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Christmas Presents, Christmas Perils

Christmas Presents, Christmas Perils

Tis almost the season! With the holidays shortly upon us, we thought it would be a good idea to examine how the holidays might impact your homeowner’s insurance coverage. This season is a joyful one, but sometimes bad things happen. How will your current coverage respond? The Peril of Fire As seen in this classic scene from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Christmas trees are highly flammable: According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) the likelihood of fire increases in December and January. A huge spike in home fires occurs in the 10 days after Christmas, when homeowners have stopped watering the tree regularly, and are more lax about turning the lights off. Electrical shorts from overloaded circuits near a source of kindling (a dried out Christmas tree) accounted for about 40% of Christmas tree fires. See more facts about Christmas tree fires here. The good news: your homeowner’s insurance will cover the peril of fire unless the fire was intentionally set (and 24% of them are). The Peril of Theft All types of theft increase during the holidays, including shoplifting. However, the worst kind of theft to experience at this time of year is the theft of holiday gifts. Christmas lights on the house, a brightly lit tree glowing in the window and no cars in the driveway are a beacon to thieves looking to cash in on some holiday spirit. This family was hit in 2013:  There are many ways to keep your home from being burglarized, including making sure the home looks occupied at all times, installing a security system, and keeping gifts out of sight...
Christmas Insurance: Holiday Survival Guide

Christmas Insurance: Holiday Survival Guide

We know that with the holidays coming up, the last thing on your mind is insurance. However, the season of gift-giving can bring about changes in your financial picture that you may need to account for when it comes to your homeowners, renters, auto and other insurance policies. Is there such a thing as Christmas Insurance? Technically, no, but there are ways to make sure your current insurance covers you before, during and after the holidays. Is It Insured? Most holiday gifts will actually increase the value of contents in your home. If you purchase or receive electronics, jewelry, firearms, gaming systems, antiques or collectibles, you should consider the impact on your insurable bottom line. Check your policy or contact your broker to determine if you should increase your contents limit or any sublimits for these new items. If you were lucky enough to give or receive a vehicle this holiday season, don’t forget to check your auto insurance policy. Some policies may extend coverages to new vehicles for only a few days so you will need to contact your broker to add coverage as soon as possible. If your newly minted driver received a vehicle, both vehicle and driver should be added. Unusual items such as drones, golf carts or boats may not have insurance automatically extended to them by any policy. Your broker should be consulted to deterwmine whether coverage exists or needs to be purchased separately for these items. Thwart Thieves In early January 2015, a Florida resident returned home from an outing to find a strange vehicle pulling out of her driveway. Her front door...