Tips for filing a homeowners insurance claim

Homeowners purchase homeowners insurance to give them peace of mind that they will be covered in the event of a claim. However, being prepared to file a claim will help make the process less stressful and help ensure your claim is handled quickly. If you have questions about how to file a claim under your policy, reach out to an agent at The Owens Agency LLC today. 

Call you carrier right away 

It is imperative that you notify your insurance carrier of a claim right away. Place the contact information somewhere safe, so you do not have to search for it. Also, keep your policy number with the contact information, so you have it handy. Some policies have time limits in which you have to file a claim. 

Know your policy terms

Each year, when you go to renew your policy take some time to review the coverage terms. You will want to be sure to check your coverage limits, so you know the limit of any potential claim. 

Find a good contractor ahead of time 

Since you will want any repairs completed on the home by a reliable and reputable contractor, you will want to have their contact information handy in the event you need to file a claim. If you need to scramble at the last minute, you may not get the contractor you would prefer. Be sure the contractor works in the  Waldron, AR area, so they can get to you quickly. In the event, you need to file a claim, call your contractor and have them put together a detailed estimate for the work before the claim adjuster arriving. 

Take photos as soon as possible. 

Once you have called your carrier and your contractor, you will want to start documenting the damage. You should take photos and videos of all the damage. This is especially important if you need to make a change to the damaged area to protect the house before the adjuster arrives. 

If you would like to learn more about how you can best be prepared to file a claim, reach out to an agent at The Owens Agency LLC today. We proudly serve the Waldron, AR area.

Do I need home insurance if I don’t have a mortgage?

Your home is probably the single biggest investment that you will ever make.  When you have a mortgage, your lender will likely require you to have a home insurance policy to protect their investment but what about when you don’t have a mortgage? Is it still a good idea to have home insurance?  At The Owens Agency LLC in Waldron, AR our experienced agents can help you to decide if coverage is right for you. 

Can you repair or replace your home

If your home is destroyed or damaged by high winds, fire or vandalism would you be able to afford to pay to bring it back to its original condition?  Would you be able to replace your furniture, appliances, clothing and personal items? If the answer is no then maybe you can’t live without home insurance. 

Can you afford to stay someplace else

If your home is damaged and is unliveable would you be able to afford to live somewhere else for what could turn out to be months? If the answer is no then maybe you need home insurance. 

If you get sued

If someone is injured while visiting your home or if your dog bites someone would you be able to pay for the litigation and judgment that might result? If the answer is no, you may need home insurance. 

Protecting your home from all the unfortunate things that can happen also safeguards your investment and your assets. Things happen, some of them are bad. Talking to the knowledgeable staff at The Owens Agency LLC in Waldron, AR can help you to guarantee if bad things happen to your home, you have the coverage you need to repair or replace the home you love. Give us a call or stop by our office for a no-obligation quote.

 

 

 

Home Insurance and Tree Damage, What You Should Know

Tree damage is a constant concern for homeowners in and around Waldron, AR. It doesn’t help that different home insurance agencies deal with tree damage in different ways. However, The Owens Agency LLC wants people to know how tree damage and home insurance typically work.

Not All Tree Damage is the Same

Tree damage can occur in several different ways:

  • Falling branches that damage structures
  • Falling trees that damage structures
  • Leaning trees that damage utility lines
  • Trees growing into structures

In addition, many problems with trees can stem from other issues beyond your control. For example, if lightning strikes a tree, it can send branches falling onto your home. All of these can represent different types of incidents that an insurance company may or may not cover.

Not All Tree Damage Has the Same Coverage

Don’t guess or assume anything about tree damage and insurance. Make sure you go over your homeowner’s policy carefully. If in doubt, ask the insurance company directly what type of tree damage it will cover, and what it won’t cover.

Sometimes, you may have coverage but only if the damage comes about in a highly specific way. You don’t want to wait until the damage occurs to find out.

Not All Tree Damage is Unavoidable

Don’t wait for damage to occur before you try to make a claim with your insurance company. Do what you can to mitigate the possibility of damage from trees. Take care of trees on your property. Keep them trimmed and pruned. If they represent a clear hazard, have them removed.

Don’t let dead or diseased trees linger on the property. You can tell your insurance company about the trees on your property and what you need to do to mitigate their potential damage. In some cases, the insurance company may even help.

When looking for home insurance in Waldron, AR, make sure you ask about tree damage specifically. Contact the Owens Agency LLC today to discuss your options.

Does my home insurance cover jewelry?

We love our jewelry, and that’s why we spend a lot of money to acquire it. But what happens when you lose a pricey diamond ring at home? What if someone breaks in and steals your gold necklace when you are out on an errand? Your homeowners’ insurance protects your personal belongings in your house from some risks that are usually specified in the policy. Jewelry constitutes personal items and is, therefore, covered in the policy but only to a certain extent. 

