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  Home Insurance News  
  by Cindy Parroné |  

After the long winter we have endured, it is nice to welcome the warmer weather and spring showers that bring beautiful flowers. Thunderstorms, hail, wind and severe weather are also possible. Even though these “Acts of God” are out of our control, there are several tips to reduce the chance of damage to your home. In order to prevent water from getting into your home, make sure the gutters are cleaned out and pointing away from the house. Tree limbs and shrubs within five feet of any structures, the AC unit, outdoor pools, etc. need to be trimmed back. Those of you with finished basements need to make sure that the sump pump is in good working order and has back-up energy if the power goes out. You might want to talk to us about a water and sewer back-up endorsement for your homeowner’s insurance. Inspect outdoor faucets for any freeze damage.

Pride in ownership is something that all homeowner insurance companies take into consideration during underwriting. Make sure the lawnmower is safely ready to be used, and use it as necessary. If you are considering some new landscaping, planting rose bushes, blackberry bushes, holly or other plants with thorns or sharp leaves in front of window areas will discourage illegal entry and theft.

Last but not least, let us coach you about turning in a homeowner’s claim. Insurance is not the same thing as maintenance. In order to “get someone out to look at my roof”, we have to turn in a claim to the insurance company. If they determine that the damage is “normal wear and tear” on the roof, the claim will be denied completely or depreciated to the point that you have a fraction of the money you need to replace the roof. If the cost of the repairs is less than your deductible, the claim would be closed without payment. The adjuster could also determine that there is no damage to the roof, and the claim would be closed without payment. Each of the examples above would be counted against you. Our recommendation is that you document the damage, do what is necessary to prevent further damage and contact us for further advice prior to turning in a claim yourself directly to the company. If you were to have two claims within a five year period, you can count on getting non-renewed and having to move the coverage to a high-risk carrier with exorbitant rates.


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