Preventing Dryer Vent Fires

You can protect your home from a dryer vent fire in the following ways:

  • Clean the lint trap before and after each load of clothes. This will prevent build-up on the screen, which can cause the dryer to overheat.
  • Make sure to put in only items that are approved for the dryer. Objects containing rubber or plastic, such as foam-backed rugs and athletic shoes, can increase the risk of combustion in a hot dryer.
  • Replace foil or plastic ducts with metal venting material.  This type of venting is preferable because of its nonflammable qualities and ability to contain flames. Foil or plastic ducts can lose their shape over time, creating fire hazards.
  • Clean the back of the dryer where lint can get trapped.

It is also important to get your dryer professionally cleaned and inspected for proper installation. The Fireplace Doctor is offering a limited time discount of only $59 on dryer vent cleaning and safety inspections for Angie’s List members. Don’t wait! This $120 value ends soon!

As always, the friendly and knowledgeable staff at Vargas & Vargas Insurance are here to help with any of your Massachusetts home insurance policy questions and concerns.  Call and speak to one today at 877-550-0025. There is never a better time to ensure that your home, automobile and family are getting the right coverage and protection you deserve.

Making sure you have Adequate Mass Home Insurance Coverage for those Extra Special Treasured Possessions

Are you a mad collector? Do you have walls of antique porcelain, or shelves full of precious rare books? Have you spoken to your insurance broker about your Mass home insurance policy and about what you need to do to make sure you have adequate coverage for these special treasures?

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Home insurance usually includes an amount in the policy to cover the replacement or repair of personal items in the event of an insured loss. However, that may not be enough if you have items that are highly valuable as when added together, the collective value may well exceed the amount you can claim in a particular category on your policy.

It isn’t just antiques and collectibles that fall into this category. A fully equipped home gym, with a lot of specialized training equipment may also cost more to replace than your policy will pay. So could musical instruments and fancy IT and entertainment equipment.

You do have a few options, including upping the contents coverage portion of your Mass home insurance, or adding endorsements to specifically cover those precious items. Why not give us a call to discuss your situation and explore how best to ensure you have enough coverage?

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All About Earth Day

Started in 1970 by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, the day was created to increase public consciousness about air and water pollution and bring environmental protection onto the national political agenda.  On April 22nd, 1970, more than 20 million Americans organized collective protests against the deterioration of the environment. 

Since then, Earth Day has evolved into a worldwide event.  It has led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts.  

Earth Day 1990 also gave a huge push to recycling efforts worldwide and paved the way for the 1992 United Nations Earth Summit.  

In the 2000s, the emphasis of the environmental campaign shifted to global warming and a push for clean energy.  For its 40th anniversary in 2010, Earth Day campaigners organized a Climate Rally at the National Mall in Washington D.C. to reestablish the movement as a prominent focal point across the country and worldwide.

This year, environmental service activists launched 1 Billions Acts of Green, an international tree planting initiative.

While the fight for a clean environment becomes more important each year, technology has empowered the campaign to reach more people than it ever thought possible.  As a result, air and water throughout the nation are cleaner today than they were 42 years ago.  Environmental education is being taught in schools, and cities are making green spaces a priority.

To become an activist in Earth Day Network, visit http://bit.ly/IW4dOk and join the ongoing cultural and political movement.

For ideas on how you can participate in Earth Day activities, check out The Boston Channel’s Earth Day Freebies.


Be sure to conserve on your electricity, recycle, and support your local Earth Day events.  And don’t forget to talk to Vargas & Vargas Insurance Agency about any questions you have about Massachusetts Car Insurance, Massachusetts  Homeowner’s InsuranceLife Insurance, Massachusetts Business Insurance or any other types of insurance.  You can visit our virtual insurance office at vargasinsurance.com, you can call us at 877-550-0025, and you can visit our insurance offices in Dorchester and Stoughton MA.  You can find us on Twitter and Facebook!

At Vargas & Vargas Insurance,“It’s all about protecting you and your family!…and our planet!

 

What does Warren Buffet know about the Real Estate Business and the Economy!

The amount that Mr. Buffet paid for the agency is unknown, but it is a strong possibility that he paid a hefty amount for the agency as Prudential handled $2.5 billion in property last year. Warren Buffett’s purchase shows that he strongly believes the economy along with the real estate business is on the uprising. 

How exactly does the real estate business improve the economy? When someone purchase a home they  will take a loan from your local bank like  and hire a moving company. Then they may furnish their  home with kitchen appliances, rugs, televisions, chairs, curtains etc.  All of these acquisitions for their home will positively help the economy of our country!

If you are thinking of purchasing a home, you will need Massachusetts homeowners insurance, make sure you have the right coverage at the right price.  Talk to one of the homeowners insurance experts at Vargas & Vargas Insurance Agency!  Homeowners, renters insurance, condominium insurance, and business insurance, we are here to help you!

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Insuring your Massachusetts small business assets at the most appropriate level

When you think about ‘assets’ it can mean so many things. Your home is an asset, and so is your business, as are the many components that make up that business – from the staff you hire to your buildings and stock. It makes sense to protect them with the best Massachusetts small business insurance you can afford, as anything that threatens those assets could mean the destruction of everything you’ve worked so hard to build up.

