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Ways to Give Back this Thanksgiving

Ways to Give Back this Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, show your thanks by giving back to others.

Thanksgiving is a time to step back and really appreciate all the blessing in your life. However, it’s also important to recognize that not everyone is as lucky as you. This Thanksgiving, make a point to provide assistance to those who need it the most. Here are some ways you can give back this season.

Support a Worthwhile Charity

One of the easiest ways to give back this year is by donating to a cause that you believe in. Whether you feel strongly about supporting our veterans or providing medical aid for the impoverished, there’s bound to be a charity or organization that is deserving of your donations.

Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen

For a more hands-on way to serve your community, try volunteering at a local soup kitchen. This is also a great activity to undertake with your children to show them the importance of giving back. It’s important to keep in mind that soup kitchens need volunteers year-round, so don’t just limit your assistance to the holiday season.

Visit a Retirement Home

Unfortunately, it’s not possible for many retirement home residents to return home for the holidays. To make matters worse, many residents do not receive visitors during this time of year. Make sure that no one feels alone this Thanksgiving by dropping in and giving the gift of company and conversation.

Pull Up a Chair at Your Table

Another way to make sure that everyone feels welcome and surrounded by loved ones is by inviting people over for Thanksgiving. If you have a lonely relative or a neighbor that’s far from home, offer them a seat at your table this Thanksgiving. Though this may seem like a minor thing, your kindness and hospitality will make a difference for everyone enjoying your holiday festivities.

These are just a few of the many ways that you can give back this holiday season. Make sure you do your part to give everyone a truly happy Thanksgiving. The team at Scavone Insurance wishes you and your loved ones a happy holiday. Located in White Plains, New York, please contact us for assistance with all your personal and commercial insurance needs.

Scavone Insurance Center Holiday Hours

Scavone Insurance Center Holiday Hours

Scavone Insurance Center will be closed on these days to observe the following holidays.

November

Wednesday, November 22, 2017 – Our office will be closing at 12:00pm.

Thursday, November 23, 2017 – Our office will be closed. Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 24, 3027. – Our office will be closed.

December

Monday, 12/25/2017 – Our office will be closed. Merry Christmas!

January

Monday, 1/1/2018 – Our office will be closed. Happy New Year’s Day!

Fireplace Safety for the Season

Fireplace Safety for the Season

Follow these fireplace safety tips to stay safe all fall and winter long.

When the weather outside is freezing, there’s nothing better than curling up before a roaring fire. However, using your fireplace can be extremely dangerous if you don’t have the right safety measures in place. Learn how you can use your fireplace safely this year with these strategies.

1) Before lighting your first fire of the season, make sure your fireplace and chimney have been properly inspected and cleaned. Lighting a fire in a damaged or dirty fireplace is incredibly dangerous for your family and your home.

2) Make sure that there aren’t any flammable items near your fireplace; a rogue spark could result in a house fire. Additionally, place a fire-resistant mat in front of your fireplace to prevent sparks or hot ashes from damaging your flooring.

3) Never leave a fire unattended when there are children present. Additionally, do not let children get too close to the flames or play with fire tools and equipment.

4) Crack open a window when using your fireplace to let out any smoke. The air coming in from outside will help push smoke up and out of your chimney.

5) When your fire burns down, make sure it is completely extinguished before leaving the house or going upstairs. A seemingly extinguished fire could flame back up and cause a house fire if you are not careful.

6) Clean out the ashes produced by any previous fires. If ash accumulates in your chimney, then it could restrict air flow to the kindling and produce more smoke.

7) Always keep a fire extinguisher in close reach.

Follow these easy tips to keep both your family and your home safe while using your fireplace this season. Another way to protect your home from fire damage and other hazards this month is to have the right insurance coverage. To find the best policy for your needs, contact the experts at Scavone Insurance in White Plains, New York. Our dedicated team is ready to get you covered today!

November is American Diabetes Month

November is American Diabetes Month

Learn how you can make a difference this month.

Diabetes is one of the biggest health crises in the United States. According to the American Diabetes Association, approximately 1.5 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes every year. In honor of American Diabetes Month, learn more about this disease and find out how you can make a difference.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a disease where your pancreas does not produce enough insulin to regulate the amount of sugar in your blood. This can lead to blood sugar spikes or sudden drops, and can cause serious health problems over time. There are two main forms of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 diabetes is normally diagnosed in children and young adults and is a lifelong condition. On the other hand, Type 2 diabetes is something that people tend to develop later in their lives and is the more common of the two types.

