Why You Need Condo Insurance

Are you contemplating buying a condominium but aren’t sure if you need condo insurance? While it’s not required by law in many states, most lenders or banks won’t give you a mortgage unless you provide proof you have insurance first. 

Besides, having condo insurance can help protect your personal belongings inside your home and provide personal liability protection should any accidents occur to people or property caused by you, a member of your family or your pets.

Doesn’t my condo association have insurance?


Your condo association most likely has their own coverage but their insurance probably covers the building(s) and commonly owned property. The association’s insurance would not cover incidents that happen inside your condo like water damage or a guest falling and getting hurt.

What does condo insurance cover?

With MAPFRE, the Unit-Owners policy generally covers fixtures, alterations, additions, structures owned by the insured; personal property; additional living and loss of rent. Every circumstance is unique, but these are generally what would be covered by your condo insurance policy.

What wouldn’t typically be covered by your condo insurance policy?

  • General wear and tear
  • Damage from lack of maintenance
  • Damage caused by remodeling your home
  • Flood damage and earthquake damage typically aren’t covered

How much condo insurance do I need and how much does it cost? 

We can help you decide what is specifically covered and what is not, therefore determining how much insurance you need. Those factors would help determine how much you pay for your policy in addition to things like geographic location, how old your property is and what the structure is made of and how much your deductible is. You may also need additional coverage for your more valuable personal possessions like jewelry as there are limits to what is covered under your standard condo insurance policy. You can always ask your Independent Agent about an endorsement for high value property.

If you live in Massachusetts, make sure you have the right coverage for your condo by getting a fast, free quote from us today.  Call us or contact us today. (910) 521-9090

Source:  https://www.mapfreinsurance.com/blog/why-you-need-condo-insurance/

A Guide to Watering Your Christmas Tree for a Safe Holiday Season

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The holiday season is a time of joy, festivities, and, of course, the cherished tradition of decorating the Christmas tree. As families gather around to trim the tree with ornaments and twinkling lights, it’s crucial to ensure that this centerpiece of holiday cheer stays fresh and vibrant throughout the season. In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of watering your Christmas tree and how this simple task can contribute to a safe and secure holiday, with a special focus on the importance of home insurance during this festive time.

Just like any living plant, a Christmas tree requires proper hydration to maintain its beauty and resilience. The moment you bring your tree home, it begins to lose moisture, and without a sufficient water supply, it can quickly dry out, becoming a fire hazard. Dry needles are more susceptible to ignition, and a neglected tree can turn a festive celebration into a disaster.

  1. Select a tree with vibrant green needles that are hard to pull from the branches.
  2. Keep your tree away from heat sources such as radiators, fireplaces and heating vents.
  3. Give your tree a fresh cut at the base to open up the pores, allowing it to absorb water more effectively.

Now, let’s discuss the insurance aspect of this holiday tradition. While you’re busy creating a festive and safe environment, it’s essential to consider the potential risks and the role insurance plays in mitigating them.

  1. A well-hydrated tree is less likely to catch fire. While home insurance policies typically cover damage caused by fires, prevention is key to avoiding the stress and financial burden.
  2. Take preventative measures, such as using LED lights that emit less heat and turning off decorations when not in use.
  3. Familiarize yourself with your home insurance policy to understand what is covered in the event of a holiday-related incident.

By incorporating these simple watering tips into your holiday preparations, you not only safeguard your home and loved ones but also ensure that your insurance coverage is there to support you when you need it most. Here’s to a festive, secure, and well-watered holiday season!

Flood Preparedness: Before, During, & After

Flooding is a temporary overflow of water onto land that is normally dry. Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. Failing to evacuate flooded areas or entering flood waters can lead to injury or death. Floods may:

  • The result from rain, snow, coastal storms, storm surges, and overflows of dams and other water systems.
  • Develop slowly or quickly. Flash floods can come with no warning.
  • Cause outages, disrupt transportation, damage buildings, and create landslides.

Preparing for a Flood

Know Your Risk for Floods – Visit FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center to know the types of flood risk in your area.  Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.

Purchase Flood Insurance – Purchase or renew a flood insurance policy. Homeowners insurance policies do not cover flooding. It typically takes up to 30 days for a policy to go into effect so the time to buy is well before a disaster. 

Plan Ahead – Plan for your household, including your pets, so that you and your family know what to do, where to go, and what you will need to protect yourselves from flooding. Learn and practice evacuation routes, shelter plans, and flash flood response. Gather supplies, including non-perishable foods, cleaning supplies, and water for several days, in case you must leave immediately or if services are cut off in your area.

