Do You Need to Update Your Home Insurance?

Aligning Your Home Insurance with Life’s Changes

As life evolves, adjusting your insurance to ensure optimal coverage is important. Leaving your family or belongings unprotected due to an outdated policy is an avoidable risk. At Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. in San Francisco, CA, our agents work with you to review your existing policy annually and make changes to accommodate new family members as needed.

Understanding When You May Need More Insurance

An expanding household keeps life exciting. However, with new additions, you should consult your agent to discuss how these changes may impact your coverage. Whether your mother-in-law moves in, you adopt a baby, or you rescue a pet, these joyous occasions could also bring additional liabilities not covered under your existing home insurance.

Home improvements and insurance

How does adding a new kitchen, porch, or bedroom to your home affect your insurance? Changes that enhance the value of your home may necessitate an upgrade to your home insurance. Speak with your agent to ensure you have sufficient coverage for all the new additions.

When Less Insurance Might Be More

Life changes can also result in discounts or reduced premiums. If your adult children move out or you install security equipment, your insurer could lower your monthly payment. Deadbolts on your doors, security cameras, updated fire alarm systems, and upgraded electrical systems can increase the safety of your property and may result in savings on your home insurance.

Let’s Discuss Your Insurance Needs

Renovating your home, adopting a pet, or starting a home-based business can significantly enhance your household. However, it’s crucial to consult with your agent to align your coverage with your current and future needs. Contact a knowledgeable professional from Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. in San Francisco, CA today to schedule a home insurance review.

Community-Based Insurance Models in Home Insurance

A transformative shift is occurring as community-based insurance models gain prominence in the San Francisco, CA area. This innovative approach redefines the traditional insurance model and fosters a sense of community resilience where neighbors collaborate.

Shared Risk, Shared Responsibility

Instead of individual policies for each homeowner, communities pool their resources to create a collective insurance fund. This shared approach ensures that the financial burden is distributed among all community members, creating a safety net that benefits the entire neighborhood.

Tailoring Coverage to Local Risks

Community-based insurance models acknowledge that risks can vary significantly from one neighborhood to another. These models allow for a more nuanced approach to coverage, tailoring insurance policies to the specific risks prevalent in a particular community. Whether it’s flood-prone areas, wildfire risk zones, or other localized threats, coverage is adapted to address the unique challenges faced by each community.

Community Engagement in Risk Mitigation

Beyond just financial protection, community-based insurance models actively engage homeowners in risk mitigation efforts. Members collaborate to implement preventive measures, such as wildfire-resistant landscaping, community-wide safety drills, or collective investments in flood defenses. This proactive approach nurtures a sense of shared responsibility for the entire community’s well-being.

Fostering a Sense of Community Resilience

Community-based insurance fosters a culture of community resilience, where neighbors work together to protect their homes and support one another in times of need. This collaborative spirit builds a sense of trust and unity, reinforcing the idea that the community is more than just a collection of homes; it is a collective effort to create a resilient and supportive living environment.

How Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. Can Help You

At Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., we can help answer questions concerning home insurance. We serve the San Francisco, CA, area. Call us today.   

Injured Parties at Home and Home Insurance

Home insurance plays a crucial role in navigating the complexities of liability protection in and around San Francisco, CA. It ensures injured parties receive the necessary support while safeguarding homeowners from potential financial repercussions.

Coverage for Guest Injuries

When a guest sustains an injury on your property, liability coverage helps address various aspects:

  • Medical Expenses: Covers the medical costs incurred by the injured party, including hospital bills, surgeries, and rehabilitation.
  • Liability for Bodily Injury: Protects homeowners from potential legal action by covering legal expenses if the injured party decides to file a lawsuit.

Coverage for Service Provider Injuries

Injuries to service providers, such as contractors, repair technicians, or delivery personnel, fall under a similar umbrella:

  • Worker’s Compensation: If the injured party is an employee of a service provider, liability coverage may help cover worker’s compensation costs.
  • Liability for Third-Party Injury: This policy addresses legal and medical expenses if the service provider, who is not covered by worker’s compensation, decides to file a lawsuit.

Navigating Policy Limits and Considerations

Homeowners should be aware of certain factors related to liability coverage:

  • Policy Limits: Policyholders should understand the maximum amount the insurance will pay in the event of a covered liability claim.
  • Umbrella Policies: Supplemental umbrella policies may offer additional liability coverage beyond the limits of the standard home insurance policy.

Risk Mitigation and Home Safety Measures

While home insurance provides vital protection, homeowners can take proactive steps to mitigate risks and enhance home safety:

  • Regular Maintenance: Keeping the home well-maintained reduces the risk of accidents and injuries.
  • Clear Communication: Informing guests or service providers about potential hazards ensures they exercise caution.

Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. Can Help You

At Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., we can help answer questions concerning home insurance. We serve the San Francisco, CA area. Contact us today. 

