How to create a home inventory

If you came home to your house near Milwaukee, WI and found that your home had tragically burned down or been robbed, would you be able to accurately account for your possessions? Unfortunately, you never know when your home could be the victim of a disaster, so it’s important to have all your belongings accounted for ahead of time to make your life much simpler in the aftermath, and at Dern & Company, we want to help.

What is a Home Inventory?

A home inventory is a list of all the items in your house; you can use this list to help file an insurance claim if your home is ever damaged, destroyed or robbed. This list can also help you make sure you have the right insurance coverage for your belongings.

How to Create Your Inventory

Although it may be time-consuming, the easiest way to create your inventory is to go through your house room by room and list all of your belongings. You should even go as far as to include small items in drawers, closets, and desks. It’s extremely helpful if you can include pictures of the items as well, and this actually might make creating your inventory easier. If you know the purchase date and price of the items, include those as well.

Don’t forget to periodically update your home inventory, especially when you make big purchases. To make the process easier should you ever need to use your inventory, keep a copy of it in a location away from your home, as well as online.

We Can Help

Nobody wants to find themselves facing a disaster, but a home inventory can make this awful situation a little bit easier. If you need help with any home insurance needs, such as creating a home inventory, talk to an agent at Dern & Company near Milwaukee, WI today.

What Are Commercial Insurance Plans?

Commercial insurance plans protect your business. You don’t want anything to happen that would cause you to spend more money than necessary. Unfortunately, life in Milwaukee, WI can be unpredictable. The last thing you want to deal with is someone getting injured on your property, an employee slipping and falling, or a commercial vehicle accident. With the right commercial insurance plan, you can be covered against virtually anything that can happen.

There’s no one-size-fits-all commercial insurance plan. At Dern & Company, we can assist you in creating a plan that works best for your business.

The average commercial insurance plan references liability. It protects your business if someone gets injured on your property or if one of your employees damages someone else’s property. If something like this happens, you can file a claim with the insurance company. You would only be financially responsible for the deductible.

Liability alone may not be enough insurance for all that you have going on. This is when you may want additional policies to protect your business in Milwaukee, WI. If you have commercial vehicles, you need commercial auto insurance. If you have a certain number of employees, the state will require you to have workers compensation. You may also want to look at business interruption insurance, ensuring that you can get compensated for lost sales while you recover from a disaster.

It’s important for a commercial insurance plan to work for you. Without sufficient coverage, you’re left vulnerable to what could happen. As such, it makes sense for you to have a plan built that focuses on your individual needs. Further, you want your plan reviewed annually because things can change inside of business from year to year.

You don’t have to figure out what coverage you should have on your own. Contact us at Dern & Company so that one of our independent insurance agents can help you every step of the way.

 

Commercial Insurance Add Ons to Consider

When it comes to your business it is of critical importance to protect it as best you can. This is why you have commercial insurance taking out on your business. With commercial insurance you’ll bring in essential protection, so you don’t have to completely pay out of pocket for unforeseen expenses. However, there are likely add ons you should consider that will take your commercial investment protection to the next level. If you live in or around greater Milwaukee, WI, Dern & Company is here to help. 

General Liability Insurance

This is an important form of insurance coverage that will extend the level of liability protection for your business. This way, if the product you produce or the services your business offers ever causes bodily harm to a customer the insurance policy will protect you (and help pay for any legal damages). 

Property Insurance

Even if you don’t own the property your business is in you probably own the machinery and other equipment within the business. Property insurance will help protect these investments and replace what is damaged. 

Commercial Auto Insurance

If you drive your vehicle for business, or if you have a vehicle designed specifically for business, you’ll need commercial insurance. This is because your auto insurance likely won’t cover damages sustained while using the vehicle for work. 

You have put a considerable amount of time, money, and energy into the opening and creating your business. This is why you already have commercial insurance on the property. However, standard commercial insurance may not always be enough. That is why you need to consider insurance add ons. For more information on these and other additions to your current commercial insurance policy and your place of business is around greater Milwaukee, WI, now is the time to reach out and contact Dern & Company. 

What Do You Need To Bring To Your Home Insurance Consultation

An Open Mind Is The Most Important Thing You Need to Bring to Your Home Insurance Consultation

There are standard home insurance policies to be sure. Like most insurance policies a new homeowner can rattle off a few key points about their new home and acquire a standard policy. At Dern & Company, we would like your experience to be more involved so that you as the homeowner gains a workable knowledge about protecting what is probably your biggest investment. 

You must bring proof of your pending purchase of the home. 

