All posts by April Woodcock

Fall Home Maintenance Tips to Revamp Your Home

Fall Home Maintenance Tips to Revamp Your Home

With pumpkin carving, apple picking, and hot cocoa, fall is a wonderful time of year with plenty of seasonal traditions. However, one tradition is often overlooked: home maintenance. There are plenty of tasks you can do to prepare for winter

Add these tips to your yearly routine to keep your home clean, safe and ready for the changing seasons.

– Update your heating system. Replace the filter in your furnace and clean your ducts to increase efficiency, reduce household dust and lower your heating bill. Call in a trusted professional to check your heating system before minor problems turn into costly major repairs.

– Check your attic ventilation. Make sure the vents in the eaves are clear of insulation. When they are covered, you are more susceptible to ice dams on your roof. Also, inspect bird and rodent screens to prevent unwanted guests and verify all your vents are free of plants and debris.

– Revamp your landscaping. Grassroots grow deeper in the fall to prepare for winter, making it the perfect time to fertilize and reseed your lawn. Trim fragile tree branches, and inspect any branches hanging over power lines. If you suspect a branch may fall onto the powerlines, now is the time to alert the power company. Prune trees and shrubs to encourage healthy growth.

– Clean out gutters and downspouts. Neglected gutters can lead to wood rot problems, pest infestations and pooled water, which can damage foundations, driveways, and walkways. Secure any support brackets that are not keeping the water in the downspout.

– Make sure windows and doors are appropriate for the drop in temperature. Change summer screens to cool weather storm windows and doors. Repair any loose or damaged window or door frames. Consider installing weather stripping or caulking to prevent drafts and lower heating bills.

– Properly insulate piping to ensure pipes do not freeze and burst. Know how to locate and turn off the water shut-off valve in the event pipes do freeze.

Even the best preparation does not prevent all problems. Northeast Insurance home insurance is the surefire way to protect yourself from any accidents to your home this fall and winter. From damage to your dwelling and loss of use during repairs to personal property protection, our comprehensive homeowner’s insurance lets you rest in peace knowing you and your home are safe. For all the regular updates on how we can best help you, follow us on Facebook today!

Uber and Lyft: Understanding Commercial vs Personal Auto Insurance

Uber and Lyft: Understanding Commercial vs Personal Auto Insurance

In the last decade, ride-sharing services like Uber moved from novelty acts to a common form of transportation. At the same time, many people have signed up to drive for one or more of these services with the hope of making a little extra money on the side. Uber currently claims to employ a little over 3 million drivers worldwide, with other services like Lyft also boasting a large number of drivers.

With numbers like this, it’s necessary to understand how something as important and basic as car insurance works with an online ride service. Even though these services require drivers to have car insurance, depending on where the driver lives, a regular insurance policy might not be enough. This is why you need to know the difference between personal and commercial auto insurance.

Personal Auto Insurance

Personal insurance is the standard insurance that every driver is required to purchase before they are allowed to drive. Depending on the amount of coverage purchased, these policies can cover you and others in the event of an accident.

Personal insurance only covers you when you are driving your vehicle for personal reasons — and this is where the problem can occur with a service like Uber. Because driving for a ride-share company is considered work, and not personal, many insurance companies do not cover accidents in a situation like this. If you are in an accident while driving for Uber and you only have personal insurance, you could be in serious trouble. Before you start your business, always check your policy and call your insurance agent to review your coverage.

Commercial Auto Insurance

As the name implies, commercial auto insurance is designed to protect a company and its employees. A commercial policy covers driving that happens during the course of a workday, and it typically covers all employees that work for a company as well.

Commercial insurance typically costs more than personal insurance does, which can almost defeat the purpose of driving for Uber in the first place. While commercial insurance is not always required for ridesharing, local and state laws can vary, so it’s important to know the laws where you live.

Uber Insurance

Even though Uber, Lyft and the others are independent contractors, and therefore not subject to the rules of commercial insurance, they do offer a limited amount of coverage — as long as the app is on and you are currently en route to or driving a passenger. If you find yourself in an accident at those times, the ridesharing company offers liability, which can help with damages to the other vehicle and occupants. This insurance does not, however, cover your own vehicle or person.