Three Home Insurance Riders You Need to Consider

Home insurance is the single best thing you can have to protect your investment. Even after your home is paid off, Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., serving San Francisco, CA, recommends retaining your home insurance so that your primary residence is protected in the event of unfortunate events. In addition to your primary home insurance, riders are available to extend that protection. Here are some of the most helpful ones to consider.

Identity Theft Restoration Rider

The number of identity thefts in this country has gone up at alarming rates. Unfortunately, having good credit makes you a more attractive target for this type of crime. But you can add an identity theft restoration rider to your home insurance policy with Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., serving San Francisco, CA. This protection would help cover the legal costs of restoring your identity.

Building Code Coverage

If your home incurs some damage where you need to file a home insurance claim, the policy can pay out to restore your home to its original condition. But if your home’s original condition wasn’t up to the current building code in your state, you’ll have to pay the contractor the difference to bring your home up to code. With a building code rider, your policy benefit will include that cost, and you won’t be out of pocket for the difference.

Jewelry Rider

Consider adding a jewelry rider if you keep valuable jewelry in your home. In the event of theft or other covered occurrence, you could get back the true value of your jewelry rather than the limited amount offered with a plain home insurance policy.

Home insurance riders may prove helpful to you. Contact Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., serving San Francisco, CA, for more information about adding riders.

The Importance of Home Insurance

A home for you and the people you love is one of the most important and expensive investments you will make in your lifetime. This is why you will want to protect it adequately by having adequate home insurance in place. The agents at Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., serving the San Francisco, CA area, don’t hesitate to stress the importance of home insurance, even if your mortgage is paid off.

What Does Home Insurance Cover?

It would be best if you were prepared for whatever may come your way regarding your home. This includes natural disasters, acts of vandalism, or fires that can destroy or damage your house.

Home insurance will cover the structure of your house if it is damaged or destroyed, as well as items inside your house. These items include your furniture, appliances, other household items, and even your personal belongings, such as clothes and toiletries. Many home insurance policies will also cover outbuildings on your property, including garages, decks, and sheds. Also, if your home is burglarized and items are stolen, your home insurance can help replace these items.

If you have a mortgage on your home, your lender will require you to have a home insurance policy in place. Even if you do not owe money to purchase your home, it is crucial to have home insurance anyway to protect the investment you have made in the home you love.

Contact Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc.

The home insurance agents at Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc., serving the San Francisco, CA area, are ready to assist you with all your insurance needs, including your home insurance policy. Call for a quote today and get your policy started.

In Case of Fire

A fire is always tragic. Some things lost in a fire can never be truly replaced. However, the disaster can be mitigated if your home is insured against fire damage. With fire insurance, you at least have a chance to rebuild and start over. If such a disaster happens, stay calm, remind yourself of what you do have (you’re still alive, after all) and do the following. 

Document Your Losses

After you’ve counted your blessings for your mental health, it’s time to get real and take stock of what has been lost. Start taking photos of all the damaged property and belongings. Video documentation works too. This will be proof that the fire happened. Ideally, you will have kept receipts and a contents list with your insurance policy. Once you’ve documented everything, board it up to discourage looters or weather damage. 

Meet With the Adjuster 

Your insurance adjuster will want to have a look at the damaged property. Be there to show them around and point things out. Document everything from policy maximums to deductibles. You may want to ask them about the loss of use coverage and other signed forms that may be necessary. Verify with them your type of coverage and ask for repair estimates. If the damage was so bad you had to leave your home, you may want to ask for an advance on your claim to cover your new expenses. 

Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. Serving San Francisco, CA 

Whether the fire was electrical, a kitchen mishap, or a wildfire out of control, losing a home to a fire can be disastrous. If you plan for a disaster before it happens, it will be easier to get back on your feet. Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. realizes every situation is unique and will do all they can to help you in this difficult time. 

When Do You Need To Upgrade Your Home Insurance?

Your home is one of your most important assets. You may not think about it often, but when something happens and you need to claim your homeowner’s insurance, you’ll be glad you have it. So how do you know when it’s time to upgrade your policy? Here are four signs that it might be time for an upgrade.

1. You’ve Made Significant Renovations to Your Home

If you’ve made significant renovations to your home, it may be time to upgrade your insurance policy. These changes can affect both the value of your home and the amount of coverage you need. For example, if you’ve added an addition or finished a basement, your home’s value has likely gone up, which means you’ll need more coverage.

2. You Have Not Reviewed Your Policy in a While

Homeowners’ insurance policies are not one-size-fits-all. As your life changes, your coverage should change with it. If you’ve had the same policy for a few years and haven’t reviewed it recently, it’s a good idea. Your needs may have changed, and you may be able to get a better rate by shopping around.

3. You Bought a Dog

If you’ve recently added a furry friend to your family, you may need to upgrade your home insurance policy. Some policies exclude coverage for dog bites, so it’s important to check with your insurer to see if you’re covered.

