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Things Covered by Commercial Property Insurance

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

While commercial insurance can be expensive, it is usually a worthy investment While commercial insurance can be expensive, it is usually a worthy investment

Holding commercial property insurance as a business owner in South Bend, PA, is important to ensuring your business’ survival in the event of an emergency. This type of policy covers damaged property in the case of fire damage, natural disasters, and even theft. It can cost quite a bit for businesses that have expensive equipment, but the premiums are usually tax deductible.

What You Can Cover

There are many types of policies available for commercial insurance, but things you may want to consider covering include:

The building itself, whether you own it or rent it
Office equipment such as computers and furniture
Manufacturing and other large or expensive equipment
Average inventory you keep in stock
Accounting records, proprietary information, and other essential documents
Fencing and landscaping
Expensive signage

Calculating Premiums and Coverage

The amount you will pay for your commercial insurance and the amount of coverage you will get after a disaster depends on the value of your business, the property, and its assets. The location of the property is a determining factor, as well as the type of construction and how the building was built inside and out (was it built with fireproofing and modern wiring or HVAC?) Even how the building is being used is considered. For example, a restaurant or repair shop is considered to carry more risk than an office building. Your rates will also be determined by how close the nearest fire station and hydrants are, as well as your own fire protection and security systems.

Protect Your Assets

While commercial insurance can be expensive, it is usually a worthy investment, especially if disaster strikes and leaves you without the essentials to run your business for a period of time. Particularly in the case of a fire, this type of insurance will cover fire restoration services and get you back up and running in no time.

3 Emergency Power Systems That Can Keep Your Building Running During an Outage

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

A standby generator is capable of providing a lot of power and require regular professional maintenance One of the most common way businesses are able to power their buildings if an outage ever does occur is by investing in a standby generator

3 Emergency Power Systems To Consider In Case Of An Emergency

Whether due to a storm or other cause, a power outage can force you to shut down your business in White, PA, or leave you stranded in an emergency situation. From having the light necessary to navigate the area to calling for help from a restoration company if a storm damages your building, it is important to have backup power available if you need it. Depending on your company’s specific needs and budget, here are three different emergency power systems to consider so you can be prepared in the case of an emergency.

Standby Generator

One of the most common way businesses are able to power their buildings if an outage ever does occur is by investing in a standby generator. These machines are permanent systems often located outside or sometimes inside a building. Depending on the model, they might run on gasoline, diesel, natural gas, or liquid propane. These generators are capable of providing a lot of power and require regular professional maintenance. They are often used in commercial settings due to their effectiveness.

Portable Generator

If you are looking for a more affordable option and only need to power a few items in a power outage, a portable generator can be moved to a safe outdoor area and help supply power to your building. This can be a good option for buildings located in areas where storms and outages are rare.

Solar Backup Generator

Like traditional gas-powered generators, solar backup generators can help provide power to your building in the case of an emergency. However, they use stored energy from the sun. While solar generators are a clean, safe alternative and do not require purchased fuel to run, they are not yet able to provide the same amount of power a standby generator can.
Choosing the right king of emergency power system for your business will depend on your specific needs and the location of your building. It is important to consider your options and stay prepared for an unexpected power outage.

Will My Insurance Cover a Broken Pipe?

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

If your pipe was broken by an unexpected event, your insurance should cover repairs Water damage from a broken pipe in

Will My Insurance Cover a Broken Pipe?

Being a homeowner in Indiana, PA, comes with many advantages, from privacy and saving money, to the freedom of doing whatever you want with your space. Unfortunately, there are some downsides to owning a home, especially when things break that end up being very costly or cause damage to your belongings and even the overall structure of the home. This is where the beauty of homeowner’s insurance comes into play, especially in the case of a flood or broken pipe.
Many individuals wonder whether their homeowner’s insurance coverage includes damages caused by a broken or leaky pipe, so it’s important to read through your policy with your insurance agent to find out exactly what is covered. Some policies do not cover things like wear and tear or gradual damage. But some policies include “exceptions” such as “resulting” damage that is caused by a broken pipe or leaking appliance.

