Archive for category: Home

4 Practical Safety Tips for Homeowners This Thanksgiving

thanksgiving safety tips for homeowners

Thanksgiving should be a fun-filled, joyous event, but it also comes with various safety risks that merit practical countermeasures.

As you get ready for the holiday, here are 4 practical Thanksgiving safety tips to observe and protect yourself and your loved ones from unfortunate incidences.

1. Prevent Kitchen Fires

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), most kitchen fires in the U.S occur during Thanksgiving. Moreover, cooking is the leading cause of kitchen infernos that often result in severe burns or fatalities.
Fortunately, you can prevent kitchen fires by implementing these simple thanksgiving safety tips for homeowners:

• Stay in the kitchen while your stove or cooker is on since unattended cooking is a major cause of kitchen fires.
• Fry your turkey outdoors, and keep the fryer away from flammable materials or structures.
• Confirm that your smoke alarms/detectors are working by pushing the test button.
• Always have fire extinguishers on hand.

2. Minimize the Risk of Injury

Watch out for the risk of injury, such as cuts and burns, especially when there’s a lot of people, movements, interactions, and activities at home during Thanksgiving. To keep everyone safe, implement these tips:

• Wear well-fitted clothing while cooking. Loose sleeves dangling over the stovetop are more likely to catch on fire.
• Protect kids from burns by keeping them away from the stove (at a minimum distance of three feet ).
• Keep children away from hot beverages and food.
• Be sure that only responsible, sober persons handle knives. Keep in mind that drunk individuals with knives are a serious threat to personal safety. Also, kids shouldn’t be playing with or using knives.

3. Protect Your Home

If there’ll be nobody at home during the festivity, be sure to secure your house against risks such as burglary. Here are some of the measures you can take to maximize the security of your home while you’re away:

• Activate your home security system to discourage intrusion and break-ins. Be sure to set up your burglar alarm and put some of your lights on timers.
• Inform a trustworthy neighbor that you’ll be away for a specific period. You may request them to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity, such as somebody entering or attempting to enter your house while you’re away.

4. Insure Your Home

Make sure to protect your home with adequate homeowners insurance. Thanksgiving shouldn’t be a day to worry about fire accidents and their consequential financial losses. It’s a time to enjoy your delicious turkey with friends and family.

Hence, it makes sense to get a good insurance cover for your home. This way, you can have peace of mind that you’re protected from financial loss or liability in case of unfortunate Thanksgiving accidents or injuries.

While implementing these safety tips for homeowners will let you focus on enjoying Thanksgiving with your family and guests, insuring your house will add to the protections you have in place. Reach out to the experts at Chambers & Company Insurance to get homeowners insurance cover that suits your needs and budget. We are ready to assist you with all your coverage needs.

3 Ways to Protect Your Home From a Lawsuit

no image

Your home is likely to be one of your most important assets. It’s not only the value of it but the security it provides for your family. While you may do your best to safeguard your home from theft and more, many homeowners overlook the likelihood of a lawsuit. It’s a reality that many families do not have the cash to handle a large lawsuit, defend themselves, and satisfy a large judgment. A lawsuit is a huge financial obligation and can put a real strain on your pocket. To help you protect yourself and your property from a lawsuit, read on.

 

Create a domestic asset protection trust (DAPT)

A DAPT is a self-settled trust created under certain state statutes that offers another method for homeowners to protect their properties. The DAPT is excellent for protecting a personal residence, cabin, or beach house that you plan on keeping for life. In most states, the longer you keep the assets in a DAPT, the better protection the trust provides.

 

Implement an equity stripping plan

Equity stripping is the process of placing a lien on your home with a mortgage and removing the equity by replacing it with a loan. In short, this makes your home much less attractive to a potential creditor who wants to take it to satisfy a judgment. It’s essential to implement the loan correctly. Ideally, a traditional home equity line of credit or even a first mortgage lien, wherein you use the loan proceeds to invest and create additional wealth, can be a perfect fit. It’s legitimate, and it’s difficult for a creditor to challenge in court and step in front of a valid lien holder on the title to your primary residence.

