Tag: home insurance

7
Oct

What You Need to Know about the Different Types of Home Insurance

The importance of purchasing a homeowners insurance policy becomes obvious when you consider the magnitude of the financial burden you would have to bear if a tragedy occurs. There are different plans available on the market which can offer partial to full coverage for specific situations. A basic understanding of the major types will help you find a perfect

fit for you.

Types of Homeowners Insurance

They are usually designated with the code HO-X, where X is their allocated number as in the list. They include:

  1. Basic Form – HO-1
  2. Broad Form – HO-2
  3. Special Form – HO-3
  4. Contents Broad Form – HO-4
  5. Comprehensive Form – HO-5
  6. Unit-owners form – HO-6
  7. Mobile Home Form – HO-7
  8. Modified Coverage Form – HO-8

What Are the Features of a Standard Homeowners Insurance Policy?

Here are a few features that characterize the various kinds of homeowners insurance available.

Coverage

This shows what part(s) of the home is covered in the policy, and the extent of coverage varies with the type. Common kinds of coverages to expect include:

  • Dwelling Coverage protects the home structure, including everything attached to the building; for example, HO-5 protects only single-family homes, and it is one of the most commonly used policies. On the other hand, HO-6 is for those who live in a condo or co-op.
  • Contents Coverage protects the belongings in your home; For example, HO-3 covers personal belongings like furniture and appliances.
  • Personal Liability covers for injuries to self or guests.

Named Peril

This refers to the list of casualties that are covered by the policy. They are specifically named in the agreement, and while some policies cover more than others, there are those that cover all. HO-1 covers ten events, including damage caused by:

  • Theft
  • Smoke
  • Vehicles
  • Fire/Lightning
  • Explosion
  • Volcanic Eruptions
  • Aircraft
  • Riot/Civil commotion
  • Windstorm/Hail
  • Vandalism and Mischief

Any damage caused by a factor that is not on the list will not be covered for this kind of policy. The special form (HO-3) usually lists perils that are not covered, which may include:

  • Neglect
  • Sinkhole
  • Act of War or Government Action
  • Nuclear Accident
  • Flood
  • Earthquake

Applicable Reimbursement

The terms of the policy agreement state the quality of the reimbursement, whether your home or belongings are covered at actual money value or replacement cost. Replacement cost is higher than actual cash value. It covers claims of damages at current prices. For example, while your personal belongings are covered at the actual value under an HO-3 policy, HO-5 policies cover them at replacement value.

Endorsements

The basic policies listed above will only cover specific structures and items as listed in the agreement. However, you may need to extend coverage to an ancillary structure, for example. You will need to add more coverage in the form of riders to cover specific events.

At Abatelli Insurance, we have a wide range of homeowners policies that will surely cater to your needs. Contact us today to learn more.

9
Sep

3 Common Questions Related to Homeowners Insurance

Every homeowner needs homeowners insurance. The reason for this is that it guarantees the financial protection of their home and personal belongings.

In this article, we will discuss the basics of the standard homeowners insurance policy and what it covers.

1. What Is Homeowners Insurance?

Homeowners insurance is a policy that protects your home and belongings from damages or losses caused by covered perils, including theft and fire. It may also cover the costs you incur if a guest sustains an injury at your home or you accidentally cause damage to another person’s property.

2. How Much Does Homeowners Insurance Cost?

A standard homeowners insurance policy does not have a specific cost. Instead, you can determine how much coverage you want to purchase and at what price. The cost of coverage will depend on several factors, including the features of your home and the value of your personal belongings. You also have to consider the type of insurance coverage you want.

3. What Does Homeowners Insurance Cover?

A typical homeowners insurance covers the following:

  • Your home’s structure
  • Your personal belongings
  • Other structures on your property
  • Liabilities arising from injuries to guests or damages to someone else’s property

A typical homeowners insurance covers a wide range of perils such as fire, theft, lightning strikes, hails, windstorm, etc. However, it does not cover floods and earthquakes. Consequently, you need to purchase special insurance policies to protect your home from these disasters.

  • Your home’s structure

This is one of the most important coverages offered by a typical homeowners insurance policy. It covers the repair or replacement of the damages to your housing structure due to some of the aforementioned perils.

  • Your personal belongings

Apart from damages to the structures on your property, the typical homeowners insurance also covers all the personal belongings within your home. These include your clothing, jewelry, and electronics. In short, homeowners insurance offers protection from thefts or damages to your personal items upto a certain limit. You can also buy extended coverage for items such as jewelry, fur, and watches with values above your personal property coverage limits.

  • Other structures on your property

Homeowners insurance also covers damages to other structures on your property not attached to your house. For example, a detached garage, fence, and tool shed.

  • Liability coverage

Finally, a homeowners insurance policy covers you when a guest is injured on your property and sues you for their injuries. It covers your legal expenses as well as the related medical bills of the guest if you are found guilty.

In conclusion, homeowners insurance is an effective safety net for the unexpected perils your home and personal belongings may face. Therefore, purchase one today if you don’t already have it. At Abatelli Insurance, we can provide you with customized coverage for your homeowners insurance needs. Contact us today to get started!

22
Jul

Hurricane Insurance Breakdown: What You Need to Know

Hurricane insurance is a safety net for people who reside in an area with a high hurricane risk. Hurricane deductibles (an amount that you need to pay out of pocket before your policy kicks in) are based on a percentage of your home’s value.

