Prevent Water From Going Where it Shouldn’t

One of the most disheartening experiences is to find flooding or extreme water damage to your treasured home in Oxford or Cincinnati, OH.

 
At Fey Insurance we know you want to protect what’s important. That’s why we’re offering these tips to help you prevent many of the most common causes of water damage.

Just a little time and some effort can prevent a lot of heartache and hassle.

Ø  Make sure your water pressure is not set too high. For just $6 or so, you can purchase a gauge that will help you test your pressure for the appropriate level, which should be set between 60 and 80 PSI.

Ø  Standard hoses on new appliances are not as durable as they used to be. So check your appliances. If they’re rubber, either replace them with longer lasting stainless steel braided hoses or replace them every three years.

Ø  Keep water from leaking into the walls or floor of your bathroom by replacing cracked tiles and re-grouting when it’s needed.

Ø  Examine the shingles on your roof. Worn, curled or missing shingles allow water in, so replace them as soon as noticed.

Ø  Consider buying a water alarm, which can help you find leaks, or automatic shut-off mechanisms, which can help avoid bursts.

Ø  A lot of water damage occurs when you and your family are away from home.  Make a practice to avoid running the washing machine or dishwasher while you’re out.

Ø  When you leave for vacations, turn off the water supply to appliances.

Ø  Keep up maintenance on all appliance hoses, because slow leaks from worn out hoses can cause major damage (and they are not covered under Homeowners insurance).

At Fey Insurance we hope these pointers will ensure your house stays nice and dry this year! 
 
-Safeco Insurance Article

Safeguard Your Home from Burglary

In 2007, the last year with full statistics, there were an estimated 2.2 million burglaries, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Burglaries represent more than 22 percent of property crimes committed in 2007, and of these burglaries, 61 percent involved forcible entry. Burglary offenses represented $4.3 billion in losses, an average of nearly $2,000 per burglary, and nearly 68 percent of burglaries were residential.

Surprising to many is that nearly 64 percent of burglaries occurred during the daytime. Below are some suggestions that should help you from becoming a statistic:

– Keep exterior views of your home unobstructed and trim landscaping back to expose windows and doors. This requires a burglar to work in full view and poses a serious risk of detection.

-Maintain adequate exterior lighting at access points to your home.

-Put your ladder away. Do not provide easy access for the burglar to gain entrance.

-Do not keep valuables, such as bicycles and tools, in the open.

-Keep your garage door closed and locked. An open garage door allows a crook to see valuables stored in your garage.

-Make sure your house number is prominently displayed and illuminated to help emergency responders find your home quickly.

-Do not leave notes on your door that might indicate your home is unoccupied.

Protect Your Phone’s Data with a Passcode

Do you have a passcode on your iPhone or Android device? If not it is recommended as phones can easily be miss placed or stolen. A passcode to get into your device will help keep your information private and secure. Many personal and business phones have apps on them that hold a lot of important personal information. That information in the wrong hands can be dangerous and because of this we have three steps we recommend in helping protect your phone.
The first step is simple; decide to put a passcode on your phone. I know, it may be annoying to have to type something into your phone each time you use it but it is better for you in the long run.
The second step is to make the passcode something more than just four digits. Recently there was a software invented called Micro Systemation XRY app. This software can crack any four digit code in only a few minutes. Currently this software is only used by law enforcement agencies however the hackers are never to far behind in developing their own. We recommend you using the setting in your phone that lets you put in more than just four digits. Letters and numbers help to make the cracking process harder. Throw in a few other characters and it becomes even harder to break.
The third step in protecting your phone’s data is to put on the setting in which your data is wiped from the phone after so many failed attempts to login. I know it would be annoying to lose your data from your phone but hopefully you have it synced and backed up on your computer or in a cloud (plus is someone stole your phone you not only lose the data anyway but also the phone). By having the phone wiped after so many failed attempts you are preventing hackers and thieves form being able to use software to try and figure out your passcode.

Damage to Rented Premises

Any time a business rents or leases a space to operate from they sign a contract. In that contract are insurance requirements stating that the tenant will carry certain liability limits. Normally they will ask the tenant to carry a commercial general liability policy, and more often than not they ask for at least $1,000,000 per occurrence limit. The reason they ask for this is that if the tenant is the cause of a fire or other type of damage to the rented building, the landlord wants to make sure that the tenant’s insurance will pay for the damages, and not their own insurance.

Commercial General Liability takes care of a lease contract with two different types of coverages. The first is the coverage I mentioned above of $1,000,000 per occurrence limit. This coverage, however, only gets the tenant half way there. The per occurrence limit doesn’t cover for actual areas of a building that the tenant rents or leases. It will pay for only the part of the building that is not rented by the tenant. An example might help explain this better.
Example:
Let’s say that business XYZ, Inc rents unit A of a four unit office building. If XYZ, Inc causes a fire that extends damages to both unit A and unit B, the per occurrence portion of their insurance policy will only cover damages to unit B. It will not pay for damages to unit A because it is leased or rented by them.
Damage to Rented Premises (sometimes called Fire Legal Liability) is the other coverage a tenant needs when they rent space. This coverage is often included in a general liability policy as well but many times is not specifically mentioned in lease contracts. In the example above, Damage to Rented Premises would be the coverage that would pay for unit A that XYZ, Inc. rented.

The reason I bring this up as a blog article topic is because the Damage to Rented Premises is often overlooked. Since it is left out of many lease contracts, businesses don’t think to check with their insurance carrier about the coverage. Your typical commercial general liability policy will only include $100,000 to $500,000. If company XYZ, Inc. in the above example rented a large space, this may not be enough coverage, and they could pay for some of the damages out of pocket.

So next time you rent a space for your business be sure to have Fey Insurance Services review the lease and double check your commercial general liability insurance limits to make sure you are covered in case of a large fire.

2010 Discriminations Charges

The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently released some very interesting data for the fiscal year of 2010. 99,922 workplace discrimination chargers were filed which set a new record. The types of claims that were filed where:

Retaliation Charges

Race-Related Charges

Sex Harassment

Disability

Age

National Origin

Religion

Equal Pay Act

Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act

What is even scarier about this number for business owners is that Commercial General Liability (CGL) doesn’t cover these types of claims. Employment Related Practices claims are excluded under a business CGL. In order to have protection for these types of claims you must purchase Employment Related Practices Insurance. Be sure to talk with your insurance agent today about quoting this coverage for your business.

Products and Completed Operations Hazard

If you manufacture, sell or distribute a product, there is a possibility that the use of the product could cause bodily injury. The example everyone thinks of is a stepladder. Next time you are at the home improvement store take a look at all the warnings that ladder manufactures put on their product. Who really needs to be told not to stand on the top rung of a ladder? But, it is because of the product liability hazard that manufacturers feel it is necessary to include so many warning with their products. Even if you are not the manufacturer, and simple sell someone else’s products, you could still be liable.

The second part of this coverage is completed operations coverage. If you install or repair products such as a heating system, you could be negligent should damage be caused by your work after you work is done. Let’s say that you installed a new furnace in a restaurant, and later that day a fire ensues. The fire marshal determines that product literature that was left inside the furnace caught fire further melting a plastic cover causing black smoke to spread throughout the premises. The business had to close until repairs and cleanup could be completed. A substantial amount of money was lost and the cleanup was in the thousands of dollars.

Both of the situations cited above would be covered if your policy includes products and completed operations coverage. Not sure if your package includes this coverage; give us a call to review.