Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Get Your Home Ready for a Cool, Rainy Fall

After a long, warm summer, the temperatures are beginning to drop in Western Washington. That means wet, rainy weather isn't far behind. Now is the time to get those home maintenance chores done before the rains begin.

Here are some simple tasks that you can perform now, before it gets too wet:

Check Gutters and Downspouts -  Take a few minutes to make sure your gutters are clear.  With rain and falling leaves, gutters and downspouts will be working overtime.  By making sure they’re clear now, you’ll avoid water damage later on. It's a good idea to remove your downspouts to make sure they're not blocked with debris. Even if your gutters are clear, a clogged downspout will cause rainwater to back up and spill down the side of your house. This can cause siding damage and wear away the ground along your foundation. By making sure everything is clear now, you'll save yourself a big bill later.

Clean The Dryer Vent - Lint accumulating in the dryer vent can cause a house fire.  A couple of times per year, unplug the dryer and thoroughly vacuum the area around the dryer vent and hose.  Remember to check the outside vent too! 

Gather Firewood - Will you be burning a wood stove or fireplace this winter?  Start gathering up firewood now and save yourself from the task when it’s cold outside. By harvesting wood when it's still dry, and storing in a dry area, the wood will be easier to light and you'll have less smoky fires this winter.

Get Ready For Autumn - Now is a great time to start planting some fall flowers.  Mums make a great addition to your front porch! 

Rid Your Home of Allergens - As the temperatures drop and the days get shorter, people spend more time indoors. Many people suffer from allergies due to dust mites.  But there are ways to rid your home of the dust without spending all day cleaning. Look for where dust lurks. Use a damp cloth to clean all window blinds and fan blades once a month. If you have carpet, make it a priority to vacuum on a regular basis.  These things will get rid of dust and prevent allergies.

Save On Home Insurance - Homeowners Insurance is an important part of protecting your belongings.  To make sure you have the best coverage, call us at 888-867-2866 today for a free, no obligation quote.  

Thursday, August 28, 2014

New Driver Safety Report: Seattle and Tacoma Drivers are Accident Prone and Getting Worse

An insurance company just released its 10th annual "America's Best Drivers Report", and it isn't good news for the Seattle/Tacoma area. Out of 200 top cities ranked for "safest driving city", Seattle ranked 173rd and Tacoma was only slightly better, coming in at 153rd.

Could it be all the hills in the city? San Francisco, a notoriously hilly city, came in 190th for safety and an even-worse 192nd in rainy or snowy conditions.

The safest cities to drive are Fort Collins, Colorado and Brownsville, Texas. Even in rain and snow conditions -- and Fort Collins gets plenty of it -- that city is ranked second for safest driving in the entire U.S.

In addition, Seattle drivers can expect to get in an accident once every 7.4 years, and the relative accident likelihood is a whopping 36% compared to the national average!

Tacoma drivers fare only slightly better, getting in an accident on an average of every 7.8 years, and having a 28.6% likelihood of getting in an accident compared to the national average.

Both Seattle and Tacoma have slipped in the safety rankings in the last couple of years, Seattle falling from 160th in 2013 to 173rd, and Tacoma from 144th to 153rd.

The report takes into account population, city density and weather conditions in its rankings. In fact, many of the cities in the top 20 are from Midwest, where heavy rain and snow is a factor much of the year.

The best advice for becoming a safer city in which to drive? Slow down, be alert at all times, and don't text or talk while on the road.

Make sure you're covered in the event you're involved in an accident, whether it's your fault or not. Call SAV-ON Insurance at 888-867-2866 for a free policy review. If you're one of the 36% that has an accident, you want to be adequately covered!

Source: Allstate's 2014 America's Best Drivers Report

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

"Back to School" Insurance

As August ends, it's time to start thinking about going back to school! What does that have to do with insurance? More than you think! Here are a few things to keep in mind.

Good Grades - Do you have a teenage driver in the house (or one soon to be)? Many policies allow discounted rates for students with good grades. Don't forget to talk to your kids about the importance of keeping those grades up! These discounts can apply to college students, too.

Driver Training - There are different discounts available for Drivers Education
classes. We can review all the options and let you know which discounts will impact you the most.

Moving To The Dorm - Is your college student living in a dorm this semester? Your homeowners insurance may cover their belongings without additional coverage being needed. This is called Property Off Premises coverage. Find out more by calling your friendly SAV-ON agent.

Remember, any claims are subject to your deductible, which is usually higher on home policies! Let us review your policy to check for the specific amounts of coverage included.

Moving To An Apartment - Let's say your college student has graduated from the dorms and moved on to an apartment of their own. In this case, your homeowners insurance would not cover their belongings and they would need their own renters insurance policy.

Renters Insurance is very affordable and covers all of the contents of the property. It also provides liability insurance if someone were injured in the property or if the student caused a fire, etc. By making sure they are properly insured, you are also protecting yourself.

Call SAV-ON Insurance Today. We're Here to Help!

We work hard to make sure all of our clients have the right coverage at all times. The fastest and easiest way to make sure your student is receiving all the discounts they qualify for and that their belongings are covered when they are in college is to schedule a review! Call  888-867-2866 to review your policy and situation and we'll make sure all of your questions are answered.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Insurance Claim Hassle? We're Here to Help!

Insurance claims can be a stressful process.  At SAV-ON, we've worked with many clients after car accidents, home fires, storm damage, and burglaries. Because it's about a loss or other horrible occurrence, insurance claims are tied to the most stressful events in our lives.

That's why it's extremely important that you work with an agent and a company that you trust.

After an insurance claim, you will work with an adjustor to evaluate your loss. Depending on the type of claim, they will examine the property and gather more information.  You will then be offered a settlement and the process will begin to restore your loss.