In Case of Emergency – Keep important documents in a waterproof container. Create password-protected digital copies. Protect your property. Move valuables to higher levels. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves. Consider a sump pump with a battery.

If you are under a flood warning:

  • Find safe shelter right away.
  • Do not walk, swim or drive through flood waters. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!
  • Remember, just six inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water.
  • Depending on the type of flooding:
  • Evacuate if told to do so.
  • Move to higher ground or a higher floor.
  • Stay where you are.

Staying Safe During a Flood

  • Evacuate immediately, if told to evacuate. Never drive around barricades. Local responders use them to safely direct traffic out of flooded areas.
  • Contact your healthcare provider If you are sick and need medical attention. Wait for further care instructions and shelter in place, if possible. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.
  • Listen to EAS, NOAA Weather Radio, or local alerting systems for current emergency information and instructions regarding flooding.
  • Do not walk, swim or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown!
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. Fast-moving water can wash bridges away without warning.
  • Stay inside your car if it is trapped in rapidly moving water. Get on the roof if water is rising inside the car.
  • Get to the highest level if trapped in a building. Only get on the roof if necessary and once there, signal for help. Do not climb into a closed attic to avoid getting trapped by rising floodwater.
  • Staying Safe After a Flood
  • Pay attention to authorities for information and instructions. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.
  • Avoid driving except in emergencies.
  • Wear heavy work gloves, protective clothing, and boots during clean up and use appropriate face coverings or masks if cleaning mold or other debris. 
  • People with asthma and other lung conditions and/or immune suppression should not enter buildings with indoor water leaks or mold growth that can be seen or smelled. Children should not take part in disaster cleanup work.
  • Be aware that snakes and other animals may be in your house.
  • Be aware of the risk of electrocution. Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. Turn off the electricity to prevent electric shock if it is safe to do so.
  • Avoid wading in floodwater, which can be contaminated and contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
  • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery ONLY outdoors and away from windows.

Source: https://www.ready.gov/floods#:~:text=Find%20safe%20shelter%20right%20away,bridges%20over%20fast%2Dmoving%20water

Homeowners Insurance Facts

When you decide you want to buy your first home, homeowners insurance may not be the first thing you think about. However, most mortgage lenders require you to have homeowners insurance before they will approve your loan. There are a few things you should know about homeowners insurance.

Certain losses are excluded from most homeowners insurance policies. Standard homeowners insurance policies don’t cover floods or earthquakes. If you want coverage for flood or earthquake damage, you will need separate policies for those. If you are in a flood zone, your mortgage lender may require you to purchase flood insurance.

We all know that our credit score is important for many things. Did you know it can also affect your homeowners insurance premium? Some states have banned this practice; however, in most cases, your credit score can affect your insurance premium. The better your credit rating, the lower your premium. So while you’re spiffing up your credit rating to get a good deal on your mortgage loan, you should maintain a good rating to save money on your homeowners insurance.

Poor home maintenance may cause a claim to be denied. Not all damages are covered by homeowners insurance. If the damage that occurred to your home is due to your failure to properly maintain your home, your claim may be denied. When it comes to home maintenance, don’t be a procrastinator!

While you are living in your new home, you will acquire new valuables, and personal possessions, and may do some home improvements. You should always report these to us right away so we can ensure your coverage is sufficient for your investment. Enjoy your new home, you deserve it!

Dial Insurance

Source: https://www.hsh.com/first-time-homebuyer/facts-about-home-insurance.html

All About Home Inventory

You never know when disaster may strike and all your personal possessions are lost or damaged. Do you know how much your coin collection is worth? Do you know how many pairs of Nikes you have? That’s where a home inventory can help. Having a home inventory can help you purchase the amount of insurance you need, get your insurance claim settled faster, verify losses for your income tax return, and keep track of all the things you’ve accumulated over the years.

It may seem like a daunting task to create a list of every item you own, but don’t let that scare you off! There are many ways to create your list, you just have to decide what works best for you. You can go room by room, category by category (furniture, electronics, etc.), newest to oldest, or the most expensive to least expensive. You can write everything down on a notepad, take pictures and write the information on the back of the photos, or put everything into your computer.

It’s also very important to keep a record of legal documents – birth certificates, passports, and financial documents. You can use your home inventory to record information about these papers. You can not have insurance policy numbers, bank account numbers, and insurance policy contact information.

You should keep your home inventory and your important records in a safe place, such as a fireproof lockbox. Keeping copies of the items outside of the home is a great idea too. You can keep them at a friend’s house or in a safe deposit box. Always remember, after you make a significant purchase to add the information to your home inventory and keep it up to date.

Dial Insurance

Source: https://www.iii.org/article/brochure-home-inventory