Whenever possible, I love to share some thoughts on home clocks with potential and existing clients. The more informed my clients are, the less likely it is that something will go wrong. The less something goes wrong, the happier my clients will be. Happy customers = good business!
People usually ask me, “What frequency of home visits do you recommend?” Each client has different needs, expectations and concerns about their seasonal home as they move out of town for several months. I am going to share with you 7 reasons why I recommend weekly home visits (check-ups, checks, etc.) in an unoccupied or unoccupied home. Then you can decide what works best for you.
Most home clock vendors will offer home surveillance to their customers weekly, biweekly, or biweekly (some call it bi-monthly) … all of which are acceptable. Some home watch providers will offer monthly home watch visits from their clients … this is not acceptable. Too much can go wrong in an unoccupied or empty home in 30 days! The public expects that we (home clock suppliers) will direct them in such a way as to minimize unnecessary damage or risk to their vacant or vacant homes.
7 REASONS WHY I RECOMMEND VISITING A WEEKLY HOME WATCH:
- SMALL QUESTIONS BECOME BIG:We all know that small problems become big if we don’t address them directly. As a homeowner, you rely and hope that you have properly closed and secured your home before leaving town. What happens when things happen that are beyond your control? Let’s say our air conditioning is turned off in Florida during our hot and humid summer months. How quickly will the relative humidity rise in your unoccupied home? We know that high humidity is one of the main factors contributing to mold growth and flowering in an empty home. If the problem with the air conditioner is detected and resolved within 3 days of its occurrence, rather than 14 days, does it matter? Oh sure!Spotting a small problem before it gets big can mean the difference between damage and disaster.
- WHEN IT HAPPENS TO YOU: Many people believe that if there has been no damage in the past, their home is likely to be fine. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. We’ve all heard the sayings: “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong” and “It’s not if, but when.”… I have several clients whom I serve in their home on a weekly basis. In most cases, everything is going well and there are no visible abnormalities or problem areas … until they appear! I entered the ground floor apartment (for weekly visits) and literally found a constant stream of water dripping from the ceiling onto the tiled floor. I entered another house (for a weekly visit) after a client had recently left and saw water flowing from the house and down the driveway due to a cracked pipe. Both visits were for clients who hired us for weekly service. Think what would have happened if we hadn’t found any damage after two weeks. The damage could be exponential.
- INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS:Some homeowners insurance policies may contain a clause requiring an unoccupied or unoccupied home to be checked for a specified number of days. The paragraph may be a little vague as it does not specify who should be checking the house. If your insurance policy states that your unoccupied or vacant home must be checked within 10 days, and the home clock provider checks this every 2 weeks, then you need to change the frequency of visits to weekly. You do not want your claim to be denied because your home has been unchecked for 14 days in a row. Plus, many Florida homeowner policies have a 14-day water damage exception, and homeowners don’t even know this is the case.This means that if water damage occurred in your unoccupied home and was found to have occurred more than 14 days before, then the claim will be denied. The insurance company dispatches a water damage expert to assess the damage to determine the time frame when the water damage occurred. This could be due to wind rain, a leak in a water heater, or even a clogged drain line. The job of a water damage expert is to protect the interests of the insurance company. I suggest that you contact your insurance agency / carrier and inquire if such clauses exist in your policy.
- RECORD: Many of my clients rent out their houses or apartments seasonally. This is a great way to generate additional income to help cover the costs of owning a second home (management fees, property taxes, utilities, and maintenance costs). I help several clients with check-in and check-out when renting, etc. If you receive income from renting a home in Florida, you can deduct the costs incurred for home clock services as a tax deduction. If you have the ability to write off home hours, you can also use weekly visits. Basically, you are increasing the safety of your home with little or no additional cost due to tax breaks.Always seek professional advice from your CPA or accountant first.
- SERVED FIRST:Every home clock supplier runs their business differently. However, most companies give their weekly customers a service first privilege, and my company does the same. I offer my clients home surveillance on two frequencies (weekly and bi-monthly). All clients are treated equally and offered the same services, except for emergencies and natural disasters. In situations like this, my weekly clients are always at the top of the list. When Hurricane Irma hit southwest Florida in September 2017, resources were limited.The hurricane passed on Sunday night, Monday was the day to go out and assess the damage to our own homes, and Tuesday was the first day we went out and assessed the damage to our clients’ homes. The first clients served were our weekly clients. By the end of the day on Tuesday, a weekly post-storm check was conducted for each client’s home. After that, all other clients were served as quickly as possible. Serving my clients weekly primarily in the event of an emergency or natural disaster is my little way to thank you for the ongoing and ongoing business these clients provide to my company all year round.
- TECHNOLOGY. Some potential home clock customers find their Wi-Fi thermostat and camcorders to be enough to deal with when they are away. While these are very good devices to use, they should never replace a trusted home clock technician who visits your home to inspect / check your home clock. These devices are great if you are experiencing a spike in temperature / humidity or if there is criminal activity in your home. However, these devices will not know if a significant roof leak has occurred in the ceiling of the back bedroom. If the leak occurred today and we had heavy summer rain for a few days, how much water damage would be done in 7 or 14 days?Again, this is another reason to use weekly home monitoring.
- WHAT IFS: Nobody wants to spend money on what-ifs . Unfortunately, if you are not ready for the “what if”, then after the fact you can get stuck in what “could have, should have and should have”. I see home hours as a necessity in an unoccupied or unoccupied home. Basically, it looks like an insurance policy. Nobody likes to pay for insurance, but when something goes wrong, you are sooo glad you have it! If you really stop and think about what investment your Florida home represents, then home clocks are not a problem. If you are going to use a home clock, I highly recommend that you use the weekly home clock service.
- Don’t assume that your home cannot be damaged just because it hasn’t happened in the past.
- Call your insurance company and check if the item (mentioned above) is on your homeowners insurance policy.
- Contact your home clock supplier and ask for weekly home clock visits / examinations.
If you enjoyed reading this blog and found it useful, please share it with others. – Karl
* Please note that the above information is suggestions based on HWSE experience. Each homeowner is encouraged to maintain their home as they see fit based on their own experience.
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