Working knowledge of any foreseeable incidents that may occur as a result of common practices in the home. For example, if you are aware that your home is located in a known flood area, you should make your agent aware of this information. Don’t assume that the insurance agent knows your home is in danger of flooding.

The agent needs to know information about the home such as the built on date. If there have been major renovations to the home. If there is a pool on site. How many dwellings are located on the property of the home? If there are multiple dwellings on the property what are their uses and what are their conditions. For that matter, the agent would need to know what the general condition is of the main dwelling.

Stop by our offices in Milwaukee, WI 53227 to learn more about how to arrange a home insurance consultation. In addition to home insurance, we specialize in other products such as home, health, life, motorcycle, renters, recreational vehicle, boat watercraft as well as commercial insurance. Dern & Company works hard to make your insurance experience as beneficial as possible. 

Caution Renters: Your Landlord’s Insurance Does NOT Protect Your Belongings!

If you are renting an apartment you may think that your dwelling is covered by your landlord’s insurance. This is often not the case, and many renters do not discover this fact until it is too late. Rather than hope that nothing bad happens to your belongings, why not gain the peace of mind that comes when you have adequate renters insurance? If you are living in the greater Milwaukee, WI area and do not have any insurance to protect your possessions you are living with an avoidable risk! The team at Dern & Company is here to provide the information you need to determine the right rental insurance policy to meet your needs.

When you have an appropriate rental insurance policy you will have protection for:

  • Personal belongings that are lost or damaged due to a catastrophic event at your place of residence
  • Burglary or theft of your possessions from your home
  • Off-premises damage, loss or theft of any items that are included on your rental insurance policy

Your landlord’s insurance will likely cover any damage to the structure itself or any common areas throughout the building. The contents of your unit will likely not be covered by such a policy and you will be responsible in the event of their loss. Your local insurance agent can provide a quote for a range of policy options to help you determine which type and level of coverage best suits your needs. Don’t wait until disaster strikes to find out that you don’t have the coverage that you need!

Don’t leave your belongings at risk for damage, theft or loss! Contact your Milwaukee, WI team at Dern & Company today to learn more about how the right rental insurance policy can protect you!

The Importance of Boat Insurance in the Winter

You may not use your boat very often in the winter, but it is still a good idea to have boat or watercraft insurance because many insurance claims are made in the colder months in Milwaukee, WI.

Is Boat Insurance Required?

Boat insurance is not required by the state of Wisconsin, however, if you have financed your boat, the lender will require insurance on it to recoup any losses on his asset until it’s paid off. Some marinas and docks also require you to have watercraft insurance for their own protection if you use their facilities.

When Old Man Winter Arrives

You most probably don’t go out on The Great Lakes too often in the winter due to the ice formations, however at the beginning of fall and spring when the waters thaw; you may want to go fishing. It is still the best idea to keep insurance on your boat all year round for your protection, as many losses do occur in the winter. Even if you store your boat in your garage, house fires in the winter often spread to the garage and you could end up with a total loss. Thefts of boats occur often in the winter because most people don’t think about checking their storage unit too often in the winter with a boat in it. Lightning is more prevalent with winter storms and can destroy your boat whether it is in open storage or a facility that is completely closed in Milwaukee, WI.

What is an At-Risk Boat Policy?

An at-risk boat policy from Dern & Company gives you the best protection for your boat. It protects you while operating the boat on the water and while it is stored. This policy can also cover losses that result from a failing part. You are covered in this type of policy for theft, vandalism, fire, grounding, sinking, and lightning. You can also add coverage for all of your personal items on the boat too.

Call us at Dern & Company or stop in to see one of our knowledgeable agents to learn more about your boating policy and find which will protect your assets to the fullest.

 

 

Major Catastrophe Planning Includes a Commercial Insurance Evaluation

An industry survey of 150 risk professionals, who are in charge of risk analysis for major companies, gave some startling results when they were questioned about their emergency plans for catastrophic events.

One of the questions asked by the survey was if the company had run a simulation drill for a catastrophic loss that included an analysis of the effectiveness of the coverage by commercial insurance to mitigate some of this risk.

The surprising answers to this question show a very low amount of preparedness:

  • Only about 25% had conducted such a simulation drill during the past two years.
  • Only 11% reported that there was such a drill conducted during the last five years.
  • Over two-thirds say they never conducted such a drill.
  • About 28% reported that they were not sure if the company ever had such a drill.

