Is My Home Underinsured?

How do you know if your home is underinsured? In this blog post, we touch on some common signs that may indicate a need for increased Home Insurance coverage. Whether you just bought your first home or you’ve been a homeowner for years, keep reading to learn more!

How to Determine if Your Home is Underinsured

One of the most obvious signs that a home may be underinsured is if current coverage couldn’t cover the cost to rebuild if it was severely damaged. For example, if there was a major storm or fire. This is a major indication that you may need to review your policy and talk to an insurance agent to determine the best plan for your situation. 

There are other less obvious signs to keep in mind. For example, if a home has outdated features, it may not be worth as much as a newer home. This means that a homeowners insurance policy may not cover as much in the event of a claim. Additionally, consider increasing your coverage if you have expensive belongings to ensure they’re protected in case of damage or theft.

What Type of Coverage is Available?

The first step is to understand the different types of coverage available. There are a few types of coverage that homeowners should become familiar with: Cash Value coverage and Replacement Cost coverage.

Cash Value coverage is based on a home’s current condition and provides reimbursements for its monetary worth. Depreciation can happen over time, especially pertaining to older homes. It’s important to consider whether or not a home can be fully rebuilt based on today’s cost estimate, instead of the initial price when it was originally built.

Replacement Cost coverage is another type of coverage that homeowners can purchase. This type of coverage will provide a reimbursement for the cost of rebuilding a home using the same type of materials. This policy could require enough coverage to restore a home to new, so it’s important to consider how much it would actually cost, as opposed to covering market value. For example, the price of a home today may not be at the same rate as the rebuild.

Currently, there are issues surrounding the pandemic that may have led to the adjustment or change in the costs of goods and services across Oklahoma. Consider taking some time with your insurance agent to review your insurance policies to discuss if your coverage may be impacted. They can help you assess your home’s value and ensure you have the proper coverage.

If you have any other questions about insurance, connect with us today. We are happy to help you find the coverage that best meets your home, auto, commercial and life insurance needs.  

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

3 Ways to Show You Care

Valentine’s Day is the perfect holiday to show your loved ones how much you care. This year, don’t just get flowers and chocolates. One gift that can truly last is insurance. It may not be as romantic as a dozen roses, but it can provide protection for life. 

  1. Protect Your Valuables

Home is where you usually feel safest and where you keep your most prized possessions. Whether you’re a homeowner or a renter, both insurance lines offer personal property coverage. Personal property coverage covers personal belongings inside a home in the event of damages or theft that may not be covered under a general Homeowners or Renters Insurance line. 

Personal property coverage can provide a sense of security and help in recuperating valuables. Reach out to your local OKFB Agent and see if the jewelry you have or are planning to give for Valentine’s Day is covered.

  1. Travel With Confidence

Planning a weekend getaway for the weekend of love? Whether you’re fishing at the lake, racing ATVs or cruising Route 66 in an RV, one way to protect your loved ones from the unexpected is with Recreational Insurance. We offer a wide range of coverage options that could help you when making new memories wherever your travels take you. 

  1. Support Your Employees

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us that small businesses have to expect the unexpected and adapt quickly. Many Oklahoma businesses have suffered from lost revenue, staffing shortages or have had to close their doors completely. One way to show you care for your employees is to give the gift of insurance. Our fully-customizable Business Owners Insurance includes Loss of Income coverage that could help cover a loss of net income due to suspension of operations and help pay for continuing payroll expenses. 

BONUS – How We Care: Drive with Peace of Mind

One auto-related gift to offer a loved one, and no, we’re not talking about buying a car, is Roadside Rescue. As an OKFB member or policyholder, we give you the gift of Roadside Rescue. This is a free service that provides 24/7 assistance wherever you or your loved one is nationwide. Enjoy the gift of traveling with confidence and peace of mind wherever and whenever this Valentine’s Day.

Insurance coverage is a great way to show you care and to provide loved ones with protection and safety. Reach out to your local OKFB Insurance agent if you have questions about your existing plan or purchasing a new one. We’re here to help!

6 Ways to Prepare for an Ice Storm

Snow and ice can be a pretty sight in small doses, but Oklahoma is no stranger to heavy ice storms. You can help ensure minimal impacts to your property by following these six ways to prepare for an ice storm. Check out these tips:

1. Prepare an Emergency Home Kit

Severe ice storms can cause road closures as well as city-wide power outages, thus leaving you situated in your home for a potential long period of time. It could be helpful to have an emergency home kit with the necessities that could include things like:

  • Flashlights and batteries
  • Candles 
  • Canned goods and no-cook foods/snacks
  • Bottled water
  • Medication and first aid kit 
  • Blankets
  • Warm winter clothing and accessories
  • Emergency radio 

2. Have Tools on Standby

Too much ice or snow could trap you inside your home, so having a crowbar, axe, chiseling tool or shovel could aid in making a path to escape. Additionally, having tools nearby could be helpful for making any quick repairs. For instance, closing a small hole to stop the cold from filling your home. Remember to stay warm or find shelter if the damages are dangerous. 

