final-walkthrough

Make Your Final Walkthrough Before Closing a Success With These 10 Tips!

The day has finally come. You’ve found your dream home, made the offer, and have had it accepted by the seller! You’ve had the home inspected by a professional, and your loan is finalized. Now you just can’t wait to move in and make it yours!

We don’t mean to rain on your parade, but you’re not finished quite yet! You have one more big step to take before making the house unequivocally and officially yours – you have to do the final walkthrough!

A walkthrough is more than just simply walking through the house and making sure the seller took all of his or her stuff with them. If done incorrectly, you could find yourself living less than happily ever after in your dream home. But have no fear! Just read the following 10 tips to help you have a successful walkthrough before closing happens!

Come Prepared – When you come to the final walkthrough, you should make sure that you have your contract with you – you might need to refer to it while you’re there! You should also take a checklist of all the things you need to test and check during the walkthrough to ensure that everything is functioning properly.

Ask Your Agent to Come, Too – It’s always a good idea to have an additional set of eyes and knowledge with you to help pick up on things you might accidentally pass up. Ask your agent to accompany you; they’ll help ground you if any issues happen to arise in the home.

Test, Test, Test – Take the time to do some testing in the house. Turn on all the lights and faucets and check for leaks under each sink. Flush all toilets, check that the appliances that you purchased are all there and working properly, and run the dishwasher. Don’t forget to turn on the ceiling fans, ring the doorbell, and make sure that the hot water heater works! The goal is to make sure that everything works.

Check Doors and Windows – With each and every door and window you come across in your soon-to-be home, check that they work. Open and close each door and window. Are they functioning properly? Are the screens on each window in place? Is anything major out of place? These are issues that should be taken care of before the home becomes yours.

Test the Heating and Cooling – Whether it’s the during the heat of summer, the dead of winter, or sometime in between, you should take the time to test both the heating and air conditioning in the home. A few minutes of possible discomfort can save you from days, weeks, or even months of misery.

Do Some Spot-Checking – While you walk through the home, keep your eyes peeled to the ceilings, floors, and walls for any signs of mold or mildew, especially if the property has been vacant for a while. While you’re looking for mold and mildew, check to see that the movers didn’t leave any damage as well.

Confirm Repairs Were Made – Your seller might have promised some repairs to be made to the home before you purchased it. When you’re going on the walkthrough, make sure that all the repairs that were outlined in the sales agreement have been completed. Also, make sure that the seller provided you with warranties for any work that was done to the home as well as manuals for all the appliances that they leave.

Check For Trash and Debris – Sellers are required to leave the home as clean as they can and to make sure that they take their personal belongings with them. Check around the home, including the closets and storage areas, to see if any debris, trash, or belongings were left behind.

Go Outside – Don’t forget about the house’s exterior! Go outside to see if there have been any changes in the landscaping of if any damage has occurred, especially if there has been a strong storm since your last visit.

Get the Keys – If everything checks out, be sure to get all the keys to the home and the garage door opener. If you happen to be buying a condo, you’ll need the keys to your mailbox, storage space, and the common areas, too.

If there happen to be any issues to resolve after you’ve completed the walkthrough, you may need to delay the closing date until everything is amended and complete. If the date can’t be moved, work out the issues during the closing and have the seller compensate you for any costs.

When you purchase a new home, you’ll want to be sure to tell your insurance agent all about it so he or she can update your policy and make sure that you’re being covered properly. Call us at 1-800-766-MMIC or visit us online at www.madisonmutual.com to let us know about it! Don’t have home insurance? We can do that! Call us to see how we can protect you and what matters most in your life!

Insurance agent

8 Times You Need to Call Your Insurance Agent

Anything can happen in life. Maybe a severe thunderstorm cracks a heavy branch from your tree and causes it to land square on your roof. Perhaps you’re thinking about moving to another state for a new job. Whatever occurs in your life, you will want to make sure that you are protected in your insurance policies, and that typically requires talking with your insurance agent about what’s happening in your life.

Not sure when calling your agent is necessary or a bother? Read about the 8 times you need to contact your insurance agent below!

File a Claim – After an auto accident or a damaging, raging storm that left your roof with a gaping hole in it, you’re probably stressed and filled with dread about filing a claim about the incident. Don’t stress out – just call your agent and ask him or her to file the claim for you. Your agent will want to take down the details of your claim, and a claims adjuster will probably contact you to verify the information you’ve provided.

Trouble with Claims – If your claim isn’t going smoothly, your agent will help you straighten everything out. While many agents don’t handle claims first-hand, they do want to make sure your claim is going smoothly. Confide in your agent and let him or her help.

