves raked.
- Stop mail and newspapers, or better yet: have a friend or neighbor pick them up each day.
- If possible, forward telephone calls so they will be answered.
- Let local police, fire, close neighbors, and security company know you will be away.
- Do not leave notes or anything around the home that can alert someone to your absence.
Continue reading “Take a vacation without inviting burglars in”
With the weather cold and blustery, hibernation starts to feel good. But as we move inside and spend more time there, some risks move with us. The winter months are fire hazard months. Heavier indoor usage of electricity, kitchens, furnaces, space heaters, candles, fireplaces and more all increase the risk of danger from accidental fires. This is the top season for home fires, according to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA), with cooking and heating being the leading causes of residential fires in the winter. Continue reading “Winter is Fire Season”
By now you’ve seen the news. Winter will be early and brutal, with Northeast Ohio expected to be hit from all directions. Alberta clippers will send Canadian cold across the Great Lakes, dropping heavy lake-effect snows. Later, storms from the Gulf of Mexico will send rain, snow or both to our area. And according to NOAA’s National Weather Service, La Niña has re-emerged in the tropical Pacific Ocean and is forecasted to gradually strengthen into winter. La Niña winters often see wetter than normal conditions in various areas, including the Ohio Valley.
What might this mean for you, your family and home? Continue reading “Storm Warnings Ahead”