4. You Have Installed a Security System

Having a security system can help deter burglars and protect your home. It can also help you get a discount on your homeowner’s insurance. If you’ve recently installed a security system, let your insurer know so they can apply the discount to your policy.

Get Home Insurance in San Francisco, CA

Your home is one of your most important assets, so it’s important to have the right insurance coverage. If you’re unsure if your policy is up to date, contact Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. We’ll be happy to review your policy and ensure you have the coverage you need.

Things home insurance won’t cover

Home insurance is your safety net as a homeowner. So many things can damage your home and your assets. Even the best safety net can’t protect you from everything. At Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. in San Francisco, CA, we don’t believe that one size fits all. Since 1938, we have been customizing home insurance policies to fit each customer’s particular needs. 

All home insurance policies have exclusions. These are things that the policy won’t cover. By knowing what they are, you can make other provisions to make sure that you are not without coverage. 


Floods are one of the most common and damaging natural disasters. Even one inch of water in your home can cause thousands of dollars in damage. The scary part is, floods are not covered by traditional home insurance. You can, however, get flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program. 

Earth Movement

Earth movement covers several different hazards that are excluded from traditional home insurance. Sinkholes, mudslides, landslides, and earthquakes are all considered earth movement. While your home insurance won’t cover you for these types of earth movement, in California you can get earthquake insurance through the CEA, California Earthquake Authority. 

Sewer Backup

Sewer backup is disgusting and even more disgusting is the fact that your home insurance won’t pay for the cleanup and damage. If you are concerned about this possibility, you can get a sewer backup endorsement for your home policy. 

Owner Neglect

Many things can come under the heading of owner neglect. If you get termite damage, that is owner neglect, you should have your home treated for termites. If your older roof leaks and causes interior damage to your home, you are at fault. You should have replaced your roof. The insurance company expects you to maintain your home. 

Contact Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. in San Francisco, CA when you are ready to have your home insurance customized for you and your home. 

8 Tips for taking a home inventory

Before buying homeowners insurance, ask yourself one question: 

"What do I need covered?"

The answer lies within your home inventory. A home inventory documents items in the event you need to make a claim. Not only will this speed up the process, but it may also maximize your payment.

For this reason, Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. encourages its clients to conduct a thorough review of their belongings. Located in San Francisco, CA, their agents list eight tips for completing a detailed home inventory.

Break it down

Start small. Divide your home into sections. Tinier areas, like a closet, are great ways to ease into the process and avoid getting overwhelmed. Find a system that works best for you.

Record key info

List basic descriptions of each item. Include estimated value, purchase date, and any sales receipts.

Identify serial numbers

For major electronics and appliances, jot down serial numbers also.

Group like items

Not everything you own needs to be listed individually. Categorize low-cost goods, like clothes, and assign a price for the whole group.

Snap pictures and video

These images can speed up claims. Not only are they helpful reminders, but pictures and videos also capture the condition of belongings before they’re damaged.

Separate high-end valuables

Expensive items may require additional coverage beyond a standard homeowners policy. After identifying jewelry, antiques, and collectibles, check with an agent.

Use technology

Ditch paper and pencil entirely. Home inventory apps, like Nest Egg, are increasingly popular and easy to use.

Update often

At a minimum, review your inventory once a year to add new purchases. In addition to digital records, keep a backup copy somewhere else.

Consult an agent serving San Francisco, CA

Once you’ve conducted a home inventory, Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. will help find a home insurance policy that’s right for you.

How Natural Disasters Impact Home Insurance Policies

Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. provides coverage to the San Francisco, CA community. For over 50 years, we have helped our clients find the policies they need to protect their assets. We offer multiple types of coverage designed to help people regardless of their situation. We will sit down with you and help you evaluate your options.

How Natural Disasters Impact Home Insurance Policies

Your San Francisco, CA home is one of your most prized possessions. Home insurance allows you to live comfortably because you are protected if something goes wrong. All of your personal items are covered if they are damaged or stolen. Any damage to the interior and exterior of your home is covered. If you plan to invite guests over, liability coverage protects you if one of your guests is injured. Liability coverage also protects you if you cause property damage.

Home insurance covers any property damage due to a natural disaster such as a fire. However, you may need to amend your policy in order to cover other potential disasters such as flooding. Flood insurance protects your home if a hurricane moves through the area and leaves flood damage. Keep in mind that flood insurance is different from interior damage caused by a broken pipe. Flood insurance will not cover those damages. Earthquake insurance is an option to consider, as the West Coast is prone to the occasional tremor. You are protected if your home suffers damage due to strong vibrations. You can also add wind damage to protect your property if strong winds damage your roof or cause flying objects to damage your home or add on structures.

Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. Will Help You Protect Your Assets

Visit our website to learn more information about home insurance.