What are the Symptoms of Diabetes?

Common symptoms of diabetes include:

  • Frequent urination
  • Feelings of extreme thirst
  • Feelings of extreme hunger
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Cuts or bruises that are slow to heal
  • Weight loss/gain
  • Tingling, pain, or numbness in the extremities

Unfortunately, the symptoms of diabetes can be so minor that many people don’t even realize they have diabetes. Early detection is important for preventing serious health risks down the line, so ask your doctor how you can get tested.

How Can I Get Involved this Month?

This American Diabetes Month, you can get involved by spreading awareness and educating others about the risk factors and preventative measures that people can take. For instance, people can lower their risk for diabetes with regular exercise and healthy diets. This month, encourage those around you to make healthier lifestyle choices. Even the smallest changes can help reduce their risk for developing diabetes. Other ways to make a difference this month include posting about American Diabetes Month on social media, attending fundraisers or events that benefit diabetes foundations, or simply donating money to legitimate diabetes organizations.

This November, do your part to educate and spread awareness about diabetes. We at Scavone Insurance wish you and your loved ones good health this month. Located in White Plains, New York, contact us for assistance with all your personal and commercial insurance needs.

Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween Safety Tips

Don’t sacrifice safety for fun; learn how you can stay safe this Halloween.

Halloween is a favorite holiday for many kids and adults alike, but it’s not without its hazards.  Make sure you and your loved ones stay safe this Halloween by following these simple safety tips.

Costume Safety

Choosing a Halloween costume is important for everyone on Halloween; consider some safety requirements as you decide. Make sure costumes aren’t made of flammable materials so you or your child don’t accidentally catch fire on an unseen candle or jack-o-lantern. You should also avoid floor-length costumes, as these may impede your movement and increase your chances of falling. Additionally, if your child is planning on trick-or-treating, make sure their costume incorporates a reflective feature so they are more visible to motorists.

Trick-or-Treating Safety

If your child is going trick-or-treating without you, make sure he or she is going with a group of friends that you know and trust.  Set a curfew for you child and make sure they stay in neighborhoods that they are familiar with.  Warn your children not to dart out into the street and to never enter someone else’s home.  You should also advise your children to avoid taking short cuts through backyards, alleys, or parks.  Finally, make sure your child has a cell phone to keep in touch with you or to dial 9-1-1 in case of an emergency.

Treat Safety

Once your child returns from trick-or-treating, make sure you inspect their haul carefully.  Any unwrapped, unlabeled, or homemade treats should be immediately discarded.  To prevent your children from eating too much candy, make sure your feed them before they go trick-or-treating.  Additionally, consider enforcing candy limits to make sure your child doesn’t eat themselves sick.

Decorating Safety

Whether you are decorating your home or your workplace, make sure you do so safely.  While candles cast a fun, spooky glow, they also increase your chances of a fire.  Instead, try using electric candles or other lighting options that don’t require a flame.  If you are using props, make sure they are light and made of plastic or rubber.  No one wants a real axe falling on them as they’re standing by the water cooler.  Finally, think twice about placing decorations on the ground.  Someone might not see your decorations and trip over them.

Keep these safety tips in mind to make sure everyone has a truly happy Halloween.  Another way to stay safe this Halloween is to make sure you have the right insurance protection.  To find a policy that fits your needs, contact the team at Scavone Insurance.  Our experts are ready to get your covered today!

What You Need to Know About Chimney Inspections

What You Need to Know About Chimney Inspections

Winter is all about sitting around a roaring fire in your fireplace.  Make sure you can enjoy a fire this winter by getting a chimney inspection today.

While many homeowners don’t give their chimney a second thought, making sure your chimney is safe to use is a huge deal.  If you do not get your chimney regularly inspected and cleaned, you are putting your home at risk for serious damage and possibly even fire.  Starting to get concerned?  Here’s what you need to know about getting your chimney inspected.

Why should I get my chimney inspected and cleaned?

