Home Renovations and Insurance in Vancouver

Home Renovations and Insurances in Vancouver

Getting tailored-made home renovations and insurances in Vancouver is possible if you contact professionals. Design a insurance policy with added features just for you.
Any insurance professional will tell you that having insurance does not provide protection against everything during a renovation. However, while accidents can happen, a person’s disaster preparedness will affect outcomes at least as much as their insurance policies.
Now, is it possible to be ready for home renovations, and having bullet-proof insurances in Vancouver? Sure it is! Of course, the first thing you need to do is activating your accident barometer, and tweak over it.

Alarm System Monitoring

For many years, companies have offered discounts for alarm systems, but not all alarm systems are the same. In order to qualify for this home renovation discount on your insurance policy, your alarm system must be centrally monitored by an approved company

Fire Monitoring System

Smoke and CO2 dioxide alarms are an inexpensive investment even if there were no insurance discounts associated with them. Luckily, there is sometimes an insurance reward, but for just a few dollars per unit, don’t skimp out on these lifesaving devices.
If it’s centrally monitored, meaning that if you’re out of town and the fire alarm goes off, a third party company can send a fire truck to help, you can expect to receive a better discount on your home insurance quotes.

Home Renovations To Your Plumbing System

Houses built in the 1970s and 1980s may still be using lead piping. This type of plumbing is susceptible to increased corrosion and can crack under extreme temperatures and can be hazardous to your health. It is highly recommended to substitute these with more modern copper supply lines and updated drains.
This would positively impact both your health and your insurance premiums.

Home Renovations To Your Electrical Wiring

If your house still has aluminum or knob and tube wiring, you should look at upgrading it to modern copper wiring. If you don’t, you might have to get your policy from high-risk insurance providers. Some companies may offer you coverage, but they will likely require an inspection through a certified electrician.
A lot of old wiring resulted in fires, upgrading to the new, safer standards will reduce the chance of a fire destroying your valuables and save you money on your home insurance premium.

Use Seismic Technology

British Columbia home insurance quotes are significantly higher than in other provinces since they are prone to earthquakes as we are located in a seismically unstable region.
Almost all homes are seismically resistant these days, but if you have a newly built house with updated seismic technology often you are rewarded with extra discounts. You might want to consider adding extra earthquake insurance to your home insurance policy if you haven’t already.

Home Renovations To Your Roof

It costs more to insure homes with older roofs and some providers may not offer you coverage at all if your roof is too old. Water damage to the inside of your home and costly repairs to your roof are claims an insurer wants to avoid and they will charge you extra for an old roof. Investing in a new roof will reduce your home insurance premium.
Also, know that home insurance is not a maintenance plan. If there is damage to your roof you’re ignoring, your claim may be denied altogether.  If you can afford it, opt for more than asphalt shingles and look for something that may cost more, but has a much longer life.
A lot of things can happen during a home renovation – your contractor falls off the ladder while fixing your roof, a hammer goes through your window, or a subcontractor is injured on your property. Despite all precautions, if there’s an accident on your property that leads to a liability issue, you, as the homeowner, can be in trouble.

Home Renovations and Insurances in Vancouver: The Rules

The general rule is that owners are not vicariously liable for the wrongful act of their independent contractors. But, there are a number of exceptions to this general rule. You should be aware of them for these reasons:
First, a fully awared homeowner understands the nature and extent of liability risk. Like this, they mitigate risk through carefully drafted contract documents or assign the risk to a third-party insurer.
Second, having an accurate understanding of the liability risks helps to assessing the feasibility of the project.
Finally, being fully aware of the potential liability for the acts of independent contractors may inform the choice of contractor. The owner may decide to choose a more competent and reliable contractor, rather than the one with the lowest price.
The time to find out risk and liability is before an accident happens:

Step 1:

Check the personal liability section of your homeowner’s policy. Talk to your insurance agent before beginning a renovation project. Like this, you can update your policy and extend coverage to the new space, if needed.
You may also want to ask your agent about whether you may benefit from an add-on protection called theft of building supply coverage, which may protect the construction materials while your project is in the works.

Step 2:

Check your contractor’s liability insurance. Do the same with the worker’s compensation (WCB) insurance, and ask your contractor to provide you with a policy certificate before you begin the project.
If a contractor is unwilling to verify his coverage, consider hiring someone else. This applies to subcontractors as well.

Step 3:

Minimize risks – remove fallen branches, wet leaves, and kids’ toys from your driveway before the workers even show up.

