3 Surprising Liabilities to Your Homeowner’s Policy

When you think Home insurance, you’re probably imagining an all-encompassing, magical policy that provides relief in case of an emergency to you, the homeowner. but did you know that some of your possessions might actually be considered liabilities by your insurer?

Your insurance provider in Lansdale, PA cannot cancel your homeowner’s policy without good reason if you’ve already paid. However, the company can opt not to renew your policy when it’s time for you to pay again based on certain factors. Here are 3 surprising liabilities to your home coverage.

1. Certain Dog Breeds

Do you love your pooch?

It turns out your insurance company might not share the love. Though all policies differ in coverage terms, certain dog breeds may not be covered by the provider at all. For instance, if you have a German Shepherd or a Pitbull, the provider may refuse to do business with you altogether.

2. Lackluster Home Maintenance

It goes without saying that homeowners are responsible for regular maintenance. Not everyone has the same standards of upkeep, but providers like Farrell Insurance Associate Inc. expect it to be at least fairly regular.

For instance, you may not mow your lawn every week like clockwork, but you can’t let weeds overrun your yard. You may not deep clean your home religiously, but rotting floors due to disrepair won’t be covered by your insurance.

When you buy a policy, you agree to prevent your home from falling into disrepair. Should your home be abandoned or not maintained, that may be reason enough for an insurer to cancel your policy.

3. Certain Backyard Features

Did you know that some of your kids’ playground equipment may be a liability to your insurance?

For instance, a provider might refuse to cover a trampoline, because it’s a high liability risk. Even unsecured swimming pools can cause your policy to be limited or nonrenewable.

Your liability risk goes up significantly if you don’t have fencing around your property. The provider may argue that anyone can trespass onto your property, injure themselves on your trampoline, and then sue you for liability.

Do you own anything that can put your homeowner’s policy in jeopardy? Contact your agent at Farrell Insurance Associate Inc. to discuss anything that might not be covered by your policy in Lansdale, PA.

 

7 Tips To Protect Your Home From Storm Damage

The team at Farrell Insurance Associates, Inc. knows all too well the toll that wind, rain, and hail can take on homes and properties. As a Lansdale, PA homeowner, you want to do everything you can to protect your investment from weather elements. Consider these tips to safeguard your home against wind and storms.

  1. Fasten metal roofing and siding. When heavy gusts tear away roof panels, secure metal siding and roofing to the side of your home to prevent further damage.
  2. Inspect shingles. Your roof should be protected by a waterproof covering under the shingles. Additionally, each shingle should be held in place by at least six staples or nails placed beneath the edge of overlapping shingles. Replace missing shingles right away, so water doesn’t have a chance to get in.
  3. Secure doors and windows. Made of steel or aluminum, storm shutters can protect windows and glass doors from being shattered by flying objects during a storm. Install window well covers to avoid water accumulation. 
  4. Maintain gutters and drains. Downspouts should be three to six feet long and should drain water away from your home (and your neighbor’s, too).  Keep gutters and drains clear of debris. Have your foundation drain inspected by a licensed plumber.
  5. Chop down trees. If a tree’s distance from your home is less than its height when fully grown, it should be removed.
  6. Anchor outdoor furniture and temporary structures. Bolt down grills and patio furniture. Storage sheds and the like should be secured with ground anchors or a permanent foundation.
  7. Check the garage door. A flimsy garage door can open up your entire home to weather damage. If it’s not in optimal condition, have it repaired or replaced right away.  

Farrell Insurance Associates, Inc. is committed to providing Lansdale, PA homeowners with quality coverage and peace of mind. Give us a call or stop by our office to speak with an agent.

Preventing Dog Bites (Even if Fido is Friendly)

From a homeowner’s insurance perspective, owning a dog is one of the riskiest liabilities out there. According to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 4.5 million people in the United States are bitten by dogs each year. What makes this statistic even scarier is that most of these victims are children and most incidents involve family pets they are familiar with.

For help with the protection of your family, our Farrell Insurance Associates, Inc. team has put together this list of ways for Lansdale, PA homeowners to help prevent dog bites, even if you consider your pet to be friendly.

