Archive | Homeowners Insurance

Travelers Reports Most Expensive Cause of Damage is Fire

Last week, we talked about the most frequent reasons for insurance claims. This week, we’re reporting on the most expensive causes of damage.

Those of us in the west, especially California, are no strangers to the destructive force of fire, and this year we are breaking records–even though we thought we’d done that last year. And we did. But weather is getting worse, not better, with drier, hotter conditions making wildfires harder to fight and stronger than ever. Continue Reading →

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Top Reason for Home Damage? Weather, Says Travelers

Recently, the insurance carrier Travelers released its interactive report titled “Top Ways Things Can Go Wrong”, identifying the most common and costliest causes of home damage. By examining its own national homeowners insurance claim data from 2009 through 2016, the report by Travelers highlights the types of claims that are most prevalent in some of the largest metropolitan areas and breaks down the results by national region and by season. Continue Reading →

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Tenant Vandalism is on the Rise—What Can Landlords Do?

Dennis Myers will be the first to say life as a landlord it not all it’s cooked up to be. Over his last 20 years of experience of owning rentals in Orange County, he feels as everything is getting worse–tenants aren’t respecting properties, rent payments, or landlords. He says what people don’t realize when they begin renting out properties, is that they are in a “position of weakness, with no advantage whatsoever.” The tenant has the advantage. They can avoid payments, wreak havoc on your property, and you can only invest in a good lawyer who can eventually bring them to court. Either way, it ends in you being out thousands of dollars.

Myers had a recent example in mind: Continue Reading →

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Factors Affecting Home Insurance Rates

When buying your homeowner’s insurance (which, if you are a homeowner you should obtain immediately), there are many different factors at play in the rate your insurance agent will produce for your home. Knowing these factors as you go into the process of buying insurance, can help you reduce your initial rate and keep it low over time. Continue Reading →

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Smoke Alarms: Are They Necessary?

The short answer is YES. Smoke alarms are one of the first items to check for when moving into a new place. Smoke alarms are required in every home, at every level and in every sleeping room. Three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms (38%) or no working smoke alarms (21%).

If you don’t have smoke alarms, start with the type of alarm: ionized or photoelectric. The difference? An ionized smoke detector use “ions”, or electrically charged particles to detect smoke in the air. Ionized detectors are more responsive to flaming fire. A photoelectric detector, using a light beam to detect the presence of smoke, will be more likely to catch a smouldering fire (such as a lit cigarette that has fallen on a couch cushion). Smouldering fires are dangerous in that they can fill a house with dangerous gases before they even reach a full flame fire. Continue Reading →

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Tips for Moving With Pets

The bags are packed, the truck is loaded, the keys are turned in: you’re ready to move into your new dream home. The dog in the back of the car, however, is not so thrilled. His or her life has been upended into a whirl of noise, strangers– moving is not a concept pets understand. While you look forward to the new place, the pup is removed from all they know, and for all they know, are heading toward a great punishment where they have no food or toys. There are plenty of ways for pet-owners to ease the process of moving for their pets– leaving them with a not too traumatizing experience. Continue Reading →

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Why Should I Install A Carbon Monoxide Detector?

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a threat to any home that burns gas, natural oil, kerosene, charcoal, or wood. This so-called “silent killer” (as an odorless, tasteless and invisible toxin) poisons 400 Americans a year, and sends 20,000 to the emergency room. But even more lives are saved every year, by the CO alarms installed in homes and cars. One of your top priorities when moving into a home should be to check for a CO alarm, and to install one if necessary. Continue Reading →

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7 Things to Consider Before Building a Backyard Fire Pit

In California, we have such great weather year-round that means our outdoor space becomes a place to entertain and relax. Residents are not just content with a wood deck and a barbecue, there are so many options for outdoor living spaces — outdoor kitchens, koi ponds, vegetable gardens, swimming pools, movie theater — but increasingly they are looking for a fire pit.

Maybe that’s because it can be a fairly affordable addition to an outdoor space. And that’s true; it doesn’t have to be an expensive project. But there are a few things to consider (not least of all local ordinances that may prohibit open flames), and therefore we’ve put together a list for you. Continue Reading →

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