Best Practices for a Commercial Insurance Review

Work with your agent at Dern & Company, serving the Milwaukee WI area, to analyze the commercial insurance for the business and to discuss the scenarios possible that may cause a catastrophic loss.

The considerations for adequate commercial insurance include:

  • Review all policies before a loss.
  • Understand the coverage that would be available for a loss.
  • Analyze the detailed definitions in the policies in order to understand the exact terminology and what it means.
  • Make a plan for documentation of the information needed before and subsequent to a loss.
  • Upgrade and add to commercial insurance as necessary to make sure it is adequate.

Things to Look Out For

There are many things to consider with the help of your insurance agent that include total policy limits, sub-limits for specific items, deductibles and how they are applied, how property is valued, and how claims will be resolved if more than one policy applies to a loss.

Summary

In a catastrophic drill, imagine the worst-case scenarios. Get a comprehensive review of commercial insurance with the help of your agent at Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI. Make sure the coverage is appropriate and adequate for the company’s needs before a loss occurs.

Tips on Getting the Best Home Insurance

In any way you look at it, the majority of people will spend most of their lives at their home. Homes serve as the number one investment. Therefore, to ensure you provide adequate assurance for the future, it is advisable you insure your home. Many people are not well informed about how the insurance works. The only time they will look for insurance services is when a lender lists it as a requirement. For the residents of Milwaukee, feel free to visit us at Dern & Company to guide you on buying the best home insurance. The following are tips on getting the best home insurance in case you feel the need to.

Get a reputable company

There are many companies that offer this services. It is advisable to consult friends who have insured their homes. They will provide the best testimonies. The insurance provider should be readily accessible and be stable financially. The company should also provide a wide coverage of insurances. In some cases, some companies do not live up to the expectations. A reputable company will offer you the peace of mind as you will not be worried as to whether they will honor the agreement.

Choose between actual cash and replacement cost

It is very important to decide whether you will want your property to be replaced or alternatively get the cash. In some cases, the replacement cost will be the best option if the property to be replaced is over a long distance. Actual cash can also be good because you may end up saving some money. If you are living in Milwaukee, WI, you can visit us at Dern & Company to help you get the best home insurance.

 

Should Short Term Renters Buy Renters Insurance?

If you are renting a home for a long period of time, you likely know the importance of purchasing renters insurance. But, not everyone rents a home for a prolonged period of time. You may be renting a home for a couple months while a new home you are having built is constructed. You may be renting a home for a month while traveling. Or you may be renting a space for a couple months while overseeing a business project. One of the questions that we at Dern & Company, serving the greater Milwaukee, WI area are asked is whether short-term renters should buy renters insurance. Here is our advice. 

When you are deciding whether to purchase a renters insurance policy, the first thing to consider is what belongings you are storing in the home. Some people may be renting a space that is completely furnished for them. As such, they may just have a suitcase filled with the clothing that they bring with you. If you don’t have much in the house, you really don’t have anything of value that will get damaged or stolen. As such, you may not really need a renters policy. 

On the other hand, if all of your belongings are in the house, regardless of how long they are there for, and/or you have items of value that can be damaged or stolen, it is a good idea to invest in a renters insurance policy. Most renters insurance policies are month-to-month, so you can buy one for a short period of time. 

Whether you are looking to buy a policy for the long term or a short-term renters policy in the greater Milwaukee, WI area, Dern & Company would love to help you. Contact us today to get started. 

FAQs About Boat Insurance in Wisconsin

There is no better way to enjoy one of Wisconsin’s 15,000 lakes than in your own boat. At Dern & Company, we want to make sure you are protected when you take your boat out this season. We proudly serve Milwaukee, WI, and the surrounding areas, so if you have any additional questions about boat insurance, come on in to discuss them with a representative. 

Boat Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can my child drive the boat, and still be covered?  If your child or guest is born on or after 1989, then it is required in Wisconsin to complete a boating safety course in order to operate any motorized boat while in Wisconsin, according to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. If the boat operator is within their legal rights, then you will likely be covered. 
  • What if I loan out my boat for the weekend? Your friends will not be covered while they borrow your boat. This is where an umbrella policy that specifies such a situation is a good idea for extra protection. Discuss your need for an umbrella policy with one of our experts to find out more. 
  • Should I carry insurance during the offseason? It depends on if you will ever use it. At a minimum, it is a good idea to make sure it is covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy while it is parked. If there is a chance you will use it even for one weekend, it is better to be safe than regret not having coverage later. 

Call Dern & Company today to discuss your insurance needs. We serve boat owners in Milwaukee, WI and the surrounding areas with quality no-hassle insurance.