Home Insurance

Severe Weather Preparation

Don’t look now, but those blooming plants and flowers are a sure sign that spring weather cannot be far behind! At Childress Insurance Agency, 2391 West Main Street, Suite A, Cabot we look forward to green landscapes and the endless opportunities to enjoy nature after the gloom of winter.

It also happens to be the prime season for severe weather in the form of tornadoes, flooding and other realized or potential disasters. Each year, it becomes more important to prepare for such incidences by compiling a list of things to have completed before high winds or hail pummel your home or business. An emergency kit is always a good idea – stock it with non-perishable food, bottled water, flashlights (with fresh batteries) and a host of other items in case you and your family end up without power or worse yet the ability to leave a damaged property.

Another essential thing is development of a family evacuation plan encompassing everything from gathering spots for exiting a home and keeping communications easily accessible (fully charged cell phones, for example) to designating what responsibilities each household member will have should an emergency arise. On top of that, of course, is the proper amount of insurance coverage for loss of property, etc. No one wants to be caught without enough coverage. Call us today at (501) 941-1148 to make sure you’re well insured!

Keep an eye on weather developments. Information is readily available today for receiving severe weather alerts via text, email or conventional sources like radio and television broadcasts. In addition, make it a priority to watch the skies yourself because even the most advanced technology cannot guarantee sufficient warning by trusted media sources. If you see an approaching storm, look for characteristics – a green tint to the clouds, rapidly increasing winds, widespread hail. When a warning is issued, move to your safe area at home, be it the basement, storm cellar or interior closet. Be sure to follow whatever directions are provided by local media and authorities. And, utilize a NOAA Weather Radio to give another layer of reassurance during breaking weather.

Flooding poses some different challenges, but preparation is virtually the same. It is of the utmost importance to pay attention to rising waters and monitor media accounts of conditions. Regardless of whether a community, state or region is flood-prone or not, the risk is always there when substantial rains hit. Know the higher flooding locations nearby and be ready to evacuate if necessary. The importance of flood insurance cannot be overstated! Stop by our offices, send an email on this site or call us today for more information about flood insurance. The less risk of a flood in your area, the less you pay for coverage.

Lightning can be one of the most serious aspects of severe weather. Why? For one, it kills and injures more Americans than all but two other factors related to storms (falling debris and structural collapses rank high as well), according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Keeping an eye to the sky can mean the difference between serious injury or death and making it to safety in a home, building, hard surface vehicle, etc. If you are inside, be sure to close off windows and doors to avoid lightning traveling through these entrances.

With all of the above, it is important to make preparations. Severe weather season is here and can be impossible to predict. Plans count for a great deal of comfort when things happen. Insurance coverage plays a major role. So, call us now to be on the right side of approaching storms.

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Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 Home Insurance No Comments

Spring Home Maintenance List

The changing of seasons can be no more dramatic than when spring pushes winter back into hibernation for another year. Just as we plan for planting shrubs and flowers, we must also get ready to mow the yard, clean out gutters and look forward to those traditional cookouts and other outdoor events. Click here for a list of our services!

At Childress Insurance Agency, 2391 West Main Street, Suite A, Cabot we are well aware of the simultaneous anticipation of warmer weather and the challenges it poses for homeowners. So, we have a few tips as to how the preparation can be done efficiently and maybe, just maybe, a little fun! Pick up the phone and call us today at (501) 941-1148!

Some “must do” items for the spring maintenance list:

* Check your smoke detectors and replace batteries, as well as make sure detectors are located in different areas of the home (upstairs and downstairs for houses with different levels)

* Do the same thing with light bulbs around the residence – be sure to use energy-efficient bulbs in order to save light but, more importantly, cut down on those utility bills

* Also, with lighting it is always a good idea to check on the proper wattage for each fixture (again, as an energy and money-saving measure)

* Diligently inspect all electrical outlets for secure and safe connections – it only takes one unfortunate incident to injure someone or result in a fire or both

* Chances are, winter left a few marks on the roof; an inspection by yourself or a trusted professional can truly make the difference between patchwork and a full replacement project (focus on the condition of shingles, for example)

