Homeowners Insurance Shopping

Homeowners Insurance Shopping

Why you should do some careful shopping Now you should have a good idea of what Home Insurance coverage you need. But where should you get it? To decide, you must shop. People rarely comparison shop enough – or at all – for homeowner insurance, Hartwig notes.homeowners Insurance
“Many assume there’s not a big range of costs, but there is.” Still, don’t let premium cost alone dictate your decision. Although insurance is a heavily regulated business, the buyer needs to beware. So make sure any carrier you deal with has at least “A” ratings from the companies that grade insurers’ financial stability (A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, Weiss Ratings, Duff & Phelps, Moody’s). And of course, you’d like an insurer known for being cooperative and reasonable in paying claims. Luckily, often it’s not difficult to find such information.
Before you buy, get quotes from several sources. Independent agents work with several companies, so they may present a range of choices and premium costs, adds Hartwig. And agents who work only with one company might get you a better deal on some of its policies, he says. But you might also contact some insurers yourself, by phone or through the Internet, suggests consumer advocate Hunter. “Companies that sell directly to policyholders often provide top service, too,” he says. A few final notes. First, even a good policy won’t do you much good without documentation of what you own. Videotaping or photographing each room in your house is a good idea. home insurance
In addition, you should keep a written inventory – stored away from the house, of course – showing serial numbers, purchase prices and dates, and similar information. Also, remember that you can’t just file away your policy and forget it; you have to tend it now and then. You should periodically re-evaluate the amount you’re insuring for. Update your contents inventory regularly, too, and keep your insurer posted on relevant changes. “I’ve seen people forget to tell insurers about renovations,” says Salisbury. “If you put a $50,000 addition on a house insured for $200,000, you increase its value 25 percent.
So you’re no longer ‘insured to value,’ which means you may not get the coverage you expect. And read the notices that insurers send out. Some companies, such as State Farm, are now modifying existing no-limit replacement-cost policies to include such limits. And you might not realize it. “The announcements of change are typically made at renewal time, and people often don’t read the information,” says consumer advocate Robert Hunter. Indeed, to make sure you’ve got the coverage you think you have, it’s smart to send out your own notices: Write to your company periodically, outlining the deal in your own words. For example, you might say that you understand your home is insured for X dollars, and that the policy will pay up to 120 percent of that after a loss. Ask the agent to sign your letter. “That way, in case of a lawsuit, you’d have proof that the deal is what you thought it was,” Hunter says. “Otherwise, you can be at the mercy of the fine print.”

Construction Gone Wrong! What Now

Construction defects

Construction Gone Wrong! What Now

Anybody who reads the papers will know of all of the contractor horror stories that are published every week – with homeowners losing thousands of dollars after placing their trust in the wrong construction team. If this happened to you, you need competent legal representation

A lot of the time, such losses occur due to a lack of care before construction has even started. Many people don’t even bother to sign a contract with their contractor and subsequently, there is little they can do once things go wrong.construction law

Taking the above into account, here is our guide to selecting the right type of procurement for your next home improvement project. It should be noted that this is only the tip of the iceberg and once you have selected one of the following three, you must then acquire a standard contract that can be used with your chosen method of procurement and complete it appropriately.

Traditional Procurement

As the name may indicate, the traditional method of procurement is the most common in the construction industry. In simple terms, it means that the design stage is completely separate from the construction – meaning that the project is basically split into two parts. The design of your project will have to be created before you can source the contractor.

There are several benefits to this method, most notably the certainty and the fact that it is the industry standard. In relation to the former, as you already have the design prepared, there are no excuses for the contractor not to provide you with an exact figure for the project. If they do not stick within this budget throughout the project, you are not liable for any additional costs. The popularity of the traditional procurement method means that practically every contractor out there will know how to work with it, and this will obviously promote efficiency.

Unfortunately, there is a drawback, with this focussed around time. As the project is split into two stages, design and construction, it will take slightly longer to complete than projects which are procured in different ways.

