Massachusetts Business Owners: Protect your business with commercial insurance in Massachusetts

 

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No location in the world is safe from Mother Nature’s fury. Natural disasters put more than just homes at risk. Businesses can be destroyed as well. Do you have commercial insurance in Massachusetts? Residents may regret failing to obtain the proper coverage.

In June 2011, Massachusetts was hit by a flurry of powerful tornados in one of the deadliest natural disasters in the history of the state. During this massive storm three people lost their lives while over 200 people sustained injuries.

Countless residents in the state lost their homes. Others lost their livelihood. Some unfortunately lost both. An apartment building that had graced a street in Springfield since the seventies was nothing more than a pile of rubble by the time the tornados had passed.

Dozens of streets had to be closed down because of debris. With bricks, glass, power lines and branches scattered across the affected area, even the companies that were not destroyed could not reopen their doors right away. Business owners lost days, sometimes weeks, worth of income waiting for the storm cleanup to be finished.

Do you see the importance of commercial insurance Massachusetts? Our state may experience the next round of storms sooner than you think. Talk to one of our agents now about getting the right financial protection in place for your business. With Vargas & Vargas Insurance, you can get the coverage you need with our agency’s help. Contact us today for more information!

 

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Home Insurance in Boston, MA: Learning from Fire History

 

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 via cityofboston.gov

Do you have home insurance in Boston, MA? Boston is no stranger to fires. In fact, the city of Boston was destroyed by large blazes multiple times. The first devastation of fire occurred in 1631; just one year after Boston was officially established. Here are a few tips to keep you from having to file a fire damage claim on your home insurance.

The first thing you should cement in your mind is to never leave a flame burning where it cannot be seen. Enjoying an aromatherapy session with some scented candles? Even if you need to leave the room for just a moment, blow them out. You never know if something will delay or distract you from returning immediately.

Keep pets, especially agile cats, away from lit candles, scented oil burners, and other open flames. They could bump or knock over the materials, causing a fire that could have been avoided. On the same train of thought, teach your children proper fire safety. Flames and the resulting smoke can be very dangerous.

In case a fire does occur, despite your best efforts to handle flames safely, make sure you have up to date insurance in Boston, MA. Boston boasts median home values above $100,000. Without coverage, how would you repair or rebuild your home after fire ravaged your property? Avoid this potential financial burden by requesting a free insurance estimate today and putting your coverage in place. With Vargas & Vargas Insurance, you can get the coverage you need for your home. Contact us today for more information!

In A Blink of an Eye…

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It has happened to all of us, your very first accident. You are driving down the street going to your destination, then all of a sudden BOOM! CRASH! BANG! You look into your rear view mirror and you see a cars bumper imbedded into your trunk. You get out of the car, thankful you are safe and not injured, and the other driver starts yelling at you saying the accident is your fault. Then he proceeds to start questioning you as to why you were stopped at a stop light as he crashed into your car going 40 mph? Yea it never makes sense does it? This may seem like the worst day of your life, but in reality, it’s not as bad as it may seem, as your cars safety features prevented you from being ejected from your vehicle and then propelled through your windshield.  Now in 2012, those safety features that saved your life will be supported by new standard top of the line safety elements. These elements are to help you to walk out of your automobile and listen to the ignorant driver yelling at you.

What are the new 2012 standard safety features?

Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Antilock Brake Systems (ABS) are now standard for all 2012 vehicles. According to Consumer Reports, Electronic Stability Control helps the vehicle stay on its path when turning so you do not slide or skid on dry pavement and ensures that you will not slip on wet pavement. ESC also keeps your car more stable when having to swerve quickly to avoid an accident. The next important safety feature is ABS. Did you know Antilock Brake Systems were not a standard safety feature for all vehicles until 2012? ABS allows you to have the ability of steering your vehicle while breaking hard and quickly. This system also does not allow your brakes to lock up when having to come to a fast complete stop. This is made possible by sensors in each wheel pumping your brakes when you are braking with all of your mite. To receive more information about the ABS system, visit Consumer Reports.

 

At Vargas & Vargas Insurance Agency we understand how difficult it is to deal with your first accident, or any accident for that matter! To receive information about how you should handle an automobile accident please call 877-550-0025 and speak to one of our Customer Service Agents, we will be more than happy to help.

Are You Paying Too Much For Your Mass Home Insurance?

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One of the first things you probably did after you closed on your house was buy insurance. It would have been the smart thing to do with such a large investment. Now that you are all settled in and you have time to think, you may be wondering if you are overpaying for the policy on your house. There are several ways to save money on your Mass home insurance.

 
I am sure you have heard the saying, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket”. That suggestion should not necessarily be followed when it comes to insurance. Having multiple policies with one company can often save you money on your premiums. It is also very helpful to only have one person to call, no matter what sort of claim you have.

A mistake some home owners make when estimating how much insurance they need is that they include the value of their land. Your insurance policy is supposed to provide you with enough money to rebuild your house in case it is destroyed by fire, a natural disaster, or some other horrible event. Generally, the land is unaffected by these events so your coverage only needs to be for the cost of the actual re-building and replacement of contents.

