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Home Insurance: 7 Tips Every Homeowner Should Know

Home Insurance: 7 Tips Every Homeowner Should Know

Home insurance policies can become complicated, so it is in every owner’s best interest to brush up on some key information before diving in.

Here are some tips for homeowners looking for coverage and ways to make the process as stress-free as possible.

Knowing you are covered is priceless.

Having a piece of mind is valuable, so sleep better at night knowing you are covered rather than worrying about breaking the bank. According to the Insurance Information Institute, there are 4 basic kinds of coverage:

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  1. Coverage for the structure of your home
  2. Coverage for your personal belongings
  3. Liability protection
  4. Additional living expenses if you are temporarily unable to live in your home because of an insured disaster.

The truth is, most people will never have a use for the majority of the coverage they acquire. But in the event of a natural disaster, emergency repair or any other pitfall that could occur it is worth the extra money to know that you are covered.

Purchasing auto and home insurance from the same company can save money.

In some cases, insurance companies will offer a discount on either home or auto insurance if you buy both from the same place. For example, Progressive offers a potential 8% discount on auto insurance if a property policy is added. This can become tricky, so be sure to crunch the numbers and make sure it will be less expensive to do both rather than purchasing separate policies from different companies.

Research insurance companies and premiums.

Insurance companies will determine the premium of your policy based on several factors. You can get a ballpark figure of what it might cost by simply entering your information at the website of any number of insurance companies. For example, Chill.ie Home Insurance provides fast quotes without even having to speak to an agent.

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Anything that puts your home at a higher risk of damage will affect how high the coverage premium is set. Do some research and find out what insurance company could potentially save you the most money. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners has tons of information on their website as well as recommendations for insurance companies within your region.

Secure the home as much as possible

It’s any homeowners’ nightmare to imagine something happening to the home when no one is there. Improve the security as much as possible, but keep in mind that effective alarms and monitoring systems can be expensive. But the good thing is some insurance companies will offer discounts for things like burglar alarms and smoke detectors. So, you can essentially save money while simultaneously protecting your home.

Know how much your possessions are worth

There is also coverage for things inside of the home. Keep an itemized list of all of your possessions because it is important when trying to recoup expenses. There are even online inventories that can assist with keeping things organized. According to Bankrate, the average household can have anywhere from $10,000-$30,000 worth of valuables. That sounds like a lot, but when you really break it down piece by piece the numbers make sense.

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Attach dollar amounts to every single thing you own and a clearer picture will start to develop. Also, remember to make several copies of the list and receipts and keep them in a safe place. Either store them digitally or keep them someplace away from any possible hazard involved with the home, as damage/loss will render them useless.

Purchase earthquake and flood insurance

If you live in an area that could potentially be affected by a flood or earthquake it is a good idea to get some extra coverage. Standard policies cover fire, hurricanes, lightning, hail and many other disasters but not floods or earthquakes. Know the history of your region to be sure you are not at risk.

Less is not always more

It can be tempting to simply go with the insurance company that charges you the least amount of money. That is not always a wise decision because the service and support they provide are also very important. Ask questions about the company’s reputation. Find out their track record with satisfied customers. Weigh those things and try to find one that provides the right balance of cost efficiency and quality service.

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Featured photo credit: ybimmobilier via ybimmobilier.com

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Erick Clifford

Journalist

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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