EDISON BLOG

5 Ways to Make Your Home Safer



 
As a homeowner, you already know the basics. Locking your front doors, looking through the peephole, or asking “Who is it?” before opening the door, and setting the alarm are usually done by instinct. However, there is more we can do to protect our homes in just 5 simple steps:
 
Examine all doors in your home for potential weaknesses: To prevent intruders from kicking your door in, use a solid wood or steel door, instead of a hollow lightweight door. If you have sliding doors, inspect the locks to make sure they are sturdy. For extra protection, use a rod or metal stick to stop the door from sliding open, even after you have locked it. This method also prevents small children from sliding the door open and injuring themselves.
 
Use longer, tougher screws: The screws in your deadbolt strike plate (the piece of metal where the deadbolt latch goes into the door's frame) should be at least three inches long to ensure the plate is sturdy and not easily knocked out.
 
Warning signs: Intruders generally seek the easiest target. If you are using a security company for an alarm system such as ADT, don’t hesitate to hang a sign or stick a decal on your doors and windows. Let everyone know your home security system is armed and ready.
 
Be creative: If an intruder does manage to enter your home, they will attempt to grab the most valuable items in a short period. Instead of placing your valuables in obvious places like the dresser drawer and bedside table, put them in a hidden safe and instead. You can even use little tricks such as leaving an old, worthless laptop or shiny costume jewelry out where they can see. It is unfortunate if your home is burglarized, but at least you’ll be able to protect most of your belongings.
 
Practice safety measures when going on vacation: Simple steps such as placing your mail on hold, setting timers on your lights, and parking your vehicle in the garage make it difficult for people to you are planning a trip. 



Thank you for visiting our blog. Hopefully, you came away with some great home insurance and safety tips. Edison Insurance Company’s mission is to provide quality coverage at competitive rates while providing exceptional service.  For more information on Florida homeowners insurance or to get a quote, please call (866) 568-8922.

Common Forms of Identity Theft



Many people fail to realize identity theft comes in various forms. You’ll be surprised to learn how easily your personal information can be accessed by hackers, and in how many different ways. There are steps to protect yourself from falling victim to identity theft, but first, you should know the common types of theft or fraud.
 
Insurance Identity Theft
 
This type of fraud occurs, for example, when someone uses another person’s information to receive medical treatment. It can have a serious impact and leave victims with higher insurance premiums and huge medical bills.
 
Child Identity Theft
 
This type of identity theft occurs when a child is the victim of the crime. Criminals will use a child’s social security number to access loans or even open accounts to commit fraud. It is important to protect your children identities, using the same measures you would to protect your own personal information. Falling victim to identity theft at such a young age could follow them through their entire lives, and affect them when they go off to college and apply for student loans or a car.
 
 
Tax Identity Theft
 
Tax ID theft is formed through fraudulent tax refund claims. Criminals send claims to the IRS using stolen information such as social security numbers and names. If you fall victim to this crime, it can significantly delay your ability to access legitimate tax refunds. You can protect yourself by practicing safe internet habits and avoiding opening and responding to strange emails about your personal information. Be very cautious when giving out your social security number over the phone and make sure the numbers you are calling (or calling you) are legitimate.
 
 
Synthetic Identity Theft
 
This is one of the most sophisticated kinds of identity fraud, in which criminals use a social security number in combination with fake information such as names and addresses, resulting in the creation of a completely new identity.
 
 
Criminal Identity Theft
 
This is a very common form of ID theft in America, where an individual commits a crime under someone else’s name. During the process of being arrested, the criminal will at times use a fraudulent ID with your name and other details, in order to keep a clean record for themselves. There are identity monitoring services you could use from reputable identity protection agencies to protect yourself, along with practicing safe habits online and even around ATM’s and public spaces.
 


Keeping your family and home safe and protected is Edison Home Insurance Company’s number one priority. We have taken a bright and innovative approach to FL homeowners insurance with coverage options allowing you to customize a policy to best fit your needs. To learn more about Edison Insurance Company, or to get a personalized quote, call us at (866) 568-8922.
 

