Fireplace Tips for a Safe Home

Now that we’re well into the winter months with blustery storms bearing down, it’s a great time to put your feet up and sit by the fire. More than likely, you’ve already been keeping your home warm and cozy with your fireplace for the last few months so let’s make sure it’s performing at peak function to continue keeping you safe and warm.

 

Let’s start with a few wood-burning fireplace tips:

 

  • Have your fireplace and chimney inspected by a professional on a yearly basis. Ash and creosote can build up in your chimney and if not cleaned properly could cause damage to your home.
  • This may seem like an obvious tip, but make sure your damper is open while your fire is burning and until it’s completely burned out.
  • When starting your fire, make sure not to use flammable liquids like lighter fluid. These liquids can release toxic fumes and could even cause an explosion.
  • Make sure to only burn wood or manufactured logs in your fireplace. Different coated papers, greenery, and other materials can produce harmful gases that can spread throughout your home.
  • Use a metal screen or appropriate fireplace cover to keep embers inside the fireplace and out of your living room.
  • Finally, always keep a fire extinguisher in a convenient location in case something happens to go awry.

 

While gas fireplaces are much more low-maintenance than wood-burning fireplaces, it’s important to follow these few tips for keeping your home safe:

 

  • Just like a wood-burning fireplace, schedule yearly maintenance to make sure your fireplace is performing as it should.
  • Make sure you have a safety screen, and that the screen is intact with no cracks or imperfections.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home. Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless, and tasteless but is poisonous so it’s important to know right away if you have a leak.
  • Warn members of your household, especially kids, that the glass/screen can get very hot and that they should keep a safe distance.
  • Finally, even though gas fireplaces don’t emit wood embers, it’s important to keep highly flammable materials like fabric, paper, wood, etc. away from the fireplace.

 

Now, sit down and enjoy your fire, knowing that your home is safe and protected.

New HO3 Products are Here

Our Homeowners team has been busy with some exciting updates over the last few months. We recently launched two new HO3 products in Texas and Florida (Florida agents, we’re releasing this product in phases so keep an eye out for a communication on when it’ll be available to your agency!) & we received word that we’ve been approved for a new HO program in Louisiana!

Don’t despair Carolina agents, we’re working on a great new product for you too, stay tuned…

Employee Spotlight – Ryan Hodges

A warm welcome to Ryan Hodges, Director of Underwriting here at Bankers. Ryan has been with us since October 2018, read on to get to know a little more about Ryan.

 

 What do you like most about working for Bankers? What aspect of your job do you enjoy the most?

The people and atmosphere. Everyone has welcomed me to the team and I love the upbeat and positive atmosphere here at Bankers.

What’s your favorite thing to do in your spare time?

Spend time with my family…and golf.

Where is the best place you’ve traveled to and why?

The coast of California. Last year we drove from San Francisco down to San Diego making numerous stops along the way. The 17 mile drive at Pebble Beach was amazing.

What would you do (for a career) if you weren’t a Director of Underwriting?

Coach basketball.

What are you most proud of?

My 7 year old daughter. She is the sweetest and kindest person that I know which I hope I had something to do with.

Where is your favorite place to eat?

Anywhere outside of my house. There aren’t any good cooks in my household (including me) so anytime we eat out is a treat.

 

We are so excited Ryan has joined our team and we look forward to many more years of working together.