Gulf Coast Educators Insurance Offers Winter Home Maintenance Tips for Florida Residents

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Naples, Florida Insurance Agency Provides a Maintenance Checklist for Homeowners

Homeowners Insurance form, toy house and key

Avoid A Homeowners Insurance Claim Check Your Home For Maintenance Repairs

Proper home maintenance is important to keep Florida homes operating efficiently and helping homeowners lower the risk of property insurance claims.

The holidays are here and while Florida residents may still be wearing shorts and flip-flops, Gulf Coast Educators Insurance in Naples, Port Charlotte and Ft. Myers Florida announces their winter home maintenance guidelines.

“The cooler temperatures in December make it ideal for taking care of home maintenance tasks that may have been ignored all year long,” says Ron DeFreitas owner/operator of Gulf Coast Educators Insurance.

DeFreitas adds, “Proper home maintenance is important to keep Florida homes operating efficiently and helping homeowners lower the risk of property insurance claims.“ The insurance agents at Gulf Coast Educators Insurance offer the following home maintenance tips to help prepare home owners for the winter season.

Gulf Coast Educators Insurance offers the following tips for homeowners to reduce the likelihood of incurring a homeowners insurance claim:

1)    Test Fire Alarms and replace batteries as needed. During winter, homeowners use the fireplace and candles more often. Carbon Monoxide Detector batteries should be checked too.

2)    Get furnace inspected by a professional. A professional inspector should do a furnace maintenance check every two years.

3)    For windows and doors, a simple touch up on caulking around the edges can reduce drafts and help homeowners save energy.

4)    Change the HVAC filter.

5)    Look under sink cabinets to check for moisture and/or leaks.

6)    Winterize outdoor faucets to prevent pipes from bursting.

7)    Clean the gutters and dispose of any pine needs or other flammable debris. Check roof for broken or missing shingles or tiles. Get the roof inspected at least twice a year (every six months).

8)    Examine Attic and look for signs of animals, leaks, or exposed/frayed wiring.

9)    In Florida, fireplaces are more often a feature included for aesthetic purposes rather than as a heat source, but fireplace safety is still a concern for the homeowner. Have the chimney inspected and cleaned by a certified chimney specialist at least once per year. Make sure that the hearth is clear of all trash and flammable items.

10)     When using a fireplace homeowners will want to make sure that glass doors are left open to allow sufficient air to enter so that complete combustion of all fuels takes place. This will also help prevent excessive buildup of creosote in the chimney.

11)    For fireplaces with glass doors that have a metal screen built into the glass door mechanism; make sure the metal screening is closed when burning in the fireplace.

12)    Be sure to remove all tree branches that are overhanging the fireplace chimney.

13)    Never leave a fire in a fireplace unattended.

14)    Only burn hardwood as this type of wood produces less creosote than soft, moist woods. Never burn cardboard or other rubbish in a fireplace.

The insurance agents at Gulf Coast Educators advise homeowners that regular home maintenance not only saves energy, and money, but it can also help reduce the risk of home insurance claims due to fire and neglect. “Homeowners help themselves by taking good care of their home or condominium,” emphasizes DeFreitas.

Gulf Coast Educators Insurance provides insurance products for educators and non-educators in Southwest Florida. The insurance agents at Gulf Coast Educators Insurance offers property insurance, renters insurance, flood insurance, as well as auto insurance, and life insurance products. Consumers can visit any of their three convenient locations including Naples, Florida, Port Charlotte, Florida, and Fort Myers, Florida.

For more information on Florida insurance policies or to request an insurance quote, please call (239) 591-0963 Naples/ (941) 391-5423 Port Charlotte/ (239) 997-0420 Fort Myers, to speak with an insurance agent or visit them online at

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