Tips for Traveling with Kids Over the Holidays



Traveling with children can be a challenge on any day, but if you’re headed to the airport over the holiday season, you may want to keep these tips in mind:
 
If possible, sign up for pre-check: In order to get through TSA lines much faster, it is a good idea to sign up for pre-check. This means not having to take your laptops out of your bag or having to take your shoes off (kids too). Pre-check makes for a hassle-free TSA experience.
 
Wrap on arrival: You’ll want to avoid carrying gift bags by hand when you have kids with you. Pack all gifts in one suitcase and wrap everything once you’ve arrived at your destination.
 
Don’t wake the kids: If you plan on catching a red-eye, dress your children appropriately before they go to bed. Comfortable clothing such as long-sleeved onesies or sweat suits are great for the chilly airport. If they’re small enough, all you’ll have to do when you’re ready to go is carry them to the car. When you arrive at the airport, you can use strollers to get to your destination easily. Unless you have night owls on your hands, your children will more than likely not opt to be awake during those hours.
 
Take advantage of early boarding: Most airlines usually call parents with small children to board first. By boarding early, you can take your time getting your bags into the overhead compartment and get your children settled down and buckled in. Be sure to carry portable devices or books to keep your children busy. Don’t forget the headphones!
 
Bring LOTS of snacks: Food always cures hunger and a case of the grumps. Be sure to travel with your kids’ favorite snacks in case they start to get a little grumpy.
 
Travel Necessities: Be sure to carry enough diapers, milk/formula, wipes and changes of clothing for your children. Anything can happen, so it’s best to be over prepared in situations like this. You should place these items in a bag which can fit under your seat for easy access. Don’t forget to be courteous and always change your child in the bathroom whether you are in the airport terminal or on the plane.
 
Purchase travel insurance: Travel insurance can protect you when your trip needs to be canceled because of the weather, or even a death in the family. If you need to cancel your trip for a variety of reasons, this can really come in handy. There are several types of travel insurance, including Trip Cancellation, Lost Baggage, Medical, Dental, Emergency Evacuation, 24 Hour Traveler Assistance, Baggage Delay, Travel Delay, and Accidental Death Coverages.
 
Most importantly, have fun! Traveling with kids doesn’t have to be a hassle. As long as you’re prepared, everything should go smoothly. Have a safe and happy holiday season! 


Keeping your family and home safe and protected is Edison Home Insurance Company’s number one priority. We have taken a bright and innovative approach to FL homeowners insurance with coverage options allowing you to customize a policy to best fit your needs. To learn more about Edison Insurance Company, or to get a personalized quote, call us at (866) 568-8922.

 

Keep Your Eyes Peeled and Your Identity Secure This Holiday Season



 
Around this time of year, the sales are hot and everyone is gearing up to buy presents, decorations, clothing and more. Criminals count on these heightened emotions to find easy targets for scams and theft.
 
Pay attention to your receipts and statements: This is a great way to keep track of spending and manage your holiday budget. It’s also a good reference to verify unknown charges on one of your accounts. Sometimes it could be forgetfulness, other times it could be theft.
 
Charity Scams: Always do your research before donating to a charity, especially during the holiday season. If you’ve never heard of it before, it only takes a minute to search it online.  Unfortunately, this is often the time of year where we see a rise in charity scams.  If you’d like to give this holiday season, contact your charity of choice directly to find out how you can donate to their organization. If you’re still iffy about giving money, donate your time to an organization in need.
 
Protect Yourself Online: Don’t let those sales fool you. When shopping online, avoid third-party websites. We’ve all heard the horror stories of ordering things from pop up sites and never receiving them, only to find out the shop has disappeared and you have nothing to show for it. Don’t do what’s convenient, do what’s right.
 
We hope you’ll keep these suggestions in mind in order to protect your personal information and finances during this busy time of year. Happy holidays!


Thank you for visiting our blog. Hopefully, you came away with some great home insurance and safety tips. Edison Insurance Company’s mission is to provide quality coverage at competitive rates while providing exceptional service.  For more information on Florida homeowners insurance or to get a quote, please call (866) 568-8922.

Hosting Safety Tips for Thanksgiving


Hosting Thanksgiving dinner can be rewarding when you see family and friends come together to have a great time. However, if you don’t plan ahead, things can get pretty messy. If it’s your turn to host dinner this year, you’ll want to take a look at these safety tips:
 
Start cooking earlier: If you can be finished with your entire meal before your guests arrive, you’ll be one step ahead the entire night. We understand it may not always go this way, but try to get most of the cooking finished before guests arrive, so you can focus more on them.
 