Generally, homeowners’ policies do not pay for jewelry pieces or gems that are simply lost. The coverage for these items on your policy is limited in that way. If you want to know whether your diamond ring or any other valuables are adequately covered in your homeowners’ policy, read through the policy carefully or better still, ask a knowledgeable agent. You may want to get additional coverage for your jewelry. The Owens Agency, LLC in Waldron, AR provides additional coverage options for your jewelry to minimize financial loss.

Should I Get Additional Coverage for My Jewelry?

Coverage varies from one insurance provider to the next, but companies usually limit their coverage for jewelry and other items of value. If your jewelry is lost or damaged due to a listed peril like theft or fire, the loss will be covered. If someone breaks into your home while you are on vacation and makes away with your jewelry collection, the loss will be covered up to a limit.

If a fire in your home causes damage to a necklace that has been with your family for generations, the loss will be covered but only to a limit. Mysterious disappearance, or in other words, if the item is lost, no coverage is provided. You need additional coverage to cover such a loss. The Owens Agency, LLC provides the coverage you need for your jewelry in Waldron, AZ. Give us a call if you need more information on our jewelry insurance policies.  

 

Can You Drop Home Insurance if You Have a Mortgage?

Mortgages are a difficult thing to understand, as is the insurance that you need to have on your home to protect it. Insurance is something that is required in cases in which the homeowner still holds a mortgage on the home or has a lien against the cost of the home. If you have a mortgage on your home, your lender will likely require home insurance for at least the value of the loan. For those in the Waldron, AR area, the agents with The Owens Agency, LLC can help.

If you own a home on which you have a loan, mortgage, lien, or other money borrowed against, odd are your lender is going to require some sort of home insurance for at least the amount of the loan. This means that you cannot drop your home insurance if you have a loan or mortgage against your house. It is essential that a lender requires you to hold home insurance for the simple fact that if the home is destroyed, your lender needs to be able to get the money they have lent to you back. Without home insurance, most people are not going to be able to come up with the money to pay back a mortgage after the home has been destroyed.

Having the right policy on hand is going to help protect both you and the lender to avoid having to pay off a large sum if your home is destroyed. This is a fail-safe in some ways for the lender because it will help them to keep your loan in good standing. For those that live in the Waldron, AR area, you can ask the agents at The Owens Agency, LLC to answer your questions and find out what type of home policy is going to work best for you. We can walk you through the insurance process and get you a quote through our online rating tool.

Reach out to our offices for more information.

How Many Supplementary Policies can be Added to Your Home Insurance Policy?

Home insurance is something that we all need to have in place to protect our homes. If you have a mortgage on your home, your lender likely requires that you have home insurance to help protect their investment as well. These policies help us in a wide range of incidents from fire to storm damage, but there are some instances in which a home policy is simply not going to pay out. In those cases, you can add supplementary policies to help cover anything that may happen. For those in the Mena or Waldron, AR area, the agents with The Owens Agency, LLC can help you determine which supplementary policies you need.

Each insurance company is different in regards to how much supplementary insurance can be added to your primary policy and how many extra policies you can have, but generally, each insurance company will allow you to buy the supplementary insurance that you need. There are supplementary policies for just about anything you can imagine including flood, earthquake, umbrella policies, and more. The most important thing is to take the time to figure out what policy is right for you and what coverage you need. In most cases, your agent or agency will help you to condense supplementary policies for easy management.

Also, many insurance companies have supplementary bundles that save you money while giving you the extra coverage that you need above and beyond your typical home policy. This type of insurance policy is entirely optional and is great for those that need a bit of extra coverage, but that might not want to buy an entirely new policy. You can buy specific additional coverage, or you can buy umbrella policies that cover just about anything. For those in the Waldron, AR area, the agents with The Owens Agency, LLC can help you find the perfect coverage.  

Can Home Insurance Companies Deny Claims Because a Home Is Not Maintained?

At The Owens Agency, LLC, serving the greater Waldron, AR area, we are often asked questions about homeowners insurance. More specifically, people want to know why their home insurance claims may be denied and what role home maintenance plays in denials. We believe in informing and educating potential customers. Here is what every homeowner should know about home maintenance and home insurance claims.

Home Maintenance

It is critical that you properly care for and maintain all of the elements of your home, including things such as the roof, siding, your foundation, and plumbing. If you file a homeowners insurance claim, an adjuster may come out to evaluate the damage done to your home. One of the things that they will look for as they evaluate the damage is what condition the damaged part of your home is in and whether that element was adequately maintained. 

If the adjuster determines that the element of your home that is damaged was not adequately maintained or was damaged due to a lack of maintenance, they reserve the right to deny your claim. Always carefully read over your policy documents to learn more about the maintenance requirements for your home and what your rights are if you dispute the findings that the element that was damaged was not adequately cared for or maintained. 

When you are looking for a new home insurance policy, The Owens Agency, LLC, serving the greater Waldron, AR area, would love to help you find the right policy for your situation. Contact us today to schedule an appointment to sit down with us and discuss your home insurance needs. 

