You’ve got an emergency plan for your family in case extreme weather or a natural disaster forces you to live without power, or worse, evacuate your home. (If not, learn how to create one at Ready.gov/make-a-plan.) But, what about planning for your pets?
They’re likely to be frightened and in need of some special care. Here are four tips for helping your furry friends weather an emergency:
For more specialized or larger pets, talk to your veterinarian about their needs during an emergency. And be sure all pets have proper identification. Your current phone number and/or address should be on their collars or tags, as well as on microchips. Because, if your pets get loose, you want to find them and bring them home again.
Most people would say their car is one of the most valuable assets they own — if not the most valuable. Despite that, however, some people make it downright easy for thieves to drive off in their pride and joy.
At DeWees Insurance Partners, we don’t want you walking out your door to an empty driveway or leaving somewhere only to find some broken glass left behind in your parking space. So take care to avoid these five mistakes.
Keeping thieves away helps to keep everyone’s insurance costs down, so avoiding these mistakes not only will save you hassle, it will save you money as well. So stay safe, not only on the roads, but in the parking lots as well!
At DeWees Insurance Partners, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!
Content provided by Safeco Insurance
Most people have an idea of what’s covered and not covered under their various insurance policies. But at DeWees Insurance Partners, we get a lot of questions about borrowing or loaning a car.
Now that summer is here, and you might be looking to borrow your neighbor’s truck for a home-improvement project or a trip to the local landfill, we thought it was a great time to provide a little more information.
Generally, insurance coverage follows the vehicle rather than the driver. So in most instances, as long as the owner of the car has insurance, it’s covered even if someone other than the owner is driving it — as long as they have the owner’s permission.
The borrower’s insurance is considered secondary, meaning that in the event of an accident, it could apply if the owner’s insurance is insufficient to fully cover the damage.
It’s important to note that there are some exceptions to what is called “permissive use” coverage. For example, permission must be given by the owner, unless the borrower has a reasonable belief that they are allowed to use the car. However, the borrower cannot give permission to someone else. So if your teenager allows one of his or her friends to drive your car, your coverage likely won’t apply.
Coverage might also be denied if the borrower operates the vehicle in a negligent or criminal manner. And if the borrower is using your car for business purposes, your personal auto policy likely won’t cover that.
If you have a regular long-term arrangement to either borrow or lend a car, the borrower should probably be added to the owner’s personal auto policy. Those who don’t own a car, but often borrow one, might also consider “named non-owner coverage,” an endorsement that provides bodily injury and property damage liability, uninsured motorists coverage and more.
Ultimately, it’s usually safe to loan your friend your car for occasional errands or projects. And the same goes for borrowing a car. Just make sure it’s for “normal” use. You’ll want to confirm that the car has coverage and that your insurance, whether you’re the owner or borrower, will apply.
Feel free to give us a call if you have any questions — after all, you don’t want to wait until after an accident to get answers!
Parents, March 2 is Read Across America Day! We here at DeWees Insurance Partners believe there are so many reasons to encourage children to read.
First of all, it’s fun! It’s also an activity that promotes learning and independent thought. But, perhaps most important, becoming a reader can mean the difference between success and difficulty later in life.
According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation, children who read proficiently by the end of third grade are more likely to graduate from high school than those who don’t. They also are more likely to be economically successful as adults.
The National Education Association (NEA) is well aware of the impact that literacy can have on a young person’s life. That’s why the organization started Read Across America in 1998. Held on the school day closest to the birthday of beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss (March 2), the event goes beyond promoting reading for just one day. It also provides tools for educators and parents to create lifelong readers.
We here at DeWees Insurance Partners want you to have a few tricks up your sleeve to promote reading at home. After all, one of the most crucial factors for the success of young readers is parental involvement. According to the U.S. Department of Education, when involvement is low, reading scores are 46 points below the national average.
So how can you encourage your child to read? Here are some tips from the NEA and the Public Broadcasting Service’s “Between the Lions” show:
Too often, our hectic schedules mean we take less time to do the things we enjoy. So, remember, reading with children isn’t just fun for them — it should be fun for you, too! After all, as Dr. Seuss himself wrote, “You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child.”
There are an estimated 300 million firearms in U.S. homes. And, with a lot of guns comes the potential for a lot of gun-related accidents. So, ask yourself these questions to help prevent your household from experiencing one.
