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How to Incorporate Workplace Wellness 

How to Incorporate Workplace Wellness 

The idea of wellness has been steadily growing since the 1960s, but in recent years it has really boomed. Wellness focuses on health in all areas of an individual. Workplace wellness focuses on encouraging healthy behavior so employees are healthier and happier at work. Every company is different and offers different methods of workplace wellness, but if you’re new to the idea of wellness here are some things to consider:  

Physical Wellness  

Encouraging workers to stay physically fit can boost their energy and overall happiness levels. Having an in-office gym or offering gym memberships can help employees with their physical endeavors. Healthy eating habits are another aspect of physical wellness, so giving them ample time to eat and offering water and snacks in the office will promote a healthier lifestyle. Getting a good amount of sleep is important to productivity, so it encourages employees to be well-rested.  

Offering a good health insurance plan will keep employees healthier in the long run. Promote regular physicals or have days in the office where you host free check-ups for employees. You can also hold events in the office where you offer company-wide flu vaccines during flu season. 

Mental & Emotional Wellness  

Mental health and emotional wellness are the most important aspects of wellness. Mental health disorders have been on the rise since the pandemic and are more prevalent than ever. You don’t want your employees to be stressed and feel overworked—the work-life balance is key. Make sure your business offers holidays off and enough sick leave and vacation days for employees.  

Offering free telehealth programs to your employees can help them with their mental health. They can use telehealth visits for therapy and won’t have to worry about the cost while getting the help they need. You can also offer courses on mindfulness, a method of stress reduction by improving the human ability to be present and have situational awareness. Mindfulness allows us to deal with our situations without becoming overwhelmed. Consider allowing time in the day for meditation or personal time to de-stress during the workday.  

Social Wellness  

Having a socially healthy company culture is an integral part of workplace wellness. That means zero tolerance for sexual harassment, bullying, or discrimination of any kind. Consider having training courses on these subjects so employees are cognizant of what constitutes poor workplace behavior. Promote social morale and cohesion in the workplace.  

Not everyone needs to be friends, but there should be a certain level of respect amongst coworkers. Make sure employees are familiar with who they are working with, even if they are in other departments!  

Personal Growth  

When employees know that there’s room to grow in a company, they are more likely to stay than pursue other jobs. Consider offering free classes for employees so that they can learn more skills and better themselves. This gives a sense of accomplishment and gives employees confidence when they finish a course.  

You can also incentivize it and make it a part of quarterly goals to complete a certain number of courses. The confidence from learning new skills may encourage them to try those new skills at work, and they may volunteer for work that they may not have before.  

Financial Security  

Financial security is at the top of everyone’s mind when they’re working—they’re not working for fun. A healthy balance between income and expenses means financial wellness for employees. Workers need to feel financially secure. When employees are stressed about their finances, their quality of work lessens and they become more stressed. It’s a never-ending cycle. Employees that are financially stable tend to be more productive and sociable with their coworkers.  

A few solutions to lessen financial stress are offering a 401(k) plan and reasonable health insurance premiums. Having good healthcare is a concern for many, so knowing that you have a reasonably priced health insurance plan can ease a lot of stress. Raising salaries to coincide with the rising cost of living and offering bonuses can also incentivize workers to be productive and stay for the long run.  

Keep your workers happy and healthy by keeping workplace wellness in mind. Consider reaching out to your local insurance agent to discuss the best health insurance plan for your employees’ needs. 

Protecting Your Farm and Ranch

Protecting Your Farm and Ranch

Your farm and ranch aren’t just your business, they’re also your livelihood. That’s why you should make sure they’re protected with the proper coverage. Farm and ranch insurance offers a dual coverage plan that protects both your home and your way of life. Each plan is customizable depending on your needs.  

Types of Coverages  

There are many different types of coverages that can be included in your customized plan—it mixes homeowners insurance and business insurance, after all. Here are some coverages you should consider: 

Dwelling Coverage protects your home and personal belongings against fire, lightning, storms, vandalism, and theft. This is like your typical homeowner’s policy. Depending on your area, you will need separate policies for floods, earthquakes, or tornados.  

