Insurance Pamphlet - Protecting Your Home

AS OUR SOCIETY EVOLVES IT GETS MORE AND MORE COMPLEX. HOWEVER, AS AN INSURANCE AGENT, I AM HIRED BY MY CUSTOMERS TO HELP PROTECT THEIR HOMES, AUTOS, ETC. VIA THIS NOT SO MODERN CONCEPT CALLED INSURANCE. PLEASE NOTE THAT I OFTEN CALL MY CUSTOMERS FRIENDS BECAUSE THE COMPETITIVE ENVIRONMENT TODAY MEANS I HAVE A LOT OF COMPETITION SO MY ATTITUDE IS THAT I AM MOST FORTUNATE TO HAVE THEIR PATRONAGE THAT I AM HUMBLED AND FRIENDS THAT HELP YOU GET THROUGH THIS RATHER UNIQUE LIFE ARE TRUE FRIENDS.


I HAVE PASSED 3 DECADES IN THIS BUSINESS AND FEEL I HAVE SOMETHING TO OFFER. PERHAPS I CAN HELP FOCUS ON A FEW IDEAS THAT YOU MAY NOT HAVE CONSIDERED. IF I CAN HELP YOU, MAYBE WE SHALL BE FRIENDS TOO.

FIRST, LET ME STATE THAT AN OUNCE OF PREVENTION IS, INDEED, WORTH A POUND OF CURE. I UNDERSTAND THE ANCIENT CHINESE PAID THEIR DOCTOR TO KEEP THEM WELL AND IF YOU GOT SICK, YOU DID NOT HAVE TO PAY YOUR DOCTOR UNTIL YOU WERE WELL AGAIN. SUCH A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO HEALTH WOULD BENEFIT US AND OUR SOCIETY GREATLY. BY EATING RIGHT, EXERCISING, NON SMOKING, MODERATE TO NO DRINKING ALCOHOL, ETC SHOULD RELEGATE DOCTORS TO DOING CHECK UPS AND REGIMIN ADJUSTMENTS TO STAY HEALTHY. WE WILL ALWAYS NEED DOCTORS AND I AM MOST GLAD THEY ARE THERE, ESPECIALLY FOR MAJOR TRAUMAS AS WELL AS A PREVENTIVE REGIMIN.

SECONDLY, SINCE I AM NOW PRIMARILY A PROPERTY AND CASUALTY PERSONAL LINES INSURANCE AGENT THAT LIVES ON THE GULF COAST, I WANT TO ADDRESS A SUBSTANTIAL FEAR THAT MOST COAST DWELLERS HAVE WHICH IS WIND STORM DAMAGE, ESPECIALLY FROM HURRICANES.

YES, HAVING INSURANCE TO COVER SUCH IS OF GREAT IMPORTANCE BUT IT SHOULD PROBABLY NOT BE YOUR FIRST CONSIDERATION. LET ME EXPLAIN.

IF YOU ARE BUILDING A HOME, THERE IS SEVERAL THINGS YOU CAN DO TO HELP PROTECT SAME. FOR EXAMPLE, A HIP ROOF HELPS MAKE YOUR HOME SAFER IN A WINDSTORM AS OPPOSED TO A GABLE ROOF. IMAGINE THE WIND IN THIS ILLUSTRATON IF YOU WILL.

ILLUSTRATION l


WIND HITTING A FLAT SURFACE CREATES A MAJOR DIFFERENCE IN PRESSURE ON THE OUTSIDE VERTICLE FLAT WALL WHEREAS THE HIP ROOF TAKES A GLANCING BLOW THEREBY GIVING LESS PRESSURE FROM THE SAME HORIZONTAL WIND. ALSO, IT ONLY SEEMS NATURAL THAT A GLANCING BLOW ON THE HIP SIDE OF A ROOF WOULD HAVE A TENDENCY TO MAKE THE HOUSE HEAVIER THEREBY REQUIRING A GREATER WIND TO DO DAMAGE.

IF YOU CAN LIFT THE REQUIREMENTS FOR WINDSTORM TO DO DAMAGE TO YOUR HOME HAVE YOU NOT HELPED TO PROTECT NOT ONLY LIVES BUT PHOTO ALBUMS, COLLECTIBLES AND ALL THOSE OTHER PRECIOUS ITEMS A HOME CAN HOLD?

