Home Insurance

7
Mar

How to Prevent Water Damage From Appliances

Safeguard your property and appliances from water damage with these tips.

Believe it or not, but appliances in the household are one of the main sources of water damage to homes. That’s right, it’s not rain coming in through a window or a faucet that’s been left on. Washing machines, fridges, and hot water heaters are major culprits when it comes to causing havoc in the home. Take action and prevent water damage in the home from appliances with these tips.

  • Check for leaks often. Thoroughly check the area around appliances for any signs of leaking every couple of months.
  • Check supply hoses. Check the supply hoses regularly to ensure a tight connection and that there are no breaks or tears. It’s a good idea to replace supply hoses for washing machines and dishwashers every five years, even if there are no signs of wear.
  • Flush out your water heater. Every year, flush your water heater to remove sediment and ensure that it uses fresh water.
  • Supervise running appliances. Try to only operate washing machines and dishwashers when someone is at home.
  • Service machines as necessary. It’s a good idea to call out a professional to service your machines and appliances every couple of years. If the machines are nearing the end of their life expectancy, consider replacing it before it leaks or bursts.

Sometimes, not all losses can be prevented. However, following these tips should lower your chances of a leak in the home. Make sure that you know where your water shut-off valve is located so that you can quickly turn off the water to minimize damage.

Homeowners insurance can help if the worst does happen. Make sure you have a policy that you can rely on. Need help finding adequate insurance? Contact Abatelli Group, Inc., serving Whitestone and neighboring cities in New York with the right and reliable coverage. 

14
Feb

3 Signs You Should Consider a New Roof

Consider a new roof when you see these signs.

A commonly overlooked factor of home protection is the roof. Most homeowners are under the misconception that roofs last a lifetime and only need the odd repair. However, this simply isn’t the case. Your roof is constantly exposed to weather conditions and natural disasters. Over time, this takes a toll. Below are just a few common signs that it’s time to replace your roof.

Curled Shingles

The shingles all add up to create a protective barrier for your home. Broken, missing, or damaged shingles could mean that your home’s roof is vulnerable. Buckled shingles can occur because of moisture in the attic space forcing nails to push up and out of the roof’s decking. This can leave your home exposed to outside elements.

Missing Granules

If you notice that there are missing granules on your roof, it could be a sign that it is dramatically losing its weatherproofing properties. Check in the gutters to see if there is granule build up, and you will be able to tell if you should consider roof replacement.

Age

A roof over twenty years old is most likely in need of some repair, if not replacing altogether. Roofs are exposed to the element’s on a daily basis, and all of these conditions will take a toll over time. If your roof is pushing the age of twenty, consider replacing it. 

Bear in mind that roof maintenance and replacement is up to the homeowner. Your homeowners insurance policy will only help to repair or replace the roof if it has been damaged by a covered peril, such as a fire or natural disaster.

Need help finding adequate insurance? Contact Abatelli Group, Inc., serving Whitestone and neighboring cities in New York with the right and reliable coverage.

23
Aug

Does Your College Kid Need Insurance?

Finding the right insurance for your studying student.

Fall is rapidly approaching and that means parents are getting their college kids ready for the new semester ahead. You may have already purchased supplies, textbooks, electronics, and fun furniture to deck out their dorm room, but are you forgetting how to protect them best? Insurance coverage looks out for your studying student and finances. Before you send your kid off to college, check out the top insurance coverages they should have. Please open our links in a new tab to continue enjoying our content.

When your college student stays on campus and in the dorms, generally, your homeowners insurance policy will protect the possessions that they take with them. Be sure to ring your insurer to confirm the details, and create an inventory of the items that they take to college. If your student lives off campus, he or she will need renters insurance. This will protect their belongings and offer liability coverage, should any accidents occur.

Is your child taking the car to college? If so, you’ll need to alert the insurer to this fact. The premium is largely determined by the location of the vehicle, so moving it to college, even temporarily, may impact the coverage and rate. If your child is leaving the vehicle at home, let your insurer know. If he or she is attending college more than 100 miles away from home, you may be entitled to a discount.

Umbrella coverage may be one of the last policies you would expect to have to consider for your student, but college opens up new risks. From liability on social media to fraternity pranks, umbrella insurance can help protect your college kid from perils that they may face.

To learn more about insurance for your college student, contact Abatelli Group, Inc. for a quote. We can help you secure reliable Whitestone, NY car insurance coverage!

9
Aug

What Insurance Do You Need for a Second Home?

Homeowners insurance for a second property.

Owning a second home can be great. Whether it’s a vacation home, apartment in the city or a rental property, an extra home is often a bonus. However, homeowners need to be aware that each of their properties needs reliable and accurate insurance. When it comes to finding quality insurance for protecting your investment, seasonal homes can pose unique challenges you’ll want to consider.

Issues like the following will impact how much you pay to insure a second home, as well as the type of coverage your carrier is willing to provide.

  • Personal Property

You keep your vacation home stocked with a few necessities, whether it’s sun loungers or snowboards. You’ll want to cover as much of your personal property as possible under your vacation home policy. Create a separate home inventory for your second home and update it as you add new belongings or move items out. Knowing the value of your possessions can help you select the right level of personal property coverage on your policy.

  • Home Sharing

It makes financial sense to rent our your property while you are not using it to generate some extra income. However, your insurance carrier may not cover damage while the home is being occupied by anyone other than yourself. Before you list your vacation home for rent, be sure you understand whether or not you’re covered. In some cases, you may need to purchase additional coverage.

  • Additional Cover

When you’re not living in your property, you aren’t there to check up on it often to ensure all is well. For this reason, you may want to purchase additional cover in case something does happen – and it gets quickly out of hand. For example, a flood or earthquake can damage a property within minutes. These two perils are often excluded from standard coverage so be sure to take out separate policies to protect your property.

Need help finding adequate insurance? Contact Abatelli Group, Inc., serving Whitestone and neighboring cities in New York with the right and reliable coverage.

21
Jun

How to Protect Your Home While You’re on Vacation

Home safety tips for while you’re away on vacation.

The summer months are carefree, warm, and the ideal opportunity to jet set to foreign locations and fun spots. Who doesn’t love going on vacation? Before you enter R&R mode, however, it’s important that you take the necessary steps to protect your home from a break-in or accident while you’re away. While your homeowners insurance in Whitestone, NY will work to help you in the event of damage or theft, preventing such incidents are important. Check out these tips on how to protect your home when going on vacation.

Simple tips to protect your home:

  • Be careful what you say on social media prior to leaving and while you’re away. Don’t announce that you will be away for 2 weeks as someone could see this information as an opportunity to visit your house.
  • Take care of landscaping before you leave – Mow the lawn, trim the hedges, and leave the garden in good condition.
  • Pull the plug on your electrical devices and appliances, apart from fridges and freezers.
  • Set automatic timers for the lights you use often to make it appear as if someone is in the home.

Ask someone trustworthy to check on your home:

  • Ask a friend or neighbor to visit your home while you’re away to collect mail, empty the mailbox, and wheel the garbage bin in from collection day.
  • Ask him or her to enter your home periodically to ensure everything is in order.

Review insurance:

  • Review your homeowners insurance policy to ensure that you have adequate coverage in place.
  • Update your home inventory list before you leave.

Need help finding adequate insurance? Contact Abatelli Group, Inc., serving Whitestone and neighboring cities in New York with the right and reliable coverage.

8
Mar

Avoid Insurance Claims with These Spring Cleaning Tasks

Spring cleaning tasks that prevent insurance claims.

Our job as independent insurance agents is to help you mitigate the risk that exists in your life, whether that applies to your possessions or your well-being. A spring cleaning checklist is likely to be on every homeowner’s to go list with spring arriving just a couple of days. Checking off these tasks while you’re cleaning can help to prevent costly insurance claims.

Change the batteries in the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Spring is a good time to change the batteries in your home smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. It’s also a good idea to test these units (once a month is recommended) while you are replacing the batteries to ensure they are still working correctly before it’s too late.

