Taking Care of the Great Outdoors – Fall Maintenance for Your Outdoor Spaces

A Fresh Look At Your Outdoor Space

With the changing of the season’s it is a perfect time to reimagine your outdoor space and make it everything you want it to be. the professional employees of Integra Insurance Services recognize that your home is important to you  as well as your outdoor spaces. Here is a short list of different things you can do to make your outdoor space a beautiful and safe one.

Do It Big!

If Texas is known for doing everything big we want Huntington, TX to be known for doing everything big and doing everything right.

In Huntington, TX we have the luxury of leaving all of our outdoor furniture out for the colder seasons. As long as you secure items that tend to move with a strong wind, you are rest assured to enjoy the space year around. 

  • decorate with earth colors,
  • add a different set of throw pillows to patio furniture.
  • set up a low-cost, do-it-yourself scarecrow to make the season cozy while adding the right amount of warmth.
  • a firepit is just the thing for those colder days. Making one is easy and tutorials abound on the internet. If you have a couple of hours you can be enjoying your firepit in time for the weekend.
  • make certain all debris and leaves are cleaned regularly and lawns are maintained. This is the best way to be picture perfect ready for Spring and to enjoy your outdoor space safely without the threat of  a slip and fall.  

An integral part of enjoying your home is having peace of mind. Let Integra Insurance Services help you handle the responsibility of all of your insurance needs, Contact us today to schedule an appointment. 

Preparing Your Home for Fall

According to the calendar, fall has officially arrived.  Whether or not that means much in East Texas is debatable.  We may experience another month or two of warm weather, or get hit with a “cold” front soon.  The one thing we do know here at Integra Insurance Services of Huntington, TX is that is no matter how unpredictable the weather might be, it is always a good idea to be prepared.  Is your home ready for fall?  If not, here are some tips to help you prepare.

Clear Debris from Roofs and Gutters

Roofs and gutters tend to collect leaves, branches, and other debris.  Clear these items out regularly throughout the fall. Debris can build up and clog gutters and drains causing drainage and water issues if left unattended.

Tackle Large Outdoor Projects

Does your garage need cleaning out or flowerbeds cleared?  Yes, Texas can be unpredictable, but it is likely that we will have  pleasant weather ahead.  And while this is a great time to enjoy outdoor activities, it is also a good time to tackle a project that it was too hot to do over the summer. 

Fire and Safety Checks

Is your fireplace clean and ready for a fire?  Are your smoke detectors working?  Or should you be concerned about the levels of carbon monoxide from your furnace?  Now is the time to prepare for when it does begin to get cold.

Seasonal preparation is just one of the ways to keep your home in shape throughout the year.  At Integra Insurance Services of Huntington, TX, we believe that preventative measures help to ensure your home is protected.  The right home insurance plan also protects your investment.  Contact us today to learn more about the home insurance plans we offer.

Is It Ever Safe To Drive Without Insurance?

So your insurance has lapped or you can’t afford it this month or maybe it’s a new car and you’ll get around to insuring it when you’re up to the task, and you’re wondering: Is it ever safe to drive without insurance?

If you’re talking about getting around town in an uninsured vehicle, then no, it’s never safe to drive without insurance. If you’re driving on your own property, if you’re taking a car for a test drive around a parking lot before you buy, then maybe you don’t need to worry about insurance too much, but if you’re using your car as, well, a car, if you’re getting to and from work in it, picking up groceries, getting out on the highway, then there are simply too many risks.

You can take those risks into your own hands if you like. We’d advise against it, but maybe you can get away with driving uninsured. Maybe you’re a tremendously talented driver and you’ll never be found at fault in any accident ever. Maybe all the other drivers where you live are just as talented, and they’ll never come out of nowhere and t-bone you. Maybe the police in your town are friendly and helpful and they’ll never pull you over at a random checkpoint, and when they stop you to tell you you have a tail light out, they won’t even ask to see your proof of insurance. Maybe nobody will ever vandalize your car.

But… that’s a whole lot of maybes to rely on just because you didn’t feel like giving Integra Insurance Services a call, isn’t it?

Texans: Why Insurance Makes the Boat Ride That Much More Enjoyable

Boating is a universal activity for people nationwide. During the summer, friends and family can enjoy a lot of activities – fishing, tubing, swimming, and even just relaxing in the sun. As many people can easily attest to, however, it’s unfortunately all too easy for a fun boat ride to transform into a ruined day in a matter of moments. Motor breaks down, get into a collision with another boat or another foreign object, etc. could see you paying a pretty penny just to get some normalcy going with your boating. Integra Insurance Services understands that desire all too well.