Therefore, if in case a hurricane destroys your home, hurricane insurance will ensure that you have adequate protection to alleviate the financial burden of repairing your home.

Hurricane deductibles are calculated based on damage classified by the National Hurricane Center or National Weather Service. Without the appropriate classification, a windstorm deductible is applied to the damages. In addition, your insurance company has a trigger for utilizing the hurricane’s deductible. Generally, the trigger is invoked if the National Weather Service declares a hurricane watch.

Origin of Hurricane Insurance

After analyzing Hurricane Andrew, insurance companies saw that total losses from hurricanes could be higher than originally anticipated. The aftermath of Hurricane Katrina cost insurance companies almost $50 billion. The substantial losses caused reinsurance companies to declare that they would be unable to assume so much risk moving forward.

During the Atlantic hurricane season, every coastal state is at risk. To reduce exposure to huge losses as a result of natural disasters, insurance companies are including hurricane deductibles in home insurance policies. The percentage deductibles are influenced by the level of hurricane or windstorm. Every year, more homes are at risk of severe weather windstorm damage. Once insurance companies develop deductible plans, they are reviewed by the state insurance department to ensure that it adheres to local laws and regulations.

Hurricane Deductibles Explained

Hurricane deductibles are applicable for damages resulting solely from hurricanes. There are also windstorm deductibles that apply based on any type of wind damage. Percentage deductibles are anywhere from 2-5 percent of a home’s insured value. You will be responsible for the amount of deductible before your insurer handles the rest of the claim. In some coastal areas that are prone to severe wind damage, the deductible may be higher. Your deductible will be based on your home’s insured value and your insurer’s trigger that determines when the deductible applies.

New York Deductibles

The New York State Insurance Department outlines that the common deductibles are between 1-5 percent of the insured amount. Some insurers use category 1 hurricanes as the trigger, while others use category 2. The State Insurance Department also requires insurance companies to offer discounts to homeowners who installed hurricane-resistant storm shutters, windows, or doors on their property. The New York Property Insurance Underwriting Association offers windstorm coverage if you are unable to find it elsewhere. The Coastal Market Assistance Plan will help you find coverage if you stay in Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and parts of Long Island.

Be prepared for the hurricane season with the right insurance coverage. Want another great way to protect your home? Secure reliable homeowners insurance that protects you through disasters. Call one of our trusted advisors at Abatelli Group, Inc. We are ready to get you the protection and peace of mind you need.

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.

17
Jan

Tips for Fireplace Safety

A fireplace provides warmth while avoiding the costs that come with turning on the heater, but how do you stay safe with a live fire in your home? 

As winter chills the temperature and natural gas prices on the rise, you may be tempted to light your fireplace and warm yourself up the old fashioned way. It can be comfortable and provide a sense of nostalgia watching the fire dance and hearing it crackle under the heat. But the fact remains that it is a live flame and the smallest spark could cause a fire in your home. Here are some fireplace safety tips to keep you and your home safe.

Clean the Chimney

The chimney is directly affected by the burning of wood. As wood burns it releases smoke, soot, and creosote, all of which are toxic to us. Hire a chimney sweep to make sure your chimney is free of any buildup; a clogged chimney can force smoke back down into your home which can cause suffocation.

Cap the Chimney

Make sure that your chimney is well capped in order to allow smoke out but disallow foreign objects in. A well-capped chimney keeps out rain and snow, along with leaves, and small animals like squirrels and birds from coming in and wrecking your home.

Use Dry Hardwood 

Only use dry hardwoods, like oak, to fuel your fires. A byproduct of burning wood is a creosote, a carcinogenic chemical that builds up in your chimney. Hardwoods produce less of this chemical which is why you should only burn the hardwoods. Softer and resinous woods, like pine, are known for producing more of this harmful carbon-based chemical.

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.

9
Jan

Winter Home Maintenance Tips

The cold is settling in and if our homes are not well-maintained, we can be throwing money away as we try to keep ourselves warm. 

Cold temperatures are great for some unique outdoor activities: snowball fights, sledding, ice skating, making snowmen, and other fun activities. But outside of play, living in the cold can be rough. Luckily for us, we do not have to live in the cold; humanity can do what no other animal can do: change our environment to suit our comforts. If our homes are not properly ready for winter, we can essentially rack up our heating bill and waste a lot of energy. Here are a few winter home maintenance tips for your home.

Insulation 

  • Add weather stripping around your doors and caulk the window seals in order to stop drafts and prevent heat loss. The more heat you keep in your home, the more energy you save and the more money you save.
  • Heat rises so make sure to insulate your attic to keep the heat from escaping into the atmosphere. If you allow heat to escape from the attic, it warms the roof melting snow and creating ice dams.
  • If allowed, remove screens from windows and install storm windows.

Utilities

  • Learn how to shut your water supply off and know where your pipes are located to prevent water damage. And turn them off if you are leaving your home for an extended period of time.
  • Check and fix any water leaks. Use only thermostatically-controlled heat tape if your water pipe is plastic and is exposed to unheated areas like garages, crawl spaces, and such other areas.

Protect your home from the dangers of winter. 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.

COVID-19 Update

Our office remains open and our staff is working remotely to continue to service our clients. You can reach us at (718) 352-6000 Letter to Policyholders