More and more Americans are storing their excess personal property in self storage rental units. In fact, the Self Storage Association indicates that approximately 11 million households in the United States rent some type of storage unit.

The first consideration, after deciding to rent a storage unit, is which self storage facility to select. The following are some tips for selecting the appropriate storage facility.

Select a rental company that has adequate security, such as proper lighting, formidable fencing, coded security pads, and 24-hour video surveillance cameras.

Look for a unit that you can access any time of the day.

Consider your need for a climate-controlled environment—particularly important if you are storing items that could be damaged by damp, cold, or hot weather such as upholstered furniture and archived items.

Choose a unit that is well-maintained, clean, and pest-free.

Ascertain the reputation and history of the rental company through referrals and the Better Business Bureau.

Select a rental company that offers competitive rates for insurance for your property in order to give you more options; the rental company should also have its own commercial general liability insurance if someone gets hurt on its premises.

Positive Thought for this Week

“Kindness can become its own motive. We are made kind by being kind.”
Eric Hoffer
American Social Writer


From Easter lilies, to candy, to kosher pet food, the Pasadena Humane Society tells you how to keep your pets safe during Easter and Passover. They also don’t recommend giving a baby chick or bunny as a gift.

As the Easter Bunny makes its way from home to home leaving festooned eggs throughout the garden and decadent sweets for children to eat, it’s important for pet owners to exercise caution to avoid any “eggscitement” during this celebratory time of year.

Easter lilies are highly toxic, and, in fact, can be lethal to cats. All members of the Lilium genus produce a chemical – present in all parts of the plant- that can damage a cat’s kidneys. Even water from the vase the lilies stand in is toxic to cats! Easter lilies, stargazer lilies and Asiatic lilies are the most hazardous. (Calla lilies and peace lilies are not a part of the Lilium genus; therefore, they’re harmless to cats.)

Candy with Xylitol, an artificial sweetener, as well as all forms of chocolate can be toxic to cats and dogs, too.

If you believe your pet has ingested any of these, please contact your veterinarian immediately.

For Passover, simply substitute your pet’s regular pet food for Kosher foods. Make sure the food doesn’t contain any chametz, which is any food product, or byproduct, made out of the five major grains – wheat, rye, barley, oats and spelt.

As cute as baby chicks and bunnies are during this time of year, we don’t recommend giving them as gifts. If your child wants a chick or a bunny, start them out with a plush animal toy; they’re just as cute and don’t require all the time, attention and care as real baby animals.

Wishing you all a safe & happy holiday from the Management & Staff of C.H. Edwards,Inc.

Positive Thought for this Week
“You give but little when you give of your possessions.
It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”
Kahlil Gibran
Lebanese-American artist, poet & writer


As many of you know, April is Autism Awareness month. On Monday, April 2, 2012, Autism Speaks, along with people across our great country and around the world, will come together for the 3rd year, in a global initiative to “shine a light on Autism awareness” called “Light It Up Blue”. Prominent buildings, such as the Empire State Building, will turn their lights blue in support of all families affected by Autism. I hope that we can join them…

We are asking that you send your child to school on Monday, April 2nd, wearing the color blue. When you go to work in the morning, or run errands around town…please wear the color blue. We have many children in our very own community that have been diagnosed with Autism. Let’s show them that we support them and that we are ONE…

On behalf of our own families, as well as every other family out there that has a child, family member or friend with Autism…Thank You!

With So Much Gratitude,

Alonna Rubin

Co-President, SWR SEPTA

Mike Sanchez 

Vice President, SWR SEPTA

Steven Visco, Ph.D, AAI, President
Denise A. Visco, Vice President
C.H. Edwards, Inc.

and parents of a child with Autism










One of the painful aftermaths of fires and tornadoes that decimate homes may be the crushing realization that the home is dramatically underinsured. According to one of the largest residential building cost data companies, Marshall & Swift/Boeckh, 64 percent of U.S. homes are undervalued by an average of 19 percent. If this figure is applied to a home with a replacement cost of $400,000, it might be insured for only $324,000, a shortfall of $76,000.

