Friday the 13th – 13 Hidden Safety Risks

Many people are afraid of or superstitious of black cats, broken mirrors and walking under ladders around Friday the 13th. However, what’s even more cause for caution is all the hidden safety risks that can be present in daily life. Check out these top 13 risks to be aware of: 

Eating while driving

Next to texting and driving, eating while driving is one of the most common forms of distracted driving. Reaction time drops by nearly 50% while eating. Next time you pick up food, make sure to wait until arrival before eating. 

Car maintenance

Without proper vehicle maintenance, driving a car can pose some risks. Change the oil in the vehicle as recommended, get tires checked regularly and make sure to have roadside assistance as part of your insurance policy. 

Lightning

While not extremely common, lightning can strike your car or home and cause damage that may require repairs. Make sure your insurance plan covers damage caused by lightning and help prevent damage by installing a lightning rod or other protection.

Cyber security

As the internet increasingly becomes part of the daily routine, cyber security is a necessity. Take steps to protect your information online from hackers or data breaches, including using complex passwords and being aware of email phishing scams. 

Texting 

Texting while doing other things is a huge distraction. Whether walking across the street or driving down the road, avoid texting and pay better attention to surroundings. 

Home security

Make sure to lock all doors and windows when leaving and consider installing an alarm system. If you’re an OKFB member, you may be eligible for a discount for installing a home security system. 

Fire 

It’s nice to have the fireplace crackling or a candle burning to provide warmth and comfort, but make sure to take the proper safety precautions. Always extinguish candles and fires before leaving a room, and make sure to keep them out of reach of children.  

Food storage

Improper food storage can result in spoiled foods, and if these foods are consumed they can result in illness. Hold cold foods at 40°F or below, and keep hot foods at 140°F or above. Regularly monitor your refrigerator and freezer to ensure they are at the right temperature. 

Carbon monoxide

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless flammable gas that can be deadly. CO can accumulate wherever fuel is burned, whether by a kitchen stove or a car in the garage. Help avoid CO poisoning by installing carbon monoxide detectors in your home. 

Appliances

Appliances, especially those in the kitchen can pose some safety risks. Stay nearby appliances when cooking and always check that appliances are off before leaving the kitchen.  

Screens

Staring at a screen all day, whether via a phone or a computer, can pose some health risks. Excessive use can result in a decrease in vision abilities, and it can also lead to back pain, joint pain and headaches. If possible, try reducing daily screen time.

Going to work 

From farming to construction, some jobs require working with dangerous equipment or substances. Make sure to be aware of and follow workplace safety guidelines to help prevent accident and injury.

Showering 

Slippery floors in the shower can lead to injury or even death. Showers can especially be safety risks for the elderly and children, who often require help to enter and exit the shower safely. Install a support bar, clean up wet floors and be extra vigilant in the bathroom.

8 Home Tips You Need to Know this Fall

As the temperatures drop, it’s time to start thinking about preparing your home for the cooler weather seasons. With a little bit of preparation, you can ensure your living space remains warm, comfortable and energy-efficient during the colder months. From sealing windows and doors to inspecting your roof, here are some essential home tips to get ready for fall:

1. Seal Windows and Doors

One of the easiest and most effective ways to keep the cold air out and the warm air in is by ensuring that your windows and doors are properly sealed. Check for any gaps or cracks around the frames and apply weatherstripping or caulk as needed. This simple step can significantly reduce drafts and prevent heat loss, saving you money on your energy bills!

2. Inspect Fireplace and Chimney

If you’re planning to use your fireplace later this year, it’s crucial to inspect both the fireplace and chimney before lighting that first fire. Look for any signs of damage or blockages that could pose a safety hazard. Hiring a professional to clean and inspect your chimney may also be a wise investment to ensure you’re heating up safely.

3. Ensure Proper Insulation

Proper insulation is key to maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature and reducing energy consumption. Check your attic, walls, and floors for sufficient insulation. Adding insulation in areas that are lacking can make a significant difference in keeping your home warm and cozy ahead of cooler weather.

4. Reverse Ceiling Fans

Did you know that your ceiling fans aren’t just for cooling? When the weather gets cooler, flip the switch on your ceiling fans to reverse their spin and run them at the lowest speed. This will help push warm air down from the ceiling and circulate it throughout the room, improving overall comfort.

5. Clear the Gutters

Clogged gutters can lead to water accumulation and ice dams, potentially causing damage to your home. Take the time to clear out leaves, debris, and any blockages from your gutters to ensure proper drainage during the rainy months.

6. Inspect Your Roof

A well-maintained roof is essential for keeping the cooler elements out of your home. Inspect your roof for any missing or damaged shingles, leaks, or signs of wear and tear. Addressing any issues before the snow starts falling can prevent more significant problems down the line.

7. Replace Air Filters

Clean air filters not only improve indoor air quality but also help your heating system operate efficiently. Dirty filters can restrict airflow and force your system to work harder, consuming more energy. Remember to replace or clean your air filters regularly to ensure optimal performance!

8. Adjust Your Water Heater Temperature

Lowering the temperature of your water heater can help you save on energy costs without sacrificing comfort. Aim for a temperature of around 120 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent excessive heat loss and reduce the risk of scalding.

As you gear up for fall, these home tips can make a world of difference in creating a warm, comfortable home. By preparing with these home tips, you’ll be ready to embrace the cold weather before it arrives.

We’re Here to Help

Whether you’re a longtime policyholder or just starting to look for insurance options, we’re here to help. If you have questions or concerns that you want to discuss, connect with your local OKFB agent today. If you have any insurance-specific questions, we would love to help you find the coverage that best meets your homeautocommercial and life insurance needs.