Conclusion

We hope these tips help you with home insurance and renovations. Although home renovations and insurances can be time-consuming or annoying, they provide a extended lifespan of your property.
If you’d like to have someone come out and inspect your roof for you, give the experts at Cambie Roofing a call. We’ll let you know how your roof weathered this winter, and fix any issues. For more information, or to request a free repair estimate.
 

Earthquake_roof

Can A Roof Be Earthquake Proof?

It’s common knowledge that Vancouver is due for a large and devastating earthquake. Thankfully all types of builders recognize this and are continually trying to seismic upgrade all our buildings. A large part of that is, of course, our roofs. If a roof collapses during an earthquake, it can kill or injury those inside.
During the design and construction process of a roof there are earthquake resistant features the roofer can apply which would increase enormously the chances of survival of both buildings and their occupants which we will cover.

What is an earthquake?

The earth is made up of plates floating on the soft centre of the earth, which consists of heavier molten rock and molten iron. The plates are not one solid piece but are separated by cracks which are known as faults and trenches which can press or expand together into mountains and valleys. These separate plates move slowly from a combination of forces in the Earth’s core, gravitational forces, and centrifugal forces from the Earth’s rotation.
Some plates are moving apart, for example in ocean trenches, where molten material pushes up and shoves the plates apart while others are bumping into each other head-on. The Cascadia fault, for example, which goes from northern Vancouver Island to Northern California is a very long, sloping subduction zone where the Explorer, Juan de Fuca, and Gorda plates all move to the east and slide below the much larger mostly continental North American Plate. If the movement was steady, about a millimetre or so a year, it wouldn’t matter. However, the plates tend to jam.

What makes a building or structure fail in earthquakes?

An Earthquake can be one sudden movement, or it can be a series of movements at short intervals. It can move the land up and down or it can move it from side to side.
Buildings are not necessarily resistant to side-to-side shifts unless this has been taken into account during the design and construction phase of the building process. A building might be perfectly stable until a severe earthquake hits. It is this side-to-side sift that generally causes the worst damage, often collapsing poor buildings on the first shock wave.
The side-to-side shift can be worse if the shocks come in waves, and can vibrate like a huge tuning fork, each new sway bigger than the last, until the building collapses. Often when more weight has been added to a building because of a heavy roof or more floors the greater the risk of failure. This extra weight produces great forces on the structure and helps it collapse. As one might expect, massive buildings like skyscrapers attract more seismic forces while smaller buildings with lighter roofs respond better to earthquake forces.
Luckily, the overall weight of a building and its contents can be calculated fairly accurately and can be accounted for in engineering design –these loads are called static loads. Wind and earthquake forces can change suddenly and unpredictably –these are called dynamic loads. The engineer must design a structure to withstand dynamic loads that may be highly variable over a very short period of time, a much more difficult task than designing for static loads alone. In Vancouver, the general awareness of earthquake danger is only a few decades old, many older buildings and roofs were not designed to stand up against the dynamic loads caused by earthquakes.

Is it Possible to Build A completely Earthquake Proof Roof?

There are, of course, roofing techniques that can be used to create a very sound roof that will endure a small or even strong quake. However, no building or roof is completely earthquake proof. During a severe earthquake, even the best-engineered building may suffer severe damage.
Most modern buildings are designed to support a vertical and dynamic load in order to support the walls and roof to keep them standing. One way to make a building more resistant to these lateral forces is to tie the walls, floor, roof, and foundations into a rigid box that holds together when shaken by a quake.

So What’s The Solution?

Because earthquakes are a function of mass shifting, all other structural elements being equal, the lighter the roof the lower the center of mass and, therefore, less likely it is to collapse or crumble. This means that roofs made out of wood tiles or asphalt are better than, say, brick, tile, or a heavy metal roof.
Lighter walls also have the advantage of exerting less force onto a building’s support system, but another good reason is that lighter wall construction tends to be more physically flexible which allows for more movement at the joints and throughout the structural members when an earthquake hits.
Many Vancouver builders use reinforced concrete where the steel reinforcement provides the tension-resistant qualities of the building which is able to absorb the shaking from an earthquake. A good analogy is an old car made in the 50s can better withstand an impact with minimum damage, however is more likely injure the occupants as the shift in mass travels through the car to the person. Modern cars crumble easier in an accident, absorbing the shock so the person doesn’t have to. This is much like a modern-day roof.
If you’re worried about your roof withstanding an earthquake call Cambie Roofing. Our expert roofers can quickly diagnose any problems with your roofing system and perform maintenance to save you the trouble of dealing with an earthquake or any other possible calamity, possibly preventing you from having to replace the entire roof all together.