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The Insurance Benefits of Impact Resistant Roofing

Scientific and architectural advancements are making homes safer and more durable than ever. For instance, houses are made with flame retardant materials that lower the chances of the home burning to its foundation. Roofs are no exception to these advancements, and choosing the right roof for your home might actually save you money on your home insurance costs.

Meet the Impact Resistant Roof

Impact resistant roofs (IRR’s) are specially designed and tested to be impact resistant for exposure to hailstones, strong winds, and flying debris. They can be made of asphalt, metal, plastics, rubber, and recycled materials. Impact resistant roofs are rated as class 1, 2, 3, or 4 (1 being the weakest, 4 being the strongest) based on the test results. The cost of impact-resistant roofs varies based on the type you buy.

Why You’ll Want One

Impact-resistant roofs are simply more durable, no matter where your home is located. They are made to resist damages from threats that can shred conventional shingles and tear them away. Homeowners with impact-resistant roofs save money on repairs and insurance claims after big storms come through, not to mention their homes are kept safer. To top it off, most IRR’s come with a 30-50 year limited product warranty. They are more expensive than traditional roofs, but when you weigh the outcome, IRR’s are an investment worth making.

Having an IRR Could Mean Lower Premiums

When your roof is less susceptible to serious damages, your likelihood of filing a claim is smaller. For this reason, several states offer an insurance benefit for opting for an impact resistant roof. This is especially true in states where weather patterns are likely to bring severe hailstorms. Ask your agent if you can save on your homeowner’s insurance premium by upgrading to an impact-resistant roof.

Your roof is one of your home’s most important elements, so you’ll want to check it for missing, curled, or damaged shingles. If you aren’t sure what kind of shape your roof is in, schedule a professional roof inspection. If you know you’re in the market to replace your roof, contact one of our agents today to see how an IRR can help you save on insurance costs!

Beware of Hail Hunters & Storm Chasers

As I’m sitting in my New Lenox office, watching a summer storm roll in, I know that I am going to soon start getting phone calls from unscrupulous contractors. Hail Hunters. Storm Chasers.

Unfortunately, storms often bring out opportunists who use the situation to take advantage of homeowners. They may offer to help our customers file their claim, offer fee-based services (that insurance companies offer for free), offer to cover the insured’s deductible, or offer other “benefits”. We have even seen situations where these opportunists say that they can get the policy holder more than they are entitled to receive. One example I have seen is where a contractor, once a contract has been signed with them, has suggested that they can get our insured a new roof when there is little or no actual storm damage.

These Storm Chasers will build a story that frightens the homeowner and may try to get them to enter into a contract to save their home. As always, we advise all of our customers to never sign anything offered by a contractor until after a reputable adjuster has contacted the insured and offered guidance.

If you feel that you have damage caused by a storm to your property, you should contact any of us at Langlois Insurance Agency and file a claim. That claim will be reported to your insurance company and an adjuster will be assigned.

In addition, CIMICO has put together a solid list of tips to help protect you:

• If you feel that a storm has damaged your property, report the loss to Langlois Insurance Agency as soon as possible. Provide as much detail as you can. Be sure to provide phone numbers so an adjuster can contact you.
• The adjuster will explain the coverage available under your policy. If you have questions about your coverage, please always feel free to contact any of us at Langlois Insurance Agency.
• Keep in mind that your coverage may not be the same as your neighbor’s coverage.
• If asked to obtain repair estimates, try to obtain several from local contractors. Estimates should be detailed and specific about the work to be done.
• Hire a reputable, local contractor to do your work. Local contractors live in your community. They want you to be pleased with the work they do. If problems arise, they will be available to deal with those problems.
• Know your contractor. Ask for references and check them out. Drive by prior jobs to see how the work looks. Ask the owner if they are satisfied with the work.
• Do not pay the contractor the full amount of the repairs before the work starts. Reputable contractors may request partial payment when the work begins. This helps them cover the cost of materials and labor. Holding the balance due until the job is done provides incentive for the contractor to complete the work and move on to the next job.
• Before the work begins, request certificates of insurance for liability and worker’s compensations. Ask any of us at Langlois Insurance Agency to review the certificates with you.
• Again, don’t sign anything until you’ve spoken with your insurance agent!
• Finally, ask yourself, does what this representative telling me make sense? Does it sound too good to be true?

