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. 

Flooding

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.  

What every home buyer should know before buying a home

What every home buyer should know before buying a home

There is always something exhilarating about owning a home in San Francisco, CA. You can drill small holes, take pictures, and modify it to your preference without worrying about the landlord suing you.  Above all, you have peace of mind that no one is coming for you due to rent arrears.

The location is quite essential

The location of your home determines many things, like whether it’s a valuable investment or not. If you have children, you will want to find a home with a school and a park nearby. You will also be looking forward to saving on fuel or transport costs when going to work. The neighborhood also determines whether you are at the right place or not.

Home insurance may be mandatory if you are buying through a mortgage

Home insurance is a critical coverage for protecting your San Francisco, CA home and family. If you are going to pay your home through a mortgage, your lender may require you to have home insurance and flood insurance if the house is located in a high-risk flood area. At Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc, we advise our clients to budget for home insurance as part of the home buying process.

Repairs and maintenance may cost you more than you think

Conduct a thorough inspection before settling on your home. Invite different people, contractors, real estate agents, or engineers to check for repairs and upgrades. They will advise you on what needs to be upgraded and what needs to be replaced. They can also help you calculate the costs. If you feel the costs are above your budget, you can always walk away before any paperwork is done

It’s every homeowner’s dream to find a place you can call your own, but it’s also essential to think about safety. You can trust Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. to guide you through the process. Be sure to drop by for more information and policy discussions.

What are the benefits of having home insurance?

San Francisco, CA has had one of the hottest real estate markets for a long time. Those that have bought homes here have enjoyed the long-term price appreciation while having a place to live in a great city. If you are going to purchase a home here, you also need to get insurance of it. Home insurance offers several benefits to property owners. 

Personal Liability Protection

One important benefit that comes when you get home insurance is that you can receive personal liability protection. People that own property will have personal liability risk at all times. While it may seem small, you could face serious liability claims if your property causes damage to another person’s property or a guest is injured while they are visiting you. By getting home insurance, you will get the personal liability coverage that is needed to mitigate this risk.

Coverage for Valuable Asset

You will also want to get home insurance as it can protect your most valuable asset. Your home is going to be the largest purchase that you will ever make. Along with this, you should always work hard to ensure that your home is covered as well as possible. With a home insurance policy, you are going to get the coverage you need to repair or even replace your property if it is seriously damaged.

Anyone that is in the San Francisco, CA area needs to get a proper home insurance policy. When you are going to get insurance here, you should call the team with Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. The insurance professionals with Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. understand the importance of getting proper home insurance coverage. They can then help you build a policy that offers the protection you and your home need to be covered and have peace of mind. 

How Getting Your Home Ready For The Fall Can Impact Your Home Insurance

Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. assists the San Francisco, CA community by offering residents multiple types of insurance coverage. We want to make sure that our clients find the policies they need to protect their assets. It’s important to us that our clients have the necessary coverage to help manage whatever the future holds.

Preparing Your Home For The Fall

As a San Francisco, CA homeowner, it’s important that you protect your investment. Home insurance gives you peace of mind that regardless of what happens in the future, your home will be covered. The policy covers your home in the event that it is damaged due to a severe storm or if it’s vandalized. In the event that someone breaks into your home and steals your belongings, your personal items are also covered. As the seasons’ change and Fall approaches, here are some things to consider.

Insulation

Make sure that you seal all of your doors and window panes. Fill in any noticeable cracks. Consider replacing parts that are visibly starting to erode.

Possible Water Damage

Water leaks may cause serious damage to your home. Observe the current condition of your pipes. If they are starting to deteriorate, you may need to make some repairs. Also, be sure to clean the gutters, valves, and drains. As the weather starts to get colder, that increases the risk that your property may suffer some damage.

Exterior Property

Consider having your roof inspected to check for any damage or possible gaps. Cracks in the exterior could lead to rodents or other types of insects entering your home and causing damage. Make sure that the lighting outside of your home is good. Proper outside lighting will prevent you from dealing with a potential liability issue if someone gets injured while visiting your home because they couldn’t see.

Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. Will Help You Assess Your Options

For more information on home insurance, visit our website today!  

Home Liability Coverage: A Must for California Homeowners

San Francisco, CA is a beautiful and exciting place to call home. If you own a home in the city, you can protect your valuable property and lifestyle with home insurance. Liability coverage is particularly important to protect your assets against liability claims that can deplete your finances. Here’s why liability coverage from Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. is a must for California homeowners.      

Protection against Accidents

Accidents are common occurrences at home, even if you maintain a safe and secure environment. If a visitor is injured in an accident on your property, you could be held responsible. That means you’d have to pay his medical costs. Liability insurance protects you from accidents by paying the cost of accidental injuries or damages that occur on your property.

Serious accidents could deplete your financial assets if you had to cover these expenses on your own. Imagine having to pay thousands or tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of medical expenses, lost wages or disability due to someone having a serious accident in your San Francisco, CA home. You may have to tap into your savings, retirement funds, investment funds or future wages to cover these costs.

Protection against Lawsuits

If you’re found negligent for a serious accident in your home, you could be sued for damages. In addition to paying legal costs, you may have to pay a major settlement of hundreds of thousands of dollars or more, if you lose the lawsuit. Liability insurance protects you against lawsuits by covering legal fees and settlement costs, up to the limits of your policy. Ideally, your liability coverage should be enough to protect your assets against the risk of lawsuits.

For more information about liability insurance or to purchase home liability coverage, see your Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services Inc. agent today.

Should I Bundle My Home Insurance With Other Insurance Policies?

You hear of bundling insurance often, especially home and auto. You get advice about it and see commercials about it, but you are still not sure if it is the best choice for you. At Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services, Inc., we want you to understand the benefits of bundling insurance so you can make the best decision for you. 

Discounts

One of the most significant benefits of bundling is that most companies offer a discount if you bundle with them. Many people bundle their phone and the internet or their internet and cable because they receive a discount when they do. Bundling your insurance works similarly.

One Bill and Agent

Paying bills is bad enough, but paying multiple ones is even worse. You can save yourself some time and trouble of getting around San Francisco, CA by bundling since you pay all of your insurance at once. Additionally, when you do business with only one agency, you have a better opportunity of building a relationship with that agent.

Potentially Lower Deductible

There is a possibility that you will have a lower overall deductible to meet as your two policies are joined.

Consumers must do their due diligence. At times, though it is rare, bundling may not provide a discount. There is also a chance that bundling two insurance types may affect the coverage you receive. This is why it is vital that you do your research before signing any contracts. You want to be sure you are getting the best deal, that the agency you choose can answer any questions you may have, and that they are transparent with the quality of the coverage you will receive through bundling.

If you reside in San Francisco, CA, and have any questions about bundling your insurance policies, give Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services, Inc. a call. You can count on us to help you make the best choice for you and your family.

 

Why a home inventory is a good idea

Owning a home in San Francisco, CA is a dream come true. When you own a home, you probably have a mortgage and your lender will require that you protect their investment by carrying home insurance. Home insurance also protects you since it provides coverage for not only the physical building itself but also your personal belongings. Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services, Inc. offers its clients and future clients the benefit of their years of experience when it comes to choosing the right home insurance. 

If your home is damaged or destroyed by a covered hazard, you can lose all or part of your personal possessions. Imagine having to reconstruct from memory your entire home and what you have in every single room, drawer, closet, and cupboard. It is a daunting prospect. This is why creating a home inventory is a good idea. With a home inventory, you will have all the proof that you need to verify the things that you owned prior to the hazard that caused the damage. 

To create a home inventory, go through your home room by room and write down all the things in the room. Be as specific as possible. For example, saying a sofa is not enough.  You will need to describe the sofa. If you have proof of the money spent on items, include that with the inventory. Take photos to go along with the inventory. For higher-priced items like electronics, be sure to note the brand and model. The inventory should then be stored in a safe place, preferably off-site but at the very least in a fire and water-resistant box. 

Your home is your castle, and in San Francisco, CA, Biddle-Shaw Insurance Services, Inc. understands that. Why not give our office a call or stop by to discuss the value of a home inventory and any other insurance needs you may have.