You’re Moving – Always notify your agent if you’re moving, whether it’s across the street or across the country. They will need to be able to contact you via mail and phone. If you happen to be moving out of the immediate area or to a different state altogether, your agent can still locate other agents who sell the same insurance carrier in the area you’ll be living in.

Major Additions – It’s always a good idea to contact your agent if you’ve made major additions or changes to your home, just to make sure that your insurance policy and coverage haven’t changed. It’s important to keep your single largest asset up-to-date and properly covered!

Add or Remove a Driver – Whether you’re adding or removing your teenage driver or adding on a new spouse to a vehicle, call your agent first to change the number of drivers on your vehicle so you can get the proper coverage.

Add or Remove a Vehicle – If you’re purchasing a new car because your old one gave up the ghost or if you’re selling a car you no longer need, contact your insurance agent for a quote to see what the price will be in adding a vehicle and how much you could save when you take a vehicle off the policy.

Questions About Your Payment – Don’t be afraid if you have any questions about your policy – it can be very confusing, but your agent can definitely answer your questions! Just call your agent if you have questions about renewals, late fees, payment options, or any other questions you might come up with! Remember, your agent wants to keep you happy, safe, and informed!

Change Your Coverage – Whether you’re getting rid of a policy, obtaining another policy, or purchasing an umbrella policy, let your insurance agent know what’s happening. Even if you’re temporarily changing a policy like taking your summer car off for the winter because it’s going into storage, you will want to get the advice of your agent to help you both make the best decision for you.

If you need to contact your agent or if you have any questions regarding our policies or who we are, feel free to call us at 1-800-766-MMIC or visit us online at www.madisonmutual.com! Remember, Madison cares!

File form

4 Important Steps in Filing an Auto Insurance Claim

Let’s say you get in a car accident. Maybe a car came out of nowhere or a deer leapt out in front of you or another driver and caused a domino effect of collisions. While your head is probably spinning and you’re wondering how you, the others, and if your vehicle are all okay, you know you will need to make an auto claim to your insurance company.

You might want to put off making your claim out of dread – dread of possibly increasing premiums, hearing the disappointment in your agent’s voice, and in filling out paperwork. Even if you’d rather put off making your claim for a while or forget about it all together, you really should make the claim as soon as you can. After all, your side door isn’t going to fix itself!

Filing a claim is actually pretty easy, and the process can be quite smooth if you’re prepared for the possibility of an accident happening. Follow these 4 steps to help you properly file a claim!

Know Your Policy – You don’t have to remember every single detail of your auto insurance policy, but you will need to know how long you have to fill out an auto insurance claim. If you wait too long, your claim could be denied. Don’t know the time frame? Review your policy when you get home or call up your agent to ask as soon as you can!

Stay in Control – It’s very easy to be overwhelmed, emotional, and in shock in the event of an accident, no matter how minor or severe it is. You will have to keep a cool head when you file a claim, however, since your emotions could affect the outcome of your claim. After you make sure everyone is safe and that everyone has received the medical attention they need, obtain the names, contact information, and insurance information on all the parties involved in the accident and any witnesses, too, if you can. Afterward, call the police to file a report. Most importantly, never resume responsibility for the accident early on in the process; the other driver might have been in the wrong because they were driving without their prescription glasses.

Get Medical Attention Right Away – You might feel fine after the accident, and you might even feel fine the next day, but injuries can surface days or even weeks after an accident. Even if you don’t feel like you need a doctor, seek medical attention right away, just to make sure that you’re okay. If you don’t have money to pay any out-of-pocket medical expenses for an injury someone else caused, it will be a lot more difficult to get the compensation you deserve if you wait before seeing a doctor. Your agent will want to know about any injuries you may have sustained as well. Remember, putting off medical treatment is never a good idea for both your health and your wallet!

File Your Claim – Now it’s time to file your claim. As soon as you can, file your claim with your insurance company. Your agent might take the information from you and file it him or herself, or they may ask you to fill out the paperwork with specific instructions. When you’re filing your claim, be honest about all aspects of what happened. If your insurance company finds out that you withheld the truth at all, your claim could be denied or your policy could be cancelled. Also, resist the temptation to get your car fixed until you find out the policy on repairs. Sometimes your insurance agent will want to send you to someone to inspect the damages first or he or she might require you to take your vehicle to a repair shop that is approved. Be sure to hold on to all repair receipts!

If you’re involved in an auto accident, be sure to call us at 1-800-766-MMIC or visit us online at www.madisonmutual.com to file a claim online. We’ll take good care of you in the event of an accident because we know that anything can happen!