When you light a fire in your fire place, it produces an acidic material that can cause your chimney to weaken and deteriorate.  Using your fireplace regularly can also result in the build-up of another substance called creosote.  Creosote is a flammable material that could potentially start a fire in your chimney that could spread to the rest of your home.  Finally, heavy rain, intense winds, and animals caught inside your chimney could lead to damage.  This in turn could result in your chimney falling.

What should a chimney sweep take care of?

A professional chimney sweep should sweep the fireplace, check your chimney’s firebox, liners smoke chamber, and flue.  They should check for any debris in your chimney and remove it and also remove any creosote deposits.  Additionally, a chimney sweep should check your chimney’s exterior and conduct a video inspection where he lowers a camera inside your chimney to inspect its internal condition.  Cleaning and maintaining your chimney isn’t a DIY project you should undertake.  Properly cleaning your chimney requires considerable experience, otherwise you may be doing more harm than good.

Be prepared for winter by getting your chimney properly inspected and cleaned.  Another way to be prepared for winter is having the right insurance coverage for your home.  To get the right insurance policy for you, contact the experts at Scavone Insurance.  Our team can help you get the coverage you need today.

How to Winterize Your Home

How to Winterize Your Home

With winter right around the corner, it’s important to prepare your home as best you can. Here are some of the steps you should take to properly winterize your home.

Preparing your home for the wind and the snow is a rather time-consuming project. However, taking the time to properly winterize your home can prevent some serious issues down the line. As you get ready for the winter months ahead, make sure you complete these chores to make your home winter-ready.

Clean Your Gutters

During fall, fallen leaves can accumulate in your gutters and downspouts, leading to clogging. While this may seem unimportant, making sure that water can pass through your gutters is extremely important for preventing icicles and ice dams from forming during the colder months. Make sure water can flow freely this winter by clearing out your gutters today.

Trim Your Trees

Trimming your trees is commonly overlooked when homeowners are winterizing their homes. However, failing to keep trees in check can lead to branches or an entire tree crashing through your roof. To prevent damage, make sure that you trim any branches that could potentially fall on your home or vehicles during a particularly hard gust of winter wind.

Weather Strip Your Windows and Doors

Weather stripping basically means sealing any openings or gaps that could let water or cold air into your home. Weather stripping your windows and doors can help prevent water damage to your home and can keep your home warmer, reducing your heating costs.

Seal Leaks

Before winter hits, it’s important to inspect your roof for loose or missing shingles and to look for gaps near your chimney or other openings. If water gets into these cracks and freezes, then it could cause serious damage to your home. Make sure you seal any leaks you find using caulk or other weather stripping materials. Handling these issues now can help you avoid having to repair your roof during a blizzard.

Complete these tasks to successfully winterize your home! Remember, another part of preparing your home is making sure it has the necessary insurance to protect against winter risks. To find the right home insurance for your needs, contact the experts at Scavone Insurance. Our friendly team is ready to assist you with all your personal and commercial insurance needs.

Fire Prevention Week

Fire Prevention Week

2017’s Fire Prevention Week is October 8-14. Learn how you can get involved.

Every year, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) holds Fire Prevention Week, a public education campaign that encourages everyone to be ready in case of a fire. This year’s theme is “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!” The risk of a home fire significantly increases as the weather cools and heat is required. Help your clients protect their families by offering fire prevention tips, including the creation of an emergency escape plan.

Prevention

Cooking equipment, smoking, and heating equipment are the most common causes of house fires. To mitigate your risk for cooking related fires, make sure you always turn off your oven and stove when you’re finished cooking and keep a fire extinguisher nearby just in case. The best way to reduce our risk of a smoking related fire is to simply quit smoking. However, you can also reduce your risk by never smoking inside your home and making sure you extinguish all smoking implements (cigarettes, cigars, pipes, etc.) completely. Fires caused by heating equipment are most common during cold winter months. Make sure you have your heater professionally inspected before winter hits to make sure your heater is safe to use.

Smoke Alarms

Smoke alarms are the best way to alert you and your loved ones to the threat of fire. When properly installed and maintained, smoke alarms play a huge role in reducing the number of fire related injuries and deaths. Make sure that you have smoke alarms on every level of your home and in every bedroom. You should also test your smoke alarms once a month and replace them every 10 years. Finally, if a smoke alarm sounds, make sure you get out of your home and stay outside.