Don’t do too many things at once: It’s important to take your time and not get too frazzled when balancing guests and your meal. Remember, your guests can mingle until dinner is ready. They understand you are busy hosting and it’s okay to take a step back to make sure your everything is in working order.
 
Keep an eye on the kitchen: When everyone starts to pile in, you’ll want to be extra careful with what’s happening around the kitchen area. There’s a chance your stove and oven will be packed full of food items. Make sure you know exactly what’s cooking, and when it needs to come out. If you lose track of what’s happening in the kitchen, this is a sure way to start a fire.
 
Ask for help: It’s tough for a host to do it all on his/her own. Ask for help from others in the household. With more hands on deck, things will go a lot smoother and you can cover more bases.
 
Keep an eye on your belongings: Most importantly, keep an eye on certain areas of your home. Guests may have the urge to wander, but it is best if you keep everyone in a general area, such as the living room and dining room. This way, you’ll know what’s going on at all times.
 
We hope you’ll keep these tips in mind when hosting dinner this year. Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving! 


Thank you for visiting our blog. Hopefully, you came away with some great home insurance and safety tips. Edison Insurance Company’s mission is to provide quality coverage at competitive rates while providing exceptional service.  For more information on Florida homeowners or condo insurance, please call (866) 568-8922, or visit our website

Common Causes of House Fires


 
House fires are usually started by things which could have been avoided in the first place. However, you can take certain measures to ensure the safety of your home and family. Here are the most common causes of house fires, and how to avoid them:
 
  1. Cooking in the kitchen: Pots and pans can easily overheat. If left unattended, this is a common way for a fire to start, spreading quickly throughout the entire house. It is important to always keep an eye on your stove, and turn it off if you plan to leave the kitchen.
 
  1. Smoking in the house: Smoking should always be done outside, and the house should be kept off limits. A cigarette which is not put out properly can easily start a fire to furniture, curtains, clothing, and even yourself. If caught onto flammable materials, your home could burst into flames.
 
  1. Candles: They look and smell great, and can really set the scene. Unfortunately, they could also cause devastating loss if not used properly. Keep candles away from flammable items such as curtains, books and furniture. It is important to keep them far away from children as well. Always blow out a candle when leaving the room and going to bed at night. Did you know: from 2009-2013, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 9,300 home structure fires started by candles? These fires caused 86 deaths, 827 injuries and over $374 million in direct property damage. 
 
  1. Barbeque Grills: Barbeques are great for an outdoor meal, especially during the summer months, but they should always be used at least 10 feet away from your home. Practice safe grilling by keeping BBQs properly maintained and clean removeable parts with warm soapy water. Check the gas bottle for any leaks before you use it each time.
 
 
  1. Curious Children: Unsupervised children can start a fire simply out of curiosity. Keep matches and lighters out of reach from children and install a smoke alarm in your child’s room. It is also important to practice fire safety with your children.
 
 
By practicing fire safety in your home, you could help lower the rates of fires happening each year. Start protecting your home and family today. 






Keeping your family and home safe and protected is Edison Home Insurance Company’s number one priority. We have taken a bright and innovative approach to FL homeowners insurance with coverage options allowing you to customize a policy to best fit your needs. To learn more about Edison Insurance Company, or to get a personalized quote, call us at (866) 568-8922.

Hiking Safety Tips


Hiking is a wonderful activity offering countless benefits for its participants, and above all else, is free! According to the American Hiking Society, Those who engage in aerobic exercises, such as hiking, enjoy increased cardiorespiratory fitness, improved muscle strength, better sleep quality, lower risk of depression and most importantly, the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of nature. However, there are inherent safety risks for those that hike, so heed the following precautions to have a safe, and fun experience on the trails.

Follow the rules of the trail

In many state and national parks, hiking trails will be marked with signs to brief you on any potential dangers in the area, including wildlife, sharp declines or inclines, and hazardous rock formations to look out for. heed any warnings and follow the rules posted on these signs to ensure your safety on the trails. Also, you should follow the unwritten rules of trail etiquette as a courtesy to fellow hikers on the trial.