This underinsurance results in a potentially huge coverage gap, particularly if the home is not insured with a guaranteed replacement cost provision. A survey by United Policyholders, a consumer advocacy group, said 75 percent of California home owners affected by the 2007 San Diego wildfires were underinsured by an average of $240,000.

Here are some general tips to consider reducing the likelihood of your home being underinsured:

  • Make sure your home has been physically inspected. This will increase the likelihood that it is insured for its replacement cost value. Ask for periodic re-inspections of your home (particularly high-end ones) to ascertain whether the dwelling limits are adequate.
  • Consider guaranteed replacement cost (or guaranteed rebuild) coverage; an alternative would be to procure coverage that offers a 30 to 50 percent cushion above the dwelling limit (extended replacement cost coverage).
  • Increase the ordinance or law coverage (10 percent of dwelling limit for many homeowners policies) to a higher percentage of coverage. Note that this recommendation is particularly important if you have an older home.
  • Keep the insurance company informed about any remodeling at your home, since remodeling can dramatically increase the need for higher dwelling limits. Americans spend more than $170 million annually on home improvement projects, according to the National Association of the Remodeling Industry.
  • If building costs are rising rapidly, an inflation guard endorsement is worthy of consideration. This endorsement increases the dwelling limit of insurance (along with other coverages) to reflect increases in values due to inflation.

Our insurance specialists at C.H. Edwards will be more than happy to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have. Call us today!

Positive Thought for this Week
“A great work is made out of a combination of obedience and liberty.”
Nadia Boulanger 1887-1979
French composer, conductor
& teacher



Below are some frequently asked automobile insurance questions that we hope you will find helpful and informative.

Does everyone have to have Long Island auto insurance?

Yes, automobile liability insurance, or proof of financial responsibility is required in all fifty states. Although each state sets their own limits on how much insurance is needed, these are only minimum limits and in most cases additional coverage is needed if you don’t want to have to pay additional expenses out of pocket. If you have a lease or loan on your car you are usually required by the lender to have comprehensive and collision coverage in addition to the state required liability coverage.

What are the best liability policy limits?

It is generally accepted among insurance agents that the state minimum policy limits are not enough. Most insurance professionals would agree for the average driver the best liability limits to have are 100/300/100. This means:

  • 100,000 per person for bodily injury
  • 300,000 per accident for bodily injury
  • 100,000 per accident for property damage

Since in most areas medical treatment is in fairly the same range, the last limit, per accident for property damage, is the one you may want to take into account if you are not the average driver. If you live in an area where you feel that if there was an accident, that was your fault, and property damage may exceed 100,000, you may want to consider higher limits. Remember, property damage is the other person’s car and any other property damaged during the accident if you are at fault. In some areas one’s landscaping can cost over 100,000!

What is the difference between comprehensive and collision?

Collision coverage is when you have a collision with another car. Comprehensive coverage is when it is anything else other than a collision such as fire or theft. Most people would have both coverages when using the car on a regular basis. Sometimes when one is just storing a car they may only keep comprehensive coverage since they are not using it on the road therefore, it is unlikely to be in a collision.

What are the minimum policy requirements?

Liability is required in every state unless you can prove financial responsibility otherwise. Limits vary widely from state to state and, if you carry the minimum limits, when you drive into another state you will automatically assume that state’s minimum liability requirements

Is anyone who drives my car covered?

In most cases, yes, as long as they have the permission or reasonable belief from the insured that they can use the vehicle. The insured is the person named on the insurance policy and their spouse if applicable.

There are some exclusions, so you would need to look at your particular insurance policy to make sure. Remember, everyone in your household must be listed on your insurance policy if they have a license. For example, if a girlfriend you live with uses your car, she may not be covered if you did not list her on your insurance policy. On the other hand, if you live separately, she could use your car with your permission and be covered.

Should you have any more questions or concerns you many contact any one of our C.H. Edwards insurance specialists for assistance.