Resulting Damage

Damages resulting from something like a broken pipe or other type of leak might be covered by your policy, but the replacement pipe is often not covered. Insurance companies consider plumbing like this to be your responsibility as the homeowner. Be aware that leaky pipes are different from broken pipes which could flood the entire house. This type of flood is often covered in a common all-perils insurance policy. Floods caused by other events often require additional flood insurance.

Your Responsibility

If you need to fix a broken pipe, and it broke because of your negligence, the insurance company can deny your claim. For example, you knew about a leaky pipe for a long period of time and didn’t take the proper steps to fix it, and then it burst. Or your vacation home is in a cold climate and the heat was left too low causing the pipes to freeze. The insurance company generally looks for a flood caused by something happening suddenly and unexpectedly, and it should not have been easily preventable.

Cover Your Damages

If your pipe was broken by an unexpected event, your insurance should cover repairs for drywall, paint, and carpeting. It should also cover any flood remediation services you need to get your home back to normal and avoid other damages, such as mold growth.

Guarding Your Warehouse Against MoldGuarding Your Warehouse Against Mold

7/29/2019 (Permalink)

A cracked foundation can cause mold to grow over time

The humid area of Loop, PA, brings concerns about mold growth, especially for commercial warehouses. The content of the warehouse matters little, as mold can grow on any surface where oxygen and moisture are readily available. Mold spores are invisible to the naked eye until substantial growth occurs. It is important to maintain an environment that deters spore growth.

Prime Growth Locations

Where water comes in, mold is sure to follow. Potential points for water entry include:

  • Leaky roofs
  • Cracked foundations
  • Unsealed windows
  • Deteriorated door frames

Areas with high humidity are prime locations for mold growth, especially in warehouses or commercial buildings where damp floors, walls, or ceilings are left untreated. Water damage from leaks in the roof, burst pipes, or flooded areas will accelerate a mold problem, and you should be vigilant in your maintenance plan. Even if you are careful to remove standing water or mop up leaks and spills, materials that are quick to absorb water can develop into a breeding ground for mold spores.

First Signs of Growth

Because you won’t be able to see the mold spores at first, you should monitor the conditions around your warehouse. If there is moisture in the air, there is potential for a mold problem. A musty odor is often the first sign of trouble, usually coming from carpets, walls, and areas with little ventilation. Spotty stains on the walls that are dark in color and appear fuzzy can also be a sign of growth.

Growth Removal

While you might not be able to do anything about the weather in Loop, PA, you can take precautions by keeping the humidity down in your building with a dehumidifier. You should also have your HVAC unit cleaned regularly. Mold growth is an unpleasant problem, but with a combination of proactive measures and immediate professional remediation treatment, your warehouse and operations can carry on as usual.

When Home Fire Is Not Covered by Insurance

7/21/2019 (Permalink)

When fire damage is proof of arson, you will not get coverage for your losses

Fire Situations That Are Not Covered By Insurance

Experiencing a home fire can be incredibly devastating emotionally and especially financially. To mitigate risk in Iselin, PA, most homeowners purchase home insurance. That way, if disaster strikes, your bank account is not completely wiped out during your restoration process.
Many insurance policies cover the property, your belongings kept inside, and living expenses if it’s necessary to move during any required renovations. It is important to understand your policy, however, because there are a few different fire situations which are not covered under typical insurance policies.

Arson

Arson can be used as a form of insurance fraud when the owner intentionally sets the home on fire for the purpose of collecting insurance funds. If you make a home fire claim, the insurance company will send someone out to investigate, both to assess the damage and determine the cause. If they find proof of arson, you will not get coverage for your losses.

Vacant Homes

If you own property which has not been occupied for 30 days, usually a vacant home fire is not covered under homeowner policies. Check for specifics with your individual policy as there are some variations between insurance companies regarding this situation. It is still possible to insure vacant homes, such as those that are only occupied part of the year. Some companies offer specific “vacant home insurance,” and others offer endorsements to add on to your current policy. This will cover basic damage including:

  • Fire
  • Wind
  • Hail
  • Theft
  • Vandalism

Protecting Your Property

Understanding your homeowner’s insurance policy is important when it comes to mitigating risks of a home fire or other potential disasters. Most types of fires are covered, including lightning, gas leaks, and various kinds of accidents, but an intentional home fire will be a complete loss as well as a fire in a vacation home or otherwise vacant home if you do not prepare with the correct type of coverage.