Contractor representatives often prowl neighborhoods looking for roofs that may indeed need replacement, but it could be from normal wear and age. Scare tactics may be used to convince the insured that unless they do something immediately their home will suffer serious damage. High-pressure sales tactics may be used to convince the insured that they must sign up today or risk losing a great deal.

If you are ever in one of these situations with a Storm Chaser, please, call us at #815-485-2106. We always love to hear from our customers!

Warmest Regards,
Matt Langlois

Don’t Invite Burglars Through Social Media

See this picture of my wife and me enjoying a delicious, frosty cocktail?  That was a recent vacation photo from a great trip that I took with my family a few months ago.  But, as much as we wanted to post this picture, we both knew that it just wasn’t a great idea to post any vacation photos until we had safely arrived home from our trip.

Why? Because I recently had a customer whose home was broken into while they were on vacation. During their vacation, they had posted all these great pics of themselves sunning on the beach. Along with the description, “Living in paradise for the next week.” And, with that, everyone in their social media world knew that their house would be unoccupied for a prolonged period of time…

Sharing news and posts on social media is a wonderful way to keep in touch with friends and family. If you are a “friend” of mine on either my Langlois Insurance Agency Facebook page and/or my personal Facebook page, you know that I love to share my life with my friends and family.

But, unfortunately, the reality is that sharing information on social media also means that you are sharing it with an unsavory group of criminals who are looking for access to your home, your valuables, or your person. The minute you post your vacation itinerary, thieves may be planning their own trip….breaking into your unoccupied home.

In order to avoid becoming another statistic, there are a couple of #socialmediasafety tips that I wanted to share before posting your activities on social media:

  1. Really limit your network only to family and friends that you know and trust.  Do you truly know and trust all 500 of your “friends”? If not, you may want to consider eliminating those that you don’t know and trust 100%.
  2. Keep silent about upcoming vacations.  Also, keep silent about being out of the house for a prolonged period of time.  For example, your son has an away baseball tournament that your whole family is going to attend?  Wait until you arrive safely back home before posting about it.
  3. Be very cautious about sharing personal data such as phone numbers, your home address and birthdays.
  4. Never post information about children or the elderly who may be home and vulnerable.

The access to abundant technology has changed the way we communicate. We have constant access to friends, family, and neighbors.  We just need to stay vigilant on what information we are sharing and to who we are sharing it with.

As always, if you have any additional questions, please don’t hesitate to give any of us at Langlois Insurance Agency a call at #815-485-2106.  I always love hearing from my customers!

Warmest Regards,

Matt Langlois

What to Do After Your House Floods

I love being an Insurance Agent. It truly gives me great happiness ensuring that my customers are properly protected in the case of an insurance claim.

But, a few weeks ago, I was not only the Insurance Agent, but also the customer. During the polar vortex, a pipe burst in one of my rental properties. And, I felt all the sorrow, pain, and unhappiness that one of my insureds feels when they have a claim. But, along with all those negative feelings, I also had the sheer relief that I was properly insured.

And, this incident reminded my of why insurance is just so important! Thank goodness I was properly protected on this building.  Here are the “before” pictures of the building:

 

Now, please take a look at the disaster that occurred due to a burst pipe:

 

Aannnddd….this is what the building looks like after demo:

Because of this incident, I thought it would be a good idea to write a blog to remind all of us 1) why insurance is so important and 2) what do to if you have a flood incident.

There are a number of ways that your house can flood, whether it’s due to heavy rains, sewer backup, or a pipe burst. While a house flood can be devastating, here are some tips on how to respond if it were to happen to you.

Put Safety First

The first step in any major home disaster is to remain safe. You may be forced to leave your home if the flooding is bad enough. Make sure you are also safe when you return to your home to begin dealing with the aftermath. This may include turning off the power, as water and electricity obviously do not mix. Be sure to wear protective clothing such as rubber boots and gloves when you re enter your home. Not only will you be dealing with the water itself, but also whatever else the water has been in contact with, namely debris or even sewage. It is best to protect yourself against whatever harmful chemicals and items the flooding may have washed in.