Farm Personal Property Coverage covers your livestock, machinery, feed, and equipment so you don’t have to worry about incurring a loss if something happens to the goods that keep your farm running. Farm machinery is especially expensive, so make sure to have it properly covered!  

Rental Value Coverage helps cover the cost of renting a place to live if your farmhouse becomes inhabitable. It covers the cost of rent until you are able to move back in. If you rent out any space to tenants on your farm and their space becomes inhabitable and it incurs a loss of income, you’ll also have coverage under the policy.  

Additional Living Coverage covers your living expenses in the event you need to live elsewhere while your home is inhabitable. This includes the cost of hotel, rent, or food until your home is habitable again.  

Outbuilding Coverage covers any barns, sheds, stables, detached garages, and any other buildings on your property. These structures help your farm operate to the best of its ability, so it’s important to keep them insured so your business doesn’t incur a loss.  

Liability Coverage covers bodily injury, medical expenses, and farm property damage. If you have workers on your farm, this policy is a necessity. Machinery can cost an arm and a leg, literally. Don’t get sued and suffer a drastic financial loss.  

You may need to consider more coverage depending on the season. Peak Season coverage can add extra coverage during peak times of the year like harvesting and planting season.  

If the farm is your primary source of income, then you should consider Farm Income Coverage. This covers the financial loss incurred in case the farm is damaged due to an event like a storm that would be covered by your insurance. 

The amount of coverage you need for your farm or ranch is completely dependent on your individual needs. That’s why farm and ranch insurance is customizable because not every farm is the same. Talk with your local insurance agent about a quote for a farm and ranch insurance policy today!  

What Your Business Needs for Emergencies 

What Your Business Needs for Emergencies 

You never know when an emergency will happen, and that’s why it’s best to always be prepared. Depending on your location, your business may need to prepare for natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, tornados, severe winter weather, or forest fires.  

Make Sure You’re Prepared

Each business will have different needs during an emergency. It’s best to focus on disasters that affect your business directly. If you’re in an area prone to certain natural disasters, you should have a plan in place on how to deal with the situation should it arise.  

Every business should have a first aid kit, but it’s important to make sure that it’s well-stocked. If you’ve had the same first aid kit for years, then it may be time to replenish the items inside. Certain things like medicine or ointments can expire, so check the dates on them and replace them as needed.  

You may have a first aid kit, but do you have a generalized emergency kit? You might need to prepare your business with enough emergency water and food for your employees to last a few days. Your emergency kit should also include flashlights, batteries, a radio, and a tool kit. Make sure it is in an easily accessible area.  

Make sure you have safety procedures and evacuation plans for your building. Each emergency is different, so you may need different plans for each one. It’s important to go over these plans and procedures with your staff.  

Put people into groups with designated leaders to keep each other accounted for. Perform regular drills to stay prepared and make sure everyone knows their role and responsibilities. Make sure you are considering the needs of all individuals. Do you have disabled staff or people with medical conditions? Have established procedures for helping each other. The group system can help ensure no one is left behind.  

Keep Backups

If your business deals with information and clients, it’s important to have backup files for all of your data. Many businesses now use cloud-based information systems that store information online. However, you can also use an external hard drive or keep backup files off-site.  

Sometimes power outages occur as a result of natural disasters and storms. Does your business have an emergency power system? Do you use surge protectors to ensure electronics don’t get fried? If your business doesn’t have a generator or an uninterrupted power supply (UPS), then it may be time to consider one. You will likely only need to keep the power on long enough to back-up systems and information, prevent damage to electronics, ensure they’re shut off properly, as well as evacuate your staff.   

Have a Recovery Plan

A lot of businesses aren’t able to open back up after a natural disaster because of severe economic loss. Make sure your business is properly insured with the right commercial insurance coverage. There are coverages for a business interruption which covers the economic loss due to the business not operating and coverages for the building & property, general/employee liability if someone gets injured on your property, as well as other coverages that may be suitable like equipment breakdown insurance. Depending on the area, you may need to purchase separate insurance policies that might not be included in commercial insurance like flood and earthquake insurance.  

Each business has different needs regarding its insurance policy. Talk to your local insurance agent to discuss the best commercial insurance plan for your business.  

