Insurance Blog

Please read and comment on our blog about a wide variety of insurance topics. Please feel free to ask us any questions.

 

Be Your Own House Crasher With These Simple Home Improvements

House

All it takes is small improvements to make a world of difference in the look and feel of your home.

With spring here and the snow finally gone, it is a perfect time to start making plans for your all the DIY jobs that you want to tackle in these next few months. Consider starting with the basic maintenance of your home, that way you will know which improvements are a priority. Here’s a list of ideas of where to start.

        gutter    Gutters – This is the easiest and the usually the least expensive task. Simply cleaning them up and removing any debris is all that is needed. Make sure all the drainage areas are unblocked and the downspouts are clean and pointing 2 – 2 ½ feet away from your foundation. This can help avoid any water from entering the home and causing damage.

          Roof  Roof – Check your roof thoroughly for any missing or upturned shingles, for this can eventually cause leaks and therefore damage throughout your home. So, take extra time to see if any shingles are lifting.  If your roof is in good shape with the exception of a few shingles, here is a helpful DIY link on how to replace them.  Otherwise, if there is considerable lifting in large areas, you will need to contact a roofing contractor for further assistance. [Read more...]

Are You An Educated Consumer About Insurance?

If you answered no to that question, then it’s time that you are. When shopping for insurance, especially if it’s online, imagesCA80KAMZyou are making important decisions about your coverage that you more than likely have no idea about. It’s normal to want to find ways to cut costs on your bill, but that may also result in you cutting out the coverage that you should really have. So before you do that, you need to take the time to understand exactly why you have the current coverage that you have.

401k retirementSo, my advice to you is to visit with your local insurance agent and let them know about the competitive quote you received online and the coverage you would be paying for. Ask questions about why there is such a difference in price, if there is, and why. Have your agent explain to you what you have for coverage and if there is a way to lower some of the limits or raise deductibles to reduce your bill. It’s good to know if you can risk removing or reducing a specific coverage to save you money in the long run or if you will end up paying more out of pocket in the event of a loss. Also, ask if there are any discounts that can be applied for additional savings.   

Surprisingly, the average consumer has no idea to as what types of coverage he or she should have. They only see that the minimum limits of coverage will save them money at the time. But no one knows of the risks they run for out-of-pocket expenses in the event of an accident or a loss. Here’s a common scenario that occurs when it happens. Remember poor “Jerry“? Exactly.  State of Regret

You can watch all the funny commercials about insurance, but none of them will educate you about your coverage. But, your local insurance agency can do that. Take the time to talk with your agent. The bottom line is this… If you’re purchasing cheap insurance, IT IS cheap insurance. Nothing good comes out of cheap coverage at the time you need it.

Here at Donald J. Medeiros Insurance Agency our goal is to try to help our viewers by suggesting solutions for many different situations.  By no means can we address each reader’s specific concerns in every incident. We strongly advise to check with a representative to address your specific needs. However, you can contact us for any insurance questions or concerns and we will be happy to help you. We offer a very competitive line of auto insurance, homeowners insurance, renters insurance and commercial insurance for all of Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire. If you have a Facebook account, you can get a quote right on our Facebook page. Come and visit us at http://www.facebook.com/donmedeiros.

Being Smart When Old Man Winter Is Here

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New England is infamous for its’ unpredictable weather patterns especially during the winter months. But when I was younger I remember those months being incredibly long, snowy and cold. I was able to endure those long winters for I had access to a huge lake that was frozen during most of it. So that meant at least 3 months of ice skating!! Whoo hoo! However, I also look back and remember how foolhardy I was for I used to venture out many times without any adult supervision or a companion. That’s a scary notion even for today, for the same dangers still presents itself as it did back then. Maybe even more so now for the weather is so variable with warming spells in between the cold ones. That doesn’t give the ice, even in the smallest of puddles, time to freeze all the way through to deem it safe enough. So, you need to make sure before going out that it is safe. Here’s how.

Depending on the activity, the key factor here is the thickness of the ice. You can check it’s depth with either a cordless drill or an ice auger or chisel. 

If the ice is:untitled

3” – Keep off!!!
4” – Ice fishing, ice skating, cross-country skiing and walking.
6” – Snowmobile or ATV (800 lbs)
8”-12” – Car or small pickup
12”-15” – Medium truck

But understand that the thickness is for clear, solid ice. Any ice white in color is considered “snow ice” and it needs to be twice as thick as the clear ice to be safe.

If you are going to be spending some time out on the ice, it’s a good idea to be prepared. Here are some ideas: imagesCAAN0IKG

 • Make sure you are adequately dressed in full cold weather attire.
• Never go out without a buddy or two. (Don’t be like me.)
• Have a spare set of warm dry clothes handy.
• Have an emergency rescue kit (rope, ice pick, cellphone, life ring)

So, now that you have a good handle on ice safety and some precautionary ideas, all you need to do now is to wait. It usually takes about two weeks of below freezing temperatures to freeze a lake or pond.