 

Purchase umbrella insurance

Umbrella insurance is a coverage that helps you when you need help the most. It extends beyond your current homeowners insurance liability coverage. It is an insurance that covers a variety of situations that could possibly create a claim. It can be very affordable and will benefit many families. If someone files a lawsuit against you, your homeowners insurance may step in to help – but only up to the policy limits. If the lawsuit is so expensive that it costs more than what you have coverage for, then an umbrella insurance policy will step in to help. Most policies start at $1 million in coverage, which gives you ample peace of mind that you have cover in place to protect your home.

 

Now you know just some of the ways to protect your home from a lawsuit. Are you ready to find the right protection? Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right homeowners insurance policy or umbrella insurance policy to suit your needs and home from a lawsuit.

Does My Homeowners Insurance Cover Internal Damage?

mold on tile

Coverage for Interior Property Damage

 

When homeowners think of their homeowners insurance, they often think of it stepping in to help with significant events like fires, lightning, vandalism, and theft. While these instances tend to be covered in a standard policy, what about the seemingly minor interior concerns that can be just as damaging?

 

  • Water damage

Whether a standard homeowners insurance policy will cover internal water damage depends on how the damage occurred. If it is sudden water damage from a burst pipe, wind-driven rain, or malicious criminal activities, it is likely that your policy will cover it. However, it may not cover damage caused by gradual leaks, sewage backup or flooding.

 

  • Mold and mildew

Mold in your home may or may not be covered, depending on what caused it. If the mold is caused by water damage from water used to put out a fire, you may be able to claim coverage. However, removal of mold from your home is not covered if the mold resulted from flooding, ground seepage, or pipes that were poorly maintained, leading to leaks.

 

  • Pet damage

Most standard home insurance policies will not cover damage your pet does to your personal property or home, whether it’s staining a carpet or scratching the walls. However, liability coverage included in most policies may provide protection in case your pet damages someone else’s property or injures someone.

 

Are you ready to find the right protection? Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right homeowners insurance policy to suit your needs and home today.

Finding an Affordable Policy for Your First Home

home insurance

Home Insurance Tips for First-Time Property Buyers

There’s little in life that compares to the feeling you get when you receive the keys to your first home. It’s probably been a long and arduous journey to this point, as it is historically for most of the nation, but you be relieved when you can move in the boxes and can put your feet up in your first property. But before you get too settled, there’s something to think about – home insurance. You won’t be able to overlook this important aspect of home buying, so here are a few tips to keep your policy affordable.

 

Know the rebuild cost

When working out the cost of home insurance, think about how much it would cost to rebuild your house and its contents. Keep in mind this won’t be the price that you paid for it. This valuation will advise the rebuilding cost of the house and the minimum amount that you must insure it for.

Protect possessions

While home insurance will protect your belongings, if you have items of high value, you may need to consider additional coverage. If you own expensive jewelry, antiques, art, musical equipment, golf clubs, and more, then you should extend cover so that these valuables are protected from perils.

Review your deductible

A deductible is the amount of money you pay in a claim before the insurance kicks in. When you choose to raise your deductible, you take on more financial responsibility in a claim. As a result, the insurance company lowers your monthly or yearly premium. If you’re looking for a way to save, consider raising your deductible. Keep in mind that this is an out-of-pocket cost so it should be kept at a comfortable expense for you to pay.

Are you ready to find the right protection for your first property? Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right homeowners insurance policy to suit your needs and home today.

How Insurance Can Pay for Damaged Landscaping

garden and wheelbarrow How Insurance Can Pay for Damaged Landscaping

Rely on Your Homeowners Insurance for Yard Protection

As a homeowner, it’s likely that you’ve invested considerable money and time in your yard. Whether you have tall trees, luscious shrubs, and specialized drought-resistant landscaping, you value your yard and the hard work you’ve put into it. It’s only natural to want insurance protection for your outdoor property just as you have for the house itself. The good news is most home insurance policies cover your lawn, trees, and landscaping.

In standard home insurance policies, your yard is covered against:

  • Fires
  • Explosions
  • Lightning
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • And more!

Problems that are excluded from that list are often:

  • Hail
  • Wind
  • Flood
  • Pests and vermin

In most policies, “trees, plants, and shrubs” are not usually covered for more than 5 percent of the total dwelling coverage. For example, if the structure of your home (not your personal belongings) is insured for $500,000, you wouldn’t be able to file a claim for more than $25,000 to repair your landscaping.

If you have extensive and expensive landscaping, you can purchase an endorsement that will provide more protection for your plants, shrubs, and trees. An endorsement could even extend to any expensive gardening and landscaping tools and machinery you own.

