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Express Insurance

710 Miami Springs Dr., Suite 120
Longwood, FL 32779

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Are Pets Covered Under My Home Insurance Policy?

Undoubtedly, you see your pet as a furry (or scaly) part of your family. For insurance purposes, though, it’s not always that simple. As much as we love our pets, they are animals and they can do damage to both people and property. Before you go out and buy an exotic snake near Longwood, FL, it’s best to check with Express Insurance about whether or not it will be covered. There are a few factors to keep in mind in terms of pets and home insurance.

Property damage

When you decide to keep a pet on your property, you do so with the understanding that they could cause damage to your home. Whether it’s a dog chewing through drywall or a fish tank cracking and causing water damage, pets can pose a risk. Unfortunately, these types of damages are not typically covered by homeowners insurance. Keeping this in mind, consider taking steps, such as creating your dog while you’re away, to avoid damage.

Some animals are riskier

Sometimes certain dog breeds or exotic animals raise red flags for insurers. It may be beneficial for you to have proof of obedience school, vet records, proof of breed, and a “character witness” for your pet. All of these can help prove to your insurer that your pet is safe.

No pet is perfect

Unfortunately, dogs do bite and cats scratch. Liability insurance helps to cover you if someone is injured on your property. However, depending on your policy, this may not cover bites and other injuries resulting from your pets. Talk to Express Insurance to determine what your policy covers.

If you live in or around Longwood, FL and have questions about specific pets in your home, give us a call today.

What Florida Homeowners Should Know About Hurricane Season

Homeowner’s insurance can protect your Longwood, FL home against the risk of hurricane damage. By talking to an Express Insurance agent, you can get a better understanding of coverage options to protect your property. The more knowledgeable you are about home insurance and the benefits it has to offer, the better prepared you will be against any eventuality.

Protection of Home

As hurricanes are quite common for the Florida area, you should ensure your home insurance coverage includes storm, hail and wind damage along with such perils as theft, fire, and vandalism. Home insurance can help cover the cost of repairing your home’s roof, siding or windows in the event of a major storm. Home insurance can also cover damage caused by trees or other debris falling on your property.

Protection of Personal Belongings

If rain enters your home due to shattered windows or roof damage, your insurance can help pay for damage to personal goods such as furniture, clothing or appliances. Having an up to date inventory of personal goods will facilitate any claims you may have to make. A policy that provides for replacement costs of damaged goods makes it easier for you to recover your losses. Standard homeowner’s insurance also covers additional living expenses if you have to stay elsewhere while your home is being restored. 

Prepping Home against Hurricane Damage

Home insurance protects your property and personal goods whether you remain in place or evacuate your property due to a hurricane. If you plan to evacuate, prep your home before leaving by putting up storm shutters, securing patio furniture and storing plants, yard statues, etc., to minimize damage and protect your valuables.   

For more information on how homeowner’s insurance can protect your Longwood, FL home against hurricane damage, contact us at Express Insurance.  

How to Make a Claim On Your Home Insurance

From a burst water pipe in the basement to a tree falling on your garage, knowing how to make a claim on your home insurance is important. It is something not everyone has experience with, so you may not know how to go about making such a claim. At Express Insurance, we want to ensure your Longwood, FL home is not only protected but that you understand how to make a claim on your insurance policy should the time ever arise. 

Contact the Police

Unlike an auto accident, the chances of you needing to contact the police are usually rather slim. However, if your home is broken into you will need to file a police report. This is a serious matter the police need to investigate. After contacting the police, you’ll need to report anything stolen. 

Contact Your Insurance Company

If you needed to contact the police make sure you have the police report number on hand. Your home insurance company will need to contact the police to verify some information. If you did not need to contact the police, you could simply contact the insurance company first thing. Report the issue to your insurance agent. They will tell you what to do next. 

Home Visit

Depending on the situation you may need to set up a home visit. This way the insurance provider can identify the potential cost of making repairs to restore the damaged area of your home (this is especially true if it is damaged during a storm). 

At Express Insurance we are here to assist in all your home insurance needs. If your home falls victim to a robbery, is damaged during a storm or suffers another form of damage, you now know how to make a claim on your Longwood, FL home insurance policy. 

Helpful Tips for Spring Cleaning

Since winter is almost over, spring is on its way. For many homeowners in Longwood, FL, that means it is time to start spring cleaning. While some people enjoy doing this, most people do not but it is something that must be done. Before you get started, be sure to check out these spring cleaning tips from Express Insurance 

  • Dust everything. Before you get started on anything else, you should take the time to dust everything inside your home. A lot of dust can build up during the summer months and now is a great time to get rid of it. 
  • Consider one or two projects. You may think you have a lot to do around the home this spring but you may not be able to get to everything. When you are making your list of things to do, limit yourself to one or two projects. If you finish everything and still have the time and energy to do more, then go ahead and work on something else. Just do not set yourself up for failure by putting too much on your plate. 
  • Ask for help. You do not have to do all of this alone. Ask for help from family and friends. Not only will it get done faster but you will also have more fun while you are doing it. 

Once you have completed your spring cleaning, next is making sure your home is well protected. The best way you can do this is by having a great home insurance policy. If you do not already have one in place, now is the perfect time to do so. Be sure to contact Express Insurance, serving Longwood, FL. They can help you find a great policy that also meets your budget needs. 

The Latest Home Safety Devices: Smoke Alarms, Carbon Monoxide Detectors, and More

The latest and greatest innovations in home safety devices provide advanced features for increased protection of you, your loved ones, and your home. Alerting you about smoke progression, fires, and carbon monoxide infiltration, these handy safety devices have been around for over a 100 years. Through the years, the features have changed, but the concept remains the same – signal systems of danger. With all the high-tech devices on the market, you can find one to fit and address your needs, so let’s clear the smoke and dive into some alert systems.

When looking for a defense against fire and smoke, you’ll find some of the most cutting-edge smoke detectors and fire alarms for your house. Now, there’s a difference in the mechanics and functionality of these two systems. A smoke detector checks for the presence of smoke, and a fire alarm provides heat sensors and sprinklers. For latest types of smoke sensors, you’ll find Ionization, photoelectric, and dual-sensor devices. Ionization models provide peak testing of minute particles usually found in fast, flaming fires. Photoelectric styles test for larger particles associated with heavy, more dense and smokey fires. Dual-sensor protectors combine the abilities of both of these models for small and large particle detection. Whether it’s a smoke detector or fire alarm, you can connect these types of systems to your mobile or Internet-accessing device – a techie feature.

So how do these fire detection systems provide you with mobile fire alerts? These systems are integrated with the world of app connections, so you receive these signals from a downloaded app linked to your alert device. With an app link through a mobile device, phone, laptop, or desktop, you get a whenever and wherever connection to the alarm activation. Other features not to be missed are digital functionality with a link to a monitoring service that notifies the police, fire department, or your phone; and voice alarm systems. Along with these defenses against fires, there are devices that detect silent, odorless, but highly dangerous carbon monoxide.

Carbon monoxide detectors check for the existence of this lethal gas. A toxic substance that is the top cause of death due to poisoning in the United States. This gas is released from the burning of gasoline, natural gas, wood, propane or charcoal. The most advanced devices function in one of three ways through a biomimetic sensor, metal oxide semiconductor, or electrochemical sensor. Some more advanced features include a digital screen showing gas levels and Smart detectors that sync with apps to provide alerts to the end user. And, of course, the best of both of these detection worlds merges the capabilities of a smoke and carbon monoxide system into one device.

So, whether it’s a single or dual safety device for the home, there are now more sensitive and reliable sensor devices to detect smoke and carbon monoxide. With these latest technology systems, you get advanced capability to defend you, your loved ones, and your home. Keep it safe with the most current detection devices, and let Express Insurance, serving Longwood, FL, protect your risk of damage to or loss of your home with insurance coverage. Having both home safety mechanisms and home insurance, you’re protected on both ends in the event of a covered fire or carbon monoxide leak.

How Home Insurance Keeps Longwood Residents Safe

The people of Longwood, FL care about their homes, there’s no doubt about this. However, home insurance is often overlooked or not discussed as one of the primary ways it keeps people safe. Express Insurance has been in the business long enough to know that it has a lot to do with safety, and we want you to know more about why.

Sending the Right Message 

Even if you have the best possible home insurance, that doesn’t mean that a criminal won’t decide to target your house. However, what home insurance does do is give you (and the people in your neighborhood) a means to fix the damage that does happen right away as opposed to leaving it for months on end. The better a street and neighborhood is maintained, the more criminals get the impression that they will not only be not welcome in the area but likely be seen or caught because people look out for one another.

Keeping the House on Solid Ground 

Homes that have the right foundation stay upright, even during bad storms in Longwood, FL. There are so many potential dangers on a property that you may not even notice. Express Insurance knows that one dying tree can cause a lot of damage to the house if it falls unexpectedly. These are just a few ways that homes stay safe when they have home insurance, and there are so many other ways that it protects you. If you’re looking for a quality home insurance policy that will benefit both you and your neighbors, then give our agency a call today. We have agents and experts who can assist you, so contact us for more information or a quote on your property in Longwood.

Fall Home and Fun Checklist

Getting ready for winter means winterizing your home, preparing for holiday guests, and conducting an annual insurance review with your agent at Express Insurance to make sure there is adequate insurance, especially if there have been any life changes during the past year.

There are plenty of maintenance chores to do in fall to get ready before the winter weather comes.

Besides having things you must do on the home checklist for fall, be sure to include some of these fun things:

  • Decorate pumpkins and toast the pumpkin seeds
  • Go for a hay ride
  • Snuggle by the fire
  • Bake an apple pie
  • Visit a farmer’s market
  • Enjoy a scenic drive
  • Jump into a pile of leaves
  • Visit a haunted house
  • Go fruit picking
  • Bake cookies
  • Make pumpkin bread
  • Enjoy hot spiced apple cider and eggnog
  • Fly a kite
  • Go on a scavenger hunt
  • Make caramel apples
  • Have a tailgate party at a football game
  • Make popcorn balls
  • Knit a scarf
  • Use scented candles
  • Go to a spooky graveyard
  • Bundle up and go for an early morning walk
  • Make hot chocolate
  • Enjoy a weekend getaway at a bread and breakfast
  • Take a holiday family photo
  • Adopt a new pet from an animal rescue facility
  • Decorate your porch and front yard with holiday decorations
  • Make s’mores and Rice Krispies treats with the kids
  • Enjoy movie night with homemade popcorn and caramel corn
  • Toast marshmallows over a fire pit
  • Make blueberry pancakes with real maple syrup
  • Enjoy the season premiers on television
  • Go for a walk in the rain and splash in the puddles
  • Make mulled wine
  • Build a tent fort for the kids in the living room out of blankets
  • Have a pillow fight
  • Enjoy a costume party
  • Go caroling house to house

Be kind, enjoy life, and be thankful.

Packing Strategies in Longwood, FL

Packing up for a move is never enjoyable. It can be tedious, back breaking and stressful, as you are literally between places to live. However, there are certain things you can do to make the whole packing process go much more smoothly and allow you to have an easier time getting out of your previous place and into your new one. Below are some of the best packing tips for your upcoming move.

USE SMALL BOXES FOR BOOKS

One of the heaviest things you will end up moving outside of large pieces of furniture will be those books you pack up. So acquire some smaller boxes and pack all of your books into them, so you can not only know which boxes have books and know they will be quite heavy, but you also won’t have random stacks of books weighing down other boxes you are packing.

USE STRONG TAPE

Masking tape, painters tape or clear tape often isn’t strong enough for boxes. You need to buy tape that won’t rip apart when something heavy is up against it, as a ripped box that spills your contents everywhere is a real problem in the middle of a move. Get some gaffers tape, packing tape or gorilla tape that is some of the strongest on the market to be safe. Also, use at least two strips of tape that overlap on the middle or edge of each box you tape up.

MAKE SURE TO GET INSURANCE

Having insurance on your new home or apartment when you move is important because it ensures you will protected in the event any of your items are damaged or stolen during your move. Contact Express Insurance, who serves the local Longwood, FL area if you need home insurance or renters insurance before you make the big move.

Halloween Home Safety – 4 Tips

One of the most enjoyable parts about Halloween for most adults is handing out candy to all the adorable trick-or-treaters. However, it is important to make sure your home is a safe place for area children. Here are four tips to consider.

#1: Cleanup Your Yard

Keeping your yard tidy for trick-or-treaters is essential to safety. Put away any garden hoses or other outdoor items that pose a tripping risk. Fill in any low areas or holes to help keep small children from not seeing them and falling. And make sure all low tree branches are trimmed to eliminate bumped heads as the kids make their way in a hurry from the sidewalk to your door.

#2: Ensure Your Property is Well-Lit

It is also important to ensure that your property is well-lit on Halloween night. Turn on your porch light and as many exterior lights as possible to help trick-or-treaters see the path to your door. Not only does this let neighborhood parents know that you are home and handing out candy, making sure your home is illuminated provides an extra level of safety. However, try to avoid candles and other open flames as lighting sources, as they come with an increased fire risk.

#3: Secure Your Pets

Another way to ensure everyone has a happy Halloween is by securing your pets. New visitors can sometimes be alarming to dogs and cats, causing them to try to run out the door each time a new trick-or-treater arrives. In some cases, this can lead to bites, lost pets, or animals being hit by a car and injured. The best course of action is to keep your feline friend or canine companion in a special room or kennel crate until the festivities are over.

#4: Make Sure You Have Adequate Homeowner’s Insurance Coverage

While many people find looking through their homeowner’s insurance policy a bit daunting, there’s definitely nothing spooky about making sure you’re covered for Halloween guests. Anytime you have visitors to your property, you run the risk of having a liability claim against your coverage if that person becomes injured on the premises. This is true even in the case of trick-or-treaters, so it is always wise to double check before the day arrives.

Of course, reviewing your home insurance policy doesn’t have to be difficult. Please contact our team at Express Insurance today for details.