Positive Thought for this Week
“Nothing’s better than the wind to your back,

the sun in front of you,

and your friends beside you.”




Here is some information that you could use to get some credit for qualified home energy improvements this year. Perhaps you installed solar equipment or recently insulated your home? Here are two tax credits that may be available to you:

1. The Non-business Energy Property Credit: Homeowners who install energy-efficient improvements may qualify for this credit. The 2011 credit is 10 percent of the cost of qualified energy-efficient improvements, up to $500. Qualifying improvements include adding insulation, energy-efficient exterior windows and doors and certain roofs. The cost of installing these items does not count. You can also claim a credit including installation costs, for certain high-efficiency heating and air conditioning systems, water heaters and stoves that burn biomass fuel. The credit has a lifetime limit of $500, of which only $200 may be used for windows. If you’ve claimed more than $500 of non-business energy property credits since 2005, you cannot claim the credit for 2011. Qualifying improvements must have been placed into service in the taxpayer’s principal residence located in the United States before Jan. 1, 2012.

2. Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit: This tax credit helps individual taxpayers pay for qualified residential alternative energy equipment, such as solar hot water heaters, solar electricity equipment and wind turbines. The credit, which runs through 2016, is 30 percent of the cost of qualified property. There is no cap on the amount of credit available, except for fuel cell property. Generally, you may include labor costs when figuring the credit and you can carry forward any unused portions of this credit. Qualifying equipment must have been installed on or in connection with your home located in the United States; geothermal heat pumps qualify only when installed on or in connection with your main home located in the United States.

Not all energy-efficient improvements qualify so be sure you have the manufacturer’s tax credit certification statement, which can usually be found on the manufacturer’s website or with the product packaging.

If you’re eligible, you can claim both of these credits on Form 5695, Residential Energy Credits when you file your 2011 federal income tax return. Also, note these are tax credits and not deductions, so they will generally reduce the amount of tax owed dollar for dollar. Finally, you may claim these credits regardless of whether you itemize deductions on IRS Schedule A.

Positive Thought for this Week
“When you want to believe in something,
you also have to believe in everything that’s necessary for believing in it.”

Ugo Betti
Judge, Author & Playwright


Don’t share cars among family members, as this will increase your premiums. If there is a 1:1 correspondence between people and cars, your auto insurance will cost less.

What kind of car you have greatly influences what NY Car insurance you should buy. If your car is an older model with a low resale value, your coverage needs will differ than if your car was a brand new model. Also look into the theft rate in your area for your vehicle. Even some older cars get stolen often, you should think about getting some comprehensive coverage.

Be careful to never lapse on your coverage since this could increase the amount you would have to pay for your auto insurance. Switching between many different policies and insurance companies can cause gaps in coverage, even if unintentional. If your insurance company notices that there have been periods when you weren’t covered, you could be in for a costly rate increase.

There is one simple and somewhat surprising way for young men under 25 to see significant savings on their insurance: get married. Married men can save up to 40% on NY Car insurance costs. So, if you haven’t picked a date yet, you might want to think about doing that.

You can get rather large discounts from many of the larger auto insurance companies by buying coverage for everyone in your household through a single provider. You could save hundreds, even thousands of dollars per year in monthly premiums by insuring all of your vehicles together.

The tips provided here will help the majority of insurance shoppers. Apply these tips to get your auto insurance payments under control. Using this article as a guide, you can get the insurance coverage you need at a price you can afford.

Positive Thought for this Week
“I try to avoid looking backward and keep looking upward.”
Charlotte Bronte
1816 – 1855 English novelist


Your independent insurance agent provides a service to their clients by being available. Clients need help with all sorts of things when it comes to New York Auto insurance. Take a look at the top 10 reasons to contact your independent insurance agent.

1. File a Claim

After an accident, it can be stressful filing a claim. Easiest solution is to contact your independent insurance agent and ask them to file the claim for you. The agent will take down the details of the claim and a claims adjuster will contact you to verify all the information.