Are you ready to find the right protection for your backyard? Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right homeowners insurance policy to suit your needs and home today.

Do I Need Renter’s Insurance Coverage?

apartment rent renter insurance space

Should I Consider Renter’s Insurance Coverage?

If you’re a renter, you may be tempted to skip the thought of purchasing renter’s insurance coverage. After all, you don’t own the space and you only have a few belongings – coverage wouldn’t help you that much, right? Think again. All renters should consider taking out a policy to protect their belongings, wallet, and more. Here’s why.

What does renter’s insurance cover?

Most renters are under the misconception that their landlord is responsible for repairing and replacing their belongings after an accident, such as fire or theft. However, this is not the case. The landlord will have insurance that covers the whole building, excluding your own personal property. This means that if you do not have insurance, you leave your belongings and pocket vulnerable to risk in the event of damage or disaster.

Renter’s insurance covers:

  • Personal property damage: If your personal property is damaged in a covered peril, your renter’s insurance company will cover the cost of the damage up to your policy’s limits. A covered peril is a damaging event listed in your policy such as fires, wind, and theft.
  • Personal liability: If someone is injured on your residence, and the event is found to be due to your negligence, your policy will cover the costs of legal liability. A standard policy covers up to $100,000 in liability costs.
  • Additional living expenses: If your rental home or apartment becomes uninhabitable, your renter’s insurance policy will cover the expenses.
  • Medical Payments: Coverage for medical costs if a guest is injured on your property.

Common perils include:

  • Fire and lightning
  • Wind and hail
  • Explosions
  • Smoke damage
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Water damage
  • Mold
  • And more!

Are you ready to find the right policy? Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right renter’s insurance coverage to suit your needs and home today.

3 Items Which Call for a Personal Umbrella Policy

3 Items Which Call for a Personal Umbrella PolicyHave These Items? Don’t Skip Umbrella Coverage 

Many homeowners are under the impression that they have plenty of homeowners insurance coverage for their needs. What many forget is that all it takes is one accident to reach their general liability limit. Granted, some homeowners have more risks than others. If you have any of these three items in your yard, consider an umbrella insurance policy.

1) Swimming Pool

A swimming pool in California is the ultimate dream. It’s a great way to avoid busy beaches, relax at home, and cool off in summer. However, pools are a huge red flag for insurers. Pools are prone to accidents, from slips and falls on the wet tiles to drowning and worse. Talk to your insurer to find out if pool incidents are covered in your policy. Think about it in terms of the worst, such as drowning or paralysis. You may find that your homeowners insurance is not enough and that an umbrella policy is needed.

2) A Trampoline

Neck injuries, broken bones, and more – trampolines can be fun but they carry their own set of risks. Trampolines are often excluded from home policies, so you’ll want to talk to your insurer about how to cover this item. Remember to read through the trampoline’s manual in order to establish strict rules about usage. Consider age restrictions, proper installation, and supervision before purchasing a trampoline.

3) Play Equipment

Ideally, you will have play equipment installed by a professional. Even a modest swing or playset can mean that kids get injured on your property. Discuss liability concerns with your insurer and ask how to mitigate the risks.

Do you have any of these items in your backyard? Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right homeowners insurance policy to suit your needs and home today.

Tips to Enjoy Halloween and Keep Your Home Safe

Tips to Enjoy Halloween and Keep Your Home SafeHalloween Home Safety Tips 

For homeowners, trick-or-treaters aren’t the only spooky things that come with Halloween. The scariest holiday is almost upon us, and now is the time for homeowners to prepare their home for Halloween so that they can enjoy it. From fires to falls, here are a few precautions to take to make your home safe before your Halloween party, or when little ghouls and witches come calling.

  • Clear Things Up

Remove obstacles that could be tripping hazards. Make sure holiday decorations, garden hoses, toys, and more are kept well away from where kids will be walking. You will also want to double-check that the path leading to and from the house is free from cracks and holes.

  • Secure the Pets

All the visitors can overexcite your dog, making it a stressful night. It is best to confine your pets to one room or area of the house so that they cannot see the frequent trick-or-treaters. You’ll keep everyone safe and make sure your pet feels more secure.

