What Home Burglars Target During Break-Ins

What do criminals look for during a home burglary?person breaking into a home

As a homeowner, the idea of someone breaking into your home and going through your things is violating.  To make the situation even worse, break-ins often result in significant damage and the loss of valuable items.  While you cannot always prevent a break-in from happening, there are steps that you can take to protect your valuables from being stolen.  Here are some of the most commonly stolen household items and what you can do to protect them.

  • Personal Devices

Laptops, tablets, and smartphones are common targets during a home break-in because these items are easy to grab and can be re-sold at a good price.  Because we use our personal devices on a daily basis, it is inconvenient to lock them up whenever we leave home.  However, you can still protect these devices by hiding them when they are not in use.  Additionally, you can invest in other security measures like alarms and laptop locks.  You should also take steps to protect the personal information on your devices by securing your devices with a strong password and good encryption software.

  • Televisions

HD and 4D televisions are becoming popular with burglars because they are valuable, more lightweight than older tv models, and more common in households than ever before.  While you cannot conceal your television, you can make it harder to remove from your home by attaching it to a secure wall mount.  You can also go the extra mile by installing a tracking device on your tv so you can locate it if it is stolen.

  • Gaming Systems

Most homeowners keep their gaming devices out in the open, so they are easy to set up and play.  However, this makes them an easy target for burglars who are looking to grab and go.  One of the best ways to protect your gaming devices is by packing them up and storing them out of sight when they are not in use.  You may even want to consider locking them up to further reduce the chance of them being stolen.

Take these steps to protect these commonly stolen household items.  Are you looking for another way to protect your belonging from burglars?  If so, then secure the right homeowners insurance.  For assistance with all your home coverage needs, contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  We are ready to get you covered today.

How to Protect Your Business from Fire

Take these steps to reduce your business’s fire risk.fire alarm in business

Fires are one of the most serious and costly perils that businesses face.  Not only do business fires result in damage to your building and equipment, but it can also put the safety of your employees and clients at risk as well.  This is why it is so important to make fire prevention a priority.  Here are some of the steps that you should take to protect your business from fire.

  • Check Fire Extinguishers

All businesses are required to have functional fire extinguishers on their premises.  As such, you need to inspect and maintain your extinguishers according to your local fire code.  Additionally, you need to train all your employees on how to operate a fire extinguisher in the event of an emergency.  When your business’s fire extinguishers function properly, and your employees know how to use them, your risk for a serious fire decreases significantly.

  • Install a Fire Sprinkler or Suppression System

Fire safety regulations require all businesses to have a fire alarm system.  However, you can go the extra mile by installing a sprinkler or fire suppression system at your business.  These systems react to fire alarms by spraying water or a chemical fire suppressant to extinguish fires.  So, by installing one of these systems, you can add an extra layer of fire protection for your business.

  • Inspect and Maintain Equipment

Faulty equipment is a common cause of fires in the workplace.  To avoid this issue, you should inspect your machines and equipment routinely.  During your inspections, you should also take the time to clean, oil, and complete other maintenance tasks.  This will keep your business equipment in good shape for as long as possible.

These are some of the fire prevention strategies that you should employ at your place of business.  Are you looking for assistance with your commercial coverage?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  We are ready to get you the business insurance that you need today.

Understanding Non-Owners Car Insurance

What does non-owners car insurance cover?exchanging car key with a driver

If you don’t own a car, then you may assume that you don’t need auto insurance.  However, if you drive other people’s cars or use car-sharing services, then you need the protection offered by a non-owner car insurance policy.  But what exactly does this type of insurance cover?  Here’s what you need to know.

Coverage Details

Non-owners car insurance offers liability coverage when you are driving a vehicle that is not yours.  Liability coverage will pay for third-party injuries and damages that you may cause during an accident.  Please note that non-owners car insurance will not cover any injuries that you or your passengers sustain during an accident.  Additionally, you will not have any coverage to pay for damages to the car you are driving.

Who Needs This Coverage?

