Does the Age of the Home Change the Cost of Insurance

Home insurance is something that all homeowners should have in place. There are a few different factors that change the overall cost of home policies and the age of the home is certainly one of them. For those that live in the Sandy, UT area, the agents with Smart Way Insurance Agency can help you to find the coverage that works best for your home and for the coverage that you specifically need.

A great place to start when thinking about how much it might cost to cover your home is of course to consider the age of the home. The age of the home is going to have some effect on the overall cost of a policy for a few different reasons. As our homes age, they lose value. You can do one of two things when insuring your home, you can insure the actual value of the home and you can insure the overall value of the home or the cost to rebuild the exact same home by the standards of today. If you are insuring based solely on the home, you are going to be able to have a slightly less expensive policy overall.

If you are looking to get a lower premium, you may want to take the time to have your assessor come and state the price of the home and the value of the home based on the age of the home. This is going to affect and change the overall cost of the policy that you are paying. For those that live in Sandy, UT area, the agents Smart Way Insurance can help you to find the right policy and to find the right coverage based on the age and overall value of your home.  

How To Deal with Roof Damage

Roof damage can be caused by a number of different factors, from age and regular wear and tear, to environmental causes like ice storms and high winds. To maintain the integrity of your home, it is important that all roof damage be addressed right away as this type of damage can cause further destruction to your home. The team at Smart Way Insurance Agency, serving the Sandy, UT area, offers full-service care and can assist you with the claims-filing process. The claims process for roof damage is fairly straightforward, depending on the cause of the damage.

First Steps to Follow If You Have Roof Damage

Determining if the repair of your roof damage will be covered by your home insurance policy will likely hinge on the cause of the damage. It is important to have documentation or notes describing the current damage and how it happened. The next step is to inform your insurance agent or insurance company of the damage. Working with a full-service insurance agency can make the process a lot easier, as your agent will be there to offer their direction and guidance as you navigate the process. 

Your insurance company will then send out an adjuster to inspect your roof and provide an estimate for repair or replacement. You will then need to engage the services of an approved roofing company. Typically, you will receive a portion of the funds upfront to enable the contractor to purchase materials, with the remainder being disbursed upon successful completion of the project. 

Are you wondering if your current home insurance policy provides adequate coverage in the event of roof damage? Contact Smart Way Insurance Agency to schedule a policy review; we are proud to serve the insurance needs of our friends and neighbors in the greater Sandy, UT area.

Protect Home Renovations by Updating Your Insurance

Spring is a great time to remodel your home in preparation for family gatherings in summer. Whether you’re thinking of renovating your kitchen or adding a new patio, updating your insurance coverage with Smart Way Insurance Agency in Sandy, UT is key to protecting your investments. Here are a few reasons why updating your policy is important when making major renovations to your abode.

Coverage Limits and Replacement Cost

Major home renovations often increase the value of a property. A rise in home value will result in higher repair or replacement costs in the event of a claim. The limits on your current insurance policy may be insufficient to rebuild your home if it’s totally destroyed by fire, flood or other covered peril.

Inadequate insurance coverage could mean extra funds coming out of your pocket to repair or replace your loss. An insurance update will allow you to recalculate and adjust coverage limits to protect structural upgrades to your property.

Personal Possessions Coverage

If you’ve bought new appliances to go with your kitchen remodel or patio furniture for a new patio, you may need to increase coverage of personal possessions as well to protect these newly acquired assets.

Property Damage Coverage    

Major renovations and additions will need to be added to your policy to receive insurance protection. By discussing renovation plans with a representative from Smart Way Insurance Agency in advance, you can get a better idea of what kind of coverage you need. If your renovations suffer damage or loss during construction or after completion, your insurer will repair or replace these in accordance with your coverage.

As one of your most valued possessions, your home in Sandy, UT deserves the best insurance protection you can provide. At Smart Way Insurance Agency, we can help you obtain personalized home insurance coverage tailored to your specific needs.  

What Information Do You Need When Updating a Home Insurance Policy?

You may not realize it, but your home insurance coverage amounts should be updated. Your home value and the price of goods that are used to repair and reconstruct a home are ever-changing. As such, it may cost more to fix or rebuild a home now than it did when you bought your policy, meaning you may need more coverage. If you are looking to increase your policy, you may be wondering what information you will need to have on hand as you call your insurance agent. Here are a few things to have on hand when you are updating a home insurance policy.

Your Policy Number

When you are attempting to make any changes to your policy, it is helpful to have your policy number. Of course, your policy can be looked up without this information, but it makes it a lot easier if you have it on hand.

A List of Renovations You Have Made

When you are making changes to your policy, always prepare a list of renovations you have made to your home since the last time your policy was updated. These renovations can affect the value of your home. So you want to make sure that you notate each one so your home is fully protected.