Also, never eat food that has been contaminated by flood waters, or even been in close proximity to the water for an extended period of time. If the water was high enough to reach your refrigerator or any of your pantry cabinets, it is best to go ahead and throw the food away and just buy more. In addition, you should thoroughly wash any dinnerware, glasses, or flatware that might have been caught in the house flood before you use it again.

Call Your Insurance Agent

Your homeowners insurance will vary depending on what policies you have, but many insurance companies cover flooding due to storms, backed-up city sewers and storm drains, broken sump-pumps, or bursted pipes. Your insurance company will send an adjuster to look at and assess the damage to determine if it is a covered loss. If your losses and damages are covered, the sooner you call your agent, the sooner they will pay out. Repairs can become costly, but the insurance money will help get your home back in order quicker with less of a financial burden on you. So, if this ever happens to you, please call me so I can walk you through all the details of dealing with this type of claim.

Stop and Remove the Water

One of the first things you should do when your house floods is stop the source of water coming in if at all possible. If your sump-pump is broken or malfunctioning, replacing it will help keep up with any continuing rains and may prevent further damage to your basement, garage, crawl space, or main floor. Calling the city to remove debris from storm drains may also be necessary in order to help stop flooding.

If your flooded home was caused by a bursted pipe, fix the plumbing as soon as possible to lessen water damage. The sooner you stop the water from coming in, the sooner you can get to cleaning up and repairing any damages.

Once no more water is coming in, you can work to remove the water from your home. Depending on the level of flooding you have experienced or even the rooms in your home that have been affected, your process might change. You may need to bail water out using buckets and bins or use hoses to drain large amounts of water from your basement. As the water begins receding, you can use a wet vacuum to suck remaining bits of water and moisture from carpets and floors. If you’re lucky and the damage is minimal, you might be able to simply mop the mess up.

Dry Out Your Home

Even if you are successful in removing all of the standing water from your home, everything will remain damp and wet, especially if heavy rains have increased the humidity in your area. If you have power, use your air conditioning and portable fans to help dry the wet areas of your home.

Dehumidifiers are also a big help, especially in closed off spaces such as basements or crawl spaces. Dehumidifiers work by removing excess moisture from the air. This is the easiest way to dry out your home and minimize the potential water damage you might be dealing with, as it does not require you to actively clean. However, in the case of a house flood, dehumidifiers are only supplemental and you are likely to need multiple methods of action. Dehumidifiers are recommended for anyone who lives in a damp climate or an area that experiences longer rainy seasons, as they can prevent some of the problems associated with this type of weather, both for you and your home.

Clean Up

Once the water is gone and you have called your insurance company, it’s time to begin post-flood care. You can call in a professional clean-up crew or do the work yourself. This may involve determining what is salvageable and throwing away anything that is too damaged or no longer safe to use. If the flooding in your home was widespread, you may have to bring in a roll-off dumpster for easy disposal of larger damaged items, as you will find your trash bags filling quickly.

Be aware that you may need to remove flooring, drywall, and insulation to prevent mold and mildew from spreading in your home. Furniture may also need to be dried out, cleaned, or thrown away depending on the level of water damage. Unless you are exceptionally handy, it is probably best to call in a professional company that specializes in mold removal. Mold can begin developing within the first 24 hours after a flood, and once it has started growing, it can be difficult to fully remove. The quicker you remove items from water and begin drying them, the less likely they are to be lost to mold, but it’s always best to err on the side of caution and have a professional assess the situation.

If you’ve experienced flooding for any reason or want to be covered against possible floods in your area, please call Langlois Insurance Agency at #815-485-2106 to make sure you are protected against the unexpected. We always love hearing from our customers!

Warmest Regards,
Matt Langlois

Will Insurance Cover My College Student?

During this time of year, Langlois Insurance Agency receives many phone calls from anxious parents who are sending their kids off to college. They have so many worries – the cost of room & board, how crazy expensive the textbooks are, the overall safety of the college campus, just to name a few. They are also worried about how this life change can affect their insurance. Here are some common questions that I often hear from parents as they send their kids off to college:

Will my child still be covered under my auto insurance policy?

