Importance of Licensed Contractors

Being a homeowner is the ultimate dream, however not all that shines is gold. According to the Insurance Information Institute, one in every 20 property owners will file an insurance claim within the first ten years of being in their home. Many of these claims are inevitable but can be avoided with proper home maintenance.

Yearly inspections of your HVAC, plumbing, alarms and roof condition are important as the costliest claims are typically caused by us and not natural reasons. These check-ups can add up and may lead homeowners to seek repairs from an unlicensed handy man but that is almost worse than the damage that you are trying to prevent.

Unlicensed repair men do not have the certifications to properly inspect, restore or fix any issues you have and do not carry insurance in case of a risk or liability. In other words, they can not be held liable for work performed or faulty repairs. Save yourself the headache and always seek licensed professionals to complete any job around the house.

Spring Home Maintenance

Spring is a great time to review your home for any minor repairs needed after the storms and cold of winter.  While some may require the assistance of professionals, these tasks can help you get your home ready to safely enjoy Summer and outdoor fun!

  1. Clean gutters and downspouts – remove any dried leaves or debris, make any needed minor repairs, and ensure water is easily running through and away from the home and foundation.
  2. Repair damaged walkways and outside areas – Look for cracks, holes and other hazards and schedule repairs before BBQ season is in full swing.
  3. Check sprinkler and irrigation systems for leaks or damaged sprinkler heads.  Make sure none are spraying the home or windows as this can cause moisture problems. 
  4. Trim back broken or dead tree branches, especially any hanging close or over the home.
  5. Test all CO2 and smoke alarms and change batteries where needed.
  6. Schedule HVAC system service if needed and change any filters. 
  7. Check screen doors and windows for any tears or holes to help keep those summer bugs out. 

Spring into Savings by Switching

Western Mutual is proud to announce that we received an A+ rating by AM Best and a near perfect score on Clearsurance, an insurance review site.

This accomplishment comes from our dedicated staff and happy customers who switched and saved with us.  All it takes is 30-seconds and you can see how much you may be overpaying with your current insurer.

Visit us online at www.westernmutual.com or call 1-800-968-8825 to speak with one of our licensed agents. Available Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 5:00PM PST.

Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Today marks the beginning of National Distracted Driving Awareness Month where we recognize the significance of being a safe driver and avoiding distractions while behind the wheel. With over 700 daily accidents occurring because of distracted driving, we must know how crucial focusing on the road truly is.

According to the group Mothers Again Drunk Driving (MADD), we can drastically reduce the chance of someone being injured by simply muting our phones and looking at the road. Talking or texting on a phone – even if it is hands-free – diverts attention away from the road and the potential to save a life. 

Join us in taking a pledge that we will do our part in making the roads a safer place for everyone.

Easter Weekend

As we prepare for this holiday weekend filled with eggs, gift baskets and confetti…let us also remember to plan a tasty dish that will have all your guest hopping to get seconds. As we know, deviled eggs are a staple to Easter and are simple to make. But why not add a twist that will make your egg-cellent dish something to dye for?

Dyed deviled eggs are the new craze and only add one additional step to the already fast and easy meal, bringing together comfort and color. 

All you need to do is add 1 cup of water to a bowl and a few drops of your desired food coloring, and steep up to 4 peeled, halved egg whites (per bowl) until the desired color.  If color is too pale, add more food coloring.  Drain the egg whites on a paper towel and continue usual deviled eggs recipe.

Enjoy and share a photo of your bright creation! And whether you celebrate Easter, Passover, or any other holidays this time of year, we hope you have a wonderful, relaxing Spring weekend.

Pandemic, One Year Later

The days may have seemed short but 2020 felt like the never ending year. As the world suffered from a pandemic from the coronavirus, the landscape of many things changed forever but we as humans took the biggest shift.

A year later we have come to realized how important space, hygiene and compassion truly is.

Space because social distancing is a courtesy that many did not practice when in public places pre-pandemic.

Also hygiene, believe it or not washing our hands become the forefront of every news report as the solution to eradicating the virus. Being in the middle of what typically would be a flu season, hygiene has radically lowered the number of flu cases this year.

And lastly compassion, as we have come to realize that we truly never appreciated our time spent outside around others or family. The urge to being socially active and spending time with our loved ones has made many people empathetic and open to making new friends and experiences.

We are hopeful that a year from now, we are back close to “normal” pre-pandemic life but continue to thank our frontline workers and those fighting to rid of this virus.

Fire Claim Prevention Tips

Fire claims are one of the most devastating and damaging experiences any homeowners can go through. We would like to help you increase your preparedness with some basic safety and prevention tips.

Install and check your smoke detectors and your CO2 alarms. Always follow manufacturer’s instructions but make sure they are properly working. Never install these alarms close to a vent, window or fan and make sure each room has one.

Purchase a multi-purpose (Class ABC) fire-extinguisher for your home, place this close to an exit. Remember that during a fire the goal is to exit the unit, although fire extinguishers are one element to help put out the flames…never forget that main goal is to get out safely.

Consider a sprinkler system as an added protection that would work alongside the smoke detectors and fire extinguisher.

And finally, inspect your home for fire hazards such as faulty light switches, electrical cords and light bulbs. Have your electrical panel professionally inspected and update any out-of-date equipment or appliances to high-efficiency machines.

Do not be a victim of a fire claim and take preventive action now.

Good Fences Make Good Neighbors

With the arrival of Spring comes the devising of a new garden and landscaping which includes your fences. Although fences are placed for boundary purposes, they also bring an aesthetic appeal and comfort knowing that you have some privacy. A fence is the most basic barrier to deter uninvited animals and are a necessity if you yourself have kids or pets.

Aside from privacy, they offer protection such as if you have a pool. If you live on a busy street, they can muffle some of the noise. By upkeeping your fence, you can potentially avoid any unnecessary injuries which can lead to liability lawsuits.

 Over time fences will degrade in some way, knowing how much effort and maintenance you are willing to put in will determine what kind of boundary is right for your home. So, while you draw up your plans for that new garden, makes sure to pencil in your fence for some maintenance and painting because good fences make good neighbors.

Understanding Your Homeowners Policy

The purpose of home insurance is the security of knowing that your home will be rebuilt/repaired if damaged by one of the covered perils.

Each property is reviewed and assessed carefully, which has earned us an A+ rating with AM Best – a company that reviews insurance carriers for excellence in service and coverage.

While you make it your forever home, we want to make sure you understand your policy and what is protected by us.

Our policy protects you against perils such as fire, theft, vandalism, windstorm, hailstorm, among others. If your property experiences any sudden damage by one of the listed perils, please call our claims department immediately.

Know your deductible and review the policy booklet to understand any exclusions that may exist.

If you have any questions about your coverage or need help reviewing your current policy, call our customer service department at 1-800-234-2114, representatives are ready to help Monday through Friday 8:00 AM until 4:45 PM PST.