Last week, Shane Smith, my colleague in Tampa, kicked off the New Year with a very fine blog about the importance of reviewing insurance policies and making sure one has the proper or needed coverage. That is very sound advice.

You may (or may not) be surprised that many homeowners cannot even locate a copy of their insurance policy. I am frequently on the phone with policyholders answering questions about their insurance claims following a loss. If a coverage issue comes up, and they often do, the very first thing I would want to turn to would be the policy itself. So to not have a copy of the policy handy makes it tough. It is best not to wait until a loss happens to then look for your policy.

Therefore, a piece of advice to homeowners, or any policyholder for that matter: make sure you have on hand a copy of your current policy—not just the Declarations Page or the notices that arrive in the mail with a renewal. If you do not have a full and complete copy of the policy, request it from your insurance agent or the insurance company. You are entitled to it.

More about insurance policies next week.