College students are normally covered under their parents’ auto insurance policy, as long as they reside with their parents when they aren’t at school (ex. summer break). As always, please review your specific policy to confirm.

Will I see my auto insurance rates increase?

The short answer to this is “it depends”.

Rates may increase – or decrease – depending on the driving habits of the student. For example, if the student is driving the car in an urban-located school, you may see your rates increase. This is because drivers in urban locations generally pay more for insurance than those in rural areas.

On the flip side, if the student leaves the car at home versus bringing it to school, you may see a decrease in your insurance rates. I have seen rate decreases for college students called a “distant student discount”, which is for a student who is at a college at least 100 miles away and chooses to leave their car at home. As always, please review your specific policy to confirm.

(Check out this bad boy above – the car that I took to college back in the day.  It’s a classic beauty.)

Are there any “good student” discounts available?

You now have another excellent reason to push your student to study hard since students with good grades may qualify for a “good student” discount. As always, if you have a child either in college, or about to head off to college, please contact Langlois Insurance Agency to review your individual policy.

Will my homeowner’s insurance policy cover my student’s belongings if they live off campus?

If your child is living off campus, you may want to purchase a renter’s insurance policy for them. Renters’ insurance protects your student’s personal property and provides most of the benefits of home insurance, including liability insurance. However, it does not protect the dwelling or structure of the dwelling itself, which is the landlord’s responsibility to insure.

Our carriers can protect your college student and their property against the following:
Fire
Theft
Vandalism
Liability if someone is hurt or accrues damage to personal property in their rental home
Additional living expenses (ex. If your child has to live somewhere else while the home is being repaired)

As always, please don’t hesitate to give me a call if you have any questions regarding your child’s insurance coverage.  I always love to hear from my customers!

Warmest Regards,

Matt Langlois

Langlois Insurance Agency partners with ValChoice

In order to continue to provide our customers with exceptional service, Langlois Insurance Agency decided to partner with ValChoice. ValChoice awards recognize the best insurance companies, state-by-state. The company’s data analytics engine is the first to let consumers know which insurance companies offer the best claims handling, service, and value.

“I founded ValChoice to bring transparency to the insurance industry and help consumers find the protection and value they deserve from the insurance they must buy,” said Dan Karr, Founder and CEO of ValChoice.

One company that Langlois Insurance Agency sells for, Rockford Mutual Insurance Company, has won the prestigious ValChoice® award as A Best Value for car insurance in the states of Illinois and Wisconsin for the award year 2017/18. To win this award, Rockford Mutual provided their customers with a unique combination of excellent customer service, claims handling, and value in the car insurance products they sold over a three-year period.

“Rockford Mutual’s mission is to provide exceptional service, innovation, security, ease of doing business and pay claims promptly and fairly” said Kent Shantz, President and CEO of Rockford Mutual. “Receiving this award from ValChoice, an analytics company, is a welcomed recognition of our dedication and commitment to our agents and policyholders and serving them well in their time of need.”

“It’s great to see Rockford Mutual achieving such excellence in service, claims handling and value. The level of excellence Rockford Mutual has achieved is something in which both the company, and the communities they serve, can take great pride.”

About Rockford Mutual

Rockford Mutual Insurance is helping families, individuals and businesses today and during their time of need by helping to put their lives back together. Our mission is to provide exceptional service, innovation, security, ease of doing business and pay claims promptly and fairly. This is accomplished by hiring the best associates, cultivating their talents, living our core values while leveraging technology.

About ValChoice

ValChoice® is the only company to provide consumers, agents and advisors with information on which home and auto insurance companies offer the best value: price, protection (claims handling) and service. The company’s analytics platform collects and analyzes millions of financial and complaint data points and delivers the results in an easy-to-use service that Forbes Magazine describe as “Carfax for insurance.”. Using ValChoice, consumers are finally able to shop for insurance based on value rather than making decisions blindly based on price or advertising campaigns.