Escape Plan

Everyone should have a fire escape plan for their home. Start by drawing a map of your home with your family and be sure to mark two exits from every room and show how you can get outside from each exit. Make sure your family knows to close doors as they exit a room, this can help slow the spread of smoke and fire. Also, make sure your family understands that they should never, under any circumstances, run back into a burning building once they’re safely outside. Once your family knows the different escape routes, practice your escape plan at least twice a year. The more often your practice, the less likely you will panic in the event of a real fire.

This Fire Prevention Week, make sure you and your family are ready for the threat of fire. Another way to be prepared is making sure you have the necessary insurance to cover you, your loved ones, and your home. To get the insurance you need, contact the professionals at Scavone Insurance today. Our knowledgeable team is ready to help you get the protection you need.

Football is Back! Celebrate with this Fun Tailgating Recipe

Football is Back! Celebrate with this Fun Tailgating Recipe

It’s finally football season!  Get back in the game with these tasty treats.

When September hits, it’s time to get your tailgate on!  Even if you don’t tailgate, celebrate the first game of the season with some delicious eats.  Round up your buddies, grab a drink, and get ready to ring in football season with this fun and easy recipe.

Field Goal Guacamole and Touchdown Tortilla Chips

For the Guacamole

Ingredients

3 avocados

2 Roma tomatoes

1/2 red onion

1 clove garlic (finely chopped)

1 bunch cilantro (roughly chopped)

1 lime (juiced)

1 jalapeño (seeded and finely chopped)

Salt

Black pepper

Cumin

Directions

  • Seed the tomatoes and dice them. Dice the onion into slightly smaller pieces than the tomato.  Set aside.
  • Remove the pits and mash the avocados. Add the lime juice to help break down the avocado and make it smooth.
  • Mix tomatoes, onion, garlic, cilantro, and jalapeño into the avocado mash. Add salt, pepper, and cumin to taste.
  • Place in an airtight container and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow the flavors to marry.
  • Serve in a chilled bowl and garnish with lime wedges and cilantro leaves.

For the Chips

Ingredients

Premade corn tortillas

Oil for frying (vegetable oil recommended)

1 Tbsp. Seasoned salt

1/2 tsp Cumin

¼ tsp Cayenne Pepper

Directions

  • Fill a pot or skillet with high sides about halfway with oil. Turn the burner to medium heat and wait until the oil reaches a temperature of 350°F.
  • While the oil is heating, cut the tortillas into triangles and mix the salt and spices together.
  • Fry the chips until golden brown, make sure not too add too many chips at a time. This could drop the temperature of the oil and make for soggy chips.
  • Place chips onto a paper towel-lined tray to drain, and sprinkle on spice mixture while the chips are still hot.
  • Serve alongside guacamole.

Try out this a delicious tailgating recipe and remember to stay safe this football season!

Contact our knowledgeable team at Scavone Insurance for all of your personal and business insurance needs.

Does Your Landscaping Business Need Commercial Vehicle Insurance?

Does Your Landscaping Business Need Commercial Vehicle Insurance?

Your landscaping business will be booming this fall, make sure you have the protection to keep it up and running.

If you own a landscaping business, chances are you already have the general liability, business owners, and workers compensation insurance you need.  However, even with these policies, your business may not be completely covered.  Find out how commercial vehicle insurance can offer your business the protection it needs.

Why do I need commercial vehicle insurance?

As a landscaper, or owner of a landscaping business, you and you employees spend a lot of time driving to different jobs.  Any time you or your employees are driving for business purposes, you are in danger of a commercial vehicle accident.  Even if you use your personal car for work, your personal auto insurance may not cover damages incurred during commercial use of your vehicle.   The best way to cover all the vehicles used in your business is to consider a commercial vehicle insurance policy.

What does it cover?

Like a personal auto policy, commercial vehicle insurance protects against liability risks and offers compensation for vehicle damages.  However, instead of simply covering you, a commercial vehicle policy covers you and anyone else who drives the insured vehicle(s).  This is why it’s particularly important to have a commercial vehicle policy if your landscaping business has employees.   A standard policy will provide liability coverage, coverage for medical payments, collision coverage, and so on.

Speak to your insurance company to make sure that your landscaping business has all the coverage it needs.  If you are looking for commercial insurance,  contact the professionals at Scavone Insurance today.  Our friendly team is ready to assist you with all your insurance needs.

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