One of our agents can tell you about more ways to save on Mass home insurance. With a little time and some insurance know-how, you can minimize your insurance costs and save your money for other things. You have probably learned, thanks to the current recession, that every penny counts. With Vargas & Vargas Insurance, you can get the coverage you need for your home. Contact us today for more information!

 

 

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Suddenly they are everywhere……

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Suddenly they are everywhere……

Suddenly you see them everywhere – on coffee cups, on the T, billboards, in magazines, on webpages and in retail stores.  All those in the cool crowd (you know who you are) are scanning these black and white boxes with their mobile phones.  Why?   It’s a type of barcode, called a QR code (Quick Response) redesigned in a 2D square that holds thousands of alphanumeric characters. These new bar codes have been designed to be read by web-enabled smartphones so that more information on the product or service can be quickly found.

How can I use them?

There are a number of apps in the iPhone App Store that can read QR Codes and most Android phones and Blackberries are able to read the codes right out of the box. All you need to do is launch the appropriate app, and point your phone’s camera at the QR code you want to scan. When you open the app on your phone, it will activate the camera on your phone and scan the QR code that appears on your screen.  

Vargas & Vargas Insurance is proud to announce that we are incorporating QR Codes into our business practices. A sample of one of our QR codes is shown at the top of this article.  You will start seeing these QR codes on our business cards, in our newsletters, and in our ads.  They will bring you to our website allowing you a more efficient way of accessing our services, as well as offering information on one of our many special and to win FREE stuff contests!  So start scanning!

Thanksgiving Kitchen Safety

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Thanksgiving dinner is one of the most eagerly anticipated meals of the year and an ideal opportunity for cooks to show off their skills.  However, Underwriters Laboratorieshave determined Thanksgiving to be the peak day for kitchen fires.  Vargas & Vargas offers the following suggestions for kitchen safety to keep your Thanksgiving from becoming a statistic.

Stay in the kitchen while food is cooking. Most fires in the kitchen occur because food is left unattended. If you must leave the kitchen briefly, carry an oven mitt with you as a reminder that something is cooking. Don’t leave candles or other open flames unattended.

Keep the stove free of clutter. Don’t overload a stovetop with too many pots and pans. Trying to cook all the Thanksgiving dishes at once can cause grease to accidentally spill onto a stovetop and erupt into a fire. Only cook with as many pots and pans as there are burners.

DO NOT hold your child in one arm while cooking with the other. Holding a child while you are cooking is a recipe for a bad burn. It’s best, if possible, to keep your kids out of the kitchen altogether while you’re cooking. Keep them occupied in another room by having them play with relatives.

DO NOT wear loose fitting clothing when cooking. Long, open sleeves can ignite and catch fire from a gas flame or a hot burner. Wear short, close fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking. If you have long hair, be sure to tie it back as it; too, can catch fire.

Always keep a potholder, oven mitt and lid handy while cooking. Be sure when removing lids on hot pans to tilt the pans away from you to protect your face and hands from steam. If there happens to be an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent flames from burning you or your clothing. If a small fire starts in a pan on the stove, put on a flame-resistant oven mitt and smother the flames by carefully sliding the lid over the pan. Turn off the burner. Don’t remove the lid until the food has cooled.

Be extremely cautious if using a turkey fryer. Because turkey fryers pose a number of distinct safety concerns, including burn and fire hazards, be extremely cautious and read the manufacturer’s directions carefully before using the turkey fryer.

Keep smoke alarms connected while cooking. Smoke alarms can save lives. Make sure smoke alarms are installed and working.

DO NOT pour water on a grease fire. Pouring water on a grease fire can cause the fire to dangerously spread.

Never put a glass casserole or lid on the stove or over a burner. If the glass gets hot and explodes, it will send shards of glass in all directions causing harm to anyone and anything in its path.

Be Prepared! Make sure your home insurance is up-to-date and ready to take on the worst-case scenario. With your family and friends visiting and the hectic kitchen, it is best to be prepared!

Thanksgiving is a day to enjoy family and friends and feast on great food. Follow these helpful Thanksgiving dinner safety tips from Vargas & Vargas Insurance and enjoy a safe holiday!

Safe Traveling During the Holidays

Safe Traveling During the Holidays

 

 

  

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As the holiday season is approaching, it is an exciting time for family and friends to get together. Don’t let the enjoyment of these special times be tainted with tragedy due to a death or injury caused by a traffic accident. During the holiday season, motorists need to be mindful of actions that will make their holiday travel safer. Drivers can protect themselves and their passengers by following these holiday travel rules.

Before you start your trip, make sure your vehicle is tuned up and in good shape for travel. This is especially important for winter driving conditions.
 

Restrain yourself and your passengers properly in seat belts and car safety seats. Remember, the rear seat is the safest place for children of any age to ride..

Be flexible in setting your travel plans. Leave early if you can to avoid the peak traffic hours. If heavy snow is predicted during the time you plan to travel, change your schedule. It is better to reschedule your get-together than to risk the lives of traveling family or friends. 