Select proper footwear

Your shoes are the single most important piece of equipment to consider when going for a hike. Proper hiking shoes or boots will help you get the most out of your hiking experience because they provide traction to keep you safe while ascending or descending mountains, offer waterproofing to keep your feet dry while crossing rivers or creeks, and provide necessary support to avoid injuries. On the same token, improper footwear can wreak havoc on your hike and cause injuries, blisters, and discomfort.

Listen to your body

When hiking, it is extremely important you pay attention to how your body feels. At the first sign of discomfort, you should stop and address it because when you are out on a trail, there are no medical care providers to help you. If your legs are aching, take a break and rest. If you have a headache, stop for a sip of water and a snack. If you have foot pain, stop and check to see if you have a blister. It is crucial that you address any injuries as early as possible, because this can help stop them in their tracks before they get worse.

Carry a first aid kit

On a hiking trail in the backcountry, a first aid kit can be the difference between a minor cut that can cause a small set back and a serious infection that can derail your entire trip. A first aid kit is your only line of defense against injuries in the wild, so make sure that you have one packed in case you face any medical emergencies, major or minor. A proper first aid kit should include moleskin to treat blisters, bandages for cuts and wounds, antiseptic towelettes and antibiotic ointment, at the very least.

Bring ample food and water

Having adequate food and water is essential for a successful hike. Your body burns more calories than normal when traversing uphill trails, and hiking at an incline can dehydrate the body. To maintain high bodily function, bring more than enough food and water, as well as a way to purify water if you run out. A wrong turn on the hiking trail or a simple injury can extend the length of your trip, and having extra food and water can prove to be a lifesaver. 


Edison Insurance Company’s mission is to provide quality coverage at competitive rates while providing exceptional service.  For more information, or to get a quote, please call (866) 568-8922.

Trick-or-Treating Safety Tips

 

 
No matter how young or old, Halloween night is one of the best nights of the year for some people because of a tradition called “trick-or-treating”. This tradition can be very fun, but also dangerous, since some people are out for the tricks instead of the treats. Take a look at these vital trick-or-treating tips before you take your children out this year:
 
Plan a route in advance: Most people walk very long paths for trick-or-treating. To avoid getting lost or taking an unnecessary route, plan in advance so you know exactly where you’re going. It’s best to choose safe neighborhoods such as gated communities (if you know someone who lives there) with security driving around. Some communities even get together to plan and decorate for Halloween, to make it fun and exciting for the kids.
 
Wear comfortable shoes: Heels might be a must-have for a princess costume, but after walking several blocks, you may end up carrying your child back home with a case of sore feet. It is important to dress comfortably so the night can be enjoyed, rather than regretted.  Be sure all shoelaces are double tied to avoid tripping in the dark.
 
Avoid dark clothing: Your children should be dressed either in bright colors, or wear something reflective to avoid being injured. When accompanying your children, carry a flashlight to help light the path, as well as to help you with your headcount (which should be done at least once on every new block). It is very common for children to wander away, or even follow the wrong family because of a costume mix-up. If your child is dressed the same as another child, be sure to call them by their names after they get their candy to make sure you are leading the right child back to you.
 
Check your child’s candy: This is a MUST for all parents or guardians. You should not allow your child to eat their candy unless it has been inspected first. Remember, these treats are coming from dozens of strangers who you may not have ever met before. Throw away any candy which has been opened or not in its original wrapper. Avoid letting your child eat home-made treats such as candy apples or chocolate covered pretzels unless they came from a family member or close friend.
 
We hope you will take these suggestions into consideration to make this Halloween a happy and safe one. Enjoy! 



Keeping your family and home safe and protected is Edison Home Insurance Company’s number one priority. We have taken a bright and innovative approach to Florida homeowners insurance with coverage options allowing you to customize a policy to best fit your needs. To learn more about Edison Insurance Company, or to get a personalized quote, call us at (866) 568-8922.

Most Dangerous Animals in Florida


 
The state of Florida possesses many different types of ecosystems and a humid, warm climate throughout the year, it is a natural landing spot for a great variety of animals. As summer draws to a close and the weather cools, you will surely spend more time outdoors and it is important to recognize animals which pose a threat to you, and how to protect yourself in the event that you encounter them.