ALSO, IT WOULD BE WISE TO ASK YOUR ARCHITECT THAT YOU WANT HOME SAFETY TO BE ONE OF THE MAJOR CONCERNS IN DESIGNING YOUR HOME. FIRE AND WINDSTORM ARE TWO MAJOR CONCERNS SHE OR HE CAN HELP YOU WITH. (MY MOTHER TAUGHT ME THAT LADIES GO FIRST) THE TYPE OF BUILDING MATERIAL CAN HELP CUT DOWN ON FIRE LOSS AS WELL AS LOSS BY WINDSTORM.

NEXT, LET US CONSIDER LANDSCAPING. YOU MAY ASK, "HOW CAN LANDSCAPING MAKE MY HOME SAFER?" WELL, I AM GLAD YOU ASKED.......

CONSIDER WIND. IF YOU CAN KEEP WIND FROM GETTING TO YOUR HOUSE OR AT LEAST DIMINISH SAME, HAVEN'T YOU MADE YOUR HOME SAFER?

BEFORE GOING FURTHER I WOULD LIKE TO HAVE A MINOR DIGRESSION HERE TO LET YOU KNOW OF ONE OF MY PREFERENCES. WHAT I MEAN BY THIS IS THAT IN OUR CAPITALISTIC SOCIETY WE MAY HAVE PUSHED TOO FAR BACK WHAT I THINK SHOULD BE OF PARAMOUNT CONCERN, WHICH IS OUR NATURAL WORLD.

IN COLONIAL TIMES, THE UNITED STATES WAS COVERED WITH FORESTS AND LITTLE APPRECIATION WAS GIVEN TO THE WALDEN WAY SO CUTTING DOWN TREES MEANT LITTLE TO NOTHING. TODAY, THE SAME CAN BE SAID OF MANY CONTRACTORS. IT IS EASIER TO BUILD ON A CLEARED LOT AND THEN PLANT A COUPLE OF TREES AND SAY WE ARE SENSITIVE TO THE ENVORONMENT.

MY POSITION IS, DISTURB NATURE AS LITTLE AS POSSIBLE. IN DOING SO, WE MAY BE HELPING THAT WHICH GIVES US LIFE, MOTHER EARTH, AS WELL AS MAKING OUR HOMES SAFER AND LESS COSTLY TO MAINTAIN.

ALLOW ME THE PRIVILEDGE OF GIVING YOU A PERSONAL EXAMPLE. IN 1975, MY WIFE AND I WERE DESIGNING OUR HOME AND WE BOUGHT TWO LOTS AND ONLY CLEARED WHAT WAS NEEDED FOR THE HOUSE PLUS ABOUT 15' OF YARD ON THE THREE SIDES OF THE HOUSE THAT DID NOT INCLUDE THE DRIVEWAY INTO THE GARAGE. WE MOVED IN AROUND APRIL OF 1976 AND YOU CAN PROBABLY IMAGINE WHAT I AM LEADING UP TO NOW.

IN SEPTEMBER OF 1979, HURRICANE FREDERICK CAME THROUGH MY COUNTY AND CREATED GREAT HAVOC. YOU HAVE PROBABLY GUESSED BY NOW THAT IT WOULD SEEM I WAS THE ONLY PERSON IN THE COUNTY THAT DID NIOT HAVE A CLAIM. EVEN THOUGH I WAS ON THE TOP OF A HILL AND APPROXIMATELY 100' FROM THE ROAD (SOME PEOPLE DID NOT EVEN KNOW A HOUSE WAS THERE FOR THE TREES AND UNDERBRUSH. THE MINI FOREST FORCED THE WIND UP SO THAT LESS PRESSURE WAS ON MY HIP ROOF AND I ONLY HAD TO REPLACE TWO SHINGLES WHICH WAS FAR LESS THAN MY $250 DEDUCTABLE. DO YOU SUPPOSE SOMETHING IS WRONG WHENEVERE AN INSURANCE AGENT IS AMID BILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN DEVASTATION AND HAS NO CLAIM? THE WINDS EXCEEDED 150 MILES PER HOUR THAT NIGHT. WAS I SIMPLY LUCKY OR DID MY PRIOR PLANNING FOR SAFETY PAY OFF?