3. Check on Pipes & Gutters 

As fall winds down and winter begins, take time to clear out rain gutters, repair roof leaks, and check the roof to make sure it can handle the extra weight of snow and ice. You’ll also need to insulate water pipes or faucets with winter covers on the exterior of the home. Allowing faucets to drip or trickle during cold weather or if the power/heat are out can also help avoid freezing pipes. When water freezes, it expands, and this can cause water pipes to burst. Know how and where to shut off water valves if a pipe bursts.

4. Watch Out for Trees

Trees lose limbs and leaves annually, and they also grow wider and bigger annually. Thus it is important to inspect trees before winter and to remove any branches that could fall on a house, powerline, car or other structure. After the storm, it’s also important to be careful around trees. Ice can accumulate and cause limbs to snap and fall down. For your safety, watch out for trees when walking around the property or shoveling ice out of the driveway.

5. Be Mindful About Carbon Monoxide 

Carbon monoxide poisoning is dangerous and there can be a heightened possibility for it after an ice storm. You’ll need to check and clear out the areas where your furnace and other vents are located, in case ice or snow start to block the vents. If the power does go out, remember to turn off anything that runs on gas or propane. To receive an early warning if carbon monoxide does become present, install battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors in the home. 

6. Save Water, Then More Water

One way to save water is by filling bathtubs, sinks and kitchen pots with water before the power goes out. Water is necessary for staying hydrated, and it can also help you operate your home in many other ways. It could give a toilet enough pressure to flush and even for hygienic purposes such as brushing your teeth and cleaning. 

As you take steps to prepare your home for an ice storm this winter, remember to contact your OKFB Insurance agent and review your Home Insurance policy. Insurance claims are an important part of recovering from storm damage. Review your homeowners, renters, or business insurance policies to ensure you have appropriate coverage for your property and personal belongings. Photograph and inventory your property to assist with post-disaster claims.

5 Ways to Keep Your Home Warm & Safe

The air outside is turning cool and crisp and your home can officially be a warm getaway. Keeping a home heated properly and safely can be a large undertaking and an ongoing process, so to help you keep your home cozy this year, check out these tips! 

1. HVAC System

Don’t wait to check up on your heating system until the day you need it, otherwise, it can be a pain to discover it needs repairs or a tune-up. Early November is a good time to schedule an inspection with an HVAC specialist to ensure all things electrical and gas are working well. Most HVAC’s have a long service life, and you can extend the longevity of the system by performing these annual checkups and tune-ups.  

2. Proper Ventilation

One way to help the warm air circulate better is to replace your furnace filters and check the exhaust fans in the bathrooms and kitchens. If the exhaust fans have buildup, it could pose a fire hazard. You should also install at least one carbon monoxide detector in the home. Most modern gas heaters are very safe, but there is still a chance that a dangerous leak could occur. Having a detector can help keep you and your family safe while the heater is running. 

3. Home Decor

Did you know you could utilize rugs and curtains to decorate your home and help make it warmer? Floorboards and tiles can become cold, so laying out a rug will keep your feet from picking up the cool temperature from the floor. Along with rugs, dense curtains could help keep your home warm by keeping in more of the home’s heat and keeping out more of the outdoor cold. 

4. Fireplace Flue 

If your home has a fireplace, remember to close the flue when you don’t have a fire going. Leaving the flue open can allow warm air from your living room to escape through the chimney, meaning it will take more to heat your home. It’s also often the culprit for cold drafts entering your home. Closing the flue when the fireplace is not in use can help keep the warm air inside your home. 

5. Space Heaters

Space heaters can be a great way to add an extra burst of heat to a room, but they also pose some safety risks. You can safely use a space heater by placing it at least three feet away from anything that could catch on fire, plugging it directly into the wall and avoiding using power strips or extension cords, and by routinely checking the heater and power cord to ensure they are not damaged or frayed. 

Your home keeps you warm and safe, and we protect your home. We’ve got your back during all the seasons. If any changes have been made, remember to contact your OKFB agent to ensure your home insurance policy is up-to-date and everything is covered.