Keeping firearms in your home is a personal choice. And, if it’s one you make, be sure you do so safely. Because we here at DeWees Insurance Partners care about your family and our community, and we know you do, too.
Solar panels can be economically and environmentally sound, and they’re more accessible than ever. According to one research firm, U.S. homes and businesses installed a new system every four minutes in 2013.
But, is solar power right for you? To help you address the question, here are five things to think about before making the switch:
Renewable power – it can help protect your from rising energy costs and even power outages, not to mention the good it does for the environment. Just be sure to consider your options and all the costs involved before making the leap.
Motor vehicle corrosion is a billion-dollar problem in the United States, according to the Federal Highway Administration. And, no wonder. Road salt, tree sap, mud, pollution and even dead bugs and bird poop all contribute to a year-round assault on your vehicle here, potentially leading to serious damage and pre-mature aging.
Safety is also an issue. Grime across your windshield and windows restricts visibility in all directions, and even a light coating of dust or pollen can impair your vision, especially at night or when driving into the sun’s glare.
That’s why we here at DeWees Insurance Partners encourage you to visit your local car wash regularly. Washing your car removes dirt, residues and pollutants that degrade your paint finish and corrode the underlying metal. It’s like anti-aging cosmetics for your automobile!
But, is hand washing at home or visiting a commercial car wash your best bet? While both lead to a clean vehicle, you’ll cut your water usage in half by going to a commercial facility and help keep toxins and soap away from street drains, which can lead to local waterways. As a bonus, some commercial facilities recycle their water.
No matter which method you choose, these five tips will help you get the most out of your car-cleaning routine:
And, when you’re all done? Finish up with a good waxing to give your car extra protection and shine.
Thieves love tourists. It’s nothing personal. They’re just looking for an easy target – someone who’s carrying cash and credit cards, tablets and cameras, passports and other identification, all while being distracted by the new sights and sounds all around them.
So how do you take it all in without allowing a thief to take off with your money, identity and other valuables? These five travel tips should help:
Remember, travel is supposed to be fun! Taking just a few common sense precautions will help make sure you’re free to wander without worry.
Leaving your lights on — is it really a good way to keep burglars away from your home, or can it actually attract them? Or, is it just a “good” way to increase your electricity bill?
As with so many questions in life, there isn’t one “right” answer. Using lights to enhance your home security can be effective, especially as part of a larger overall strategy. With that in mind, here are five things to consider:
Of course, there’s no one perfect way to keep your home safe. The best strategies oftentimes involve a number of different deterrents. So, mix it up, with your lights and other things, to keep burglars guessing whether or not anyone’s home.
You keep your car filled up with gas so you don’t get stranded on the side of the road. And, your phone charged so your loved ones can reach you. But, what kind of safety measures do you have in place for more extreme scenarios?
What if you lost everything you owned in a fire at your house or your apartment? What if your car were stolen? These situations are scary, but your insurance can help you through them, and much more, so long as you have the right coverage in place.
So, what’s right for you? Whether you’re starting out on your own or starting a family, these tips can help you begin to understand the level of insurance you may need.
Consider What You Own – And What It’s All Worth
Could you imagine having to replace all of your personal belongings at once? What about having to do so from memory and on your own dime? It would be both a difficult and a costly task. So, make an inventory of your belongings and their value to minimize the former – the free Safeco Home Inventory app can help. And, be sure you have enough insurance coverage, whether you rent or own a home, to minimize the latter. It’s known as “personal property coverage,” and you want enough of it to replace all of your belongings if it were to come to that.
Take Your Lifestyle Into Account
Drive an expensive car? Repairs are likely costly, so be sure to carry full coverage. Own a home with a lot of custom features? Be sure your homeowners policy takes them into account. The way you live can help you save, too. For example, if you take public transportation to and from work even though you own a car, you may pay less for your insurance.
Talk to Your Independent Agent for Ease, Choice and Advice
As an independent agency, DeWees Insurance Partners offers a choice of carriers and options, plus personalized advice to help make sense of it all. And, we make it easy by doing the research and the work for you. We know you value that – a recent study by Safeco Insurance says so!
Remember, we’re here to help. Contact us today with your insurance questions and needs.