Spiders

Although spiders are tiny in size, they can pose a huge risk to your health if bitten by them. Florida is renowned for two of its most venomous spiders, the Brown Recluse Spider and the more famous Black Widow. The Brown Recluse prefers to hide in dark, covered spaces its bite injects venom which deteriorates human flesh if not treated. The Black Widow has an easily-recognizable red pattern on its back and likewise, has a venomous bite. Thankfully, there is an antivenom available to treat bites from both spiders which can be managed if treated quickly.

Snakes

In Florida, there a few snakes to watch out for when spending time outdoors. Although snakes are not typically aggressive and feed only on small rodents, they are known to bite humans if they feel threatened by accidentally encroaching on their territory. Burmese pythons, coral snakes, and copperheads are all snakes to look out for, but water moccasins are the most dangerous because of their venomous bite and because they live on in fresh water and on land, posing danger to fisherman on the sides of waterways such as canals and rivers.

Alligators

Florida is famous for its alligators, which are known to have the strongest bite of any animal in the world. These massive reptiles live in fresh water and are adept at blending in with their surroundings, making them difficult to spot. If you encounter one, be sure to keep a safe distance and avoid any sudden movements which can be deemed as predatorial by the alligator. Fortunately, alligators typically avoid humans as much as they can when faced by them.

Marine Animals

While many beachgoers are reluctant to enter the waters of our Florida beaches because of the prospect of sharks, there are many other marine animals posing a greater risk to them. Shark encounters are extremely rare for Florida beaches; however, it is more likely you will encounter a jellyfish or Portuguese Man-o-War. Both animals float on the surface of the waters and are transparent, making them hard to spot. These animals have stinging tentacles that can cause severe pain to humans if they are stung, and require immediate medical attention. It is in your best interest to heed the dangerous marine life flags, which notify visitors to stay out of the water because jellyfish or Man-o-Wars are present.

Although Florida does contain some dangerous animals, enjoy all the beautiful outdoor adventures our great state has to offer. If you are able to identify some of these animals and know how to reduce the chance of encountering them, you will have a safer, and more enjoyable time outdoors. 


Allow Edison Insurance Company to shine our light on you and your family by insuring your home, condominium, and precious belongings. Should the unexpected occur, you will be our focus while we restore your home. To learn more about Edison Insurance Company, please give us a call for a home insurance quote at 866-568-8922 or visit our website.

Hurricane Irma Aftermath: Beware of Fraud


 
After natural disasters, such as Hurricane Irma, it is not uncommon for fraudulent schemes to pray on those experiencing a loss. Therefore, Edison Insurance Company is urging our policyholders to call us first to protect themselves from fraud.
 
Should you have been affected by Hurricane Irma, please be weary of contractors going door-to-door to solicit repair and cleanup services. These contractors may be out-of-town “storm chasers” who may not have the proper licenses to make the repairs they promise to deliver. There is a high probability Assignment of Benefit (AOB) forms will be offered to policyholders from these contractors soliciting business or making emergency repairs. When an AOB form is signed by a homeowner, they are assigning their rights under their homeowners insurance policy to the vendor, and allowing all payments to be made directly to the vendor for their repairs.  The issue we continue to see throughout the state is AOB fraud, where crooked contractors and lawyers inflate the cost of repairs, charge a fee for handling the claim, and commit insurance fraud. At times, these repairs are not completed and the homeowner must pay out of pocket to finish the repairs, since the contractor has already collected all the money from the insurance company.
 
While we understand the temptation to aid in the recovery process by beginning repairs to your home as soon as possible, please do not sign any forms without speaking with Edison Insurance Company or your agent. Our claims representatives are here to assist you. Please report your claim by calling 888-683-7971.
 
If you suspect fraud, please report it immediately to the Department Financial Services at 877-693-5236. To report suspected fraud on an Edison Insurance policy, call 888-683-7171 (Option 4) or email REPORTFRAUD@EDISONINSURANCE.COM.
 
Allow Edison Insurance Company to shine our light on you and your family by insuring your home, condominium, and precious belongings. Should the unexpected occur, you will be our focus while we restore your home. To learn more about Edison Insurance Company, please give us a call for a home insurance quote at 866-568-8922 or visit our website.