Why You Should Add Hurricane Shutters to Your Home

7/11/2019 (Permalink)

There are several types of storm shutters

Several Types of Storm Shutters for Your Home

If you live in an area prone to hurricanes, you need to be prepared for major storms and high winds. A company that provides emergency restoration services can help you repair your Canoe Ridge, PA, home following a disaster. Yet you can also mitigate your damage ahead of time by installing hurricane shutters.
There are several types of storm shutters. Each one fits different aesthetic and budgetary requirements:

  • Accordion
  • Roll-Down or Roll-Up
  • Colonial Security
  • Storm Panel
  • Bahama

Read on for more details on these various types of shutters. You can then decide which ones are right for you.

Accordion

This permanent shutter is usually made of polycarbonate or quality metal, making it quite strong and effective. Each shutter is attached to the side of a window and is unfolded and locked in place by the homeowner. The average cost is $15 to $25 per square foot.

Roll-Down/Roll-Up

The roll-down or roll-up option is ideal for those who want a permanent change to the outside of their house. They also typically feature polycarbonate or quality metal. Besides protecting the home from high winds, they also add privacy and insulation. The typical cost is between $20 and $30 per square foot.

Colonial Security

The colonial security shutter looks similar to a regular decorative shutter. However, you can bolt a colonial security shutter to keep it in place during a storm. The price varies from $200 to $500 per window.
Unlike the other options on this list, storm panels are temporary and are only put in place when a storm is coming. They are made of steel, polycarbonate or aluminum and cost just $7 to $15 each.

Bahama

Bahama awnings are ideal for those living in hot, sunny climates. Besides protecting homes from debris, they also provide necessary shade. They usually cost $15 to $20 per square foot.
Each of the above options provides protection from high winds. Your home will be more secure, and you and your loved ones will feel safer.

If a Fire Didn't Cause Much Damage, Should You Fix It Yourself?

6/28/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage in a commercial building

A fire on your commercial property, even if there wasn't much fire loss, can put your business at a bit of a standstill. If the fire was small and caused minimal damage, you may be tempted to make the repairs yourself or ignore it for awhile for the sake of your company. There are some reasons you should consider not doing this.

You Should Not DIY

Repairing fire and smoke damage can become dangerous without the proper PPE or protocols. You could even end up doing more harm than good. If you don't know exactly what you are doing, it may not get done properly and damage will persist. Although it may seem like a big deal, you should trust a professional fire remediation service.

  • water damage from fire-fighting efforts can
  • eventually turn to mold
  • smoke damage can degrade electronics
  • specific techniques are required to remove
  • soot from upholstery and documents
  • air quality is something that needs to be
  • tested with specialized tools

You Are Probably Covered

Most insurance policies that protect against fire also include coverage for partial fire loss. Before you move anything, be sure to document everything you can with pictures and written lists. Partial losses are sometimes low on the priority list of insurance adjusters, so be sure to follow up frequently if you do not hear from them right away.

You Might Have More Damage Than You Think

Not all damage is immediately visible. Areas like the walls, siding, roof, windows, plumbing, wiring and heating system need a thorough inspection from an expert to truly assess any deterioration. Once damage is found, a professional fire restoration company can help you claim these damages on your insurance, as well.

Even in small doses, fire loss should be taken seriously to avoid bigger problems down the road. Attempting to patch it yourself could be a bad idea for both you and your commercial property. Don't be afraid to reach out to the right people when the time comes.

What Business Owners Should Understand About Clean Water Damage

6/21/2019 (Permalink)

Broken pipe in Willet, PA

It's Helpful to Learn About Clean Water, Also Known as Category 1 Water Damage

It can be easy to feel stressed your business in Willet, PA, floods. Many business owners and managers are unsure of the category of water damage that has affected their properties. The type of water present can majorly affect the cleanup and restoration process, and it can be helpful to learn about clean water, also known as category 1 water damage.

What Are Sources of Category 1 Water?

The category of water damage is determined by the source of the floodwater. Category 1 water is water that is not contaminated with hazardous materials. Common sources of this category of water include:

  • A broken or damaged supply line
  • A broken pipe
  • A tub or sink that has overflowed
  • Damaged appliances


Why Does the Category of Water Matter?

