As we close out the first month of 2017, NBD International’s President, Jack Schwartz reflected upon the past year and shared his thoughts about what lies ahead for 2017.
In 2015, NBD’s Management team, determined to believe in the dedication and longevity of our staff and company values, believed that “The Insurance Restoration Marketplace” was about to enter a period of restructuring, regarding how vendors and insurance companies would service their policy owner claims. Therefore, contrary to prevailing logic, the company and assets were not sold, and Jack Schwartz and Mickey Bodi chose to delay retirement in hope that the management team and staff could be equipped for this exciting and ever challenging restoration marketplace.
How NBD is Changing
Throughout 2016, NBD International was challenged from within, and with new jobs. The challenge was to add to our specialty services, water mitigation and reconstruction required by the restoration market place transforming into wanting “single source solutions”. The demands placed upon those working in the restoration industry have become very demanding. As a result, many companies in our market have or are closing. During 2016 NBD spent made the investment to join and become a part of four new market initiatives to develop additional new business sources.
We’re up to the Challenges of 2017
2017, holds new and adventurous opportunities. The transforming insurance and restoration demands will be a part of the challenge. Having participated on a national platform, with the transformation that took place within the banking and utility industries 80’s, Jack Schwartz says, “I can assure you that the companies, like Cisco Systems, who prevailed and had high market credibility did very well”. There will be new opportunities as we meet the challenge to prevail and do well this year.
On behalf of Jack, Mickey and the entire staff at NBD International, we wish for each of you a successful and safe New Year. We also thank each of our customers for your faith, loyalty and business throughout 2016.
Protecting your home is about more than the financial aspects. It’s also about having a sense of security if your home is affected by a disaster. Regaining your stability is what you’ll most need to focus on – and the last thing you’ll want to worry about is money.
Knowing that you’re covered if something should happen to your home will not only give you peace-of-mind now, but also in the event of an actual disaster. Here are some things to keep in mind.
What Is Typically Covered – Damage to your property/possessions in the event of;
Liability coverage (If someone is injured on your property)
Shelter costs (If you’re temporarily displaced from your home)
Property stolen from your car or while traveling
What Isn’t Covered – Standard policies typically exclude
In its 2016 report, the National Fire Protection Agency states that U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 358,300 home structure fires per year during 2010-2014. Cooking equipment was the leading cause of home structure fires and home fire injuries and ties with heating as the second leading cause of home fire deaths.
If you’re ever facing a real fire, it’s always smart to call 911 and let the pros do their job. However, some quick action on your part can mean the difference between a little flame and a lot of costly damage.
Get a home fire extinguisher: They’re a must-have item, and a great way to either stop a fire before it gets out of hand or control it while you escape. But before you face a potential fire, go ahead and read the directions. Because more important than just having a fire extinguisher is actually knowing how and when to use it! Most extinguishers in your average hardware store are rated Type A: B: C, which means they’re ok to use on just about any kind of fire. But read the directions on your extinguisher, know which type it is, and know how to use it.
Know how to put out different types of house fires
Small electrical fires – Never use water! Switch off the power to whatever started the fire, and smother it with a clean, nonflammable blanket. You can also use a Type C fire extinguisher. (Your average Type A: B: C extinguisher is ok too.)
Small cooking fires – If a grease fire starts in your kitchen, never try to put it out with water! Calmly turn the heat off to the pan and try to cover it with a metal lid. If you can’t do that, smother the flames with baking soda (a lot of baking soda!) or use a Type A:B:C fire extinguisher.
Small gas fires – If your home uses gas, you should know how to put out a small gas fire. Immediately shut off the gas supply. You can smother the fire with a thick rug, put it out with cool water, or use a Type B extinguisher. (Again, Type A: B: C extinguishers will work too.)
Always Remember, if you can’t quickly extinguish the flames, never leave it to chance. Get yourself and your loved ones out of the house, call the fire department, and leave it to the experts.
Whether you’re bringing a dish to share at a holiday gathering, planning a cozy holiday meal at home, or entertaining a large number of family and friends this holiday season, a food borne illness isn’t a gift you want to give! Here’s a reminder to practice good food safety techniques.
Keep raw meat, poultry, and seafood away from other foods in your grocery cart.
Buy cold foods last.
Ask the cashier to place your raw meat, poultry and seafood in a separate bag.
Steps to follow during food preparation:
Use separate cutting boards for raw meat and ready-to-eat items like vegetables or bread.
Prepare uncooked recipes before recipes requiring raw meat to reduce cross-contamination. Store them out of the way while preparing meat dishes to ensure they don’t become contaminated after preparation.
Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of dishes to ensure they are fully cooked and safe to eat. Fresh beef, pork, veal, and lamb should be cooked to 145 ˚F with a three minute rest time; fish should be cooked to 145 ˚F; ground beef, veal and lamb should be cooked to 160 ˚F; egg dishes should be cooked to 160 ˚F; and all poultry should be cooked to 165 ˚F.
As temperatures dip into the single digits here in Ohio, water pipes can freeze and possibly burst resulting in a wet mess that needs immediate attention. If your faced with broken pipes, knowing what to do can save you a lot of grief and money. Here are some things to know if it happens to you.
Shut it Off
Do you know where to find your main water supply and how to turn it off? Knowing this beforehand in invaluable should a worst case scenario happen. Cutting off the flow of water as quickly as possible will help to minimize the damage.
Assess the Damage
Quickly assess the extent of the damage
If the leak resulted in a large amount of water, it’s probably best to contact a provider experienced in water damage clean-up
Remove items from the area
Sort items based on what can be restored and what needs to be discarded.
Keep in mind that water damaged items require appropriate cleanup and can lead to mold growth if not properly treated
Dry it Out
Mold growth can begin within 48 hours – through drying is critical
Quickly remove all water
Dry the area completely using a combination of fans, ventilation and dehumidifiers
Carpeted areas – Carpet should be pulled back and a high-powered fan utilized to dry out the underside.
Burst water Pipes? We can Help!
24/7 Emergency Service
Water Removal & Clean-up
Content Assessment and Restoration
We offer SteraMist™ BIT™ technology: Eliminates dangerous pathogens that cause infection from mold
Holiday Decorating is one of the best ways to get in the holiday spirit, however according to the National Safety Council, 15,000 injuries involving holiday decorating were seen in emergency rooms during the 2012 season. In addition the use of candles and fireplaces, combined with an increase in the amount of combustible, seasonal decorations present in many homes means more risk for fire. About 2,200 deaths were caused by fires, burns and other fire-related injuries in 2013, according to Injury Facts 2015, and 12% of home candle fires occur in December as reported by the National Fire Protection Association.
Opt for strands of lights with fused plugs that can prevent sparks in the event of a short circuit.
Ensure that you are using outdoor appropriate extension cords and lights.
Check cords for cracks (particularly old lights) exposed wires and other flaws.
Avoid letting the lights stay on overnight, as unattended lights pose a potential fire hazard. Set your lights on a timer so that they shut off automatically after bedtime and turn on again the next evening.
Use the correct wattage when replacing bulbs. If you aren’t sure, consider a Christmas light tester and/or repair gun.
Be careful with ladders. If the surface seems unsteady, don’t risk it—they’re just lights!
Decorate the tree with kids in mind; move ornaments that are breakable or have metal hooks toward the top
“Angel hair” is made from spun glass, and it can irritate your eyes and skin; always wear gloves when handling it, or substitute non-flammable cotton
When spraying artificial snow on windows or other surfaces, be sure to follow directions carefully; these sprays can irritate your lungs if inhaled
Plants can spruce up your holiday decorating, but keep those that may be poisonous (including some Poinsettias) out of reach of children or pets; the national Poison Control Center can be reached at (800) 222-1222
Make sure paths are clear indoors so older adults do not trip on wrapping paper, decorations, toys, etc.; NSC provides tips for older adults on slip, trip and fall protections
Accidents happen, sometimes right under our own roofs. A four-year study by the National Safety Council reported that the average home insurance claim for bodily injury was nearly $18,000. In addition;
About one-tenth of homeowners have filed a bodily injury claim at some point in their lives
Unintentional at-home injuries caused $150 billion in annual losses, mostly in medical expenses and lost wages
As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” – and in the case of home injuries it can be worth much more to your financial health. Being mindful of conditions around your home can help prevent an injury from occurring in the first place. Here are some things to consider;
Clean up spills immediately – liquids, grease, or anything else that could cause someone to slip and possibly fall.
Secure rugs.Purchase rugs with slip-resistant backings, secure them with nonskid pads or use double-sided carpet tape to keep them in place.
Beware of where you put hot liquids – Refrain from placing hot liquids on or near the edge of counters. Keep them off of a table that has a runner or table cloth hanging over that can accidently be pulled on causing the liquid to spill. Always keep hot liquids out of reach of children.
Install grab bars in the shower – Installing grab bars could help prevent a fall should anyone who is unsteady on their feet slip.
Check your hot water heater – Children and the elderly are more susceptible to burns from hot water. Keep your water heater set at 120 degrees Fahrenheit or lower to avoid unintentional burns.
Keep electronics away from water – Do not keep electronics near water or in a place where they could fall in or a child could pull them in.
Check your basement and garage – Often used for storage, check that these areas have a clear path to walk in and make sure boxes are stacked securely so that items do not fall on anyone.
Keep guards on all tools and store out of reach: Be sure to keep all safety covers on the tools and store them in a locked cabinet or in a place out of reach of children.
Stair safety – Make sure stairs are well lit. Handrails should run the full length of the staircase, make be certain carpets are secure, and do not put area rugs or mats at the base or top of the stairs. If you paint basement stairs add some sand to the paint to give the stairs more traction. For outside steps that are not well lit, paint the edges white so they can be seen in the dark.
Keep cleaning products out of reach – All cleaning products should be stored in a place where kids and pets cannot get to them. Put them in a cabinet with child-proof locks or better yet store them in a high cabinet.
If an Accident Happens…
Take pictures: Document the conditions of your home when the accident occurred, for instance, if a visitor claims he or she slipped on your icy walk, but it was dry outside, be sure to document that fact.
Contact your insurer immediately: And provide insurance information to the injured party.
Stay Calm and think Fairly: When someone who’s been injured feels as though they’re treated fairly, they’re less likely to seek compensation,
Regardless of whether you own or rent, your home or renter’s insurance usually includes only a modest amount of coverage for visitors’ injuries. If you have substantial assets that you want to protect from an injury-related lawsuit, you may be wise to talk to your agent about Umbrella coverage, which would pick-up where your standard policy leaves off.
With many toys being given as gifts during the holiday season, it’s the perfect time to take into account how keep kids safe while they’re having fun.
According to the latest available statistics from the National SAFE KIDS Campaign and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission; Approximately 217,000 children are treated in emergency rooms for toy-related injuries. About half of all toy-related injuries occur to the head and face area. While most do not require hospitalization, in 2005, 20 children died due to toy-related injuries.
Riding toys are responsible for the majority of toy injuries among children ages 14 and under, occurring when a child falls from a toy.
Children under age three are at greater risk for choking on toys than older children, due to their tendency to put everything in their mouths. In addition, the upper airways of children under age three are smaller than those of older children.
Keeping them Safe
Right Age for the Right Toys: Consider the age of the child when purchasing or playing with certain toys.
Small Parts = Choking Hazards: Smaller children put things in their mouths, make sure toys are large enough not to slip down the little one’s throat. This includes dolls, game pieces, interlocking blocks, and puzzle pieces. Supervise children when at play, so you can see if something poses a danger.
Sign Up for Recalls: Toy companies sometimes recall toys when they find something isn’t as safe as they thought. You can sign up to receive alerts that let you know if you need to send one of your toys back for safety. Visit RECALLS.govfor information on product recalls for children’s items.
Toy Bins: It’s great to have a place to put toys once playtime is done. Consider bins or barrels without hinges or clips, so little fingers don’t get pinched or stuck.
Water or flood damage to your home can be extremely expensive to repair: According to the National Flood Insurance Program, the total cost to repair a 2,000-square foot home that has six inches of water damage would cost $39,150 on average.
Costs included in those repairs include:
Refinishing or replacing flooring.
Repairing doors, windows, and trim.
Repairing electronic devices.
Electrical and plumbing work.
Four common water damage situations are listed below. Do you know if your home is covered, and how your insurance company might handle them?
Washing Machine/Dishwasher Leaks
Flood from a Storm (Hurricane, Tornado, Blizzard etc.)
The article Does My Insurance Cover Water Damage, from Netquote.com, helps to shed some light on what may or may not be covered and the different circumstances that play into the decision.
Look over your existing home insurance policy closely and ask your agent questions about what’s covered in various scenarios. If you take these precautions, you may be able to avoid paying out of pocket for costly surprise repair fees.
Of course, doing everything you can to avoid water damage by properly maintaining all appliances and structures associated with your home that could be associated with water leakage. Here are 10 steps you can take to keep your home nice and dry!
Disconnect outdoor hoses when not in use (standing water in a hose can freeze and block pipes)
Clean gutters and downspouts (at least twice per year)
Maintain trees and vegetation (to prevent roots wrapping around and possibly breaking pipes)
Know the location of your water main (shut it off if you’re gone for an extended period)
Check appliances regularly for leaks
Investigate leaks right away and fix promptly
Upgrade washing machine
Install water detection devices
Check your water pressure (water pressure set to high can cause pipes to fail)
Monitor your water bill (if there’s a jump in your usage, track down the source ASAP)