Conquer Your Stress

Conquer Your Stress

Life is often stressful. Between work, family, and keeping up with other tasks, life can become overwhelming. Here are some tips on how to conquer your stress!  

Consume a Healthy & Balanced Diet

Consuming a healthy & balanced diet takes a big role in how you feel. If you consume too much “junk” or overprocessed foods, then you are more likely to feel groggy and not have enough energy to finish your tasks. This could cause you to feel more stressed than usual. Sometimes when we’re stressed, we want to eat comfort foods. This is ok in moderation, but overconsuming comfort food is not good for your overall well-being. Preparing a healthy meal for yourself can also be relaxing! Taking the time and effort to prepare a healthy and delicious meal can make you feel even more satisfied.  

If you’re tired, drinking too much caffeine can also make you stressed. It raises your heart rate and can make you feel more anxious than normal. Drinking too much caffeine can also make it more difficult to sleep at night, and a good night’s rest is an important part of being less stressed!  

If you’re stressed, you may be more likely to turn to alcohol or tobacco to try to reduce stress. However, this can cause more stress to the body and leave you not feeling your best. Consuming too much alcohol on a regular basis can also negatively impact your sleep schedule. Tobacco usage puts more stress on the body and reduces blood flow and breathing abilities. Becoming dependent on alcohol or tobacco can cause even more stress if you can’t get your fix.  

Practice Mindfulness  

Practicing mindfulness can positively impact your overall mental health. Mindfulness is being aware of what you’re doing and how you’re feeling. A good way to practice mindfulness is by keeping a journal where you collect your thoughts. Looking back on what you were doing and how you were feeling at the time is an important step in stress reduction. Knowing what triggers stress can help you figure out how to fix it.  

Take some time out of your day for yourself. This time can be spent journaling, or you can also meditate or do some form of exercise you find relaxing. Even simple movements like taking a walk or doing some yoga can be very relaxing. You can always find guided meditations or yoga videos online to help you.  

Practicing mindfulness also includes self-care. Taking a bath with Epsom salts or doing a face mask may seem trivial, but taking extra care of yourself and treating yourself can brighten your mood. Making sure you take care of yourself can help you to feel less stressed in the long run! 

Having someone to talk to about your stress or other problems can also help significantly reduce stress. It’s not good to bottle up these emotions, so journaling and having someone you can talk to, whether it’s a close friend, family member, or even a therapist, are a huge help.  

Set Realistic Expectations 

Many people are stressed because they simply have too much on their plate. Set realistic expectations for yourself and know that you can’t do everything. Part of relieving stress is accepting what you can’t control. If you know you have particular stressors, like the news or a certain family member, try to avoid them as much as possible! It can be difficult, but limiting the amount of time you find stressful can be a huge help.  

Don’t procrastinate. Even if you don’t want to do something now, it’s best not to put it off. Leaving tasks until the last minute can put unnecessary stress on you that you wouldn’t have to deal with had you not procrastinated. 

Realize that it’s okay to say “no.” Sometimes you just need to put yourself first. Creating boundaries can help reduce the amount of stress. No matter how hard you try, you will not be able to please everyone. Accepting this as a part of life can make life less stressful.  

Leading a stressful lifestyle can put a significant amount of stress on the heart and other organs. Make sure you talk to your local insurance agent about your life and health insurance plans to ensure you’re under the most suitable plan for your needs.  

The Importance of Flood Insurance

The Importance of Flood Insurance

Homeowners’ insurance and renters’ insurance do not cover any damage that is caused by a flood. Everyone should have flood insurance. It’s especially necessary if you live in a designated flood zone or an area that is prone to flooding. It’s always best to make sure you are properly covered with a flood insurance policy.  

What is Flood Insurance? 

Flood insurance is a separate entity from homeowners’ or renters’ insurance. It covers damage to your property and personal belongings. Floods can be brutal and cause extensive water damage. You don’t have to live in a designated flood area to be susceptible to floods. Floods result from melting snow, heavy rainfall, and overflowing creeks/ponds. You can be more susceptible to flooding if you live at the base of a hill or in an area with lower terrain.  