Clean the dryer. It’s a good idea to check that the dryer’s hose is free of lint. While you may clean the lint trap after every load, some lint can get past the filter and into the hose. If the hose is clogged with lint, it could spark a fire when creating heat for the dryer.

Change your air filters. A clean air flow reduces the efforts of your air conditioning and heating units in performing their functions. In turn, this simple task can extend the lives of the units motor.

Seal windows and doors. Check that all the seals on windows and doors are in good condition. Fill in any gaps that you see and replace worn or dried out caulking. Where there are gaps, leaks can form and cause damage.

Clean out the gutters. Debris and dirt from winter can clog up the home’s gutters and downspouts, which could cause the gutters to break and allow water to seep inside of the home. A good clean out of the gutters can keep the water flowing away from your house and prevent the possibility of water damage and leaks.

Trim the trees early. Keeping dangerous branches at bay can limit your exposure to potential car damage and personal injury, not only to you and your property, but that of neighbors and visitors.

One of the most important parts of protecting your home is securing homeowners insurance policy, which can provide the right amount of protection to fit into your lifestyle and property. Contact Abatelli Group, Inc., serving Whitestone and neighboring cities in New York with the right and reliable coverage.

11
Jan

How to Prevent Frozen Pipes in Your Home

Avoid Water Damage from Frozen Pipes

Homeowners need to consider the risks of frozen pipes in their homes, especially during this winter in Illinois. A 1/8-inch crack in a pipe can spew up to 250 gallons of water a day, causing flooding, structural damage, and the immediate potential for mold.

Frozen water pipes can occur all over the country, affecting both plastic and copper pipes. It’s all too common, especially considering this damage is largely preventable.

Prevent Freezing Pipes

  • Insulate pipes in your home’s crawl spaces and attic, even if you live in a climate where freezing is uncommon. Remember to insulate exterior pipes as exposed pipes are more susceptible to freezing.
  • Use heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables to wrap the pipes. Only use products intended for either interior or exterior and use accordingly.
  • Seal leaks that allow cold air inside near where pipes are located. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents, and pipes. Caulk or insulate these areas to keep the cold out.
  • Drain exterior pipes if you do not use them during the winter. This reduces the chance of freezing in the short span of pipe.
  • Keep the pipes running – Set the thermostat in your house no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

If Pipes Freeze…

  • If you turn on your faucets and nothing comes out, leave the faucets turned on and call a plumber.
  • Never use electrical appliances in areas of standing water.
  • Never try to thaw a pipe with an open flame – This could cause a serious fire hazard.
  • You may be able to thaw a frozen pipe using a hairdryer. Start by warming the pipe as close to the faucet as possible.
  • If your pipes burst, turn off the water at the main shutoff valve in the house. Make sure everyone in your home knows where the water shutoff valve is and how to open and close it.

One of the most important parts of preventing disaster is to make sure that you have the right homeowners insurance policy, which can provide the right amount of protection to fit into your lifestyle. Contact Abatelli Group, Inc., serving Whitestone and neighboring cities in New York with the right and reliable coverage.

2
Nov

How to Make Sure Your Home Doesn’t Have a Carbon Monoxide Leak

Carbon monoxide poisoning is a very real threat – Ensure you address it immediately.

Now that the cooler weather is coming, that means more time spent indoors cooking up hearty meals and turning on the heating (now and again). While our winter homes should be places of comfort, there is one silent killer that could be lurking in your home – carbon monoxide (CO).

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that is produced when fuels such as wood, oil, natural gas, and propane are not efficiently burned. In essence, your generators, lawn mowers, barbeques, furnace, and cooker could be harboring a deadly gas.

Common symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:

  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Vomiting
  • Chest pains
  • Confusion

As the symptoms can be mistaken as other concerns, such as a cold or the flu, it’s important to stay on top of when you feel these symptoms coming on. If you leave your home for a couple of hours and the symptoms subside, only to come back when you return home, it is well worth getting your home checked for a carbon monoxide leak.