Non-owners car insurance isn’t right for all drivers.  However, you may want to consider securing this coverage if you:

  • Need an SR-22 or FR-44– If you don’t own a car but need your license reinstated, then you can secure non-owners car insurance to meet the insurance requirements necessary to file an SR-22 or FR-44.
  • Use Car-Sharing Services– If you use a car-sharing service such as Zipcar or Car2Go, then the company will offer you limited liability coverage. To supplement this coverage, you can secure a non-owners policy to ensure that accident costs do not come out of your own pockets.
  • Want to Maintain Coverage– If you have a gap in your car insurance coverage, then this will mark you as risky to insure. If you are getting rid of your car, but don’t want to have a gap in your coverage, then you can secure a non-owners policy to tide you over.
  • Rent Cars Frequently– If you often rent cars, then having a non-owners insurance policy may be cheaper than buying liability insurance through the rental company. Remember, non-owners policies will not cover damages to your rental car, so you will still need collision and comprehensive coverage from the rental company.
  • Borrow Other’s Car Frequently– If you often borrow your friends’ or family members’ cars, then their insurance will cover you in an accident. However, the cost of a crash may exceed their liability coverage limits.  By securing a non-owners policy, your liability coverage can supplement the car owner’s insurance.

This is what you need to know about non-owners car insurance.  Do you have additional questions about this special form of auto coverage?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  We are ready to assist you with all your car coverage needs today.

Home Insurance Policy Endorsements for Your Consideration

Secure these insurance endorsements to extend your homeowners insurance coverage.file labelled "home insurance"

Many homeowners make the mistake of assuming that their insurance covers every risk that they may encounter.  However, all insurance policies have coverage limits, and not knowing yours could leave you exposed to major threats.  Fortunately, homeowners have the option to secure policy endorsements to supplement their home insurance.  Home policy endorsements allow you to extend your homeowners coverage for specific losses for an additional premium.  But with all the endorsements out there, how do you know which ones are right for you?  Here are some of the most popular endorsements for your consideration.

  • Scheduled Personal Property

If you have high-value items that cannot be covered by your standard personal property coverage, then you can secure additional coverage by scheduling these specific items on your home policy.  This will ensure that high-value items such as jewelry, electronics, fine art, and so on are covered for their full value.

  • Sewer Backup

A sewer backup can cause considerable water damage to your home and can also pose a major health risk to your loved ones.  Unfortunately, standard home insurance will not cover the cost of dealing with sewer backup damage.  However, by securing a sewer backup policy rider, you can secure coverage for water damage and remediation efforts.

  • Home Business Endorsement

If you are running a business out of your home, then your insurance will not cover anything related to your business.  Rather than securing a totally separate business insurance policy, many home insurers offer the chance to secure a home-based business insurance endorsement to cover your business equipment, supplies, and legal liability.

These are some of the home insurance policy endorsements that you should consider.  Are you looking for assistance with your homeowners insurance?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  We are ready to get you covered today.

Why You Need to Make a Home Inventory

How home inventories help you manage your homeowners insurance.making home inventory

As a homeowner, there are certain responsibilities that you need to take care of.  One of the important things that you need to do for your home is create and regularly update a home inventory.  However, because creating an inventory means documenting every item that you own, many you may want to put off this task as long as possible.  While this may not seem like a big deal, failing to create an inventory can cause problems with your homeowners insurance.  Here’s why it’s so important to have a home inventory.

Home inventories are a log of all your possessions and their value.  Homeowners are advised to create a home inventory before they start looking for insurance because it helps them determine how much personal property coverage they need from their policy.  If you do not know how much your belongings are worth when you select a homeowners insurance policy, then you risk securing insufficient coverage.  This means that you may have to cover the cost of replacing or repairing your possessions after a claim event.

It’s also important to have an updated home inventory because, in an emergency, it can serve as a guide to help you identify all the items that were damaged or lost.  For instance, if your home was partially destroyed in a fire, then you can use your inventory to figure out which belongings were lost in the fire.  This, in turn, helps you file an accurate insurance claim and ensures that you get all the compensation you need to replace or repair your belongings.

This is why it’s so important for homeowners to create an inventory of their belongings.  Do you have additional questions about your home inventory or homeowners insurance?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  Our dedicated team is eager to assist you with all your coverage needs today.

What Separates Personal and Commercial Car Insurance?

Why personal and commercial car insurance are different.line of semi-trucks

If your business requires the use of company vehicles, then you must secure the right commercial auto insurance to protect your business’s risk.  But why can’t businesses simply use personal auto policies to protect company vehicles?  Here’s what separates personal and commercial car insurance.