Because no one knows when a flood will happen, you need a special policy for flood insurance. It is typically offered by the federal government and some private insurers. You don’t want to wait until it’s too late to get flood insurance—it has a 30-day wait period before the coverage even takes effect.  

What Does Flood Insurance Cover? 

Most flood insurance comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as part of their National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP is underwritten by the federal government but is provided by private insurance agencies. This plan covers up to $250,000 in structural damage and up to $100,000 for personal belongings.  

NFIP covers however much (up to $250k) money it costs to rebuild your home to its state before damage. Your personal belongings coverage will cover their actual cash value, which is how much they are “worth.” This means you may not get as much as you paid for them if their value has deteriorated. You can also get less money back on furnishings or other items stored in your basement (because the water will accumulate at the lowest point of your home and cause more damage there).  

Private Market Flood Insurance 

Sometimes the standard flood insurance may not be enough to cover your home or your belongings. You may also need to take out a private market flood insurance plan if you don’t live in an area the NFIP covers. Many of these private insurances are “first-dollar” coverage, meaning they are similar to the coverage provided by the NFIP but it offers higher levels of coverage. This can also be considered excess flood insurance for those who need more coverage.  

Water damage can be severe and long-lasting. Depending on where you live, you may or may not be required to have flood insurance. However, it is always a good idea to carry flood insurance protection just in case. Talk to your local insurance agent to discuss the best options for your flood insurance plan.  

Renting a Property? What You Need to Know

Renting a Property? What You Need to Know

Renting a property comes with advantages that are often overlooked. You don’t have to worry about home improvements or paying property tax. You can move whenever your lease is up, or if you like the property enough you can sign a new lease. Renting offers plenty of flexibility that owning a property doesn’t. However, there are a few things renters should be knowledgeable about before signing the lease.  

Research the Neighborhood 

You don’t want to get stuck somewhere you won’t enjoy living. Make sure you’re knowledgeable about the crime in the area, as well as the local amenities. You want to live somewhere that’s convenient for you. Are there restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations, or public transport nearby? Depending on your needs, these are some things you may want to consider.  

If you own a car, does the rental have its own place to park—or does it have public parking? If loud noises bother you and there are frequent sirens or trains passing by, then maybe it’s not the best place to live.  

Read the Terms of Lease  

Before you sign anything, it is absolutely necessary that you read all parts of the lease agreement. If there is anything you’re unsure of, have a realtor or attorney look over the lease to make sure everything is standard. You will want to pay extra attention to specific rules and clauses of the lease, like if there are pet policies, maintenance & upkeep, and information regarding your rent and security deposit. You don’t want any surprises, so make sure everything is clear and ask questions so you understand everything detailed in the lease.  

Inspect Property 

Make sure you inspect the property upon moving in. If there’s anything “off” report it to the landlord. Document and take pictures of all pre-existing damages and the overall condition of the rental. Test all the appliances and make sure they work properly. Turn on faucets and sinks and check to make sure the water pressure is alright. Ask your landlord if there’s an available move-in/move-out checklist, or you can find one online. Don’t make yourself pay for damage you didn’t do.  

Pay on Time 

Set reminders to pay your rent and bills on time. You don’t want to be late on your rent or your landlord can charge a late fee and not allow you to resign your lease. Paying your rent on time also gives you a better reputation, and your landlord might even write a recommendation for you if you plan to move somewhere else.  

Sometimes landlords accept automatic bank transfers as a way to pay your rent. Talk with your future landlord to see if you can set one up so your rent is always on time.  

Purchase Renters Insurance 

You never know when something will happen, so that’s why it’s best to always be prepared and have coverage in place so you don’t have to worry. Renters insurance can protect you from suffering financial loss due to damage and theft. For example, if your upstairs neighbor floods their apartment and your belongings suffer from water damage you would be covered by your renter’s insurance. Or if there’s a fire in the building and your belongings suffer as a result. It covers your personal belongings in case they get damaged in an unfortunate circumstance, disaster, or if someone breaks into your home.  

Renters insurance can also cover additional living expenses if there were ever a period of time where you’re unable to live in your rental—such as natural disasters. It can also provide guests medical protection in case anyone is injured while in your rental.  

