Merry Christmas to you from all of us at Fridrich, Pinson & Associates. Hello, my name is Chip Fridrich, President of our family owned Agency that has been a part of the Nashville and Middle Tennessee community for well over sixty years.
The holiday season can be busy and frantic so let’s go over a few risk management tips that can be especially important during this time of the year.
If you have a live Christmas tree, be very careful when it starts to dry out and lose its needles. Some of the older type holiday lights get quite warm and this coupled with the dryness could lead to a fire if not properly maintained. If you are going out of town for the holidays and leave your tree up, be extra careful.
A growing trend we are seeing is package theft from residences. This happens more than you think – especially during Christmas. Thieves monitor drop offs at homes and it can be “open season” for them. If you are not at home that often during the day, consider having packages shipped to your place of work or ask the shipper to require a signature for delivery. We are seeing many homeowners invest in cameras for their front door area as well. These can send alerts to your phone when motion is detected. Brands like Nest, Canary, and Blink are popular and are inexpensive.
The holidays are a perfect time to light fires in the fireplace but if you have not had a professional chimney sweep inspect your firebox recently it might be a good time to do so. Fires can occur when the soot and chemical residue FORM inside the chimney. Don’t take a chance if you have not recently had an inspection. Get one scheduled.
Another tip – Lock your car doors and never leave the keys inside while you are away from your vehicle. Thieves look for easy to reach holiday packages in your car at malls and driveways. If you leave the keys to your car inside, the car may be gone as well before you know it.
Speaking for locking things, absolutely lock your home and if you have an alarm turn it on to deter theft. More people travel during the holidays than any other time of the year so make sure that your home appears to be occupied even if it is not. You can purchase inexpensive timers for lamps that can be helpful to make this happen. In addition, make sure you protect your home from freezing pipes by leaving the heat on if you are going to be away. Frozen pipes happen and if you are away for the holidays and this were to occur you could be in store for a costly surprise when you return home.
And finally, it is especially important to be extra careful with your holiday online shopping. Well over 125 billion dollars will be spent on “E Commerce” this Christmas and the number continues to increase every year. If you question a website or a retailer, do some checking on the web. Research the reviews and if you are in the least bit suspicious don’t make the purchase. If a deal looks too good to be true, then it may be a hoax. Contact your credit card company immediately if you feel like you have been a victim of a cyber crime using your credit card.
Thanks for reading. I hope these tips come in handy during the holidays. And once again, from all of us at Fridrich, Pinson & Associates we wish you a very Merry Christmas full of joy, peace, and happiness. For more information about our Agency, check us out on the web at FPA.insure or on various social media platforms.