So what happens if things don't go smoothly at first?  Maybe you don't agree on the amount or can't get the right documentation?

That's where SAV-ON comes in.

Our job, as your agency, is to also be your advocate.  Our office goes to work to help you communicate with your adjustor if there is a problem.  That means that when you need help, we're there. With 50 years of experience, we know how to work with adjustors to get you a reasonable settlement.

Yes, sometimes you can get cheaper rates with unknown companies.  And you might enjoy being able to buy online without talking to an agent. If nothing ever happens, and you never have a claim, then you may save a few dollars.

But when it comes down to those stressful moments when something unfortunate has occurred and you aren't getting a fair shake from your insurance adjustor, it's great to have someone on your side.

If you live anywhere in Washington, call SAV-ON Insurance Agencies today at 888-867-2866 and let us help you get the insurance you need, at a great price. And, should you ever need to make a claim, you will be able to count on us to help you through it.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Insurance Tips When Planning Your Vacation

It’s getting warmer, schools are out, and everyone has summer vacation on the brain!  But, before you load up the car and head out, here are a few insurance tips before you take off.

First, contact the post office and put a hold on your mail.  You can do the same for your newspaper service, too. These are often big indicators that a homeowner is out of town and will be a target for thieves.  This is an easy way to help keep your home protected while you're away! 

Consider putting a few lights in your home on a timer to further give the illusion that someone is home.  Outdoor security lights are also a great option.

Do you have a neighbor who you trust?  Let them know of your plans, share your emergency contact number, and consider leaving a spare key just in case.

Imagine that a big thunderstorm hits while you’re out of town.  It knocks out power or even causes a tree in your yard to fall.  Your neighbor can make sure that your freezer is back on when the power is restored, or verify that there aren’t any leaks in the roof from the storm damage!  This can help prevent unhappy surprises when you get home.


What about once you’re on the road?

The biggest tip we share with our clients is to avoid leaving valuables in the car! 

Many people believe that their belongings are covered by car insurance, but that is not the case.  The only coverage for your luggage, computer, etc. would be on your homeowners insurance, and it’s subject to your deductible! So, if you can't take it with you when you leave the car, the best idea is to hide the items in a trunk, or at least park in a well-lit area that has foot traffic all the time. A thief wants to have as easy a time as possible. No witnesses, no lighting to call attention to his crime. If he can see it,  he can easily get in and steal it.

Have questions about your Homeowners Insurance?  Give SAV-ON a call anytime at 888-867-2866 to discuss your policy or to get a quote!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Buying a Home? Let Us Handle the Homeowners Insurance for You!

Many people begin house hunting during the spring and summer months.  And while you may know all the basics for getting a mortgage and finding the perfect house, many people have no clue where to begin when looking for good, low-cost homeowners insurance.

That’s where SAV-ON Insurance comes in! 

Home buying is a long and sometimes stressful process, but getting the proper insurance doesn’t have to be. Here’s how to make it incredibly simple: When you find the right home and have an accepted offer, let your lender know that SAV-ON Insurance will be handling your homeowners insurance. 

They’ll typically send us the loan information, but you can speed up the process by calling us and letting one of our friendly agents know all the important details.  We’ll need to know things like what year the home was built, how many square feet it is, what construction materials were used, and other items like that.

Then we’ll contact your lender to determine the closing date and the mortgagee clause.  (You don’t need to worry about and of this. Just let us know who is taking care of your loan and we’ll handle all the details.)

We’ll fax all of the insurance documents to your lender before the closing date and you’ll be ready to go when the house closes! 

To save a little extra on your home policy, let us know about any security systems or if you’d like to quote your auto insurance at the same time. Having more than one policy with us qualifies you for big multi-policy discounts!

Home buying can be stressful, the insurance side is really simple with the right communication and team.  Call us at 888-867-2866 today to discuss your new home.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Are You Prepared for a Natural Disaster?

Whether it’s the recent landslides we’ve experienced in the Northwest, the tornados that ripped through the Midwest, or the wildfires that are raging in Southern California, it seems like Mother Nature is behaving at her worst these days.

Are you prepared in the event a natural disaster strikes where you live? There are a number of things you can do to prepare, so that you can make the best of a bad situation and get the help needed to start the recovery.

Inventory Your Belongings

Take a full inventory of all personal belongings. This will help the claims process go more smoothly if they are damaged in a natural disaster. Making a video of your home and garage will give you visual evidence during the claims process. Remember to put this inventory in a fireproof safe or safety deposit box so it doesn’t get destroyed should disaster strike!

Use Technology

The American Red Cross offers free disaster safety apps for mobile phones that help homeowners prepare for a natural disaster, stay up-to-date on the latest wildfire news and find a shelter in their area, should they need to evacuate.

Put a Supply Kit Together

Encourage customers to put together a basic supply kit for wildfires and other natural disasters. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a list of recommended items on its website, plus tips on maintaining the kit, where to store it and more.

Safeguard Your Home

Protect your property with tips from FEMA or The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety, including how to create defensible space, protect patios and decks, and more.

If you’re in an area susceptible to wildfires, tornadoes, floods or landslides, you can take steps to protect your property and your family. Check out www.ready.gov for tips on how to prepare, survive and get emergency assistance in the event a natural strikes.

Make Sure You've Covered

Having an effective insurance plan that can help you replace and rebuild after being the victim of a natural disaster is extremely important. Standard homeowners insurance will not cover many natural disasters, so if you’re in an earthquake zone, near a landslide-prone hill or a low-lying area near a body of water, call SAV-ON Insurance and make sure you’re covered should they occur. It’s protection you can’t afford to pass up!