In actuality, personal and commercial auto insurance is not that different.  In fact, both types of insurance essentially offer the same types of coverage.  For instance, personal and commercial auto policies both offer coverage for collision, comprehensive, liability, and so on.  The main difference between these two forms of insurance is the amount of liability coverage each offers.  Because businesses have more assets and face a higher risk for liability lawsuits, commercial auto insurance policies have much higher liability coverage limits than personal policies.  Additionally, commercial policies are also equipped to cover a wider array of vehicles, such as delivery vans, shipping trucks, as well as standard cars.

There is also a special form of commercial auto insurance designed to cover heavy-duty vehicles.  Because heavy vehicles cause more damage in an accident than light vehicles, they need higher liability coverage limits.  So, if your business owns things like minibusses, cement mixers, semi-trucks, tow-trucks, and so on, then talk with your commercial insurance provider to make sure you have the right amount of coverage.

This is what you need to know about the difference between personal and commercial auto insurance.  Do you need help securing coverage for your company vehicles?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  We are ready to assist you with all your business insurance needs today.

Steps to Take After Your Life Insurance Application Has Been Denied

What you can do if you’ve been denied life insurance coverage.man looking stressed as he looks at life insurance online

If you’ve applied for life insurance and been denied, then this may come as a shock.  One common reason for getting denied is because the life insurance provider has determined that you are too high-risk to insure.  However, just because you’ve been denied coverage doesn’t mean that life insurance is an impossibility for you.  Here are some of the steps that you can take after your initial application has been denied.

  • Collect Information

As insurance companies consider life insurance applications, they conduct research to determine the applicant’s risk.  If they determine that you are high-risk, then they will deny your policy.  Luckily, you can request information about your denial from the company.  At this point, the insurer will provide detailed information on why they refused coverage.  For instance, they will say if the denial was due to your medical history, current exam results, driving record, or another factor.  Once you understand why your application was denied, you can take steps to address your risk.

  • Confirm Results

Underwriters are human, which means that it’s possible for them to make mistakes.  This is why it’s important that you double-check their findings.  For instance, if bad medical exam results were stated as the cause of your denial, then verify your current state of health with your primary care physician.  If they determine that you are in good health, then turning in this official report could mean your application will be reevaluated.

Sometimes, life insurance applications are denied due to occupational dangers, recreational hazards, criminal records, or financial instability.  If you have these records, but they aren’t updated or detailed enough, then an underwriter may deny you coverage because they cannot accurately assess your risk.  So, by providing additional information, you can have your application reevaluated and potentially accepted.

  • Work with an Independent Agent

Sometimes, the first company you apply with isn’t the best option for you.  After your application is denied, you should partner with an independent agent so they can help you find some better options.  Your agent can sort through all your carrier options and find a company that’s underwriting guidelines will accept you, despite your risks.  For instance, if you have diabetes, then your agent can look for companies that will cover individuals with diabetes so long as their condition is well-managed.

If your overall risk is just too high for coverage under standard life insurance policies, then your agent will help you explore other options such as “graded” or guaranteed life insurance options.

These are some of the steps that you should take if your life insurance application was denied.  Do you need help securing the right life insurance policy?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services.  We are ready to get you the coverage that you need today.

What Does Home Insurance Cover When It Comes to Natural Disasters?

Here’s how your homeowners insurance will cover you when it comes to natural disasters.stormy sea

As a homeowner, natural disasters are some of the only perils that you cannot do anything to avoid.  This is why it’s so important to have the right home insurance protection to rely on.  But does homeowners insurance cover all natural disaster damages?  Here’s what you need to know.

  • Hurricane Coverage

If your home is in the path of a hurricane or tropical storm, then your home may sustain damage from high winds, heavy rain, and extreme flooding.  Fortunately, your home insurance policy will offer coverage for the damages related to wind, rain, and hail.  However, if your home is damaged by floodwater, then your policy will not offer coverage for repairs.  The only way to secure flood coverage is with a specialty flood insurance policy.

  • Gas Explosion Coverage

If your gas pipes explode, then this can result in a major fire in your home.  Fortunately, all home insurance policies include fire as a covered peril.  This means that your policy will offer coverage to repair fire damages, including damages to your personal belongings.  Your insurance will also offer loss of use coverage to help you pay for the costs of temporarily living elsewhere while your home is undergoing repairs.

  • Land and Mudslide Coverage

Insurance companies categorize land and mudslides as earth movement.  As earth movement damages are excluded from standard home insurance policies, you will not have coverage for these types of natural disasters.  Specialty policies are available for those who live in areas prone to land or mudslides.