Is Home Insurance On the Rise?

If you own a home in Arkansas or Oklahoma and have insurance on it, you may notice a rise in your premium from time to time. What you need to realize, though, is that your insurance rate should not increase simply because the insurance provider wants to make more money. Instead, there usually has to be some justification and change as to why you are paying more. Let’s take a closer look at what could make your homeowner’s insurance increase with The Owens Agency, LLC in Waldron, AR. 

Dogs and Pets

Did you know that dog bites account for roughly 1/3 of all homeowner’s liability claims? If you have a dog and your insurance provider finds out and you have not previously listed the dog on your policy, this can cause your rate to increase. 

Trampoline and Outdoor Equipment

So, you’ve decided that the kids would love to have a trampoline. Sure, having one of these is going to keep the kids well-entertained, but it may also increase your homeowner’s insurance rate. Pools can have the same affect as well.

Wood-burning Fireplace

There’s nothing better than the cozy feeling of heat coming from a wood stove. However, with 36 percent of rural and residential fires starting from a wood fireplace or stove, this makes having one in your home high risk; therefore, meaning once you list it on your policy, you very well may see a jump in your insurance rate. 

Home Business

If you run a home business, there’s a good chance you may require a completely separate insurance policy for it. If you don’t, then the coverage of your homeowner’s policy is likely to increase because coverage will be needed to protect your business assets, including furniture, electronics, and more. 

To learn more about homeowner’s insurance, please contact The Owens Agency, LLC serving the Waldron, AR area. Also, try our online rating tool for quotes on home insurance from your computer.

Prepare Your Property to Defend Against Sudden Storm Damage

We all know how crazy the weather can get around Mena, AR, especially in the summer time. Your friends at The Owens Agency, LLC are here to provide some timely tips to reduce the amount of damage those sudden thunderstorms and winds can cause in a concise amount of time.

Check for Loose Siding and Shingles

It only takes a hammer, a few nails, and a little bit of time. Walk around your house and property to check your siding for loose boards or shingles. A flapping piece of roofing can get caught in the wind, take flight, and smash a window. Don’t forget to secure fencing and your shed if you have one.

Lock Up the Bikes

You might think a bicycle is a relatively heavy object and couldn’t become airborne. When the winds are whipping over 40 mph, your child’s toy can easily become another piece of flotsam. It’s so tempting for you or your child to simply hop off and leave it in the middle of the yard. Make it a habit of leaving the bikes in the garage or locking them to a secure post when you are done with them for the day.

Use Your Shed

It’s not just bikes, but sprinklers, hoses, buckets, shovels, and wheelbarrows that can go airborne when a funnel cloud is spotted. There isn’t time to clean up the yard on a moments notice. Take the time to neaten up your shed and use it for its true purpose, providing a safe and secure spot for all your tools and yard implements. Your friendly agent at The Owens Agency, LLC has plenty of other suggestions to help you maintain your Mena, AR home and protect your most valuable asset against damage.

Types of Home Insurance Riders

When basic home insurance doesn’t cover something or only partially insures it, a rider can provide a way to gain coverage without buying another type of policy. Riders are add-ons that enhance standard homeowner insurance policies in various ways. Here are a few to ask about:

Belongings

Waldron, AR, Poteau, OK, or Mena, AR homeowners with valuable jewelry, firearms, furs, antiques or computers may find that their insurers don’t fully cover such possessions. Personal property riders add coverage for these and other high-value items.

Flooding

Floods sometimes inflict considerable harm upon Arkansas and Oklahoma homes. Although they frequently cover storm-related damage, basic home policies normally don’t insure dwellings against flooding. Fortunately, it’s possible to gain financial protection by adding this type of insurance.

Earthquake

Most people in Arkansas seldom worry about seismic activity. Nevertheless, earthquakes have occurred in this state’s history and caused significant destruction. Property owners can gain a peace of mind by requesting earthquake riders when they obtain insurance.

Landslide

Standard homeowners insurance normally won’t pay to repair dwellings damaged by landslides. Both flooding and earthquakes can trigger these disasters. They have struck numerous parts of the Natural State. A landslide rider may cover your personal belongings and/or the entire house.

Back-Up

When sewage backs up through a home’s drains, this can badly damage the building and its contents. Rugs, flooring, appliances, and furniture often must be replaced in this situation. Homeowners may need special coverage to qualify for compensation from an insurer.

Business

Numerous Arkansas and Oklahoma residents run small businesses in their homes. However, basic insurance might not cover valuable equipment. Specialized riders add coverage for home businesses. They can also provide liability protection if customers visit the house.

Rider availability varies depending on your location and insurer. The Owens Agency, LLC can help you find a policy with the right coverage options. We compare policies from an assortment of dependable carriers. Please dial 479-637-2207 to reach The Owens Agency, LLC in Waldron, AR.