News & Blog: Personal Insurance

Covering the insurance-related issues and developments that matter to our personal and business clients.

Nov 18, 2020 5 tips for safe winter grilling

What many typically think of as “grilling season” has officially come to an end — but did you know you can cook outside all year long when you take some precautions and properly prepare your space? Here are some tips to keep you safe if you are considering barbecuing into the cold winter months: Give your grill a good cleaning. If you’re planning on using your barbecue in the winter, you’ll want to make sure it’s in tip-top shape after a long summer of grilling. Following the instructions in the owner’s manual, clean each part of your barbecue to get rid of food remnants, bacteria, and built-up carbon deposits that could cause your grill to heat unevenly, not reach its full operating temperature, or even stop…

Read More

Nov 13, 2020 When is the best time to turn my furnace on?

Stretches of extreme heat, periods of unexpected cold, heavy rains followed by seasonably moderate temperatures. When it comes to autumn weather, it would appear as if Mother Nature is in a state of perpetual indecision sometimes. The decision to switch from air-conditioning to furnace overnight is often a reality for Canadians experiencing weather extremes across the country; especially here in Ottawa. The question is and will always remain, is there an ideal time or temperature that should motivate you to turn on your furnace?  Inside temperature is more important than outside temperature “The decision to switch on your furnace has more to do with the temperature inside your home than what’s going on outside,” said Tracy Burgess, Service Manager of Carleton Refrigeration,…

Read More

Nov 2, 2020 A step-by-step guide to closing your cottage for the winter

Summer days have come and gone, and if you haven’t taken measures to winterize your cottage, it’s almost time to close it up and say goodbye until next spring. Check these 10 tasks off your list as you prepare to leave your home-away-from-home for the winter months: Inspect your septic tank. If your cottage has a septic system, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s service recommendations and timelines. If your system is due for an inspection, call in a professional to make sure it’s functioning properly before you close up to avoid any surprises in the spring. Keep the sump pump pumping. If your cottage has a sump pump, make sure it stays in good working order all winter long, or…

Read More

Oct 28, 2020 How to winterize your cottage and turn it into a four-season home

If you have a cottage, chances are you’ve spent more time there this summer than in previous years. With long-term remote work becoming a reality for many and travel restrictions keeping us closer to home, you may have even started wondering how you can extend cottage season into the fall and winter months. But turning your summer getaway into an all-season oasis is a big investment and takes a lot of work. These are just a few of the steps you’ll need to take if you’re planning on converting your cottage or cabin from a summer property to an all-season home: Install an appropriate heat source. This isn’t as simple as installing a wood stove or fireplace, so you’ll want to consult a professional and…

Read More

Oct 19, 2020 Home Insurance Coverage For Spoiled Food

The value of your food can add up quickly, especially if you have a deep freezer filled with meat, seafood, and other big-ticket items. So, what happens if there’s a power outage or your fridge or freezer malfunctions? Thankfully, your home insurance policy has you covered. What is food spoilage coverage? Food spoilage coverage is designed to protect you if the contents of your fridge or freezer are spoiled because of a power outage or technical malfunction. This coverage is included in most standard home, tenant, and condo insurance policies. Common exclusions of food spoilage coverage Food spoilage coverage only covers spoilage as a result of a power outage or a malfunction in your fridge or freezer. If you’ve…

Read More

Oct 14, 2020 Safety tips for outdoor patio heaters and fire elements

Patio season took on a whole new meaning this year, as people across the country adapted their yards for physically distant visits, playdates, and even outdoor workspaces. If you’re hoping to keep patio season going a little longer, you’ve probably thought about how you might heat your outdoor space as the weather continues to cool down. Some popular options include freestanding or mounted heaters, fire pits, lanterns, and fire pit tables. Keep these tips in mind if you’re planning on installing any type of outdoor heating system: Choose the right location for your patio heater or fire element. When you’re thinking about where you want to install a heat source, think first about where you spend the most time — it probably makes most…

Read More

Oct 7, 2020 Home insurance for short-term rentals

In today’s sharing economy, peer-to-peer rentals are making their name as cheaper (and trendier) alternatives to traditional hotels. But if you’re considering entering the short-term rental market as a homeowner, there are a few things you should know. Do you have to tell your home insurance company when you’re renting out your home? Yes. Any time your situation changes, it’s important to talk to your licensed home insurance broker to make sure you have the right coverage to protect you in an emergency. Here are three examples of home-sharing situations your broker and insurer need to know about, no matter what: 1. You’re listing your home on a home-sharing website or app. You’ve heard that listing your apartment (or even just your…

Read More

Sep 29, 2020 How your location affects the cost of your insurance

There’s a lot of change to navigate when you move to a new neighbourhood, from finding the best route to work to getting to know your local grocery store. But did you know that moving could also mean a change in your home and car insurance rates? Even moving from one subdivision to another within the same area could lead to an increase or decrease in your premiums. Here are some of the reasons your insurance costs might change when you move. How does your location affect your home insurance premium? These factors could have an impact on the cost of your home insurance: The age of your home: Older neighbourhoods have older sewer systems, which could potentially put you at higher risk for a sewer…

Read More

Sep 25, 2020 Get Under an Umbrella – Policy that is

This blog was originally posted in 2009, however the concepts are still applicable today: I have been meaning to write an article / blog about umbrella insurance for quite some time now. Howard Yegendorf beat me to it and did a great job of it. He was kind enough to allow me to use his material and act as a guest blogger for Rhodes & Williams Insurance Brokers. Nightmare Scenario #1 You are driving your car, not paying attention momentarily, and you go through a red light colliding with another vehicle going through the green. The accident is clearly your fault. The other driver suffers catastrophic injuries. He makes a good living and his injuries will prevent him from ever being gainfully employed again. He…

Read More

Sep 16, 2020 Insurance coverage for your mobile phone

There’s no denying that most of us would be lost without our mobile phones. They’re our personal sidekicks, our closest connections to friends, and our family photo albums. So, when something goes wrong and your phone is stolen or damaged, the last thing you want to worry about is the cost of replacing it. This is where insurance comes in. But is your standard home insurance policy enough, or should you purchase additional cell phone coverage? We’ve got the answers to your questions, plus a breakdown of key differences between home insurance and mobile phone insurance. Does home insurance cover your cell phone? Yes. Your home, condo, or tenant insurance policy covers your phone in many different situations. Here’s what you need to…

Read More