Home Insurance

home insurance

Home Insurance Policies and What To Look For

Home insurance policies differ in many ways. We think of home insurance as a must, but don’t always explore our options when looking for the perfect home insurance policy. It is not your insurance provider’s responsibility to make sure you get the best deal, it is your responsibility. There are many ways to make sure you get the best possible home insurance that fits your needs, let’s talk about a few.

Always shop around for the perfect insurance. Sometimes people just want to stay insured by the family insurance company but shopping around could be to your advantage. Even if you stick with your family insurance company getting other quotes could help you negotiate with your current insurer.

Another thing you can do is to take advantage of special discounts insurance companies offer. Insurance companies do not automatically deduct these discounts; you have to ask for them. Your driving record or report card are two examples of discounts which may apply to you. Ask your insurance company yearly for a list of discounts that may apply to your family.

Make your home more disaster ready. The best way to prepare for a disaster is before it happens. Being prepared for a disaster might not help lower your insurance rate, but it will help after the disaster happens. You could cut down trees close to your home or install hurricane shutters so your home would sustain less damage during a storm.

Often when your home has a security system installed an insurance company will offer a discount. Installing a security system is not a hard or as expensive as it sounds. Ask your provider for specific details on what needs to be installed to be eligible for the discount.

Did you know where you live depends on your insurance cost? Your home insurance cost depends on if you live close to the ocean, elevation, flood risk, and many other claims that have been made close to your home. If you have not yet bought a home you should check out the area before purchasing. Insurance rates could go up two blocks down the road from your home. Your dream home might not be as dreamy as you think.

These are a few things you should take in to consideration when searching for your perfect home insurance policy. If you need help finding a great policy call Gulf Coast Educators Insurance at 239-591-0963. It would be our pleasure to serve you.

 

Sinkholes

sinkhole

Sinkholes In Florida

Sinkholes in Florida occur all the time without any warning signs. Some might ask how does a sinkhole form? The peninsula of Florida is made of limestone, which helps to store and move groundwater. Soil sits on top of the limestone and over time, groundwater erodes the limestone, forming a cavity. When this occurs a sinkhole is created. The cause of a sinkhole is when a period of drought is followed by heavy rain, along with a heavy pumping of groundwater by people.
Tampa counties which include Hillsborough, Pinellas, Hernando, and Pasco are affected the most by sinkholes. Does your insurance cover sinkhole damage? Florida law requires insurance companies to provide coverage for catastrophic ground cover collapse, this is when a sinkhole opens suddenly and severely damages your home. In some cases sinkhole incidents catastrophic ground cover collapse coverage will not cover the damage. Actual sinkhole coverage is available to add to a homeowner’s insurance policy for an additional cost.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection stated, “Many insurance companies rely upon the regional maps showing zones of sinkhole occurrences based on the local geology and historical sinkhole activity, or on private sinkhole data.” When you are choosing a homeowners insurance policy take into consideration the area you live and the risk of sinkholes in the area.
At Gulf Coast Educators Insurance we thrive in helping you to choose the right policy that fits your needs, give us a call at 239-591-0963. It would be our pleasure to serve you.

Lightning Can Cause Hundreds of Dollars in Damage

Lightning Is Dangerous To You And Your Home!

Thunderstorms and lightning are either loved or hated. Some people are scared to death at the first sight of lightning and thunder, either way thunderstorms can cause a lot of damage. When lightning hits the ground, a tree, or a building it does not strike straight down it spreads. Annually in America there are more than 20 million lightning strikes the actually hit the ground. $1 billon dollars in damage are reported each year to insurance companies, damage from lightning can be severe.
If lightning hits the your home or nearby power lines it could potentially destroy your property. Lightning can travel through wiring and phone lines which can ruin your computers, televisions, stereos, and other electronics. One way to safeguard those belonging is to unplug those electronics if you are expecting a thunderstorm. Sometimes if your install a surge protector it will help protect your electronics but if the lightning strike is a direct hit it will jump the surge protectors. Your insurance company may or may not cover these electronics if they are ruinlightninged by lightning, check with your insurance agent to see if you are covered. Lightning strikes are not just limited to direct lightning strikes on a building but can strike trees which then could split, falling through your roof. Be careful after a lightning storm avoid using landline phones if power lines are down; if your home gets hit by lightning during a storm call an electrician to inspect and repair your home.
Thunderstorms are dangerous and your home should be protected. If you need home owners insurance and live in the Naples, Florida area call Gulf Coast Educators Insurance at 239-591-0963.

A Home Inventory Check List

A Home Inventory Check List is important in the Case of Fire or Theft

A home inventory check list is very important. In the event of theft or fire your valuables should be in check. Did you know in 2011 there were 364,500 residential fires, which is almost 1,000 fires a day. The total loss is more than $6.65 billion. In the event of a fire in your home, an inventory check list would save a precious time and get your claim filed in a timely manner.

It would be almost impossible to figure out what is missing and destroyed in your home after a theft or fire. You would be stressed and in shock after the loss of your property and you might miss the most important items. If you make an inventory list of your home before anything happens you would have a complete list of everything in your home that is important to you.

It takes some time to make take proper inventory of your home. If you have never made an inventory list of your valuables it is easy and here is how. Use a video recorder and walk around your house, take a video of everything; get up close to everything of importance such as televisions or jewelry. Use the video to go back and take the inventory. Probably the easiest way to take down your inventory is to use a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet. Take pictures of everything on your spreadsheet including all serial numbers and model numbers. If you receive a gift of value remember to update your spreadsheet so nothing is forgotten. Put the inventory spreadsheet in your email account or somewhere similar so no one can steal your information.

Start your inventory spreadsheet today. It will save you time and money if anything ever happens to your home.

Replacement Cost vs. Actual Cash Value

At one point or another you may need insurance on something of value. There are two types of coverage to get your money back if that item is stolen replacement cost and actual cash value.

              Replacement cost means the insurance company gives you enough money to replace the item with an item similar to what you had and for the same purpose. An example replacement cost would be if you had an expensive camera that was insured by your insurance company, and you lost your camera, you make a claim through your insurance agency and they will give you the equal amount of money to replace the camera.

              Actual cash value is a little different from replacement cost the insurance company gives you the money to replace the item minus the wear and tear the item has. The insurance company takes into consideration how old the item is and the product category it falls into. An example of this would be if you lost your camera and made a claim, the insurance agency would give you less money back if the item was an older model camera, but if it were a new camera you would get more money back for your claim to replace the camera.

              Replacement cost and actual cash value both get your money back to replace an item. One is not better than the other, it is a personal choice. Which would you choose if you needed to insure your personal property?