What Budget You Have for Your Policy

The last bit of information you need to have is what your budget is for your new policy. If you are increasing the policy limits, your premiums may increase. Consider a higher deductible if you do not want your premiums to rise.

Is it time for your to update your Sandy, UT home insurance policy? If so, it is time to contact Smart Way Insurance Agency. Our agency serves those in the Sandy, UT and surrounding areas. Call us today and let us help you get the insurance coverage you need to fully protect your financial interests.

Why Homeowners Insurance is so important in Sandy, UT

Your home is most likely the biggest investment that you will ever make so it’s important to protect it with adequate homeowner’s insurance coverage.  The threat of fire, flooding or severe weather can significantly impact you and your family financially.  Sometimes, the damage may come from visitors to your property.  A homeowner’s insurance policy from Smart Way Insurance Agency in Sandy, UT can help protect you so that you can recover quickly from any disaster that occurs. 

A homeowner’s policy will cover the repair or replacement of a home should there be a fire or damage from a severe weather event.  It will also cover the owner’s personal property that is damaged.  This can include clothing, furnishing and personal items.  Most policies also cover small outbuildings, storage sheds and fencing on the homeowner’s property.  In the event that a home is destroyed and significantly damaged and deemed inhabitable, most homeowner’s policies will provide funds to cover the homeowners additional living expenses such as hotels and meals until the home is repaired.  Homeowner’s policies also contain some personal liability coverage.  This protects homeowners by providing funds for legal expenses should someone get hurt on their property and sue.  Many policies will also provide funds for medical expenses if someone is hurt on their property.  These types of support are invaluable following a traumatic event and allows homeowners to recover more quickly. 

In Sandy, UT, it’s important to have appropriate homeowner’s insurance.  The team at Smart Way Insurance Agency is ready to discuss your options with you or visit our website and compare quotes online.  Today is the day to get the coverage you need!

Ways to Avoid DIY Remodeling Mistakes

Do you enjoy DIY (do it yourself) remodeling? Maybe you’ve declared yourself a DYI master, and along with you buddy YouTube, you’ve been able to pull off many projects just fine.  It’s never too late to get a few tips on how to avoid some common DIY remodeling mistakes from your friends at Smart Way Insurance Agency in Sandy, UT.

Mistakes to Avoid

  • When remodeling a small space, avoid trapping something large in the room, such as a refrigerator.  Measure repeatedly and imagine every possible scenario before changing the area’s layout.
  • For some items, it will not pay to go with the cheapest.  For example, installing an island range hood is no easy feat, and removing it a year later because you found an amazing deal will not save on cost.
  • When doing specialty work, there is no shame in consulting with a specialist before you start the work.  For example, electrical work can be tricky, especially when you want something fancy like dimmer switches at both entrances of a room.  You don’t want to end up with flickering lights that don’t dim.
  • Avoid tackling DIY projects on a holiday.  It may seem like the perfect time, but if things go wrong, you have no one to turn to because they are all on holiday.  Imagine a DIY plumbing project that goes south over the long Thanksgiving weekend.  It’s best to save some projects when a pro you trust is around to help.

Smart Way Insurance Agency

At Smart Way, we care about your home in the Sandy, UT area, and we love sharing tips on how to maintain and manage remodeling work to save you time and money.  We are here for you to help identify your home insurance needs.  Contact us today.

Why Routine Gutter Maintenance is Important

Regularly maintaining gutters is important throughout the year, even in winter. While we may receive less that the US average of 39 inches of rain each year, we do get a lot of snow in Sandy, UT. In fact, we average 89 inches of snow each year! Melting snow on the roof needs a place to go. Are your gutters in shape to handle it? At Smart Way Insurance Agency, we recommend that gutters are on your list of regularly scheduled home maintenance tasks.

Keep Unwanted Visitors Away with Clean Gutters

If your gutters are filled with debris, this can attract unwanted animals who find these things attractive. In the winter, not only will they scour your gutters for materials they can use, they will search for entry points into your home where it is warmer. In the summer, debris creates stagnant water in the gutters, which is the perfect place for mosquitos to lay their eggs. Clean gutters allow water to flow and keep your home from being a breeding ground for mosquitos. Clean gutters can help keep your home free of mosquitos and rodents.

Protect Your Home from Water Damage

Clogged or damaged gutters can also create water damage. If they are working properly, they move water from rain, ice, or melting snow away from your roof and home. However, if they are clogged, water can pool in the gutters and eventually seep into your home causing mold and mildew. This can weaken your home’s foundation and walls. Sandy, UT is a wonderful place to live. But as with any home, regular maintenance is key. If you do have an issue with your home, give one of the friendly agents at Smart Way Insurance Agency a call. We are here to help. 