  • Light it Up

It might be fun to turn all the lights off to get the full spooky effect of the jack-o-lanterns, but a darkened home and walkway can spark trips, falls, and multiple injuries. Turn on the lights to be safe and install extra lights outside to ensure guests can see the path.

  • Take Care of the Candles

Instead of putting a tea light in the jack-o-lantern, which poses a risk to you and your home, use LED lights. This is a smart swap that will keep your property safer on Halloween.

  • Consider Your Candy Options

Keep in mind that some candy may not be for every child. Some kids have food allergies, ranging from peanuts to chocolate to wheat. Check the bag’s label for allergy and choking warnings.

  • Review Your Home Insurance

You may not know, but opening your home trick-or-treaters and Halloween party guests can expose you to homeowners claims and lawsuits. Unfortunately, this is the not-so-fun side of the fun holiday. Talk to your insurance agent to ensure that your home insurance policy is current and that you have adequate protection.

When it comes to celebrating Halloween, make sure your home is ready. Homeowners insurance can protect your property through Halloween and beyond! Talk to the professional team at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to determine the right homeowners insurance policy to suit your needs and home today.

Situations Where Renters Insurance Will Save You

Situations Where Renters Insurance Will Save YouMoments Where Renters Insurance Pays Off

Renters insurance is one of those policies that not all renters have, but one that all renters need. Even though you may think that the worst will never happen to you and your rented space, the reality is that accidents can happen to anyone. Renters insurance can be the safety net that you need in an unfortunate situation. Here are just a few scenarios where renters coverage can save you and your bank account.

Your friend gets injured.

You invite all your best buds over to watch the big game with some pizza and cocktails. It has all the makings of a perfect afternoon! Your friend heads into your kitchen for a refill, slips on the tile, and really hurts himself. Because this person slipped in your apartment, he could hold you liable for medical and other costs associated with the injury. It’s happened before, and even good friends can hold you accountable for their injury costs. Luckily, renters insurance can help cover these expenses.

You get robbed in a hotel.

You’ve been waiting for this vacation for months. You check into a nice hotel and unpack all of your belongings. You come home after an amazing night to find your laptop has been taken from your room. While it’s not exactly how you wanted to start your vacation, your renters insurance will cover this for you, thankfully.

You cause fire damage.

It’s fajita night in your apartment, and you’re cooking for everyone. You move the hot skillet and, suddenly, grease spills on your burner and erupts into flames. In seconds, the cabinets above your stove, your belongings, and your stovetop are ruined. Renters insurance to the rescue again! Your policy will cover the damaged items (up to the policy limit) and will pay for you to stay in a hotel while your apartment is being repaired.

Are you ready to find the right renters insurance for your needs? Contact Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers and our specialists can ensure you secure and understand reliable coverage.

What Renter’s Insurance Can Cover

What Renter’s Insurance Can CoverRenter’s Insurance Coverage

Many renters believe the misconception that renter’s insurance is just for their ‘stuff’. In turn, many renters fail to secure coverage because they think that they don’t have a lot of belongings, or they think that their possessions are not worth insuring. What many don’t realize is that renter’s insurance can cover belongings and finances. For a small monthly premium, your renter’s insurance can protect the things you’ve worked so hard for.

Personal Property Coverage

Also known as your ‘stuff’. Take a look around your rental place. Look at all of your items. The value of your belongings can quickly add up. Personal property coverage helps to cover the cost of replacing your stuff if it’s unexpectedly damaged or ruined in a covered peril. If you have items of value, you may need to protect them under a rider, especially if they exceed the limits of your renter’s insurance coverage.

Liability Coverage

Liability coverage is another protection typically offered in a renter’s insurance policy. This may help protect you from paying out of pocket for certain costs if you are found legally responsible for injuries to other people or damage to their property. Even though you only invite friends and family over to your place, accidents happen. If someone trips and falls, you could be held liable for their medical costs. What’s more, if things turn sour, they could sue you for negligence to tend to your property.

Additional Living Expenses

If you’re renting a house or apartment, you typically have a place to call home until your lease expires. If your rented home were to be damaged by a fire, for example, you may be forced to find temporary housing until your rental property is repaired. For this, renter’s insurance can help to cover the costs of living away from home, such as hotel room bills and restaurant charges.

Are you ready to find the right renter’s insurance for your needs? Contact Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers and our specialists can ensure you secure and understand reliable coverage.