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In some ways, a small business is special because – as for many small business owners – it is possibly your main focus and source of income. Valuing your assets accurately, and ensuring that you have the right level of insurance so that they can be replaced as quickly as possible after a loss, could be vital to your ability to get back to your regular level of productivity. Don’t make the mistake of underestimating their value and under insuring – which could backfire if you need to claim, with the payout being insufficient to replace your loss. Overestimating can also be a bad move, as it may result in a dispute over the value of particular assets; it may also mean paying a higher premium than you need to.

Massachusetts small business insurance may offer you your best source of financial backup as long as your policy is based on an accurate assessment of your assets. You owe it to yourself, your family and your employees to get it right so that your business has the best chance of lasting the distance, even during the tough times. Contact us for more information on getting the right coverage for you small business. 

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Protect Your Home and Family from Wildfires

You can keep your home safe in the following ways:

  • Remove natural fuels, such as dry grass, brush and trees, from within 100 feet of your home.
  • Clean out your gutters.
  • Mow your lawn.
  • Cut down any dead branches that hang over your home’s roof and are near a chimney.
  • Prune branches on taller trees so that a ground fire cannot climb up to the tops of them.
  • Enclose the underside of porches and decks, this keeps fire from creeping under the house.

Plan ahead to protect your family and valuables in case of a wildfire:

  • Discuss what to do and escape routes to take should a fire start.
  • Teach every family member how to use a fire extinguisher.
  • Install smoke detectors on each level of your home, especially near bedrooms, it’s the law!
  • Make two copies of important documents, and keep the originals in a safe deposit or fireproof box.
  • Take a complete inventory of your home, garage and property.
  • This list could help you prove the value of what you owned should anything be damaged or destroyed and enable you to claim deduction on taxes.
  • Contact your home insurance agent with any questions about your policy’s coverage.
  • For a free home insurance quote, visit our Virtual Insurance Office.

As always, Vargas & Vargas Insurance is dedicated to keeping you and your family safe.  Call and speak to one of their helpful agents today at 877.550.0025, or visit their website, vargasinsurance.com.

Spring For a Remodel

If it saves you money in the long run:

Certain renovations, such as energy-efficient windows and doors, will essentially pay for themselves by reducing heating costs.  For this reason, be sure to consider a renovation’s long-term savings and not just its current cost.

If your home isn’t competitive in the marketplace:

If you are looking to sell your home, it is important to bring it up to community standards, but no higher.   

To help you know which projects yield the greatest cost recoups, experts from Remodeling Magazine report the latest remodeling trends:

  • Steel entry door replacement (73% cost recoup)
  • Attic bedroom (72.5% cost recoup)
  • Garage door replacement (71.1% cost recoup)
  • Minor kitchen remodel, such as granite counter tops (72.1% cost recoup)
  • Vinyl siding replacement (69.5% cost recoup)

For more detailed information on nationwide market value trends, check out the Cost vs. Value Report 2011-2012.

According to Wall Street Journal staff reporters, other relatively inexpensive, worthwhile renovations are:

  • New carpets (neutral colors)
  • Pull-out kitchen faucets
  • Body-spray shower heads
  • Garage storage systems

Remember, it’s not how much you spend; it’s how you spend it. 

Vargas & Vargas Insurance is happy to assist you with any and all homeowners insurance policy questions.  Call and speak to a friendly agent today at 877.550.0025.

Maximizing Value for Money with Mass Home Insurance

To make the most of your Mass home insurance, you need to ensure that you aren’t paying more than you need to, and that you have adequate coverage. However, that means you need to do two things; do an accurate assessment of your assets, and look for ways to keep the costs of your premiums down.

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People sometimes under insure – in other words, they under-value their assets in order to get a lower premium. This is a false economy. It may mean that, if you have to make a claim, the amount your insurance company pays may not be sufficient to replace lost items. Ask yourself if you can afford to pay to replace an item if it is lost or damaged. Unless you can answer yes, you really need insurance that is able to pay the required amount (in an accepted claim) for replacement.

Instead of running that risk (of being under-insured), you should look at positive ways to lower your premiums without compromising your coverage. For instance, do you have your auto or life insurance with a different company from your home policy? The may be discounts available if you have all of your insurance with the same company. Increasing the security of your home may also help with reductions to your premiums as it means creating a lower risk profile for losses due to burglaries.

There are other options you could explore to make sure you get the best value for your Mass home insurance. Why not call and speak to one of our experienced staff members for help with the information you need to make the best decision for financially protecting your assets?

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Insuring your New Home-Based Business Venture

A home-based business can offer a degree of flexibility in working hours that suits people with families better than having to punch an employer’s time clock. However, before you rush off and resign so you can get your business up and running, do some homework. Look at what your options are for the type of business that might be feasible, and then work out what you might need in the way of essentials like equipment, basic marketing materials and Massachusetts small business insurance.

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Life is getting busier, for many working hours are getting longer, our kids have more commitments outside school hours, and it can be very difficult to maintain a sustainable life/work balance. For many people it’s important to be around for family, especially when kids are going through school. Managing on a single income so that one of you can stay home full time may not be a financial option. However, running a small, home-based business that allows you to have some control over the hours you work, and when you work, could give you that much need financial security and still allow you to be available for those all-important occasions for your kids.

While some business activities might be able to be covered by a homeowner’s policy, there can be financial hazards that could catch you off guard if you are not careful. You may only need to raise your limits, or add an endorsement. Alternatively, if your business needs more than an average PC and a corner of the kitchen, you might need to have more comprehensive Massachusetts small business insurance. Call us today to discuss your options.