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Michigan Insurance Blog

Spring Refresher

We’re finally starting to see some sun in the state of Michigan, thank goodness! Everyone is getting more excited and more proactive as the weather warms up. We’ve got a big holiday weekend coming up here that’s going to be the start of Michigan’s outdoor season! This is when we break out our tents, RV’s, and recreational vehicles for the summer months.

Along with this means it’s time to update your insurance policies. You need to make sure you have the correct vehicles on the road and the correct vehicles in storage. You have to have all of your recreational products insured to verify that they’re safe to be driving on the trails. If you have a pool or trampoline, make sure you’re covered for those on your home insurance and ask your agent about an umbrella policy to guarantee that you’re covered for everything.

Remember, this weekend is going to be a fun time with friends and family. Safety is the key to a good three-day weekend. Always keep the nearest hospital in mind when settling down in an unfamiliar area. Make sure to review fire, boating, and camping safety tips prior to engaging in the activities.

Have a great weekend everyone, and drive safely on the busy roads!

Don’t Let Your Dog Cheat You Out of Your Deposit

Man's best friend.We all love our furry friends. And while we wouldn’t dream of leaving them behind when we move, our pets can make getting a new apartment or rental much more complicated. Paying extra fees and pet rent can add up quickly. And let’s face it, there are reasons for those fees. Between hair, “accidents”, curiosity, and cooped up energy, our dogs can get into some sticky situations – and cause some major damage. How can you avoid losing your deposit without sacrificing your furry family?

Here are some easy ways to keep your fur baby from ruining your chances at getting your deposit back:

  • Protect Surfaces from Chewing
    In general, dogs avoid chewing on things that smell of citrus. If your dog is a chewer, you can try spraying surfaces with citrus scented cleaning spray or air freshener. If you need a stronger deterrent, most pet supply stores carry products designed to keep pets from chewing up your things. 
  • Regularly Remove Pet Hair from Your Carpets

    You love you dog’s silky coat! It’s warm, and adorable, and soft, and… a huge pain to remove from the carpet. Avoid paying special cleaning fees by regularly removing the hair yourself. A good way to remove pet hair from the carpet is a squeegee. You can use the same type of squeegee you use in the shower to remove pet hair effectively. Try to squeegee your carpets every other week, or more often if you have multiple pets. 
  •  Seal up Treats and Food

    The compulsion to get into your trash, or their dog food stash is a hard one to combat. The best way to fight this problem is to seal up the temptations in air tight containers. You can buy large dog food storage containers for pretty cheap. Transfer dog food from bags into the sealed containers. Removing that tempting dog food smell helps your dog resist their evil urges.

    You can also purchase trashcans that open from a foot pedal. Most versions of these trashcans include a lock, so even if you’ve got a smart pup they won’t be able to open the trashcan when you’re not home. Of course, storing trashcans and dog food in rooms with locked doors doubles up your protection. 

Prevent dog boredom

  • Prevent Boredom

    What’s the number one reason your dog destroys things? He’s bored. Try to prevent boredom by leaving toys that can keep Fido busy for hours. You can purchase toys that are indestructible and have space for snacks in them. Add peanut butter (make sure your brand is xylitol free) and freeze the toy. Your dog will spend hours trying to eat the peanut butter out of the toy. And a busy dog is a well behaved dog.

Having a pet and apartment chaos don’t have to go hand in hand. But even when man’s best friend inevitably cause a mess or get into some trouble, we still know we wouldn’t trade them for the world!

What is your favorite tip for keeping your pet in line while you’re away? Share in the comments!


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A Few Tips for the College-Bound

Back to School TipsCollege is expensive enough without the added cost of unexpected accidents or theft, and it’s stressful enough without the extra worry of whether they are covered by your insurance policy. If you have a student heading away to school, below are a few tips to help you get the most out of your coverage.


  • Personal Property:  Most homeowners policies will cover personal property for up to 10% of your total policy while your child is residing at school (a $100,000 policy equals $10,000 in coverage). Not all types of damage are covered, so read your policy carefully or call our office with questions. Some items such as jewelry or expensive electronics require special coverage. Renters insurance is strongly recommended to make sure your child and their belongings are fully protected. 
  • Liability Coverage:  General damage to a dorm room or apartment is not usually covered.
  • Documentation:  Creating an inventory of the items your child is taking to school is a good idea. Use photographs and keep receipts. You can also read our guide to creating a home inventory


  • Car Staying Home:  If you child isn’t bringing a vehicle to school but they will still drive your car while at home on school breaks, you should keep your child listed on your auto policy.
  • Car at School:  Make sure to notify us if your child will be taking a car away to school. In most cases, if the car is registered to you and listed on your policy, it will be covered.
  • Discounts:  Many insurance carriers reward good grades! A full-time student meeting certain academic requirements can qualify for a good student discount. Distant student discounts may also be available. Discounts may also be available for drivers under 21 who have completed driver’s education courses.

Before your child leaves for school, be sure to call Alliance at (616) 897-1515 or e-mail us with questions. We can walk you through the steps to ensure you have the right coverage to protect you and your child at school. We’re always here to help!

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