Understand the Temperament of Your Dog with Guests

For some dogs, the arrival of company means someone extra to give belly rubs, cuddles, and treats. Others see this as a threat to their space and family, which could cause aggression. Understand the temperament of your pet and act accordingly. If an animal acts negatively to new faces, cordon him or her in a crate or special area of the home to prevent incidents.

Educate Children on How to Behave Around a Dog

Many bite incidents that happen between a family pet and a small child occur because the dog took the movements and body language of the child as aggression. Teach your kids from a young age not to pull ears, tails, paws, etc. Also, teach them that they should never to put their face up to the dog’s and keep rough play to a minimum.

Use Warning Signage

If all of the above fails and you do have an aggressive animal, it might be time to put up some warning signs. While this may not ensure that a bite doesn’t happen, it could take a bit of the liability off of you in the event of an incident because visitors were notified before entering your yard.

For more information about homeowner’s insurance in Lansdale, PA, please contact Farrell Insurance Associates, Inc. today. We are here to answer your questions and address your concerns.

5 Health Benefits of Spring Cleaning

Spring’s warm weather provides the perfect background for deep cleaning your home in preparation for summer. Through spring cleaning, you can create a safe, clean, and hygienic environment for you and your family. Here are just a few of the many health benefits you gain through spring cleaning.

Fresh, Clean Atmosphere

Deep cleaning your home gets rid of dust, grime, mold, and bugs that accumulate in your kitchen, bathrooms, and living spaces, giving you a cleaner home atmosphere. Washing windows, curtains, and blinds and opening up your home to fresh air will eliminate pollutants that have gathered over winter. Steam clean carpets to remove dust and mites that can cause allergies and asthma.

Reduced Risk of Accidents  

Removing clutter on your stairs, entryway, or halls will reduce the risk of accidents due to tripping and falling, particularly for children and seniors. Clutter is also a dust collector and fire hazard. Decluttering makes your Lansdale, PA home a safer environment in which to live – a plus when talking to your Farrell Insurance Associate, Inc. agent about home insurance coverage.

Less Stress

Organizing your belongings reduces the stress of searching for lost items when you need them. In the process, you rid your home of junk that’s accumulated over the last year, providing more living space for you and your family.

Poison Control

Clearing out a place for safe storage of chemical cleaners, garden products, and medications that could be dangerous to children reduces the risk of accidental poisoning. Locking these products in a secure location makes it more difficult for accidents to happen.

Happiness

A clean home makes you happy and thankful for your surroundings.

The right home insurance package will protect your home investment from any eventuality. Contact Farrell Insurance Associate, Inc. in Lansdale, PA for all your home insurance needs. Also, try our online rating tool for quotes on your home and auto insurance.

3 Easy Steps to Maintain Your Home’s Water Heater

If you own a home in Lansdale, PA, then you most likely have an electric or gas tank-type water heater that you rely on daily.  Most water heaters are dependable and can last for ten years or more with an annual maintenance plan.  Maintenance can be performed with these 3 easy steps, which can prevent issues that may cause water damage to your home or personal items.  It also can extend the life of the water heater and save you money.

3 Easy Maintenance Steps

  • Check the temperature setting on the dial located on the water heater.  Adjust the temperature between 115 to 120 degrees F will protect the water tank from overheating and will lower your energy bill in the process.
  • Check the temperature and pressure relief valve, which is critical for the safety of your water heater.  Locate the valve on the outside of the tank, lift up on the lever a little and let it snap back into place.  This should cause a gurgling sound because some water will be released into the drainage tube.  If you do not hear anything, then it’s likely the valve is bad and will need to be replaced.
  • Prevent rust and corrosion from the bottom of the tank by draining some water from the valve close to the bottom of the tank, allowing it to refill, wait for things to settle and remove some more to create a mini-flush.  Your water heater will also run more efficient.

Farrell Insurance Associate Inc.

Contact a Farrell Insurance Associate Inc. friendly and experienced agent in the Lansdale, PA area to review your homeowner insurance policy coverage.  You want to make sure your home and personal property is covered in case your water heater causes damage.