2. Trouble with Your Claim

If your claim isn’t going smoothly, your independent insurance agent is a great source to get things straightened out. It is especially true if the problem between you and the claim representative is poor communication. Many agents do not handle claims first hand but they do want your claim to go smoothly. Often agents will make the appropriate phone calls to managers and reps to ensure the claim stays on track.

3. Add or Remove a Driver

If you are looking to change drivers, you should call your independent insurance agent. Lots of reasons exist to change number of drivers on your policy. Whether you are adding your new spouse, adding or removing a teenager, or splitting off your drivers after a divorce your independent insurance agent can help guide you through the process.

4. Add or Remove a Vehicle

Taking vehicles on and off is a common occurrence on policies. It is a good idea to call and get a quote from your independent insurance agent to see what the price will be when adding a vehicle. It works the same if you are selling a vehicle, your agent can let you know how much you are saving.

5. Moving

Always notify your agent of a move. It is important your insurance company can contact you through both mail and phone. Even if you are moving out of state, let your agent know, he may be able to look up agents in the area who sell the same insurance carrier.

6. Questions about Payment

Billing questions are extremely common. Changes to your policy, renewals, and late fees can all affect your payment and raise questions. Lot of payment options are also available, contact your independent insurance agent to go over all the options.

7. Change Coverage

Sometimes you just need to change the coverage on your existing vehicle. Maybe you are putting your sports car in storage for the winter. Your independent insurance agent will be able to give you advice on your decision and also make sure the change gets processed correctly.

8. Inquire about Cheaper Insurance

The only stupid question is the one you do not ask. Asking your agent to review your policy is a great way to potentially save some cash. Discounts could have been missed or rating options could be applied improperly. If your rate has gone up, renewal is the perfect time to check and see if cheaper insurance is available with your current carrier.

9. Adding more Policies to Get Multi-Policy Discount

Always call your independent insurance agent if you are purchasing a home and need home insurance. You should be eligible to save on your insurance with the multi-policy discount. If the discount is not available then it is time to start shopping elsewhere. But a great tip is to always start with your current independent insurance agent.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding your automobile insurance a representative at C.H. Edwards will be more than happy to help.

Positive Thought for this Week
“Simplicity and repose are the qualities that
measure the true value of any work of art.”
Frank Lloyd Wright
American Architect


It depends on your location.

Yes, Home insurance New York is cheaper if you have a brick home as compared to if you had a wood frame home if you are living in an area prone to high winds. This is because a home that is made of strong materials such as brick or cement. Of course, this kind of house will be more able to withstand catastrophic events such as a windstorm or a fire. On the other hand, a wood frame home located in the same area is more expensive to insure since it is more prone to fire and is easily destroyed by high winds.


Many people are active in their condominium or homeowners association, serving as directors, officers, and editors of association newsletters. If you are an active member of your association, consider the following risk management tips and recommendations.

  • Verify that the association has directors and officers (D&O) coverage in force with reasonably high limits. If the association refuses or chooses not to obtain D&O coverage, seriously reconsider your leadership activities within the group due to your unprotected liability exposure.
  • If D&O liability coverage is in place, verify that this policy provides errors and omissions coverage for the proper purchase of insurance. To do this, verify that the “failure to maintain insurance” exclusion is not attached to the D&O policy.
  • Ask your association to hire an independent insurance consultant to audit the association insurance program to uncover any potentially lethal coverage gaps. For example, homeowners associations should have at least the following types of coverages: guaranteed replacement cost property coverage for common areas, commercial umbrella coverage, and workers compensation insurance (even if there are no association employees) to cover claims brought by uninsured independent contractors, and D&O liability coverage.
  • If you don’t already have it, consider adding a personal injury (HO 24 82) or related endorsement to your New York homeowners policy.

Our representatives at C.H. Edwards, Inc. are more than happy to answer any questions or concerns that you have on this coverage or any insurance coverages.

Positive Thought for this Week
“The miracle on earth are the laws of heaven”.
Jean Paul
German Romantic Writer