  • Tornado Coverage

The damage caused by tornadoes can usually be categorized as wind or water damage, which are both covered perils on standard homeowners insurance policies.  However, you can run into trouble if your insurer determines that your damages are caused by flooding.  If a tornado causes a nearby dam to break, and your home is damaged as a result of this rushing water, then your home insurance will not cover these damages.  In this case, you would need the coverage offered by a specialty flood policy.

This is what your homeowners insurance will cover when it comes to these types of natural disasters.  Do you have more questions about your home insurance coverage?  If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Service for assistance today.

What Home Insurance Will Cover

Know how far your home coverage extends.paper home cutout cupped in hands

As a homeowner, it’s vital that you know what your homeowners insurance will and will not cover. This allows you to evaluate your current protection and secure additional coverage if necessary. To help you understand the extent of your home coverage, here’s what your policy covers when it comes to these common risks.

Mold

Mold in your home is covered by your insurance if it is caused by a covered loss. For instance, mold is covered if it is the result of fire, lightning, ice, frozen pipes, or another covered peril. Mold repairs and remediations are only covered if it is caused by something sudden and accidental. For instance, if a pipe burst, but you did nothing about it and mold formed, then you would not have coverage because the mold is seen as the result of your negligence.

Mold is also not covered when it grows over time. For instance, if mold pops up in your shower or tub or around other perpetually damp places in your home, then it is not covered by your policy. This is because this mold is considered a result of your lack of maintenance.

Theft

Homeowners insurance covers theft both inside and outside your home.  For instance, if someone broke into your home and stole your television, then you would have coverage to replace your television and repair the damages the burglars caused. If your phone was stolen while you were traveling, then your home insurance would also cover the cost of replacing your phone.

Homeowners insurance will only cover your belongings up to a certain coverage limit. So, if you have high-value items that exceed these limits, then they will not be covered by your policy. You can secure additional coverage for high-value items through policy endorsements or by securing specialty policies for specific items.

Dog Bites

Typically, your home insurance will provide coverage if your dog bites someone on or off your property. However, there are three main coverage exclusions:

  1. Your home insurance will not cover dog bites to someone covered under your policy (you or the immediate family members living in the household).
  2. Your insurance provider may exclude your dog from coverage if they have a history of biting.
  3. Your insurance provider may exclude your dog from coverage if it is considered “high-risk.” Certain breeds, such as pit bulls, Doberman pinschers, rottweilers, German shepherds, Siberian huskies, and so on are typically labeled “high-risk” by home insurers.

This is what your home insurance will and will not cover when it comes to these common perils. Do you have more questions with your home insurance? If so, then contact the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Services. We are ready to assist you with all your home coverage needs today.

How to Can Manage Work-Related Stress

Try out these stress-management tips at work.employee looking stressed at work

For most people, work stress is an unavoidable part of life.  Unfortunately, constant stress can wreak havoc on your mental, emotional, and physical health.  To protect yourself from the negative effects of stress, try out these stress-management strategies at work.

  • Take a Time Out

Everyone has moments where their job feels too overwhelming.  If you notice yourself starting to get panicked, then it’s important that you take a moment to calm yourself down and assess the situation rationally.  Momentarily step away from the stressful situation and take a bathroom break, have something to eat, or simply clear your mind.  Once you feel your anxiety ebb away, revisit the issue that is triggering your stress.  Now that you are calmer, you will have an easier time thinking of productive ways to deal with the problem.

  • Delegate

Having too many responsibilities on your plate can be stressful, even for the most efficient employee.  If you find yourself overwhelmed with work, you need to think about things rationally.  Rather than attempting to handle everything on your own, think about the tasks that you can pass on to a co-worker or subordinate.  Once you have taken some of the smaller things off your schedule, you can handle the remaining tasks more carefully and efficiently.

  • Be Flexible

No one wants to hear that they have a major assignment due in a couple of hours.  Unfortunately, getting hit with last-minute assignments is often part of the job.  Rather than wasting time lamenting the unfairness of it all, it’s best to accept the situation and start thinking about how you will complete things in the given time frame.  By being flexible and making things work, you can keep a cool head and earn the respect of your peers and superiors.

These are some of the things that you can do to manage work-related stress.  Are you looking for another way to reduce your stress?  Then turn to the experts at Miller Carlisle Insurance Service for the easy insurance experience that you deserve.  Our experts are ready to help you get the coverage that you need today.