Design and Build Procurement

Again, the name gives everything away in relation to this procurement. Unlike the traditional method which was split into two stages, the main contractor is responsible for both designing and constructing the project. Unsurprisingly, this means that the project can run much more efficiently – as there is no overlap as is the case with traditional procurement. Furthermore, the design and build procurement method holds the similar advantage of certainty – as you and the contractor will agree on the cost of the project at the very beginning.

Unfortunately, it’s not a perfect method and there are suggestions that this type of procurement does not promote the best quality design. This is because a lot of contractors merely specialise in one field, meaning that they may not be quite as proficient at designing as they are in actually carrying out the practical elements of the project.

Management Procurement

The final type of procurement we’ll take a look at management and if you are merely having a small alteration to your home, this is probably not going to be considered. It involves a main contractor being appointed and being responsible for managing the whole process – meaning that they appoint sub-contractors to carry out specific sections of the project. However, you will be responsible for sourcing a design professional – with the main professional only accountable for the practical elements of the contract.

To put the above into an example, we’ll look at the situation in relation to a proposed extension to your home. You will firstly hire an architect or design team to design the extension, before then sourcing a main contractor to manage the whole construction process in relation to this design. They will then hire contractors for each separate process; so this could be a large firm such as Taylor Lane for the frame of the extension, or NRC Ltd for the roof covering.faulty construction

Management procurement is another method that is regarded as being very efficient, as processes can overlap each other and the construction phase does not have to start once all of the designing has been performed. Furthermore, unlike the design and build system, the main contractor can bring in specialist teams which should help with the overall quality of the project.

Unfortunately, there is a lack of certainty with the management method, as each segment of work is let at a different time. Therefore, if you are working to a strict budget, this might not be the most advisable solution.

What to Do if You or a Loved One has Experienced a Traumatic Brain Injury

What to Do if You or a Loved One has Experienced a Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury is an increasingly common diagnosis that actually affects thousends of Americans each year. There are a variety of causes and degrees of severity that may range from mild to moderate. The impact of such a diagnosis is life altering.head injury attorneys If you or a loved one has suffered such an injury it is always wise to seek legal consultation; even if unsure of who or if anyone may be at fault.

Causes of Traumatic Brain Injury

Some of the most common causes of brain injury include falls, automobile accidents and medical malpractice. In many of these instances, the injury could have been prevented and may be due to negligence or wrongdoing of another party. This can be very complex and the average person may not even be aware of this without obtaining proper legal consultation.

Lifelong Disability

A traumatic brain injury can cause lifelong disability, no matter how minor the injury seems. So-called minor effects can include but is not limited to problems with speech, memory and even concentration. Major problems may include remaining in a vegetative state or coma, partial or full paralysis and limited movement of the body. Other issues can involve problems with speech and speech recognition, emotional instability or the individual may lose the ability to think logically on an age appropriate level.Personal Injury Lawyer

Financial Impact

The financial impact as a result of a traumatic brain injury is often severe for the victim and family. Due to the previously mentioned disabilities, these individuals may not be able to hold down employment. This can create a huge problem especially if the victim is the sole bread winner or relied on employer sponsored health care. The cost of medical care alone is expensive without the kind of care that may be required following a brain injury. However, the victim or the family may be entitled to compensation that can cover a variety of things which can include: medical bills – deprivation of companionship – loss of income – altered quality of life care of dependents.

Do Not Accept a Settlement Offers

Due to the financial uncertainty, accepting a settlement offer from a corporation or insurance company may seem like the best option. This is never recommended. Typically, these companies will offer much less than what the claim may be worth and once accepted the party at fault cannot be held further liable. This means that the burden of future problems as a result will fall to the injured or their family. If approached with any type of offer for compensation, it should be ran by an attorney experienced in traumatic brain injury claims. Seek legal Consultation as Soon as PossibleDo not wait to seek legal consultation if you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury. Contacting an established legal firm immediately can save a lot of time, money and hassle. This can allow an experienced member of the legal team to begin scrutinizing the details of the injury immediately to determine if there may be reason to file claim for compensation. There are time limitations to file suit in many areas. There are no charges associated with an initial consultation and no obligation, so there is nothing to lose. Rather, the victim and the family can gain piece of mind knowing that someone may be able to help. Get legal help today!