It’s the favorite time of the year for a lot of us, and we begin planning our summer vacation months in advance, whether it is spending the weekend at the beach, going camping or on a road trip. Some prefer to travel abroad and visit a new country, and some others like to take advantage of the free time and get rid of all the clutter; picnics, pool parties, kite flying are good old summer classic activities all of us can enjoy.
Along with the joy of the summer come several aspects to keep in mind before fully going on relax mode, this to ensure that the time we are spending with our friends, family, or by ourselves can be completely worry-free, without the uncertainty of the kind of problems or situations we might be coming back home to, ruining the fun for everyone.
Here are 5 insurance tips for the summer that we should follow if we want to make the most out of our vacation, from how to make sure our home remains safe even when we’re gone, to safe-driving tips and suggestions, pool party safety, boating suggestions, and being aware of purchasing insurance plans we don’t need.
Keep Your Home in Safe Mode
One of the most important aspects to keep in mind before going on vacation is making sure we are leaving our home as protected as possible, since we don’t want to come back to a house that has been broken into, or find out that a water pipe had burst.
The first thing to consider is making sure we don’t let the world know we will be away for a while, and only sharing this information with a trusted neighbor or friend, asking them to keep an eye on our home in case they witnessed anybody trying to break into it. Requesting a correspondence hold, as well as setting up timer-controlled lights will also reduce the risk of burglary and theft while we are away.
Another good idea is having a professional inspecting and repairing our water system inside and outside of the house, checking the tank, pipes, bathtub, sink, and toilets, in order to prevent coming back to a flooded house. A worse case scenario would be coming back only to find out there was a fire in our house, which can be avoided by simply keeping our electrical outlets covered, as well as cutting any gas supply to the house to prevent a possible gas leak that could lead to an accidental fire.
Both Hands on the Wheel
Since a lot of us might be going for a road trip to the nearest beach or summer destination, driving safe is a priority to arrive and return from our resting place without harm, and without having to call our insurance company for some on-the-road emergency.
The best way to make sure our summer road trip becomes one to remember for the right reasons, is to anticipate any possible issue we might face. Having a certified mechanic check our vehicle before hitting the road will always be a good idea. Coolant, oil levels, brakes, engine, and tires should be in the best state possible to prevent an unfortunate incident.
It is also important to consult with your insurance company what kind of coverage you have while driving on the road, for this can save us hours or even days of having to deal with unforeseen situations we might experience. Always consider bringing an emergency kit with you in case you need to change a tire or jump start a car. You never know if you might be the good Samaritan helping a fellow driver in the middle of nowhere.
No Running Near the Pool
Planning a pool party during summer is always a great idea. The weather is perfect, and getting together with friends or family and having good quality time fits right in. However, having a pool in your backyard might come with some disadvantages and risks which we need to consider during summer.
To begin with, whenever we have a swimming pool, we are responsible for the safety of anybody who uses it, with or without our permission or knowledge of them using it. With this in mind, it is always a good idea to get an Umbrella Insurance policy just in case somebody gets hurt inside your property, but before doing so, remember to check with your current insurance company if the coverage plan you have already protects you and your guests. Besides, we need to be aware of safety codes and standards required by law, such as a having a fence around the pool, as well as having emergency kits available.
Some other basic recommendations include never leaving children near or inside a swimming pool without adult supervision, always knowing who is swimming and what their skills or needs are. If you have children and they invite their friends over, make sure you talk to their parents and get their permission before allowing pool access.
Gently Row Your Boat
If you are one of the few owners of a boat and decide to sail away for the day, enjoying the open water, feeling the breeze and the water beneath you, there are multiple situations you might want to be prepared for in terms of liability.
There are usually three different types of insurance plans for boats to protect you in case you have an accident that results in total loss: an Actual Cash Value, which will result in the reimbursement of the current market value of your boat by the time of the accident; an Agreed Amount Value, which reimburses the amount you and your insurance company will agree upon when you purchase the policy; a Replacement Cost coverage, with which your insurance company will have to replace your boat with the most similar one, and if not possible, then cover the expenses of acquiring a new one.
Once you’ve obtained the proper insurance plan for you, make sure you don’t end up voiding your policy, which is why you should know the Marine and Boating laws that apply in your state; whether you need a boating license, a boating education course, or any additional requirements. Also, remember to always have personal floating devices like lifejackets and lifebuoys, and just like with any other activities, do not mix alcohol with boating, as it can end up voiding your insurance and even worse, being the cause of a fatal accident.
Don’t get Over-Insured
It is never a bad idea to be over-prepared for unfortunate incidents that might happen when we are away for vacation. However, when it comes to insurance, it is always better to avoid being over-insured, purchasing a coverage plan we might have already been paying for with our existing insurance.
Whether you are traveling abroad or within the country, renting a car or another vehicle, or doing any other activity out of the ordinary, always contact your insurance agency to confirm what kind of extra coverage you might need for this summer before purchasing an additional policy that you might not even need.