If you would like us to analyze your insurance company, please feel free to give me a call at #815-485-2106. I always love to hear from my customers!

Warmest Regards,

Matt Langlois

Why You Must Buy Home Insurance Before Closing on a Home

Buying a home isn’t as exciting of a process as it may look like on HGTV. It involves a lot of paperwork and finances to bring you to that happy closing day. For most homeowners, lenders are required to help them obtain the home of their dreams, unless you happen to have enough cash to purchase the home in full. However, if you are like most people, here’s what you need to know about buying home insurance before closing.

 

Do I Have to Buy Home Insurance Before Closing?

Just in case you are still thinking you can get out of home insurance, yes, you do have to purchase it for at least a year in order to close on your home. In order to protect their investment (your new house), lenders will require you to cover your home against disasters. Until you have paid off your mortgage, your lender as the stakeholder has the right to hold possession of your property to protect what is technically their property. Home insurance is designed to protect both you and the lender, which is why lenders typically will not agree to lend you the money for your home until they know it will be protected.

 

How Much Coverage Do I Need?

Home insurance policies can protect your physical house, your belongings on the inside, and the cost of medical expenses for a person injured on your property. The amount of coverage you need typically depends on your lender. However, the general rule is that you need enough to cover the cost of rebuilding your home from the ground up in case of disaster.

 

A standard home insurance policy will protect you against:

  • Damage from the weight of ice or snow
  • Explosions
  • Falling objects, such as tree branches
  • Fire
  • Frozen plumbing, heating, AC, or other household systems
  • Hail, windstorms, and lightning
  • Smoke
  • Theft and vandalism
  • Vehicles

 

By having homeowners insurance, you and the lender are protected in the event that the house is damaged or destroyed. Additional coverage can also be added such as flood or earthquake insurance, depending on your situation.

 

Types of Homeowners Insurance

 

Replacement-cost policy–  This type of policy covers the current cost to replace your home. For example, if you were to buy an older home that has unique features, the cost to restore it may be higher. A replacement-cost policy will cost more than a cash-value policy, but will cover the cost of rebuilding.

 

Cash-value policy– This type of policy costs less than a replacement-cost policy and covers the market value cost of your home and its contents. So rather than reimburse you the amount you paid for something, you will only get back its depreciated value amount, which is not something that Langlois Insurance Agency recommends.

 

While some types of insurance may be optional, homeowners insurance is a must if you want to own a home.

 

Please allow Langlois Insurance Agency to find the best policy with the right coverage and price. Let us know how we can help you by giving us a call today at #815-485-2106.  We are always happy to hear from our customers.

Warmest Regards,

Matt Langlois

matt@langloisinsurance.com

Home Insurance Tips for First Time Homebuyers

Home Insurance Tips for First Time Homebuyers

Are you buying a home for the very first time? This process will have you running the full spectrum of emotions: fear, exhilaration, confusion, extreme highs, coupled with some low points. These emotions definitely make sense since you are about to undertake what is, most likely, the single biggest purchase of your life.

(Actual photo of Matt and I the week that we purchased our first home.)

We work with many first-time homebuyers at Langlois Insurance Agency, and we have found that there are many things first-time buyers wish they knew before they made the jump into home ownership.  Below are some tips and tricks on how to navigate homeowners insurance for your first home.

1) How can I save money on this insurance policy?

One of the biggest questions that I get asked is, “How can I save some money on this insurance policy?”. One of the best ways is to bundle your policies. Bundling will help lower your rates by granting you savings when you purchase multiple insurance policies. For example, if you bundled your automobile insurance with your home insurance, this should save you money on both insurance premiums.

Another tip that I give to our first-time homebuyers is to not wait to purchase your home insurance until the last minute. We get it – the fun part of first-time home buying is with your realtor. The search for the perfect, dream house — that is the exciting part. But, there is a lot more to home insurance coverage than just signing up for a policy. Give yourself time to get a few quotes from trusted insurance professionals so that you can make the best decision and aren’t “surprised” with unexpected costs or issues at a future date.

2) Why isn’t my insurance premium the same as the previous owner’s insurance premium?