If you would like to know more about the insurance requirements for these services and how they affect you, please don’t hesitate to contact us today at NE Insurance!

summer home security tips

Summer Vacation Home Security Planning Tips

Whether it is your main home or your summer vacation house, you want nothing more than to protect them. Making sure your house and belongings are safe is one of your top priorities. You may decide that adding a home security system is the best protection. But where do you begin? With so many systems and packages available, how do you know what you really need? You should start by doing some research on wireless, monitored and internet or cable based systems.

Using What You Have
If you have a cable or internet provider, you may want to check to see if they also offer a security monitoring service. This service may only have a slight increase in the fees because they are already in your residence. The security setup may include another service call to add any additional equipment to your current system.

Monitoring Services or Automatic Notifications
There are two ways you can approach your home security monitoring; a monitoring service or automatic notifications when the alarm goes off. The monitoring service is more expensive because you have a company that is watching for alarms and then calling you to determine if police need to be sent to check out the situation. If you are looking for a more cost effective system, you can monitor it yourself by setting your system up to notify you when a sensor goes off. You can then login to your system and check out the situation. If the situation warrants additional investigation, you would need to call the police and have them dispatched.

Wireless or Not
The wireless systems today have become more reliable. The batteries last longer and there are a decrease in the number of false alarms. The wireless systems and sensors are definitely easier to setup because you do not have to run any wires throughout the house. You just peel the backs of the sensors and stick them on the windows, frames and doors. When you shut the window or door the circuit is complete and the system is available for use. One disadvantage of an older system is the amount of wires that is all over. The wires will need to connect the sensors with the brain of the system so the different pieces can communicate with each other.

For questions on home security systems and discounts on your home-owners insurance, contact NE Insure.

home security tips

Top Home Security Tips

Securing your home is the most critical resource in your life: shelter. If you’ve got kids, they sleep there. Your valuables are there. For many, the tools of your trade that allow you to earn your daily bread are within those four walls or on the property.

Having a home of your own comes with the responsibility to secure it against theft and home invasion, and making sure you and yours stay safe and this can be easily accomplished with some planning and a few changes in how you maintain your property and your daily routine. Let’s discuss some easy home security tips that will help you protect what’s yours and keep your family safe. Continue reading Top Home Security Tips

winter preparation

Winter Preparation: How to Prepare your Home for Winter

Preparation is the key to having a wonderful winter and lessening your chances of expensive damage to your home. Preparing  for the upcoming months may seem troubling. If you feel overwhelmed at the thought of preparing your home for winter, here are a few tips on how and what to look for, to simplify the winterization process.  Continue reading Winter Preparation: How to Prepare your Home for Winter

insurance scams

How to Avoid Insurance Scams

These days, it seems like scams are more prevalent than ever. Most of us have become acutely aware of people online trying to get our money through shady practices, but the fact is that they can happen anywhere. Thus, it’s imperative that you stay vigilant at all times and learn the various ways that insurance scams can occur. Continue reading How to Avoid Insurance Scams

fall home maintenance checklist

Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

Fall is such a wonderful time of the  year. A welcome reprieve from the heat of summer, fall is a good time to prepare for the cold winter ahead. A fall home maintenance checklist is essential if you want to be prepared for winter and avoid costly and unexpected accidents or breakdowns in your home. What’s on your checklist? There are the obvious things like making sure your furnace runs or insulating outdoor spigots, but what about less obvious things like your humidifier or gutters? Check out this handy fall home maintenance checklist to keep your home in order:

Continue reading Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

fireplace safety

Top Fireplace Safety Tips

There are so many things to enjoy as the weather gets cooler and the leaves start falling. One of those simple pleasures is using your fireplace on a cold night. Something you might not think about, however, is fireplace safety. Any other time of the year, it might blend into the walls in your house, so it’s easy to forget. The truth is, misuse and neglect can lead to dangerous consequences. So before you get cozy, make sure to follow our tips for being safe this fall and winter.

Continue reading Top Fireplace Safety Tips

insurance for millennials

3 Tips for Insurance for Millennials

Millennials can’t seem to get a fair shake these days. It seems like everyone wants to blame them for one thing or another. In reality, though, millennials are just like any other generation out there: working, paying bills and trying to find insurance. But finding just the right insurance can be difficult, if you don’t know what you’re looking for. How can you find the right insurance for millennials? Here are some tips to help you sort it all out:

Continue reading 3 Tips for Insurance for Millennials