Why Is The Roof So Important To Home Insurance?

We don’t need to tell someone from Milwaukee, WI how important the roof is, do we? That’s your first line of defense against harsh weather, it’s what’s going to keep the heat in and the snow out during the winter. To an insurance company like Dern & Company, it may be the very most important part of your home.

All other things being equal, a home with a roof that’s past its prime is going to cost more to insure than a home with a new roof, if it can be insured at all. Many insurers won’t touch home with a roof more than twenty years old. 

Building material is important too. Cedar roofs, for instance, are more likely to catch fire than many other types of roofs. Natural materials, in general, can have a harsh effect on the life expectancy of a roof, being more likely to rot and mold should moisture be trapped underneath after a rainy summer.

A well-maintained, quality roof can also be indicative of how well a homeowner takes care of their house. A roof that is missing some shingles and has a few unpatched leaks may be seen to signify a homeowner who has a "When I get around to it" attitude about other things, like leaky pipes and cracked windows. A quality roof suggests a homeowner who treasures and cares for their domicile.

If you’re looking for a home insurance company to protect you and your home in Milwaukee, WI, get in touch with Dern & Company by phone or online. They’ll help you to get set up with a home insurance policy that you can count on.

Everything You Need to Know About Commercial Insurance Coverage Options in Wisconsin

Starting your own business, large or small, is risky to the say the least and you will want to protect the investment of time and money you put into your Wisconsin-based business through obtaining the proper insurance policy. Commercial insurance is one way to guarantee that your business is protecting but what is and what does it cover?

What Is Commercial Insurance?

Commercial insurance is designed to provide coverage for businesses and corporations, including each business’s property, employees, and products. It covers anything that can threaten the success of a business. Most of the time, owners of businesses and corporations can work with their insurance agents to create the best insurance policy for their situation based on their needs and preferences.

Commercial Insurance Coverage Options

Property insurance is an important option for commercial insurance. It will cover losses caused by weather-related disasters from hail, windstorms, fires, and lightning along with vandalism, theft, and civil disturbance like a riot or other commotion. This type of insurance also can cover supplies, appliances, office equipment, and machinery that is needed for the business to function after a disaster or other incident occurs. Business interruption insurance can also be added to your policy which will cover employee salaries and other things that must continue even if your business burned down or was otherwise destroyed. It will cover your net profits before the incident occurred.

Liability insurance is incredibly important for a business owner since it covers injuries that may occur to people while on your property or while using a product you produce and/or sell. From bodily and personal injury to damage to someone else’s property or injuries to someone through your company’s advertising, this is an important policy to have to ensure the protection and sustainability of your business.

Commercial insurance is imperative in keeping you and your business protected in Milwaukee, WI. Call an experienced and knowledgeable insurance agent at Dern & Company today to assist you in creating the best commercial business policy for your company.

Neighbor Slipped On Your Icy Driveway? What to Know About Milwaukee, WI Home Insurance

In Milwaukee, WI, snow and ice are a natural part of life. In fact, the inevitability of snow is so understood that there are several key ordinances on the city’s books when it comes to how residents should approach snow and ice that gathers on the sidewalks and hydrants in front of their home. To understand the answer to whether a Dern & Company home insurance policy will reimburse your neighbor if they slip and fall on your property, it’s first important to understand these ordinances.

Keeping Your Property Snow-free

Milwaukee Wi ordinances dictate that all homeowners must clear the sidewalks abutting their property, including any corner crosswalk areas, of snow and ice within 24 hours of when snow stopped falling. Getting caught with a driveway full of snow and ice can result in fins.

But it can also go much further than fines! When it comes to injuries to others like slip and fall injuries, your home insurance policy will likely be separated into two types of injury coverage:

  • Medical pay coverage which will cover all medical bills up to a certain limit but no extraneous costs like pain and suffering and
  • Liability coverage which protects you from a lawsuit that might arise from the injury.

Most policies will pay for guests’ direct medical payments (up to coverage limits) in any type of slip and fall accident. But in order to be approved for liability coverage, you must have shown that you did everything reasonably you could to protect others from injury on your property. In terms of slipping on snow and ice, you must have followed the ordinance and cleared driveway, sidewalks, and other pavement within 24 hours.

Contact Dern & Company to Learn More

To update your home insurance policy, contact our team today. 

What Does Renters Insurance cover?

Just because you don’t own your home doesn’t mean you should avoid protecting and insuring what is inside. With renters insurance, you’re able to do exactly that. It doesn’t matter what you own, it is possible to insure it with renters insurance. In fact, renters insurance is one of the most versatile coverage options out there. So, when living in greater Milwaukee, WI you’ll want to consult with the insurance experts at Dern & Company.

