It’s that time of year again. The holidays are over and if you’re like us, you are waiting for the week that you can leave the cold weather behind and travel to a more breezy and beautiful place. (Don’t worry we still love Cleveland) It’s time for spring break! All of the chores, errands, deadlines, and expectations can be forgotten and your focus can turn to sunshine and relaxation. But how can you leave the worry behind as well? How do you know that you left your home secure and your family fully protected if something unexpected should occur? Will your homeowners insurance policy cover you if something does happen?
What does your Home Insurance Cover?
Let’s start with the basics. Your home insurance is there to help protect you and make you whole again in the event that something unexpected occurs. It covers your home, other structures on your property (detached garage, etc.), personal property, and loss of use. Your policy will cover you for losses that occur under a Basic, Broad or Special form. The basic form will cover losses that include wind or hail, riot, explosion, lightning, fire, vehicles or aircraft, vandalism, volcanic action, and smoke. The Broad form covers the previous losses but adds falling objects, weight of ice, snow or sleet, plumbing and collapse. The Special form covers you for everything but the losses that would be specifically excluded on your policy. All of these forms also cover theft. Understanding your home insurance and the things that it covers will help you get the most out of your policy.
While you are gone, your home insurance is there to protect your home and your belongings. You don’t want to spend your spring break worried that someone will break into your home or that a pipe will burst in your basement. Leave your Cleveland home for spring break knowing you are prepared and protected by taking a few simple and easy steps before and after you leave.
What Steps Can you Take to Safeguard your Cleveland Home?
Do what you can to create the appearance that you never left. There are some simple things you can do in your home that can lower the chances of someone breaking in and stealing any of your personal items.
You can easily set a lamp or two on a timer to turn on at night time.
Go online and put a hold on your mail so that it is not being delivered and piling up throughout the week.
Have a close neighbor park in your driveway throughout the week and pick up any packages that are left on your doorstep.
Don’t forget the obvious, and make sure all your windows and doors are locked and the garage door is closed.
Your home insurance would also respond in the event that your sump pump backed up but make sure your sump pump is working properly before you leave and you have it hooked up to a backup battery if the power would happen to go out. The last thing you want to worry about on spring break is coming home to a flooded basement!
How can You Prepare Prior to a Claim?
If you had something stolen from your home or if something did happen causing your personal property to be damaged, your insurance company would need to know the items or the value of the items that were lost or damaged. You already have to remember to walk the dog, pick up the kids, pay the bills, and get the groceries so let’s not add remembering all your personal property on top of it! Leave all the stress of recalling those items behind and take an account of all the items around your home in case something were to happen. You can easily do this by using your phone to take a few photos of the rooms and closets in your house and keep them stored on your phone, on a flash drive, or on a cloud based service. It will be much easier to pull up a few photos than to recall every closet in your home by memory.
Your home insurance policy covers your personal property anywhere in the world! So, whether you are vacationing in Ohio, California, or Italy, your belongings you take with you are covered, essentially resulting in Spring Break Insurance! However, you may also want to take note of the valuable items you bring with you just in case your items are stolen while you are away.
What about Your Jewelry?
Another thing that you definitely don’t want to forget about is your jewelry. While on spring break, a lot of people will be going to the beach, or the pool and want to leave their ring back in the hotel room for safe keeping. However, that puts you at risk for your ring to be stolen. Unless your ring is specifically scheduled on your policy, your home insurance will typically only cover up to $1,500 for the theft of your ring. Protect yourself and leave those valuables at home in a safe and buy some fake jewels to flash while you are away.
What about Your Pets?
Lastly, you may choose to have someone house or dog sit for you while you are gone. Your home insurance would protect you in the event that something happens to your house guest due to your negligence. However, you may want to put some extra thought into the person you choose to watch over your home. Make sure to choose a responsible person you can trust. If the person staying in your home does happen to get injured during their stay, regardless of whose fault it actually is, your home insurance will respond with Medical Payments to others at a specific limit. Contact us today to discuss medical payment coverage in more detail!
Again, your (spring break) home insurance is there to protect you when the unexpected occurs. You can leave your home for spring break knowing that it’s protected from break in, or that someone is watching out for those unlikely occurrences. It’s unwise to hope for the best, but by taking a few simple steps you can set yourself up to have the most relaxing spring break possible. Now go and enjoy it and send us a postcard!
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