Ice Dams

Dealing With Ice Dams on RoofsIce Dams | Home Maintenance

An ice dam has the potential to cause serious damage to both your roof and the inside of your home. When snow accumulates on a roof, a cycle of melting and refreezing occurs. The ice then forms a  line or “dam” at the edge of the roof. As more snow melts, it keeps getting bigger. Once the dam gets large enough, the melted snow that pools up behind it can force its way back under the roof shingle and then leak into your home!

Two key factors interact to cause these types of problems:  insulation and ventilation. Make sure your attic is well insulated to help prevent the melting-freezing cycle. Check and seal places where warm air could leak from your house to the attic, including vent pipes, exhaust fans, chimneys, attic hatches and light fixtures.

Most importantly, remove snow from your roof! Clearing the snow from your roof immediately after a winter storm can help prevent ice dams from forming. Clear your downspouts. An easy way to help snow and ice drain off your roof is to make sure the area around your downspouts is clear.

What are the indicators of an ice dam?

If you notice water damage on ceilings or exterior walls, it can be an indication that an ice dam is formed and ice and water have forced their way into your attic area. Regardless of the circumstances – if water damage occurs from freezing or other sources, call a professional property damage company. They have trained technicians who will mitigate the loss to prevent further damage and the provide restoration services to return the property to a pre-loss condition.

Source:  Will Southcombe, Director of Technical Services, PuroClean

Flood Insurance: What Isn’t Covered

What’s Not Covered by Flood InsuranceFlood Insurance

Generally, physical damage to your building or personal property “directly” caused by a flood is covered by your flood insurance policy. For example, damages caused by a sewer backup are covered if the backup is a direct result of flooding. However, if the backup is caused by some other problem, the damages are not covered.

  • Damage caused by moisture, mildew, or mold that could have been avoided by the property owner.
  • Currency, precious metals, and valuable papers such as stock certificates.
  • Property and belongings outside of a building such as trees, plants, wells, septic systems, walks, decks, patios, fences, seawalls, hot tubs, and swimming pools.
  • Living expenses such as temporary housing.
  • Financial losses caused by business interruption or loss of use of insured property.
  • Most self-propelled vehicles such as cars, including their parts.
  • Paneling, bookcases, and window treatments such as curtains and blinds.
  • Carpeting, area carpets, and other floor coverings such as tile.
  • Drywall for walls and ceilings (below lowest elevated floor).
  • Walls and ceilings not made of drywall.
  • Most personal property such as clothing, electronic equipment, kitchen supplies, and furniture.

Flood Insurance for Basements and Areas Below the Lowest Elevated Floor

  • Basements; crawl spaces under an elevated building
  • Enclosed areas beneath buildings elevated on full-story foundation walls (walkout basements)
  • Enclosed areas under other types of elevated buildings.
  • Make sure to ask your agent for additional details on basement coverage.

Flood Insurance: The Basics| Flood Insurance: What Isn’t Covered | Preparing for a Flood

www.floodsmart.gov

Flood Insurance: The Basics

What’s Covered

Homes flooded with high waters.As with any other type of insurance, it’s important to know what your policy does and does not cover. By now, you probably know that flood insurance covers flood damage, but you probably don’t know all of the details.

Building Property

  • The insured building & its foundation
  • Electrical & plumbing systems
  • Central air conditioning equipment, furnaces & water heaters
  • Refrigerators, cooking stoves & built-in appliances such as dishwashers
  • Permanently installed carpeting over unfinished flooring
  • Permanently installed paneling, wallboard, bookcases & cabinets
  • Window blinds
  • Detached garages (up to 10% of building property coverage); detached buildings (other than  garages) require a separate building property policy
  • Debris removal

Personal Contents

  • Personal belongings, such as clothing, furniture & electronic equipment
  • Curtains; portable & window air conditioners
  • Portable microwave ovens & portable dishwashers
  • Carpets that are not included in building coverage
  • Clothing washers & dryers
  • Food freezers & food items in them
  • Certain valuable items such as original artwork & furs (up to $2,500)

The Basics | Flood Insurance: What Isn’t Covered | How to Prepare for a Flood

MN Auto Insurance: What Affects Policy Cost?

Variables that affect the cost of your auto insurance cost.

Auto Policy Cost

 

Age and Gender –  Insurance Industry statistics show that certain groups of people have different accident rates, based on their age and gender. For example, teenagers and seniors have more accidents. Because they are viewed as an increased risk for the insurance company, they pay more for coverage. 

Type of Vehicle –  Certain vehicles cost more to repair or replace. An insurance company charges more for physical damage coverage on one of these vehicles.

Mileage –  The more you drive, the more opportunity for an accident – and the more you pay for coverage.

Driving Record –  You will be rated according to traffic accidents and tickets you have over a period of years. The more incidents, the greater the premium. You may also be turned down for coverage if you have too many.

Where You Live – If you live in an area with more traffic (a city versus a rural area), industry statistics show that you have a greater chance for an accident and therefore will pay more for insurance.

Deductibles –  Some coverage’s in your policy have a deductible, which is the amount you pay first, before your insurance company pays, on a covered loss. The higher the deductible, the lower your premium. Insurance companies offer varying deductible amounts.