CONSIDERING MY FONDNESS FOR NATURE, I WOULD VERY MUCH LIKE TO SEE A NEW FOUND APPRECIATION FOR NATURE AND THE NATURAL AS OPPOSED TO THE RAPING OF OUR MOTHER EARTH. WE MUST RECONSIDER WHAT IS BEAUTIFUL IN OUR WORLD. IS IT NATURE OR IS IT SHOWING OFF OUR VANITY BY HOW BIG AND SHOWY OUR HOME CAN BE? NATURE CAN BE TOUGH BUT IF WE DO NOT RESPECT HER, THERE MAY BE GREAT RETRIBUTION TO PAY SOMEDAY.

TODAY, I LIVE BY MYSELF, BUT I HAVE RETURNED THE BACK 1/3 OF MY LOT TO NATURE AND ENCOURAGE OTHERS TO DO THE SAME. OVERPOPULATION IS RAPIDLY DESTROYING OUR EARTH AND ITS RESOURCES. IT SEEMS TO ME WE MUST CHANGE OR DIE. ARMAGEDON MAY EVENTUALLY COME AND IT COULD BE AT OUR OWN HAND.

ANOTHER ASPECT TO CONSIDER OF LANDSCAPING IS PLANTS STRATEGICLY PLANTED NEAR YOUR HOME. I HAVE AZALEAS ALONG THE FRONT OF MY HOME WHICH I THINK WILL HELP LIFT THE WIND UP TO THE ROOF FOR A GLANCING BLOW RAHTER THAN HITTING A FLAT WALL. CONSIDER THE ILLUSTRATION BELOW.

ILLUSTRATION 2


THESE AZALEAS ARE ABOUT 8' TALL AND ABOUT 6' THICK.

AN ADDITIONAL CONSIDERATION FROM OUR MODERN WEATHER REPORTING, MOST OF THE TIME WE KNOW IN ADVANCE OF BAD WIND/RAIN STORMS OR HURRICANES. NEWS REPORTERS OFTENTIMES SHOW PEOPLE BOARDING UP WINDOWS WHICH I THINK MAY BE A MISTAKE. IF YOU THINKI AN OPEN WINDOW MAY RELIEVE PRESSURE ON THE OUTSIDE WALL AND TEND TO BALANCE PRESSURE ON THE INSIDE WALL, THEN CONSIDER THIS NEXT ILLUSTRATION.



ILLUSTRATION 3



THIS WRITER WOULD MUCH RATHER HAVE SOME WATER DAMAGE AS OPPOSED TO A WALL CRUMBLING AND THE HOUSE TO BE SLOWLY PEALED AWAY LIKE THE LID ON A SARDINE CAN.

ANOTHER CONSIDERATION THAT I WANT TO PASS ON IS AUTOMOBILES. SHOULD HURRICANE FORCE WINDS BE HEADED YOUR WAY AND YOU DECIDE TO GO 75 MILES INLAND, THAT MAY PRECLUDE LEAVING ONE OR TWO CARS BEHIND. MY ATTITUDE IS TO USE SUCH AS A POTENTIAL BARRICADE. IF YOU HAVE A WALL THAT IS UNPROTECTED AND SOMEWHAT NAKED, THIS VEHICLE COULD BE PARKED ABOUT 2' AWAY, PARALELL WITH THE WALL. I WOULD FURTHER SUGGEST THAT YOU LET THE AIR OUT OF THE TWO TIRES FURTHEST FROM THE HOUSE THEREBY ALLOWING LESS AIR TO GET UNDER THE CAR AND POSSIBLY FORCING THE CAR INTO THE WALL. CHECK THE ILLUSTRATION BELOW FOR SAME.


ILLUSTRATION 4


SINCE WE HAVE A LOT OF MOBILE HOMES IN OUR SOCIETY, THE ONE THING I MOST OFTEN SUGGEST TO NEW BUYERS IS TO PLACE THE HOME AS LOW TO THE GROUND AS POSSIBLE. IN DOING SO, IT ALLOWS LESS AIR TO GET UNDER THE HOME THEREBY MAKING IT MORE DIFFICULT TO TURN OVER.

CONSIDERING THAT DREAD NAUGHT CALLED FIRE, I HAVE A FEW SUGGESTIONS HERE THAT SHOULD HELP ALSO.

FIRST, FIRE NEEDS OXYGEN TO EXIST SO IF YOU CAN STARVE A FIRE OF OXYGEN, YOU HAVE GIVEN THE FIRE DEPARTMENT MORE TIME TO SAVE MORE OF YOUR HOME. THUS, THE REAL QUESTION IS HOW CAN YOU CUT OFF THE SUPPLY OF OXYGEN TO A FIRE. SURPRISINGLY, IT IS THE SAME WAY PUBLIC BUILDINGS USE. YOU CLOSE THE DOOR!

WHENEVER I LEAVE MY HOME FOR OVER AN HOUR I CLOSE ALL THE DOORS TO EACH ROOM AS WELL AS CLOSETS. THIS MAY NOT BE A GREAT HELP BUT IF YOU HAVE SOLID CORE DOORS, IT WILL TAKE A LOT TO PENETRATE SAME SO THAT THE FIRE CANNOT ACQUIRE MORE OXYGEN TO FEED ITS VORACIOUS APPETITE FOR BLIND, RABID DESTRUCTION.

AN ADDITIONAL SIDLINE BENEFIT HERE MAY BE THAT BURGLARS WHICH ENTER A HOUSE WITH ALL THE DOORS CLOSED MAY WONDER WHICH DOOR THE OWNER MAY BE BEHIND. COULD YOU IMAGINE THE STRESS ON SUCH A PERSON?

FIRE EXTINGUISHERS SHOULD BE ON EACH END OF THE HOME AND ONE IN THE MIDDLE, ESPECIALLY THE KITCHEN.

BEWARE OF SPACE HEATERS ALWAYS AND BE SURE TO KEEP MATCHES AWAY FROM CHILDREN.
IF YOU ARE CONCERNED ABOUT BURGLARY, THINK PREVENTION. IF YOU LEAVE THE HOUSE OVERNIGHT ETC,, A SERIES OF TIMERS THAT TURNS ON THE TELEVISIONS AND LAMPS ON METHODICALLY CAN BE A GREAT BENEFIT. DEAD BOLTS AND CENTRAL BURGLAR ALARMS ARE WISE AND CAN OFTEN SAVE YOU MONEY ON YOUR HOME INSURANCE.
LAST BUT NOT LEAST, THINK SAFETY. BEWARE OF DANGERS TO LIFE AND LIMB LIKE TRAMPOLINES, SWIMMING POOLS, ESPECIALLY DIVING BOARDS, EXOTIC PETS ETC.

IF YOU WANT TO HOLD INSURANCE PREMIUMS STEADY RATHER THAN ALLOWING THE INSURANCE COMPANY TO USE FREQUENCY AND SEVERITY OF CLAIMS AS AN EXCUSE TO GO UP ON PREMIUMS OR MAYBE EVEN CANCEL, THEN THINK SAFETY, CARRY AS HIGH A DEDUCTIBLE AS YOU CAN COMFORTABLY CARRY AND ALWAYS, BE HAPPY.

ONE LAST THING, PLEASE ALLOW ME A DISCLAIMER HERE. EVERONES SITUATION IS UNIQUE TO THEM SO PLEASE CONSULT YOUR ARCHITECT, FIRE MARSHALL, SAFETY CONSULTING ENGINEER, BUILDER, LANDSCAPER, POLICE SAFETY PROGRAMS AND ANY OTHER APPROPRIATE AUTHORITY BEFORE APPLYING ANY OF THE LESSONS OUTLINED HERIN.

MAY WE LEAVE A BETTER WORLD FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS. MAY IT BE SAFER TOO. IS NOT A BETTER SOCIETY WHAT WE SHOULD CONSTANTLY BE MOVING TOWARD?

THANKS FOR YOUR KIND ATTENTIONS.


ROSS SLOAN
MOBILE, AL

CAN YOU TELL I LIVE ON THE GULF COAST ?

No comments:

Post a Comment

* If you are having trouble leaving a comment, please use the Anonymous selection and click "Publish".