Depending on the state a boater resides in, they may have to fulfill a mandatory boater education course and be approved before they can take to the water with their boat – and this is the case with Texas boaters. These educational courses will work to ensure that all potential boaters are made aware of important safety rules and regulations as well as ensure that you are able to actually operate the boat competently. For prospective boaters, the idea of doing all of these courses and passing can be an intimidating process, which may keep boaters off of the water – or worse, have them try to skirt their responsibilities entirely and not even get the proper boating insurance. At Integra Insurance Services. we don’t want to see either happen, so we aspire to make sure to help the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department by getting all of you prepped for when you do go out to take this course.

Boaters in and around the Huntington area who are interested in boating and need to get some brushing up on your knowledge or do not have your first clue about it, make sure to contact Integra Insurance Services online or by phone at  (800) 655-2159 right away so we can help you enjoy the ride.

The Key To Protecting Your Business is Commercial Insurance

As a small business owner, you know that everything you do has a monetary value: from the time you spend talking to customers and clients, from turning your office lights on and off. One of the important things to fully understand when owning a business is risk management. This is where a solid commercial insurance package can help you out.

Risk happens every time you open your front doors in your business. A customer could slip and fall on your premises. A fire could break out in your break room. Accidents can and do happened. The time you spend having to deal with these kinds of issues is the time you are not making money for your company.

Commercial insurance has several different levels of coverage depending on what you need for your particular type of business. Coverage that a storefront business would need is much different than what an office-based business needs. If you run a home-based business, but use a company vehicle, you will need different coverage than if you ran a restaurant.

No matter what kind of insurance needs you have, insurance coverage is designed to protect you and your assets in times of trouble. 

Contact your local Integra Insurance Services agent today if you are a small business owner. They can help you understand the different types of policies and options available for your business. They can give you quotes and help you figure out what kind of policy will fit your budget. 

Integra Insurance Services is just an email or phone call away. You can contact them toll-free at 1-800-655-2159 and get the most up to date information on commercial insurance at competitive rates.

Why Do I Need the Protection of a Homeowners Insurance Policy?

Your home is a major investment.  Homeowners insurance protects that investment should events occur that damage or destroy the home or the owner’s personal property.  Typically, homeowners policies that are purchased in Texas cover damages to the house.  They will also cover personal property and other structures, such as sheds or fences, that are located on the property.   Should your home become inhabitable due to damage, the policy will cover the additional living expenses such as hotels and food that will be incurred.  Homeowners policies also protect the homeowner from personal liability in the event the are responsible for someone’s injury on their property.  In some cases, the policy will also cover any medical expenses related to an injury on the property. 

There are two primary types of homeowners insurance policies available in Texas:  all risk and named perils.  All risk policies, also called comprehensive coverage, cover all risks unless specifically stated.  Named perils policies provide coverage only for specifically defined threats.  The policy will outline whether is provides for replacement cost or actual cash value.  The replacement cost is the cost to rebuild or repair the home if it is damaged or destroyed.  This figure will be based on current construction costs and does not include the land’s value.  Actual cash value represents the cost to rebuild or repair the home less the depreciation due to age.  Homeowners should talk with their agent to determine the most appropriate type and level of coverage for their individual situation. 

The agents at Integra Insurance Services serve homeowners in the Huntington, TX area.  They are able to discuss the available homeowners insurance options.  Contact them at 800-655-2159 to protect your home today!

Full Coverage or State Minimum?

Do you know if you want full coverage or just the minimum required by your state when it comes to auto insurance?  People use the term full coverage pretty loosely.  That being said, do you have a complete understanding of what full coverage actually means?  It might not be exactly what you think.

Full coverage isn’t actually a certain type of coverage that is offered to customers by insurance carriers.  There is no full coverage box for your agent to check on your policy.  This is a term that has evolved when it comes to the industry of insurance but there isn’t a set of rules for carriers to follow for it and as such, it can be interpreted in a variety of ways.

Basic Full Coverage

Every state in the US has laws regarding auto insurance.  The core of it is that you must have at least some.  The requirements as to how much and what type will vary from state to state. Typically, though, most states will require liability for property damage and personal injury.

