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Division of Insurance offers tips for protection from fires

In the past few weeks, Nevada has experienced significant wildfires, ranging from the Poeville Fire in Washoe County to the Mahogany Fire on Mount Charleston. With fires in mind, the Division of Insurance reminds Nevadans to take action to protect their assets from disasters such as wildfires.

“Homeowners and renters are encouraged to take two important steps every year: review their homeowners and renters insurance policy to make sure they are adequately covered and mitigate the risk of wildfires to reduce the possibility of fire-related property damages,” Insurance Commissioner Barbara Richardson said.

The first step consumers can take to prepare for wildfires is to follow local ordinances that help control the growth of shrubs, vegetation, pine needles and other fire fuels. This is especially important in high vegetation communities such as Lake Tahoe and Mount Charleston.

Consumers should consider the defensible space around their property to reduce the threat of wildfire and also help firefighters defend property safely and more effectively in the event of a wildfire. The Living with Fire program at https://www.livingwithfire.com/get-prepared/ can help with this and other tasks to prepare.

In addition, consumers should make sure they are adequately covered by first making a home inventory. All of their belongings, including home improvement items, electronics and other specialty items such as jewelry should be documented.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners has a free myHOME Scr.APP.book downloadable app that allows you to quickly photograph and capture descriptions of your possessions room by room and store them electronically for safekeeping. The app is available for iPhone® and Android devices.

Before calling their insurance agent or company, consumers should read their insurance policy and declarations page to review the coverage levels. When calling, consumers should ask for an “annual policy review” and disclose the contents of their home inventory and ask if the current insurance coverage is adequate.

The Division of Insurance has other resources available on its website to help homeowners and renters. Please visit the Division’s website at http://doi.nv.gov/Consumers/Homeowners-Insurance/Home-Inventory/ for tips on how to create a home inventory.

You can also view the Nevada Consumer’s Guide to Home Insurance at http://doi.nv.gov/uploadedFiles/doinvgov/_public-documents/News-Notes/HomeInsuranceGuide2011B.pdf

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