Discounts –  Your premium may be reduced by various discounts offered by some companies in some instances. For example, you may get a discount if you have your homeowner’s insurance and auto insurance with the same company; or if you are a non-smoker. Other discounts are required by law: policyholders age 55 and over who have successfully completed a defensive driving course; a vehicle equipped with an authorized anti-theft protection device.

Surcharges –  If you have one or more traffic violations or accidents, your insurance company may attach an additional charge to your policy. The Surcharge Disclosure Sheet, which by law must be given to you at the time you apply for your policy, will have the details.

Minnesota Auto Insurance: Required Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: Optional Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: Renting & Loaning
Minnesota Auto Insurance: No-Fault Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: What Affects Policy Cost?

MNDepartment of Commerce

MN Auto Insurance: No-Fault Coverage

What is No-Fault Coverage?No-Fault Coverage| MN Auto Insurance

No fault coverage is widely misunderstood. Many drivers believe that their insurance company will cover ALL losses in an accident, regardless of who is at fault. But “no-fault” coverage applies ONLY to expenses resulting from injuries sustained in an accident. Here are some other facts about no-fault coverage.

No-Fault is a Minnesota law.

It was established to help ease the burden of courts and to ensure prompt treatment for accident victims.

No-fault IS the Personal Injury Protection (PIP) on your policy, sometimes referred to as Basic Economic Loss Benefits.

No-fault covers your medical costs, wage loss, replacement services such as housekeeping, and in the event of death, $2,000 of funeral expenses.

No-fault claims are first made on your own PIP. If expenses then prove greater than the PIP limit on your policy, or you attain specified thresholds, you may make a claim against the other driver’s liability coverage if the other driver is found to be liable.

Minimum no-fault coverage is $40,000. That amount is available to each person injured in an accident; $20,000 is allowed for medical expenses and $20,000 may be used for non-medical expenses. Coverage beyond these minimum amounts may be purchased.

No-fault usually does not apply to accidents when you are riding your motorcycle or snowmobile. You must purchase a separate insurance policy covering these vehicles, and the policies will not include personal injury protection. PIP coverage for snowmobiles or motorcycles can, however, be purchased separately.

No-fault claims must be made within six months of the accident. You must include proof of expenses, complete an application for benefits, and submit to a medical examination if requested. Bills should be submitted to the insurance company as they come in.

Minnesota Auto Insurance: Required Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: Optional Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: Renting & Loaning
Minnesota Auto Insurance: No-Fault Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: What Affects Policy Cost?

MNDepartment of Commerce
Part 5 : “What Affects Policy Cost”

MN Auto Insurance: Renting & Loaning

Renting a car? Are you covered?Minnesota Auto Insurance

Minnesota law requires every auto insurance policy, under the property damage liability portion, to provide a minimum of $35,000 in coverage, without a deductible, for damage to, and loss of use of, a rental car (including pickup trucks and vans under 26,000 pounds.) State law further specifies that when a driver rents a vehicle in Minnesota, separate notice must be attached to the rental contract that informs the driver of this coverage. The notice must also state: “purchase of any collision damage waiver or similar insurance affected in this rental contract is not necessary if your policy was issued in Minnesota.” The same law requires that no collision damage waiver or other insurance affecting the rented vehicle can be sold unless the person renting the vehicle acknowledges in writing that the consumer protection notice has been read and understood.

Loaning your car to a friend?

If you loan your car to a friend, and he or she has an accident, their injuries will be covered under their own policy, not yours – assuming they have an auto policy. If they do not have their own policy, and no one in their household is covered under a policy, the basic economic loss benefits will be paid from your policy.

Who pays for damage to the car, however, is not quite so simple. Your car will always be covered under your own policy as long as the policy carries comprehensive and collision coverage. Under certain circumstances, the policy covering the other vehicle may pay for damage to your car. Check your policy under the definition of “your covered auto.”

Minnesota Auto Insurance: Required Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: Optional Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: Renting & Loaning
Minnesota Auto Insurance: No-Fault Coverage
Minnesota Auto Insurance: What Affects Policy Cost?

MNDepartment of Commerce
Part Four: What is No-Fault Coverage?

MN Auto Insurance: Optional Coverage

Optional coverage applies in cases of damage to your vehicle.

Auto Insurance

If you are at fault, damage to your vehicle as a result of an accident with another vehicle or object is covered under the COLLISION portion of your policy.

If your vehicle is stolen or damaged by vandalism, fire, or impact with a deer, or falling objects, you are covered under the COMPREHENSIVE portion of your policy.
Recap Of Required Coverage

Required coverage applies when you and others covered by your policy are in an accident:

You collect on your PIP benefits, regardless of whether you or the other driver is at fault. This is the no-fault portion of your policy.

If the other driver is at fault, you make a claim against his or her LIABILITY when your PIP benefits run out. You also can make a claim for damage to your vehicle.

If the other driver’s liability is insufficient, you collect on your UNDER-INSURED benefits for PIP coverage.

If the other driver has no insurance, you collect on your UNINSURED benefits for PIP coverage.