The category of water damage can drastically affect the cost and time spent on removal and restoration. In general, the process of removing clean water is less involved than removing category 2 or category 3 water, since the source of the water is clean and the water itself does not contain potentially harmful materials. In order to prevent the same issue from causing a flood again, it can also be helpful to know what category of water damage has affected your building.

How Are Businesses Affected by Category 1 Water Damaged Restored?

The restoration process can vary depending on how long the water remained in the building and the amount of water present in the building. When large amounts of water have affected a building, it can be useful to employ emergency restoration services who can ensure restoration is performed in an efficient manner. If category 1 water is quickly removed and only a small amount of water was present in the building, restoration could be minimal.

Understanding what category 1 water damage is can help business owners prepare for the restoration process. Though any type of water damage can devastate a business, clean water is often much easier to remove. As a result, the restoration process is often less costly and less time-consuming.

How To Handle Water Dripping From Your Light Fixture

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

Water in light fixtures can be a scary sight

How To Handle Water Dripping From Your Light Fixture

If you’ve ever seen water in light fixtures on your ceiling, you know it can set off a panic. Everyone knows electricity and water do not mix, so it requires immediate action. The following steps can guide you through the process and keep everyone safe in your Two Lick, PA, home.

1. Turn Off the Electricity and Water

Do not touch the light fixture; instead, the first step is to turn off your electricity. Water conducts electricity, and there is a real risk of shock or even a fire when water surrounds electric wiring. Assuming water is coming from an unknown or external source (such as rain from a leaky roof), turn off your home’s water supply. This will help you contain the leak and prevent further ceiling damage.

2. Call the Professionals

It can be tempting to try a do-it-yourself approach when you notice water in light fixtures, but it’s really a job for professional water and restoration specialists. You of course will need someone to address the plumbing issue or leaking roof; however, you also must make sure to fully dry the area to prevent mold damage. A ceiling is a difficult place to dry out yourself, and it can appear dry while still hiding moisture.

3. Prevent Future Problems

If you’ve had ceiling damage from a burst pipe, your focus after cleanup should be on how to prevent it from happening in the future. If the leak was caused by pipes freezing and bursting, you can avoid this by keeping one or two faucets slowly dripping in extremely cold temperatures. Try to keep the home the same temperature at night as it is during the day, and open kitchen or bathroom cabinets to allow warm air in. Professionals can also help reduce water pressure and soften water, which both help relieve stress on pipes.

Water in light fixtures can be a scary sight. Make sure to shut off electricity and water and call professionals to help clean it up. You also can take several steps to prevent future problems to help make the situation more manageable.

How To Care for Mold-Covered Paintings

5/30/2019 (Permalink)

Painting covered with mold

It doesn't take much time for mold to settle in and develop into a colony as long as it has some moisture and a safe place. Consider some old paintings stored in a basement; after a couple of rotations through humid summers and frozen winters, those paintings could have become a cozy home for many types of molds. Fortunately, if the homeowner decides to hang those paintings, it is possible for mold cleaning to restore the art to its previous good condition.

Follow These Steps

For the best results, you should contact a conservator to treat the paintings. (More about this later.) However, there are a couple of things you need to do first:

  • Move the paintings into a dry, warm location. You could put the art in a sunny spot, but too much sunlight could lead to fading.
  • Find out which type of paint was used in the artwork. Art remediation professionals will use methods specific to oils, acrylics, or watercolors.
  • Identify if the art is on canvas, hardboard, or paper. Again, the methods used for treating each of these vary.

Depending on the preferences of the professional, you may need to remove frames or packaging.

Contact Professionals

Once the professionals get your painting for mold cleaning, they will begin by assessing the extent of mold damage. After determining whether it's possible to save the artwork, conservators will try to verify the type of paint and background. If the artist used acrylics on canvas, for instance, the cleaning method is very different from the method used to treat watercolors on paper. Finally, professionals have access to chemical treatments, specifically for artwork.

Avoid New Mold Growth

After mold remediation is complete, be aware of the risk for repeated mold contamination. If you put your newly cleaned art back into a damp basement, new growth won't be far away. Instead, identify the safest room in your home and store your artwork there.

Don't hurry into mistakes in a moment of panic. Follow the first few steps given above and then contact a Black Lick, PA, professional to tackle the mold cleaning appropriately.