Stay fresh and alert when driving. Take plenty of breaks and do not push yourself to meet an unrealistic schedule. If you get tired, pull off the road in a safe spot for a rest, get out of the car for some fresh air, or buy something to refresh you, until you feel revived. Forty-one percent of fatal traffic accidents are single vehicle crashes. These crashes most often occur during the late night/early morning hours and the late afternoon hours to drivers who are tired, have consumed alcohol, or both.

Keep your speed down. Give yourself plenty of time and distance to react to the traffic around you. Clear snow from all windows, side mirrors, and the roof of your vehicle. Keep headlights and tail lights clean – Dark winter days make it more difficult to see other motorists and pedestrians.

If there will be drinking at your holiday get-together, choose a designated driver who will remain alcohol free, 
because driving requires your full attention, pull off the road if you have to use your cellular phone.

Carry a driving emergency kit – a blanket, flashlight, candles, matches, jumper cables and a shovel in your trunk. Kitty litter or sand is also useful to gain traction if you happen to get stuck.  

Holidays are happy times filled of fond memories; follow the above safety tips to ensure that they stay that way. Vargas & Vargas Insurance wishes you and yours a very happy and safe holiday season!  

 

Winterize Your Home

 

Winterize Your Home

 

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Many disasters caused by winter weather conditions can be prevented by taking a few simple steps. Most homeowners’ policies provide coverage for ice dams, burst pipes, and losses from wind damage, snow or ice. There are several ways to prepare a home for winter and protect your most valuable asset from damage.  These tips will ensure a safe winter, if you think you need to review your insurance, Vargas & Vargas Insurance ins here to help you!  

1. Clean out all gutters – It’s important to remove all sticks, leaves and debris. This helps the melting ice and snow flow smoothly. It also prevents ice collecting and forming a dam, which can result in water seeping into the ceilings and walls.

2. Keep trees and branches trimmed – When branches hang over houses during the winter, they’re likely to accumulate snow and ice, which may make them break. Branches falling on homes can cause significant amounts of damage. They may also hurt people who enter the property.

3. Seal cracks and holes – Caulk all holes and cracks to ensure that melted snow and wind can’t enter the home.

4. Keep steps and handrails safe – It’s important to ensure that steps and banisters are sturdy and clear of snow and ice to avoid any to serious injuries.

5. Use insulation liberally – Homeowners should add extra insulation to basements, attics and crawl spaces. When heat escapes through the roof, it contributes to ice and snow melting faster. As the moisture melts, re-freezes and accumulates, it can cause a roof to collapse.

6. Keep it warm – It’s best to keep the thermostat at 65 degrees to prevent pipes from freezing. The temperature in the walls is always colder than the temperature in the house.

7. Call the professionals– The heating system should be checked and serviced every year to prevent fires. It’s also important to ensure that smoke alarms are working. Carbon monoxide detectors are another valuable safety feature that should be placed in every home. In addition to this, homeowners should have a contractor evaluate the home for structural damage. It’s best to identify and repair minor problems before they become a disaster.

8. Be familiar with shutting off the water – Homeowners should know how to do this, and they should know where their pipes are located. When pipes freeze, it’s imperative to act quickly. When going away for an extended time, it’s best to have someone look after the home or have a service professional drain the system.

9. Add an emergency pressure release valve – By adding this to a current system, homeowners will have a system that is protected against increasing pressure from frozen pipes.

Vargas & Vargas Insurance Agency Inc. 877-550-0025 Fax: 617-298-8355 vargasinsurance.com

Preparing to Buy Commercial Insurance, Massachusetts?

Regardless of the size of your business, you need commercial insurance as an essential investment for the protection of your business in the event of an unforeseen mishap leading to losses. Many local business owners have been rudely awakened to the reality that commercial insurance in Massachusetts is the only way to protect their investment in their company against unpredictable yet costly events.

Preparing to Purchase Commercial Insurance

When preparing to purchase commercial insurance, Massachusetts residents have important steps to take, including the following;

  • Explore the different types of commercial insurance coverage

It is helpful to explore the various types of commercial insurance coverage available, so that you can have insight into the most suitable one for your business. This would also enable you to ask your insurer meaningful questions. For instance, property insurance is the type that protects your business location, so you can ponder how much coverage your should purchase in order to cover the risks pertaining to crime or environmental hazards around your business location. Indeed, it pays to be an informed insurance policy buyer.

  • Carry out analysis of your business

While getting ready to purchase your business insurance, it is also helpful to analyze your business. Then, you can use the knowledge you acquire by studying the different types of business insurance to determine the type of commercial insurance that would be most suited for your business. One of the desirable approaches to business analysis for the purpose of insurance is to learn from business owners in your industry, especially those that run your kind of business. Ensure that you take some notes down regarding the information you gathered from your analysis, so that you can ask the right questions to commercial insurance providers.

When it comes to learning the basics of commercial insurance, Massachusetts residents may be best off looking online at some of the available options before seeking advice from a knowledgeable, local agent. With Vargas & Vargas Insurance, you can rely on us to get you the coverage you need.