Enjoy the pleasures of winter and be safe!

Here at Donald J. Medeiros Insurance Agency our goal is to try to help our viewers by suggesting solutions for many different situations. By no means can we address each reader’s specific concerns in every incident. We strongly advise to check with a representative to address your specific needs. However, you can contact us for any insurance questions or concerns and we will be happy to help you. We offer a very competitive line of auto insurance, homeowners insurance, renters insurance and commercial insurance for all of Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire. If you have a Facebook account, you can get a quote right on our Facebook page.

Are You Ready To Get Your Sled On The Snow?

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Just as the snow starts to fly, skiers and snowmobilers alike are anxiously waiting for the inches to accumulate in North Country to mark the beginning of the winter season. A little preparation ahead of time is a great idea to do while you are waiting for the mountains and trails to get covered. So, whether you are a first time rider or a seasoned trailblazer, review the following checklist to refresh your memory on some important items to pack for you and your sled.

What To Pack: Basic Repair Kit & Emergency Kit

Basic Repair Kit

  • Spare belt
  • Spare spark plugs
  • Tool kitimagesCADAKJ7U
  • Wrenches
  • Nuts & bolts
  • Tow rope
  • Pry bar
  • Duct tape
  • Wire
  • Extra ignition key
  • Insulated work gloves

Emergency Kit

  • First aid kit
  • Extra medications
  • Sunblock
  • Sharp knifeimagesCANEC7V9
  • Saw
  • Axe
  • Map
  • Compass
  • Mirror
  • Waterproof matches or lighter
  • Flashlight
  • Long-range battery operated handheld
  • Battery operated radio
  • Extra batteries (flashlight & radio)
  • Non-perishable high energy food
  • Aluminized blanket for extra warmth
  • Water pouches
  • Bright colored flag
  • Extra clothing/socks/gloves
  • Fully charged cellphone
  • GPS
  • Avalanche Beacon (if riding in potential areas)

These lists may seem extensive, but whenever you are riding there is nothing like being prepared for the worse-case scenario for every scenario.  So, make sure you drive responsibly and with care. Be aware of your surroundings at all times and slow down after dark. Most importantly, remember to tell a friend or family member where you are riding and when you expect to return.

Enjoy the season and pray for snow! untitled

Here at Donald J. Medeiros Insurance Agency our goal is to try to help our viewers by suggesting solutions for all insurance needs. By no means can we address each reader’s specific concerns in every incident. So, we strongly advise to check with an insurance representative to address any specific needs. However, you can also contact us for any questions or concerns and we will be happy to help you. If you have a new sled, call us or visit us online for a snowmobile insurance quote. We have some great companies that could save you money. We also offer a complete line of personal & commercial insurance products for all of Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire.

Teen Driving: Can Your Teen Handle The Winter?

old man winter

Old Man Winter is back!

That means we have at least four months of hazardous weather of snow, sleet and rain. Those conditions can make driving for anyone a potentially dangerous event, but most especially for the inexperienced teenage driver. It is common knowledge that auto insurance rates are much greater for drivers under 25 years old and it’s mostly due to the statistics that the accident rates are much higher. These young teenagers have a problem staying out of trouble on the road because of the following reasons.

1)      They take more risks because they have no fear.Fearless

2)     They are limited to solving problems quickly and under pressure.

3)     Easily distracted. texting

4)     Lack of experience.

5)     Difficulty with speed, distance and location.

All of these reasons make a dangerous combination when you add the winter weather threats to the equation. So, in order to help eliminate some of these risks, a great idea for your teenage driver is to send them to a In Control Crash Prevention Course.

The In Control Crash Prevention Course is a closed course that does hands-on training that focuses on the most likely crash scenarios and how to avoid them. They determined the most dangerous activities after examining insurance and police data and assessing the biggest needs.  All of the training is done one-on-one with highly qualified instructors in their own vehicles. The drills include proper hands on the wheel, emergency braking skills, advanced steering skills, speed control, backing up skills, maneuvering in tight spaces, anti-cell/text messaging distraction experience and emergency avoidance maneuvers. To see what this driving course can teach your teen, watch this video.

Not only are you helping your teenager be a better defensive driver, you can also get the added benefit of receiving a discount on your insurance for your new driver. To find out if this discount is offered in your state, contact your agent for more information about the Crash Prevention Course.

Here at Donald J. Medeiros Insurance Agency our goal is to try to help our viewers by suggesting solutions for all insurance needs. By no means can we address each reader’s specific concerns in every incident. So, we strongly advise you to check with an insurance representative to address your specific needs. However, you can also contact us for any questions or concerns and we will be happy to help you. We can offer a complete line of personal & commercial insurance products for all of Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire.

Come visit us at www.donmedeirosinsurance.com or give us a call at 508-678-1271. We look forward to hearing from you! If you have a Facebook account, fan us at www.facebook.com/donmedeiros.