What Level of Perils Coverage Do You Need?

Your home insurance covers you from financial loss when specific perils affect your home. Perils typically include events such as hurricanes or earthquakes. Home insurance offers five different levels of peril coverage – HO-1, HO-2, HO-3, HO-5, and HO-8. Read this blog from Dern & Company to determine which level of perils coverage you need for your Milwaukee, WI, home.

Why Have So Many Levels of Coverage?

The insurance industry designed homeowner’s insurance to serve the U.S. population as a whole, hence the five levels of perils coverage. The level of coverage a person needs for their home depends on the location of the house and the typical natural hazards affecting the area. Let’s consider how the five levels differ.

Differences Between Levels of Perils Coverage

The bare bones coverage provided by HO-1 protects from financial loss due to 10 specific perils named in the policy. In the insurance industry, we call this named peril coverage. HO-2 policies also contain named peril coverage but cover 15 perils. HO-8 policies cover the same perils as an HO-1 policy, but only owners of historical homes or architecturally significant homes can purchase them.

Most financial lenders require HO-3 policies before they extend a mortgage to an individual. An HO-3 policy covers most perils and doesn’t limit which homeowners can purchase it.

Insurance companies offer HO-5 policies for homeowners who want comprehensive perils coverage. In the industry, we refer to this as all-perils coverage. If you purchase an HO-5 policy, your home insurance covers anything that could happen to your house.

Upgrade Your Home Policy Today

Do you have less than all-perils coverage? Don’t put your home at risk! Contact Dern & Company today to upgrade your Milwaukee, WI, home coverage.

Why your home-based business needs commercial insurance?

Why Home-based Businesses Need Robust Insurance Coverage

More and more people are setting up businesses from the comfort of their homes. One critical fact to keep in mind is that home insurance does not provide adequate coverage for such ventures. Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI, brings over 25 years of insurance expertise to help you make informed choices about commercial insurance for your home-based business.

Key Protections Your Business Requires

  • Property Coverage: Commercial property insurance offers comprehensive coverage for the property and the items you need for your business operations. Regular household insurance won’t cover the necessary equipment, materials, and supplies your business might need.
  • Liability Coverage: Regular home insurance covers your family and guests, but it doesn’t extend to include business-related visitors. If a client or supplier gets hurt on your property, you need commercial insurance to cover potential legal expenses.
  • Workers Compensation: If your home-based business employs three or more people, you are obliged to provide them with workers’ compensation insurance. This protection is crucial for both you and your employees.
  • Business Interruption Insurance: Occasionally, a business might have to cease operations due to uncontrollable circumstances, such as a fire or theft. In such cases, business interruption insurance can help you meet expenses and payroll obligations.

Engage Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI, for reliable commercial insurance solutions. Don’t hesitate to call us for a no-obligation quote.

What Are The Risks Of Not Having Home Insurance?

Have you got a property and are now a homeowner? Congratulations, you are a lucky one! However, becoming a homeowner is also stressful and full of responsibility. Your home is probably your most valuable investment. That is why you want to protect it, and home insurance is one of the protection tools. Since home insurance is not mandatory in Milwaukee, WI, you may think skipping it is a good idea. But it is associated with numerous risks you should know about: 

  • You may face serious financial consequences. If you do not have home insurance, you are responsible for all the repairs and other costs related to your home. For instance, if your home is damaged in a hurricane, you will cover all the expenses out of pocket.
  • Facing liability is also a risk. Home insurance also aims to protect homeowners, not just their property and personal belongings. If you have home insurance, you can be safe that all the liability fees and medical expenses will be covered if, for example, your guest or visited jets injured on your property. However, if you do not have home insurance, you are on your own and will have to pay yourself. 
  • Not having peace of mind. You never know what tomorrow brings. With home insurance, you get peace of mind that you need to enjoy your life in your house. However, without home insurance, you will constantly worried that something might happen.

Home insurance is something that every homeowner should consider. Regardless of the home type you own, it would be best if you bought home insurance. If you are looking for home insurance and need help finding the perfect policy, Dern & Company is here to assist you. We at Dern & Company serve clients in Milwaukee, WI, and other towns. Please give us a call or visit our company website to learn more about home insurance. 

Home Insurance and Home Renovations

Home renovations can breathe new life into a house, becoming a personalized haven in and around Milwaukee, WI. However, these transformative changes can significantly impact your home insurance coverage. As you embark on home renovations, it’s crucial to understand how alterations can affect your policy and take proactive steps to ensure that your coverage aligns with your home’s updated value and risks.

The Impact of Renovations on Insurance Coverage

Home renovations can impact insurance coverage in various ways:

  1. Change in Home Value: Renovations often increase the value of your home. The added square footage, upgraded features, or new additions can significantly raise your home’s worth, which calls for more coverage. 
  2. Alteration of Risk Factors: Renovations can introduce new risk factors. For example, adding a swimming pool, outdoor kitchen, or wood-burning fireplace could increase the risk of accidents or property damage. 