Some landlords may require you to have renters’ insurance before signing the lease.  

Contact one of your local insurance agents to discuss the best renter’s insurance plans for your needs.  

 

Why Your Home-Business Needs A Home-Business Insurance Policy 

Why Your Home-Business Needs A Home-Business Insurance Policy 

Are you starting a home-based business or already have a home-based business? You may want to look further into a home-business insurance plan. Your homeowner’s insurance doesn’t always cover your business property (equipment, technology, files/data), so it’s always best to have a home-business insurance plan to make sure you’re covered for anything that might happen.  

If your insurance agency isn’t aware that you run a business from home, it could potentially void personal liability coverage from your homeowner’s insurance. This leaves both your home and your business at risk. Business insurance is essential for any operating business, whether or not it’s from home.  

Why You Need Home-Business Insurance  

With the rising cost of office spaces, more and more people are opting to run their businesses out of their own homes. Not many people realize that you will need separate home-business insurance. Homeowner’s insurance will not cover your business-related needs. You definitely need home-business insurance if you: 

  • Bring customers/clients into your home 
  • Keep inventory/supplies in your home  
  • Would lose income if you had to close your business due to home damage 
  • Have employees working in your home 
  • Keep client/employee records in your home. 

If you don’t have home-business insurance, you could be held responsible for paying for property damage, lawsuits, employee injuries, and any potential data breaches that occur.  

Types of Coverage  

Business property insurance covers any kind of equipment you may use to run your home business. This includes a computer, fax machine, printer, and any furniture you may use for your business space. Your business property insurance may help you cover the loss of any of these items if damaged. 

Liability insurance will cover you in case you have an employee or client injured on your property. Your homeowner’s insurance might have liability coverage, but it will not protect you when someone is at your home for business-related purposes. You will need business liability coverage for this reason.  

Professional liability insurance covers working professionals (like interior designers, photographers, wedding planners) and consultants working out of their homes. Professional liability protects against negligence (failure to take care of something) or failure to deliver claims (product isn’t as advertised).  

Product liability coverage protects your business from damage to a product or if someone was to be hurt by your product. For example, if you’re a baker and someone tries to sue you over food poisoning, you could be protected under this policy. 

Business automobile insurance is another policy you may need if you use a car for your business. If you pick up or make deliveries, visit clients, or use your vehicle for other business-related purposes your personal auto insurance plan will not cover your business-related use.  

Data breach coverage helps cover you in the event your data is compromised. Small businesses are viable targets for cyber-attacks, so it’s important to have the best data breach policy in place to protect you. Data breach insurance helps cover the cost of your business experiencing such an incident. You have to let your consumers know if your information may have been compromised, and sometimes it’s costly. Some policies also pay for an investigation to investigate the breach. In the event you need to temporarily close your business while working on the breach, some policies can cover any income loss suffered.  

If you are or are planning to run a business out of your home, reach out to a local insurance agent to discuss creating a home-business insurance plan.  

How Does Lifestyle Affect Health?

How Does Lifestyle Affect Health?

What you do in your day-to-day life actively affects your health. The foods you eat and the personal choices you make drastically impact how your body feels and functions. Eating processed foods can leave you feeling groggy and frequently tired, whereas healthy food can leave you feeling energized and refreshed. Smokers and habitual drinkers often run into health problems like cancer or heart disease later in life. Certain choices can damage your health and well-being leading to illnesses and a shorter lifespan.  

Diet  

Most of us know that eating too much sugar is bad. It can cause high blood sugar and health complications from diabetes. Too much sugar can also cause cavities leading to pricey dental visits. Processed food is easy to grab and eat, but taking the extra step and preparing a healthier option like fruits and vegetables is better for you in the long run. 

Not drinking enough water also negatively impacts your health. Keeping yourself hydrated gives you more energy and allows your organs to function properly. Many people opt for sodas or other beverages, but they are often loaded with sugar and other chemical flavors that add empty calories that lack nutritional value.  

If you find water bland, try drinking some tea without additives. Most premade teas on the store shelf are loaded with sugar or other flavorings, so make your own at home with tea bags. You can also add sliced lemons, cucumbers, or other fruits into your water for a tastier and healthier beverage. 

Personal Choices 

Smoking and drinking alcohol can have major health implications. It is well-known that smoking can cause cancer and other diseases like Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Smokers are also susceptible to vision loss and blindness. Smoking can also increase feelings of depression and anxiety. Being a smoker can also affect your insurance rates. Smokers’ health insurance rates tend to be higher because they are known to have more medical issues. 

A few drinks a week might not seem like a big deal. But any amount of alcohol can have a negative impact on the body. Shortly after drinking you may notice symptoms of dehydration like headaches, dizziness, and nausea. Frequent alcohol usage can have long-term effects like a weakened immune system, mood changes, memory problems, weight gain, and issues falling asleep. Overconsumption of alcohol can lead to liver disease, pancreatic problems, and heart-related medical problems like high blood pressure and heart disease.  

Smoking and drinking during pregnancy can lead to miscarriages, stillbirths, and premature birth. Babies can also be born with medical issues like fetal alcohol syndrome, and are more likely to have learning disabilities.  

Both alcohol and smoking are addictive and can create problems in your personal life. Addicts tend to struggle with friends and family members. If you are dependent on alcohol or smoking, please reach out to a specialist or recovery group for help.  

Physical Activity  

Being active is an important part of keeping up your health. A simple 30-minute walk a few times a week will drastically improve your health. Making decisions like parking further away and walking to your destination can also help.  

A lot of people spend most of the day sitting behind a computer screen. It’s necessary for your body to get the activity that it needs. Consider walking around the office as a short mental break to reset your body. Additionally, too much screen time is bad for our eyes. Studies have shown that blue light from screens negatively impacts our sleep cycle. Too much screen usage before bed can make your brain think that it’s still light outside, and therefore won’t start producing melatonin (the sleep hormone) until the lights are off and you’re ready for sleep. 

Not getting enough sleep is also harmful to your body. Being well-rested gives your body and mind the break they need and helps your brain to process all the information from the day. You may have noticed that when you get less than 6 hours of sleep you are more tired throughout the day and are less efficient with your tasks.  

Caffeine can’t solve all your problems. It’s good for a quick fix but you’ll soon notice that you are having difficulty sleeping more often, aren’t able to focus, have depression, and other health-related problems. Chronic sleep deprivation can lead to an increased risk of heart disease, depression, and a weakened immune system.  

Connect with your local insurance agent to discuss what policies best fit your medical needs. Consult with a doctor to better discuss your individual health needs. 

As a Landlord — Insurance Policies You Need Under Your Belt 

As a Landlord — Insurance Policies You Need Under Your Belt 

If you plan on or are already renting out property that you own, you may want to look into purchasing landlord insurance. Landlord insurance is made so that you don’t suffer any financial loss due to property damage or liabilities. Renting property is a good source of steady income, but you never know when something may happen that damages your property. Whether it’s damage from a fire or a burst pipe, it’s always better to be covered under insurance.  

What is Landlord Insurance  

Landlord insurance financially protects you from damages and liabilities that can occur on your property. When you purchase landlord property protection, it generally covers you from damages from fire, wind, hail, and lightning. Liability covers the costs of medical bills in the event someone is injured on your property and also covers. You can purchase extra coverage for the appliances on your property, or if you provide furnishing you can insure those, as well.  

Why You Need Landlord Insurance 

Anyone renting out a property should have landlord insurance. It covers you from property damage and liabilities. View your insurance policy as a financial investment. If you don’t have landlord insurance and something happens to your property, you could suffer financial loss.  

What Landlord Insurance Covers 

Depending on where you live, how many tenants occupy your property, and what you provide for them affects the cost of your landlord insurance and how much the insurance covers.  

Additional landlord insurance coverages include vandalism, burglary, building codes, and if your building is under construction and something happens to it. Depending on your insurance agency, vandalism isn’t typically covered under a traditional landlord insurance policy, so if vandalism is one of your concerns, you should add it to your coverages.  

Landlord insurance will cover the cost of damages from a break-in, but it doesn’t usually cover stolen items. If you are concerned about furniture or other items from your property being stolen, you should add burglary coverage to your insurance policy.  