Renovating a Home and Insurance Impacts

Home renovations can seem like a great way to make an old Sandy, UT home brand new again, which can mean big changes to the risk factors of a home as well. Depending on the renovation that is performed, it can mean no impact at all or a significant change to a home coverage policy. Here are some of the big changes that have related big impacts to a policy cost:

  • Replacing the roof – Roofs on a home generally last about 20 years before needing repair, and some are less. Ideally a homeowner shouldn’t wait until a leak develops. A full replacement can seem like a big hit, but to a home policy it can also mean a big cost reduction of 10 to 20 percent of the annual cost, savings that come back over time.
  • Be careful with pools – While they may seem like the ultimate personal luxury items, pools significantly increase risk for a home. Everybody who knows the homeowner wants to visit and jump in the pool, and that means a higher chance of an injury. It also means a far greater insurance cost for the home with the pool.
  • Start a home business, expect expenses – Many home businesses involve a good amount of computer equipment and peripherals. Covering all of that business-related material may not receive full reimbursement if not identified properly in a policy. So if you modify a home for an office, make sure to get a rider or new clause in an existing policy.
  • Adding an extension – Mathematically, more square footage and structural materials means more costs for repair and reconstruction when damage occurs. So obviously an expansion triggers a higher policy cost as well.

To find out how a Sandy, UT home renovation translates to a policy, talk to Smart Way Insurance Agency. He or she can help estimate your accurate impact or savings.

Fall Checklist-Cleaning the Chimney for Winter Safety

There is nothing better than sitting in front of a fire when the temperatures begin to drop in Sandy, UT.  Unfortunately, without proper preparation, the fireplace and chimney can also be one of the most dangerous areas of your home, especially if the chimney hasn’t been cleaned since last winter. Along with scheduling a furnace inspection and contacting Smart Way Insurance Agency to review your policy, make sure your family stays warm and safe this winter by including chimney cleaning to your list.

Cold Weather Damage

Fall is the perfect time to have the chimney inspected to make sure last year’s winter weather didn’t cause any damage to the structure of the chimney. Concrete, brick and other masonry materials are extremely absorbent, so when temperatures drop below freezing any water that is trapped inside freezes. Frozen water expands so when it thaws, the shock causes the masonry materials to crack and crumble apart. If this damage is not repaired, it can seriously compromise the structure of your chimney and may even cause it to collapse. This can be dangerous in a number of ways, including damage to the house and its occupants.

Install a Chimney Cap

Installing a chimney cap is one of the least expensive preventive measures you can take against water penetration in the chimney. A chimney cap is also ideal for preventing wild animals and birds from getting your chimney. So, installing a chimney cap this fall will ensure your chimney is ready to fend off the ice, rain and snow this winter.

Check the Flashing

The flashing around the base of the chimney is used to prevent leaking where the chimney meets the roof. Over time, the flashing can break down and leave your home susceptible to water damage. Before the winter weather arrives, make sure the flashing is secure and have it replaced or repaired, if necessary.

Mid to late fall is the best time to schedule a chimney cleaning. A cleaning will ensure your chimney is free from cracks, water damage, creosote and blockages. Having an annual inspection and cleaning will help you feel confident in knowing that your family will stay safe and warm during the fire burning season.

When preparing your fall home checklist, residents of Sandy, UT should also remember to contact Smart Way Insurance Agency to review and/or update their current policies.

Signs You Need Chimney Repair

A chimney plays an important role in the function of your fireplace and in your roofing system. If the chimney is in need or repair, water can seep into through the chimney causing water damage to the roof or chimney, or a fire can start when you use your fireplace. Knowing the signs of a damaged chimney repair can help you determine when you need to call a professional for repairs.

Damaged Bricks

One of the tell-tale sign that your chimney needs repair is damaged bricks. This may be bricks that are falling apart and/or shifting. If you notice that the bricks around your chimney move when you press on them, have cracks in the mortar, or have obviously shifted, it is time to call in a professional.

Damaged Flashing

Flashing are metal strips that are placed around the bottom of the chimney, where the chimney meets your roof. They are designed to keep water from seeping into your roof. If the flashing is damaged, water will seep in. Damaged flashing may be twisted, rusted or could have even blown off. A roofer or a chimney sweep can inspect your flashing for you.

Smoke Not Going Out the Chimney

The last sign that your chimney needs repair is smoke from your fireplace filtering into your home, rather than up the chimney. This is indicative of a crack or damage to the chimney liner. This can be hazard to anyone in the home, including pets, so it is important to not use your fireplace until this problem has been properly repaired.

In some instances, homeowner’s insurance will cover the damage done to your chimney. If you have questions about chimney damage and your homeowner’s insurance, or simply want to price a new policy out, give Smart Way Insurance Agency a call. We serve the greater Sandy, UT area and would love to help with all of your homeowner’s insurance needs.