Updating Your Home Insurance Policy

To ensure your home insurance adequately covers your renovated property, consider the following steps:

  1. Notify Your Insurer: Discuss the scope of the renovation project and any changes that might affect your coverage needs.
  2. Reassess Your Coverage Limits: Work with your insurer to reevaluate your coverage limits based on the increased value of your home.
  3. Consider Additional Coverage: Depending on the nature of the renovations, you might need additional coverage, such as liability coverage for new structures or specialized coverage for valuable renovations.
  4. Review Deductibles: Discuss potential adjustments to deductibles to ensure they align with your new coverage needs.
  5. Document Changes: Keep detailed records of the renovation process, including receipts, invoices, and photographs, which are invaluable to claims.

Dern & Company Can Help You

At Dern & Company, we can answer all your questions concerning home insurance. We assist the Milwaukee, WI region. Contact us today.

How Do You Cover a Home Business with Renters Insurance?

When you rent and operate an online business, you need to protect your business interests with a home-based business rider added to your renter’s insurance. The rider provides financial protection to your computers, business inventory, office furniture, tools, etc.

Insuring Home-Based Businesses in Milwaukee, WI

At Dern & Company, we want your business to thrive, so we offer a full range of insurance options. That includes a rider for your home insurance that lets you insure a home-based business without purchasing a separate policy.

These riders protect your business in the same manner that a separate commercial policy does. Adding this type of coverage to your home insurance affords your home-based business liability coverage and property damage coverage. It doesn’t go as far as a business owner’s policy would, but most home businesses don’t need BOPs.

Coverage Needs Examples

Each person’s home business needs different levels of coverage. Here are a few quick examples of what we mean.

  • We suggest you increase your liability coverage if you host meetings at your home.
  • If you own a lot of expensive business equipment, such as a photographer, we suggest upping your property damage coverage.
  • If you store your inventory at home or craft the items you sell, such as a woodworker or many Etsy business owners do, we’ll suggest increasing the property damage component, too.
  • You’ll need commercial auto-added to your policy bundle if you drive your vehicle primarily for your home-based business, such as a baker or florist who delivers their creations.

We can help you determine which coverages your home-based business needs.

Contact Dern & Company Today

You can protect your Milwaukee, WI, home business under your home insurance. Ask your Dern & Company agent about adding business liability to your home insurance.

Homeowner’s Insurance Policy — What is Not Covered?

Navigating homeowners insurance coverage can be tricky. The good news is that the insurance professionals at Dern & Company can help homeowners in and around Milwaukee, WI find the insurance solutions to meet their needs.  

One of the essential aspects of understanding an insurance policy is knowing what will NOT be covered. While homeowners insurance policy requirements vary by jurisdiction (or endorsements or add-ons), most policies designed to protect homeowners typically exclude:

  • Flood Damage — the damage that a flood may cause is typically covered by specific insurance issued by FEMA – through the NFIP, the National Flood Insurance Program – which is available through Dern & Company.
  • Sewer/Drainage Back-ups  certain insurance policies offer coverage if the drain was located on the property; however, it would likely not cover an issue that occurred down the road and off the property.
  • Repeated/Consistent Water Leakage  any slow and consistent leaks are usually only covered by an add-on endorsement, not a standard homeowners policy.
  • Mold/Microbes  mold is typically a covered event if it occurs and is sourced (to an unexpected/accidental water discharge) to the property covered by the policy. Many policies have time restrictions that require policyholders to report the event in a certain timeframe.
  • A Frozen Plumbing or Heating System  while most quality policies will cover an event like this, a policyholder must proactively take steps to avoid the event. For example, if you leave the property for a two-week vacation and turn the heat off, the loss would likely not be covered if the pipes freeze.

Do you have questions regarding a homeowners insurance policy for a home or condo in the greater Milwaukee, WI area? Contact the licensed professionals at Dern & Company at 414-935-5700.

Does Home Insurance Cover High-Cost Valuables?

If you own valuable items like jewelry, artwork, or antiques, it’s essential to ensure they’re covered for theft or damage. While homeowner’s insurance typically covers the cost of your home and belongings, high-cost valuables may need additional coverage. At Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI, we offer a range of insurance options to keep your valuables safe. 

Insuring Your Valuables 

Homeowner’s insurance may provide protection for some of your items, but coverage limits can be low, and certain items may not be covered at all. For example, if you own an expensive piece of jewelry or a work of art, you’ll want to ensure it’s adequately insured. 

We understand how vital these belongings are to you and offer personalized coverage plans that fit your needs and budget. We specialize in insuring high-value items, so you don’t have to worry about costly repairs or replacement costs should something happen. 