If you are renovating or repairing your rental you can purchase coverage to protect your property until it’s ready for inhabitants. If your property can no longer support inhabitants, you can potentially receive loss of income coverage for your losses while your property is repaired.  

What Landlord Insurance Doesn’t Cover 

Landlord insurance will not cover maintenance fees. If any appliances in your property break, you will likely have to pay out of your pocket to repair or replace them. If you live on your property and rent out a room you will most likely not be eligible for landlord insurance. Landlord policies are reserved for “non-owner-occupied” property. You can probably add extra coverage to your homeowner’s policy if you need to.  

Your tenants’ belongings will not be covered under your landlord insurance. They will need to have their own renters’ insurance to cover their own belongings. As a landlord, you can require tenants to have a renter’s insurance policy.  

Connect with your local insurance agent to further discuss landlord’s insurance and what coverage is best for your property needs.  

Why Should I Worry About Earthquake Insurance?

Why Should I Worry About Earthquake Insurance?

Earthquake damage can be costly. Depending on the severity and amount of damage, your home may need to be repaired or even rebuilt. Standard homeowners’/renters’ insurance does not cover earthquake damage, so earthquake insurance has to be purchased separately. Earthquake insurance is a good investment for those that live in areas frequently affected by earthquakes.  

Why You Need Earthquake Insurance 

Earthquakes can happen anywhere in the world, and the vast majority of people aren’t prepared. If your home is close to an active fault line (where earthquakes are the most likely to occur), then it is even more important to have earthquake insurance.  

How homes are built also factors into how much damage can occur during earthquakes – the layout of the house, the materials, and even what kind of soil the house is built on are contributing factors. Softer soils will shift more during an earthquake, which can cause extensive damage to the foundation of the home. Homes that are too stiff and rigid (brick and mortar) or irregularly shaped are more likely to collapse than those with more flexibility (wood frames).  

You may also want to consider the value of your home and its contents when purchasing an earthquake insurance plan. If you possess valuable China or crystal, you may want to purchase a more extensive plan that can cover the loss of these items. 

What Earthquake Insurance Covers 

Earthquake insurance and the amount of coverage received depends on an individual’s policy. Earthquake insurance typically has three parts consisting of dwelling coverage, personal property coverage, and ALE (additional living expenses)/ loss of use coverage. 

Dwelling Coverage covers your home up to a set amount, also known as “the limit.” This is similar to homeowners’ insurance. This coverage helps pay to repair or rebuild your home in the event an earthquake damages it.  

Personal Property Coverage covers objects in your home like TVs, computers, and furniture that can be damaged during an earthquake and may need to be replaced.  

Additional Living Expenses (ALE), or Loss of Use Coverage covers the cost of living somewhere temporarily while your home is being repaired/rebuilt. It can cover the cost of a rental home, hotels, apartment, moving/storage, restaurant meals, and laundry depending on your personal earthquake insurance plan. This part of the coverage is bound to a set of time that it takes to repair/rebuild your damaged home or the amount of time it takes for you to move to a new, permanent one.  

Consider these coverages when purchasing your earthquake insurance. Each person/family has different needs so it’s better to personalize your insurance plans. 

What Earthquake Insurance Doesn’t Cover 

Earthquakes can cause all different kinds of damage to occur, including fires and flooding. Earthquake insurance doesn’t cover damage caused by fire or flooding from outside your home. Fire damage is covered under homeowners’ insurance. If an earthquake caused a pipe to burst into your home resulting in water damage, homeowners’ insurance would cover this damage. If water from outside of your home were to flood your home as a result of an earthquake, a flood insurance plan would be the coverage you need.  

Earthquake insurance also doesn’t cover any damage that may happen to land after an earthquake occurs, such as sinkholes. It doesn’t cover any damage that may occur to your vehicles – you will need to look at your automobile policy to see if it covers earthquake-related damage. 

Earthquake insurance can cost a pretty penny, and many homeowners choose to forego it. Earthquake damage can be very pricy, so it is better to be prepared and insured than not, as you never know when a devastating earthquake may happen. Reach out to your local independent insurance agent to learn more about earthquake insurance and what plan your home would need.