Another question that I often get asked is, “Why isn’t my insurance premium the same as the previous owner’s insurance premium?”. When a first-time home buyer is purchasing their new home, they often ask the current homeowner how much they pay for electricity, property taxes, etc…when deciding on buying the home. But, how much the current homeowner pays in insurance is not a good indicator of how much you will pay. This is because insurance policies take into account very personal information in order to establish a cost. For example, a person’s age, credit rating, etc…are all taken into account for your insurance rate. So, your price might be lower – or higher – for the same dwelling for homeowner’s insurance. Your best course of action is to meet with your trusted insurance agent and get a price on your insurance before you close the deal.

3) Review, and improve, your credit score

Let’s talk credit score. Credit Score. I can’t emphasize the importance of this enough to all my first-time homebuyers. Not only will a good credit score help you get a better interest rate on your mortgage, it should also help you save on homeowner’s insurance. In many states, including the state of Illinois, insurance companies use your credit rating when calculating your premium to help determine your level of risk as a policy holder.

So, if you have less than optimal credit, you should take the time to reduce your spending, get rid of debt, reduce as much debt as you possibly can, and pay your bills on time. If you take these steps, you can improve your credit score.
Also, we recommend running your credit rating at least once to twice a year to ensure that there aren’t any mistakes/errors on your credit report.

4) Why shouldn’t I just get the cheapest coverage?

Langlois Insurance Agency is an independent agent and we office a choice of multiple insurance carriers, coverages, and prices. Because of this, we might recommend that you purchase homeowners insurance that is a bit higher than the bare-bones-cheapest coverage. The reason is because our main focus is to find the insurance coverage that best suits your overall needs. And, this might not be the “cheapest” coverage. In addition to protecting your dwelling, personal belongings, and liability, there may be other optional coverages that we recommend, to fully protect your investment. Again, this is why it is important to find an insurance agent that you can trust; an insurance agent that will be there for you in case you have a claim and need to have your investment properly protected.

So, as you venture forward with your first home purchase, take a deep breath, have fun, and don’t forget to contact us with any questions you might have. We have many more tips that we can discuss with you in order for your dream home to be properly protected.

In the meantime, if you have a few minutes, you can watch the following video with your local real estate, mortgage, and insurance professionals. This video gives you some additional tips and tricks on how to better your first home buying experience.

And, as always, don’t hesitate to give Langlois Insurance Agency a call with any questions or comments. We always love to hear from our customers!

Sincerely,
Erin Haughton-Langlois
erin@langloisinsurance.com

Market Value vs Replacement Cost: Which Amount Should I Insure?

Before purchasing a home, you are required to purchase homeowner’s insurance as well. But how do you know how much to insure your home for? Most would think that they need to cover only the price they pay for the house. However, that price isn’t enough coverage to pay for your home in the event of a disaster such as a fire or storm. In most cases, your home’s real value is greater than its market value. That is because market value deals only with the buying and selling process, not rebuilding. And rebuilding costs are much more than the costs to build a home from scratch due to costs of demolishing/cleaning up the existing home, not being able to buy in bulk for supplies, and labor for a single rebuild versus multiple.

So which amount of coverage do you go with? Depends on the risks you want to take. Below we will go over the differences between a home’s market value and replacement cost, followed by the best option we recommend for the average homeowner’s insurance policy.

What is Market Value?

Market value is the price a home can sell for in its current condition. Knowing this price is beneficial when buying or selling a home, but not necessarily for rebuilding. As we said already, there are a number of factors that cause rebuilding the same home to be much more expensive than the home’s market value. Market value is affected by factors such as the location of the home, crime rates in the area, amount of land, proximity to schools, and the availability of similar homes. The most important detail to note about market value is that the price is rarely high enough to cover the cost of rebuilding it since materials and labor costs could be more than when the house was built and one-time jobs are typically more expensive.

Benefits and Risks to Insuring Your Home at Market Value

Benefits: Occasionally, a home may be worth more on the market than it would take to rebuild such as if the home were historical or consisted of elaborate artisanal work that would be worth a lot of money. If you have a home such as this, you can choose to purchase a historic home policy, but these are often more expensive. To save money, you could insure your home based on the market value in order to recover after a loss.

Risks: If your home’s value isn’t placed in the history or craftsmanship, insuring your home at market value puts you at risk for not being fully covered in the event of damage to the house. You would be required to pay the difference between your home’s rebuilding cost and market value in order to rebuild. The only other alternative would be to build a less expensive home elsewhere.

What is Replacement Cost?

Replacement cost is the amount of money it would take to rebuild your home after being destroyed. Coverage at this price will insure your home for the cost to repair any damage or even rebuild your home at the current prices. A building contractor can help you estimate the replacement cost of your home based on the property’s structure and associated items as well as costs such as plans and permits for rebuilding, labor, materials, fees, and taxes. Keep in mind that the land value is included in the market value only, not the replacement cost as the land will not have to be rebuilt.

Benefits and Risks to Insuring Your Home at Replacement Cost

Benefits: You will be able to experience minimal financial interruption should your home be destroyed. If you go with this option, it is best to insure your home for 100% of its estimated replacement cost.

Risks: The cost to rebuild your home can vary over time. There is no guarantee that you will be 100% able to rebuild your home at the estimated replacement cost. To increase your chances of keeping your home fully covered against destruction, we recommend reviewing your policy annually to make sure your amount of coverage is still appropriate for you. Factors that can affect your replacement cost include home upgrades and improvements, market conditions, labor and material costs, and transportation prices. For the maximum amount of protection, you can consider a policy that includes an inflation clause to automatically adjust and account for changes in construction costs.

Insuring Your Home

Unless you believe otherwise based on the benefits and risks listed above, insuring your home for its replacement cost is typically the best and safest option. While, yes, insuring your home for its market value is cheaper now, you will be more adequately covered down the road should anything happen to your home.

Ultimately, when you make your decision, research all your options and please talk to any of us at Langlois Insurance Agency about your situation.

As always, please don’t hesitate to give me a call with any questions or comments — I always love to hear from my customers!

Warmest Regards,

Matt Langlois

matt@langloisinsurance.com

Do I Need Water & Sewage Back-Up Coverage?

Do I Need Water and Sewage Back-Up Coverage Insurance?

Whenever the weather shifts in the Midwest from beautiful sunny days, to cold, rainy ones, the number one question that I get asked from my customers is, “Do I need water and sewage back-up coverage on my insurance policy?”

I always tell these customers to imagine this.

Imagine that you wake up to 3 to 4 feet of water and sewage backed up in your basement? The water damages the furnace and all of your belongings that are stored in the basement. Your sofas, exercise equipment, television, Christmas decorations, etc…all damaged.

Furthermore, the drywall and flooring needs to be replaced, furniture is too damaged to salvage, and the cost of clean-up is expensive. Sewage and water also causes damage to utilities, such as your gas and electric. The sewage contains bacteria, viruses and other organisms that could cause illness. Even electrocution is a possibility in situations such as this. Therefore, you need to hire a professional restoration company because of these issues and dangers.

Unfortunately, most homeowner’s insurance policies do not automatically include this coverage in a policy for this type of loss. But, the good news is that water and sewer back-up & sump-pump/ejector pump failure coverage can be purchased under your homeowner’s policy and it’s reasonably priced.

As with all of our customers, we recommend that the endorsement be added to your policy even if you have an unfinished basement; water and sewer back-up & sump-pump/ejector pump failure is one of the most common homeowner’s claims.

Having a water and sewer back-up & sump-pump/ejector pump failure coverage endorsement provides coverage for the damage to the home and personal property, as well as the cost for a restoration company to clean up the damage.

Should you ever be unfortunate enough to experience a water and sewer back-up & sump-pump/ejector pump failure incident, please call Langlois Insurance Agency immediately at #815-485-6676. We can provide a recommendation for a reputable water restoration company to ensure your home is back to its former self as quickly as possible.

Please note that insurance endorsements vary by company. Please contact Langlois Insurance Agency to carefully review coverage, exclusions, limits, and costs specific to your policy.

We always love to hear from our customers!

Sincerely,

Matt Langlois

Langlois Insurance Agency

matt@langloisinsurance.com