* Another crucial thing to do is making sure water hasn’t puddled up and damaged roofing, along with looking at any existing or potential wear and tear following winter’s harsh winds and precipitation

* Gutters serve an important purpose by collecting leaves, water and small debris but the downside is these same gutters can easily become clogged and must be cleaned out when spring arrives because winter’s leftovers are more than capable of creating foundation leaks when April’s showers are lending a hand to May flowers

* Look down at your driveway and take inventory of any cracks or other issues

* A lot of people use spring as the perfect excuse to paint their home inside and out – it is a refreshing way to usher in the new season

* Don’t forget to give your yard and landscaping some much-needed attention during spring; pruning dead flowers and plants, pulling weeds, replenishing mulch, etc. all count as spring maintenance goals to check off the list

* Be careful to store items like gas canisters and other fluids used in yard work in a well-ventilated location

* Spring cleaning certainly includes checking hot water heaters, washing machines, dryers and other household appliances for leaks and the like (think of it like a yearly physical for the home)

The list here is not exhaustive, but offers a number of solid pointers on spring maintenance. With questions, please call us at (501) 941-1148 or stop by our offices. Hours of operation are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Contact us today!


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Thursday, April 10th, 2014 General Update, Home Insurance No Comments

Home Inventory List

Disaster can and does strike without so much as a second of warning. Just like that, your household is utterly and completely turned into a scene of chaos. Decisions must be made quickly. It cannot be a time of deliberate thought or planning – you have to get out and fast. From tornadoes and floods to fires and ice storms, Americans understand the realities of losing everything to the whims of nature. Of course, property losses can occur for many other reasons as well.

Childress Insurance Agency, 2391 West Main Street in Cabot, Arkansas is not only about providing you a sense of comfort and reassurance in these moments. We simply offer nothing less than an all-inclusive set of services to be prepared before, during and after life-altering events. Moreover, we can get you started with some timely advice and tips to utilize in anticipation of future challenges. Let’s get going!

* Be a list taker – Start with a plan to go from one room to the next and stick with it. That way, you can compile a full inventory of items to include things like model numbers, owners’ manuals, serial numbers, etc. The information makes it much easier to locate answers to the typical questions an insurance agent will be asking. Items of high value – computers, refrigerators, freezers and major furnishings like sofas and table sets, among others – should be on your list.

* Don’t forget the details – More than likely, you’ll be swamped with competing demands when a disaster occurs. When compiling the inventory list, grab your camera and snap photos and/or videos of your belongings as a means of additional documentation. And, be mindful of keeping receipts for your items whenever possible because it can certainly make the process easier.

* Estimating the value of things – It may be more feasible to maintain more detailed records of major household items like appliances or furniture, so when coming up with dollar amounts for items like clothes, shoes and kitchen utensils it probably makes better sense to provide an estimated value. Again, make use of photos to document what you have. Another tip is to group as many things together as you can – for instance, taking all the belts or earrings and submitting a total count. We are here Monday-Wednesday and Friday, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and on Thursday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. to help answer questions you may have about the list.

* As with your possessions, organize important paperwork (medical records, insurance and contact information). You’ll want to make copies of this information for storage in safe deposit boxes, sealed document casings, trusted friends or family. Remember: If your home is lost to a fire or tornado, the inventory list is likely gone as well. Basically, you should inventory the list itself! Visit our web site at www.childressinsuranceagency.com for more information about this topic, finding an agent and a host of other needs.

* Update and update – Most of us purchase new gadgets, clothes and many other household items on a regular basis. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to update inventory lists for including them. One suggestion might be to set up a template for how your inventory will be recorded so that each addition can be put there seamlessly.

* Inventory lists offer assurance about your insurance – It may sound a bit cliché, but the most important factor to consider when putting your home’s inventory on paper is about us!  As your trusted agency, we are fully committed to making sure your claim covers all the things you seek to replace. Keeping the list correct and updated should also mean making adjustments to your policy, whether owning or renting a property. The last thing you want is for your claim to be unable to cover the losses.

Call us at (501) 941-1148 for a policy review to make sure it’s up-to-date.


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Monday, March 17th, 2014 Home Insurance No Comments