To help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, follow these tips:

  • Hire a professional to check all of your gas-run systems in the house before using them regularly for the winter. A professional will ensure the appliance is burning properly and is suitably vented.
  • Never leave a car idling in a garage (even if the garage door is open).
  • Keep portable generators at least 20 feet from an open window.
  • Never use a charcoal barbeque inside a home or tent.
  • Never use a gas oven to heat a home.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors on every floor of your home. For an extra level of protection, consider installing a CO alarm in every bedroom of your house.

With a little preparation, your home can stay safe from CO! Fortunately, it takes just a simple phone call to secure the right homeowners insurance protection for your property. Talk to the professional team at Abatelli Group, Inc. to determine the right homeowners insurance policy to suit your needs and home today.

1
Jun

Tips for Homeowners Safety While on Vacation

You may be all packed for Peru, but is your home ready to be alone for two weeks? Brush up on these homeowners safety tips before heading off on vacation.

The start of summer means people are readying themselves for upcoming vacations. Every year, between June and August, families, couples, and individuals opt to enjoy their summer in a foreign location. While you may be packed and ready to go, do you know to protect your home while away on vacation? A few safety precautions and quality homeowners insurance know-how will help to leave your home safe while you’re out of town.

Put these do’s and don’ts into practice so that you can kick back and relax on your vacation knowing that your home is safe and sound.

Do:

  • Make sure that all the doors and windows are locked and fastened. Doors should have deadbolt locks!
  • Examine your house from the street and make sure that no valuables (like expensive electronics or artwork) can be seen from the road. If a passer-by can see your belongings, so can criminals.
  • Secure sliding glass doors by placing a metal rod or piece of plywood in the track to prevent an intruder from forcing the door open.
  • Unplug the power to your automatic garage door to keep thieves from opening it.
  • Make it appear as if you’re at home. Use timers on lights, radios, and televisions.
  • Ask a trusted friend or neighbor to check in on the house, collect the mail, and water your plants.

Don’t:

  • Leave clues that you’re away. No matter how excited you are, don’t post your plans on social media. If people see that you’re away for two weeks, they may be tempted to enter your home.
  • Close your curtains! This is a clear indication that no one is home.
  • Hide a key outdoors for your neighbor or friend. Burglars know the best hiding places better than you do.

These tips can help assure you that your home is ready for you to head out on holiday. Make sure that your home is protected with the right home insurance policy. Contact Abatelli Group, Inc. for a proper policy on your insurance needs in Whitestone, New York.

18
May

Review Your Home Insurance at Renewal

When the situation entails your homeowners insurance policy, ensure that you make no assumptions to avoid misunderstandings. 

Home insurance has very specific and unique vocabulary that can make understanding it fairly difficult. Policies can vary to fit the needs and budget of every policy holder, so coverage can vary widely between policies. If you have never read your policy from cover to cover, it’s recommended you set aside some time and do so. Here are a few tips on what to look for when you review your home insurance at renewal.

  1. Structure – Some people only cover their homes to satisfy the mortgage debt. But what should happen if your entire home is destroyed to a crisp? You should have enough coverage to completely rebuild your home from scratch. You have to remember the cost of clean-up, raw materials, and construction.
  2. Liability – If someone is injured on your property, the medical bills alone can surpass your liability coverage. Your home comes with a certain risk, but it can go up if you have “attractive nuisances.” Things like pools, trampolines, dogs, and other fun things, you may need extra liability to cover your increased risk.
  3. Contents – Your things need to be protected, and a homeowners insurance policy does just that. Contents coverage usually goes for about 50 to 70 percent of the amount of coverage you have. So, for example, if you have $200,000 in coverage you will receive $100,000 to $140,000 for your things.
    You have to review your contents coverage if you made any recent upgrades, home improvements, or recent costly purchases like new kitchen, HVAC systems, et cetera.

When it comes to your homeowners insurance, make sure that you’re protected for everything you need. Make sure that your home is protected with the right home insurance policy. Contact Abatelli Group, Inc. for a proper policy on your insurance needs.