2. Protect your identity from party guests. Keeping your social security number secret may not be enough to prevent against identity theft; especially since one out of every 11 cases of identity theft is an inside-the-family job. Before hosting holiday parties, put away all financial documents and lock them in a home office, desk drawer or safe. In addition, ask your insurance provider if they offer identity restoration coverage to help restore a stolen identity.
3. Extend insurance coverage for valuable items. The holidays are a time for big purchases, such as jewelry. According to the Insurance Information Institute, a standard homeowners’ insurance policy includes coverage for jewelry and other precious items such as watches and furs; however, there are relatively low limits of liability for certain items, generally around $1,500. If the liability limit is not enough, consumers have the option of extending the coverage by „scheduling” jewelry. The best part about supplemental insurance for jewelry is that it offers broader protection, which means you are insured for all different types of perils, including loss of the stone, a chip in the diamond, misplacing the item, and so on. Unless the peril is specifically mentioned in the policy as being excluded, the item is covered. Before purchasing additional insurance, the items covered must be professionally appraised.
4. Review your insurance coverage once a year with an insurance agent. Leading into the holidays, homeowners are often inspired to install new carpeting or complete remodeling projects to make an impression on family and friends. Allstate advises consumers to talk with their insurance agent about remodeling projects that may impact the cost of rebuilding the home in the event of a fire or loss. Consumers should also make sure they read the policy and understand all of the coverages.
„Insurance plays a key role in helping families protect their property from the unexpected throughout the year,” said Byrne. „In addition to the risk of burglary, many people may not realize house fires increase during the holidays, due to holiday decorations and candles. Be careful to blow out candles and keep open flames away from fabric or flammable items.”
5. Create and maintain a home inventory, including photos or video. A home inventory will make it easier to file a claim and restore your property after a loss. Make a list of the contents of your home on paper. It is helpful to take photos and describe on the back of the photograph what the item is and what it cost. Save receipts for major purchases, especially for computers and
large appliances. Whenever possible include make, model, serial numbers and date of purchase for all items in your home inventory. Keep the videotapes or photographs in a place separate from your home, such as at your workplace or a bank safe deposit box. Be sure to update your home inventory when you make new purchases or receive gifts.
For more information about Allstate, visit www.allstate.com.
About the Allstate Corporation:
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer. Widely known through the „You’re In Good Hands With Allstate®” slogan, Allstate helps individuals in approximately 17 million households protect what they have today and better prepare for tomorrow through approximately 14,900 exclusive agencies and financial representatives in the U.S. and Canada. Customers can access Allstate products and services such as auto insurance and homeowners insurance through Allstate agencies, or in select states at allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate®. Encompass® and Deerbrook® Insurance brand property and casualty products are sold exclusively through independent agents. The Allstate Financial Group provides life insurance, supplemental accident and health insurance, annuity, banking and retirement products designed for individual, institutional and worksite customers that are distributed through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, financial institutions and broker- dealers. Customers can also access information about Allstate Financial Group products and services at myallstatefinancial.com.