Choosing the Right Coverage Plan 

When considering insurance for your valuables, there are several factors to consider. What type of item do you need to insure? How much does it cost? Will the policy cover repairs as well as replacement? Our team can help answer these important questions so that you get the protection you need for your treasured possessions. 

At Dern & Company in Milwaukee, WI, we understand how important it is to protect your valuable items with the right coverage plan. We specialize in insuring high-cost valuables to protect them against theft or damage no matter what life throws at them. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help provide peace of mind with comprehensive insurance plans made just for you!

Does your renter’s insurance cover you when you travel?

Your renter’s insurance policy from Dern & Company doesn’t just cover the items you own inside your apartment, condo, or rented home in Milwaukee, WI. It also covers them when you travel, whether for business or vacation.

The personal property coverage in your renter’s policy applies to all of the items you own, whether you keep them inside your domicile or in a storage unit. Packaging up your laptop or iPhone to go on vacation still enjoys the same great coverage, even in Bora Bora.

The same policy continues to protect what you have in your home. If a burglar breaks in while you’re gone and makes off with your wide-screen TV and stereo system, the renter’s policy covers that, too.

This hardworking policy covers both situations at the same time. It also covers all the items you own while you travel around town.

Let’s say you go to the gym in Milwaukee, WI, and someone steals your iPhone from your locker. Your renter’s policy also covers that situation.

A renter’s insurance policy covers you, the renter, not the domicile itself. (That’s your landlord’s home policy that covers the structure.)

Wherever you go, your renter’s insurance goes, too. It covers your property wherever you use it. If you rent a hotel room or vacation home, your renter’s policy covers your belongings.

You also still enjoy liability coverage from your renter’s insurance. It travels with you, too. That means if you rented the vacation cottage at the beach where your mother-in-law broke her arm, the liability coverage from your renter’s policy protects you financially.

Contact Dern & Company Today

If you don’t have a renter’s policy from Dern & Company yet, contact us today to start this vital protection. Protect yourself wherever you rent.

Signs you need a new roof

If you notice any of the following signs, your roof likely needs to be replaced. Remember that these are only indicators, not necessarily conclusive proof, that you need a new roof. Be sure to consult with an experienced roofing contractor before making any major decisions regarding your roof.

Leaks: If you notice leaks anywhere on your house, this is likely a sign of an issue with your roofing system. Leaks can be caused by missing or damaged shingles, worn-out flashing around chimneys and vents, or water damage due to improper drainage of gutters and downspouts. You should always have a leak professionally inspected as soon as possible. If left unaddressed for too long, even small leaks can cause significant damage to the roof structure, walls, and ceilings of your home.

Moss: Moss can begin growing on roofs if they are not regularly maintained. If you notice moss or algae on your roof, it’s important to have it removed as soon as possible – moss tends to hold moisture against the shingles and is also abrasive enough to damage them. Having a professional remove the moss can prevent further damage from occurring in the future.

Missing shingles: A missing or damaged shingle here and there may seem like no big deal – but when left unattended for too long, it can put your entire roof at risk of water damage and other issues over time. Missing shingles can be caused by several things, such as high winds, improper installation or fastening, or being worn out over time.

If you have any additional questions about home maintenance, give Dern & Company a call today. We proudly serve the Milwaukee, WI area.

Does My Home Insurance Cover Water Damage In Milwaukee, WI?

Accidents happen around the home. Unfortunately, some result in medium to excessive damage that a homeowner may have difficulty paying. Typically, home insurance covers these issues. However, does it handle issues related to water damage in a Milwaukee, WI property?

Sudden and Accidental

According to Dern & Company, home policies cover water damage if it’s sudden and accidental. For instance, your water heater ruptures and drenches the basement drywall or a leaking upstairs water pipe could cause the ceiling to collapse. As a result, it damages the lower floor’s surfaces. 

The coverage amount depends on a few factors. One is the liability amounts selected when you purchased the home policy. Another is the estimated cost provided by the insurance adjuster. 

Flood Damage

On the one hand, flood damage is covered by your home policy if it’s the result of the aforementioned broken pipes or water heater. On the other hand, flooding due to natural disasters isn’t covered. Thus, you wouldn’t be protected if a nearby stream or river overflowed its banks. 

A separate flood policy is required to cover these damages to a Milwaukee, WI home. It isn’t mandatory if your property doesn’t reside near a flood plain. Conversely, mortgage companies won’t finance a flood-prone home if the buyer doesn’t purchase a related insurance policy.

There’s a lot to decipher to determine your needs. So, it’s best to reach out to a subject matter expert in the insurance field to get the correct answers. Not only can they tell you if you have the needed insurance, but they will also check if you require a flood policy.

If you need assistance, contact the representatives at Dern & Company to get started.