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4 Factors That Impact Your Home Insurance Premiums

When it comes to protecting your family’s most important place, having the right insurance coverage is crucial. However, home insurance premiums can vary significantly depending on many factors. Understanding these factors can help you make informed decisions and potentially save money on your home insurance policy.

Location

Your home’s location plays a significant role in determining your insurance premiums. We take into account the state and sometimes even the specific zip code where your home is situated. Certain areas are more prone to natural disasters, such as hurricanes, earthquakes or wildfires, which can increase the risk of potential damage to your property. Additionally, highly populated areas or regions with high crime rates might also result in higher premiums. If your home is located in a low-risk area with a history of minimal claims, you may enjoy lower insurance rates.

Type of Home and Roof

The characteristics of your home, including its age, construction materials and roof type, can also impact your insurance premiums. Older homes might be more prone to certain risks like plumbing or electrical issues, while homes made of combustible materials may have higher fire risks. Additionally, the type of roof you have can influence premiums. Roofs made of fire-resistant materials like metal or tile tend to be more insurance-friendly than those made of wood or asphalt. Insurance companies assess these factors to determine the level of risk associated with your home and adjust your premiums accordingly.

Overall Risk and Cost to Replace Your Home

Similarly, insurance providers evaluate the overall risk associated with your property to determine your home insurance premiums. This assessment includes factors like the value and cost to rebuild your home, its square footage, the presence of safety features (e.g., smoke detectors and alarm systems), and the condition of the property. The cost to replace your home is a crucial consideration, as insurance coverage is designed to provide you with financial protection in the event of a disaster. Higher replacement costs may result in higher premiums. However, it is essential to ensure that your coverage adequately reflects the potential cost to rebuild your home to avoid under-insuring your property.

Insurance and Claims History

Your insurance and claims history also plays a role in determining your home insurance premiums. We consider your previous claims and the frequency and severity of those claims. If you have a history of multiple claims, especially for similar types of incidents, it can increase the perception of risk and potentially result in higher premiums. Building a positive claims history by avoiding unnecessary claims and promptly addressing maintenance and repairs can help you maintain affordable premiums over time.

While many things can impact your home insurance premiums, understanding these four key factors can help you better navigate your home insurance policy. Remember to regularly review your policy and communicate any changes or upgrades to your property with your local OKFB agent to ensure you have the right coverage.

We’re Here to Help

Whether you’re shopping for life insurance or want to update your policies, we have agents who can help. If you have questions or concerns that you want to discuss, connect with your local OKFB agent today. If you have any insurance-specific questions, we would love to help you find the coverage that best meets your homeautocommercial and life insurance needs.

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6 Home Insurance Terms You Should Know

Home insurance is an important aspect of protecting your property and belongings from unexpected events. However, navigating through the complex world of insurance policies can be overwhelming, especially if you’re new and unfamiliar with the terms. To help you make informed decisions, we’ve compiled a list of essential home insurance terms that you should know.

Additional Living Expense

Additional Living Expense coverage is a crucial aspect of home insurance. It provides coverage for extra day-to-day expenses incurred when you and your family are unable to live in your home due to a covered loss. This coverage can help you pay for temporary housing, meals, transportation and other necessary costs during the time it takes to repair or rebuild your home. Knowing that your insurance policy includes Additional Living Expense coverage can provide peace of mind during challenging times.

Loss Assessment

Loss Assessment coverage is particularly relevant for people with Condo Owners Insurance. It offers limited coverage for loss assessments made by your condo association or governing body for damage to the building. In the event that the common areas or shared structures suffer a loss not covered by the association’s insurance, this coverage can help protect you from unexpected expenses. Remember, it’s essential to review your policy carefully to determine the extent of coverage provided. Talk to your local OKFB agent to see what your policy covers.

Personal Property Coverage

Personal Property coverage is designed to protect the personal belongings in your home. In case of damage or theft, this coverage helps cover the cost of repairing or replacing your possessions. From furniture and electronics to clothing and jewelry, personal property coverage ensures that you are protected financially if your belongings get damaged or stolen. It’s advisable to maintain an inventory of your personal property and keep records of their value to simplify the claims process.

Owner Occupied

This term refers to a home in which the owner also resides. This distinction is important because owner-occupied properties often have different coverage requirements compared to properties that are rented out or left unoccupied. Policies for owner-occupied homes may offer additional protections or discounts based on the assumption that the owner takes more responsibility for the property’s upkeep and security.

Tenant

A tenant is someone who lives in a home that they do not own. It’s essential for tenants to understand that their landlord’s insurance policy typically does not cover their personal belongings. As a tenant, you may need to obtain a separate renter’s insurance policy to protect your personal property. Renter’s Insurance provides coverage that is similar to homeowner’s insurance but tailored to the needs of tenants.

Fixtures

Fixtures are permanently attached to a property, such as sinks, built-in appliances, lighting fixtures and cabinets. These items are typically covered under the dwelling coverage, which protects the structure of your home from covered perils. It’s important to understand what fixtures are covered under your policy, as different insurers have different coverage limits.

By familiarizing yourself with these essential home insurance terms, you can better understand your policies and make informed decisions. Remember to review your policy carefully, ask your local OKFB agent any questions and regularly reassess your coverage to ensure it aligns with your needs.

We’re Here to Help

Whether you’re shopping for life insurance or want to update your policies, we have agents who can help. If you have questions or concerns that you want to discuss, connect with your local OKFB agent today. If you have any insurance-specific questions, we would love to help you find the coverage that best meets your homeautocommercial and life insurance needs.

Don’t forget to follow us on social! This kind of information and more is just a click away. You can find us on FacebookInstagram and LinkedIn.