Cover Just About Anything

The beauty of renter’s insurance is that it can cover just about anything. From your computer to the paintings you picked up while traveling, you can have all of these and everything else in between covered. When working with your insurance provider you’ll go over the value of the item and then pay based on the value. Typically you can secure renters insurance for a very small monthly payment. This small monthly payment helps protect you in the event of theft, or if the items are even damaged due to fire or flooding. 

Protect Your Valuables With Renters Insurance

It doesn’t matter what you own if it is important to you it is worthy of being insured. From your collection of action figures to your entertainment system or purse collection, these are items that will cost hundreds, if not tens of thousands of dollars to fully replace in the event of theft, flooding, or fire. Avoid these kinds of issues and protect yourself and your valuables with renter’s insurance. When living in a metro Milwaukee, WI rental, you’ll want to talk with the insurance experts at Dern & Company. They will work with you in finding the right insurance coverage for your needs. So pick up your phone and give the team a call today. 

Traveling for the Holidays? Prevent Break Ins With These Homeowner’s Tips

While homeowners insurance will pay to repair your home and replace your belongings if there is a break-in while you’re traveling, there’s never a good time to have to deal with a burglary. These tips from Dern & Company will help keep your Milwaukee, WI home safe while you’re out of town over the winter holidays.

1. Hire a house sitter.

The surest way to avoid a burglary while you’re traveling is to hire someone to come stay at your home during your absence.  Be sure to hire someone trustworthy and reputable by asking friends, relatives, and neighbors for recommendations.

2. Don’t post on social media.

While it’s fun to share photos on social media right away, these pictures are a tip-off that you are not at home. You never know who will come across your social media posts, so wait until you are back at home to share photos to your Facebook or Instagram profiles.

3. Stop the mail or have someone pick it up.

Mail piling up in the mailbox is a dead giveaway that you’re traveling. Stopping your mail is easy using the postal service’s online tools. Alternately, you can arrange with a neighbor to pick up your mail for you while you are traveling this winter.

4. Have your lights on a timer.

To create the illusion of occupancy in your home, you can set up your television, radio, and lights with timers. Timers are fairly inexpensive ways to fool would-be burglars into thinking that you are at home. Use several timers, set to turn on your lights at various times of the day. For instance, have the living room lights come on from dusk to 8 p.m. and have the bedroom lights set to come on from 8 to 10 p.m.

5. Let a trusted neighbor know you’re going out of town, so they can look out for your home.

If you have a neighbor that is trustworthy, ask them to keep an eye on your place. They can call the police if they notice anything suspicious happening while you are out of town. 

If you need information about homeowner’s insurance in the Milwaukee, WI area, contact Dern & Company. 
 

Who Is Responsible if Someone Is Injured While in my Apartment?

Contrary to what many people believe, renters may carry a certain amount of liability if someone is injured while visiting their home. The key is determining where the divide between the liability of the renter and that of the landlord. Agents from Dern & Company serve residents who live in and around Milwaukee, WI. It’s their job to help their clients get the answers they need about their renter’s insurance.

Your Liability

When it comes to liability, a renter may be considered to be responsible for an injury in their apartment if it is caused by something they have done or not done. A good example of this is running an extension cord across a walkway. If a person trips and is injured, the fault would lie on the renter for creating a hazard.

Your Landlord’s Liability

If the accident was the result of tripping over a piece of torn carpet or linoleum, the landlord may be responsible. If a landlord has been notified of damage to the apartment and has not made the repairs in a timely fashion, any compensation due to the victim could eventually fall on the landlord. In some cases, it may be determined that both the landlord and renter are at fault.

Renters in Milwaukee, WI can call the agents of Dern & Company if they have any questions concerning their liability. It’s important to understand what you are responsible for as well as what your landlord may be required to cover. Call and talk to your agent today to have your policy reviewed and possibly upgrade it. Schedule your appointment now!!

Putting Your Boat Away for the Winter

If you live in Milwaukee, WI and own a boat, you need to start thinking about getting it ready for the colder months of the year. While some people don’t do much, if you want to protect your investment, it’s best to take a few steps to ensure the elements don’t cause damage. 

At Dern & Company, we can provide you the protection you need for your boat and at an affordable price, but the rest is up to you. Consider some of the tips here to ensure your boat makes it through the winter unscathed. 

Dry or Wet Dock

You have two basic options when it comes to boat storage if you plan to keep it on or near the water; a wet or dry dock. Both have their appealing qualities, but a dry dock is going to be a more significant investment. You can also pull the boat on your trailer to a garage or warehouse where it can be stored. All of these options come at a price, so be sure to keep that in mind. 