Full coverage insurance will typically enhance that coverage by adding comprehensive coverage to it.  This can be used to cover things that can occur with your vehicle that don’t necessarily involve a collision. Most of the time, you cannot have what is deemed to be full coverage without this type of coverage.

If you are in the Huntington, TX area and have questions about auto insurance, call or come by Integra Insurance Services today.  We are staffed with friendly and knowledgeable agents who can help you gain a better understanding of the types of coverages that are required in Texas as well as what types of coverage you will need beyond that.  They are ready and waiting to help you as soon as you contact them.

5 Ways Commercial Insurance Can Keep Your Business Alive

Your business should be able to handle whatever may come its way, but unfortunately many owners don’t realize that they may be going the repair process alone if certain events occur. Depending on your plan, you may face more difficulty than you could have potentially imagined if you haven’t purchased the right policy. Here are 5 ways commercial insurance can keep your business alive. 

1. Setting You Up 

Along with the major scenarios, buying comprehensive coverage sets you up for success. You won’t have to check the weather in fear every morning if you aren’t covered for specific phenomena. 

2. Serving Your Customers 

Your customers will certainly understand if your business befalls an unfortunate event outside your control, but they may not understand if you have to be out for months due to it. Commercial insurance gives you the means to put everything right quickly. 

3. Focusing You on What’s Important 

Commercial insurance means you keep track of your equipment and inventory, and can ensure you don’t make an investment that ends up going to waste. 

4. Saving You Money At the Right Time

If you do need to make a claim, that’s the worst time to see your money start to fly out the door. It’s not just financially hard, but emotionally hard to bear that burden. Having a partner to call means you’ll have more motivation to do what needs to be done to get your business running again. 

5. Giving You Piece of Mind 

Being prepared gives you confidence, which is definitely needed to keep a business alive. Integra Insurance Services serves Huntington, TX, so you can get the policy that best meets your needs. Give us a call today for more information or for a quote. 


Bringing Your Boat Out Of Winter Storage

It’s been pretty cold, and your boat has been in winter storage for months. With spring here, the temptation to just pull it out and take off the cover is strong.

Unfortunately, there’s more to bringing your boat out of winter storage than that. There are a few things you need to do before taking to the water.

First of all, check the electrics. Make sure any batteries are charged fully. Clean and tighten all of your electrical connections and protect your battery terminals with grease or spray. Make sure that electrical systems start up. Bear in mind that rechargeable batteries are most likely to fail after a period of non-use. Check internal lights, running lights, GPS systems and, of course, the bilge pump if you have one.

Then, check the engine. You should check oil and coolant levels, power steering fluid and transmission oil. Look for fluid leaks in the bilge area, and inspect all fuel lines. Check fuel and air filters.  If you are a sail type, inspect all swage fittings, rigging, and run a rag over stays and shrouds – this will help you find fishhooks which indicate wire wear. Run a hose over chain plates to check for leaks, recaulk if necessary.

Water systems should be checked. If you put antifreeze in the fresh water tank, make sure you flush it out completely before connecting the pump, or toxic antifreeze may end up in your drinking water. Make sure the raw-water intake strainer is clean, fits correctly, and undamaged.

Finally, be sure to check all of your safety gear including flares, fire extinguishers, life jackets, etc. And, of course, make sure your marine insurance is up to date and sufficient for your needs. Contact Integra Insurance Services for a quote today.


Life in the Fast Lane: Knowing How to Avoid a Fender Bender

There’s no denying that life itself would be much different if there was no form of vehicular transportation. It is thanks to cars and trucks and SUVs that we are able to get our kids to and from school as well as ourselves to and from work. We also use vehicular transportation to travel back and forth from activities we enjoy. No matter your reason for traveling, please keep in mind that road rage and fender benders can greatly hinder your ability to make it your destination safely. In fact, here are a few tips you should follow to make sure you get to and from your destinations in the safest manner possible. 

Turn up the music

When is the last time you heard someone tell you to turn up the music in order to avoid a fender bender? It’s probably been a while, but still yet, it’s imperative that you know that listening to the right type of music can help you avoid road rage and stay in a good mood. In turn, this results in a less of a chance that you will avoid a fender bender. 

Always buckle up

Did you know that when you buckle up it helps you feel like a safer driver? And when you do this, you are more likely to abide by safe driving practices? So, next time you hop behind the wheel of a car, make sure to buckle up and also make sure that everyone else is buckled up safely. 

To stay safe and avoid fender benders, make sure to contact a reputable agent working at Integra Insurance Services today.