When you drive or walk through your neighborhood, it is easy to see which homes are being maintained and which are not. You don’t have to inspect them, but just pass by and take a look. It’s simple to find homes that are run down, their lawn is overgrown, window shutters are falling off or there’s missing shingles from the roof. Maintained homes aren’t perfect, but you can see fresh paint, no cracks or holes in the walkway or driveway, clean windows and no overgrown trees or hedges.
Yearly and seasonal maintenance of your home helps to retain its value and prevent problems in the future. Some repairs can help keep your Homeowners Insurance policy from increasing since they include reducing safety issues such as fires.
It’s helpful to keep a checklist of what you must do to maintain your home:
- Check the batteries in your smoke detectors. A good way to remember to do this is when we change the clocks for daylight savings time.
- Clean the dryer vent.
- Vacuum the coils of your refrigerator.
- Clean and check the screens on your windows and doors.
- Check and maintain your air conditioning system yearly.
- Have your septic system cleaned out professionally. This should be done every year – every 3 years. Ask what schedule you should keep.
- Inspect your roof, chimney, gutters, etc. Again a professional can do this or you can do it yourself. Some homeowners do it every year then have a professional come in on the 3rd year for example.
- Check your foundation for cracks and soil for unusual holes. This can mean there is a sinkhole starting.
- Inspect your walkway and driveway and repair any cracks or holes.
- Check your doors and windows for to see if they close properly or if they need to be re-sealed.
- Have an inspection done for insects especially termites.
- Check the expiration date on fire extinguishers and replace them as needed. Keep the expiration dates on your calendar.
- Remove and clear any tree branches that hang over your home or your neighbor’s home.
- Remove anything that can be caught up by the wind during hurricane season and store it indoors.
- Inspect your attic for openings.
When using professional services, be sure to do a background check to see if the person or company is licensed and certified to do the work you have hired them to do. Another thing to look out for is workers’ compensation insurance. If a worker in your home is injured, they will most likely be covered under their policy. If they don’t have worker’s compensation, they can sue you. That means you’ll be using your Homeowners Insurance policy to cover their claim. There should be no reason for that, especially when you are trying to prevent problems with your home.
Your Deductible is the amount you can expect to pay for a loss before your rental insurance policy takes over any cost for you. When you are choosing your deductible, which can be from $100.00 and up, take into consideration the dollar amount you figure for your possessions.
Once you have that figure calculated add a bit more for extra’s. A good way to start this, is to plan out a well detailed inventory list, and while you are doing this list be sure to add to it any receipts, id numbers etc and a little more for things you’ve forgotten or under-priced
Your Actual Cash Vale or Replacement cost is also considered when choosing your policy. Some insurance companies will reimburse you either way but considering that somethings depreciate in value you will be in a better position to go with replacement verses actual cash.
If your total dwelling is destroyed you may want to look into Total Cash Coverage. This is also where your inventory list you have kept in a safe place will come very handy to you. This will cover you for the total amount of renter’s insurance.
Some renter’s insurance Premiums are paid annually, while other companies allow you to pay quarterly or even monthly.
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On Sunday, February 4th, 2018 is the biggest game of the year for football fans, the Super Bowl. The New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles will play at at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. If you cannot be there in person you can enjoy the game on NBC channel (see other options here) and kick off is at 6:30 pm ET.
Where there is a football game there must be great food! For Super Bowl Lll (52) we have searched for the best appetizers, desserts and yummy dishes you can conger up. The first on our list is a long time favorite Buffalo Chicken Wings…
Buffalo Chicken Wings – Make them as mild or hot as you like.
and as long as we are in the neighborhood of hot and spicy food here are a few more dishes…
Lara Spencer’s Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Dip (easy and so yummy!)
Jalapeno Poppers with Blue Cheese and Bacon – easy appetizer!
For those that do not want the hot or spicy foods;
Enjoy the Super Bowl :}
To drive in snow and ice can be dangerous and one of the most driving perils is black ice. Black ice is a term for ice that is transparent and invisible. Normally you will not know you are on it until you are just a short distance away. If you see cars ahead of you suddenly swerve for no apparent reason, black ice can be the cause.Understanding how to drive on this hazard in the road is very important for you and other drivers that may be around you.
Black Ice is a glaze that forms on the surface of a road, sidewalk and driveways at just about the freezing point. I usually occurs from a light freezing rain, refreezing of snow or water on the surface. It is clear and not easy to detect in advance and can form from the heat of tires on the road.
The most common times of formation is at night or early morning when the temps are lower or on a cloudy day. Look for this along tree lined roads, tunnels and roads that do not have much traffic. It can also be found on bridges and overpasses from the cold air cooling both over and under the bridge or overpass.
In the right conditions you may be able to see the black ice before you head onto it. It is very smooth and sometimes glossy. Watch the road and if you see a change in the color of a patch ahead of you slow down and proceed with caution.
If you have ever hydroplaned on a wet road, this is close to what your experience would be on black ice. Just like most kids learning to drive, many were taught by mom and dad in a big empty parking lot. It would not be a bad idea to find one that has the black ice so you could practice braking, and driving your way through to understand what it is like. If you know someone that is familiar with driving, even better to take them with you. Get to know how your vehicle will react in this situation and doing this in a controlled environment is much safer then finding out when you are with other cars around you.
If you come upon Black Ice stay calm and turn on your hazard lights if you can. Try to let you vehicle pass over the ice and do not hit the brakes. Try to keep the steering wheel as straight as possible very gently. Don’t struggle against the steering if you feel the back of your vehicle fishtailing, going left to right turn the wheel in the same direction as the fishtail so that you do not skid or spin out.
Look for an empty field, soft snowbank or a yard if you can slowly steer you vehicle into that. Remember do not hit the brakes.
Winter on the road can be hazardous, drive slower then usual on heavy snow days or in freezing weather with your eyes peeled for black ice.