Get the Engine Ready

Just like your car, you have to take care of your boat’s engine in colder weather. This means making sure it is winterized. If you aren’t sure how to do this, hire someone to do it for you. That way, when you are ready to get back on the water, you won’t have any problems. 

While storing your boat during the winter months in Milwaukee, WI is up to you, our team at Dern & Company can help you with your insurance needs. Contact us today to learn about the policy options we offer and to find out how we can get you the protection you need. 

What makes a good home insurance plan?

Your home insurance policy is for more than you looking good on paper. There are stipulations in your policy that either confirm or hinder your financial stability. You do not want to wait until tragedy strikes in Milwaukee, WI to take a look at the tenets of your home insurance plan. Such is how many homeowners are left out in the cold with a bill that their bank accounts cannot handle. 

You should speak with an agent at Dern & Company immediately if you do not understand the basics of your home insurance policy. One of our associates may even be able to find a policy that better suits your lifestyle. Read on to learn about what makes a good home insurance plan. 

A good plan goes beyond the minimum

You, for the most part, cannot obtain a mortgage agreement without showing proof of home insurance. Most financial institutions will attach their home assurance policies to your mortgage if you fail to show proof of home insurance. You should not be tricked into thinking that this is a good thing! Home assurance plans attached by your mortgage company are meant to serve their needs. You may be surprised to learn that your personal possessions are not covered under such a policy despite you paying through the nose for a high premium every month. 

The best insurance policies, then, go above and beyond the minimum. Your assurance plan should cover the structure as well as your valuables in Milwaukee, WI. You should also consider indemnity policies that guard against financial losses due to lawsuits. The best home insurance plans pay for legal representation as well as provide funds in the unfortunate instance of you losing your case. 

Call Dern & Company

Our agents can thoroughly explain your home insurance options and create a plan that works best for you. Call today to get started with a quote!

What to Expect When Filing a Commercial Insurance Claim

Filing an insurance claim is always going to be a little confusing, no matter how straightforward the issue may appear at first glance. Because every business is different (and every business owner has their own set of priorities), there will always be some clarification needed before any professional can properly fill out all the questions. Here are a few things to expect if you’re filing a commercial insurance claim in Milwaukee, WI, courtesy of Dern & Company.

You Will Be Asked for Documentation 

There’s a lot of paperwork when it comes to filing a claim. Insurance companies keep all this information to assist with everything from audits to lawsuits. If you’re requesting the company to pay for damaged inventory or replace a broken window, you may need to take photos, provide proof of value, or get formal estimates. They’ll use all of this information to justify their approval or denial, so it helps for commercial business owners to have as much data as possible. 

You May Not Agree With the Results 

Insurance companies have formal policies with each of their clients, but that doesn’t mean the policy can define the parameters of every situation. Because two people may view the same event two entirely different ways, it can lead to disappointed customers who expected more out of their claim. Insurance companies have an appeals process that commercial business owners can use to ask for their claim to be reconsidered. 

If you have questions about your commercial insurance policy, call Dern & Company today. We’re here to get you a policy that will keep your business safe from natural disasters, theft, and even slander. We’re here to help the people of Milwaukee, WI protect the enterprises they worked so hard to build. 

Home Security Tips for New Renters

As a renter, you need to be mindful of your home security to protect yourself and your property. Living in an apartment complex with high foot traffic puts you at greater risk of theft or intrusion. The following security tips from Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI can be helpful in keeping you and your goods safe in a rental property.

Lighting

Make sure your apartment has good lighting, inside and out, to ward off intruders after dark. Your entranceway, hallways, parking areas, stairways, and elevators should all be well lit after dark to enhance safety.

Upkeep

A well-kept apartment building and landscaping is more likely to keep thieves at bay as it shows the landlord is concerned about safety and security. If your landlord is dropping the ball in this area, make your concerns known to ensure proper maintenance gets done.

Door & Window Locks

If possible, replace your door locks to reduce the risk of former tenants getting access to your apartment. Check window locks to ensure they’re working properly. This is especially important if your apartment is on the ground floor.

Fire Escape

If your unit is in a high rise complex, make sure there’s a workable fire escape for emergency situations.

Get a Renter’s Insurance Policy

Renters insurance from Dern & Company can protect your belongings from theft and natural disasters that could befall your apartment complex. Your landlord’s insurance protects his building, not tenants’ property.

If your apartment is burglarized or catches fire, renter’s insurance will cover the cost of repairing or replacing your belongings up to the limits of your policy. Renters insurance also protects you against liability claims if someone gets hurt while visiting your apartment and sues you for damages.

To learn more about renters insurance options and costs, contact Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI.