‘Tis the Season’ to Shop and Be Aware

Santa Claus

As the season of giving draws closer, people are putting together their shopping lists and making more purchases in stores and online with credit cards.

An NBCNEWS article says identity theft is more common during the holiday season as people are busy making purchases and running errands with less rest that they forget to focus on protecting their identity. People are more distracted and more vulnerable to scams.

Steps you can take to protect yourself from identity theft include:

  • Have security software installed on mobile devices and computers.
  • Guard your social security number.
  • Monitor your credit report, bank and credit card statements.
  • Use a shredder on documents containing personal information before placing in the trash.
  • Remove your name from marketing lists.
  • Keep duplicate records on your wallet contents in a secure location.
  • Know to whom you are speaking. Do not give personal information unless 100% certain you know the person and/or business they represent.
  • Be aware of your surroundings when making credit card purchases and entering passwords and pins at atm’s and stores.
  • Mail payments from a safe location. Private home mailboxes are not considered to be very secure.
  • Destroy any electronic recording device prior to disposal.
  • Be aware of bogus shipping emails as clicking on them could load malware on your machine or take you to a phishing website.
  • Check out new merchants with the Better Business Bureau.

During this busy holiday season make sure to put your safety first…in this case, the safety of your finances and identity. If your credit cards or wallet have been stolen, contact the three reporting agencies below immediately.

Equifax: 1-800-685-1111

TransUnion: 1-800-916-8800

Experian: 1-888-397-3742


Safety Director Crystal Schafer
Article by Crystal Schafer, Safety Director
cschafer@massarocorporation.com

 

 

 

Saving Money on Your Heating and Air Bills

attic

Many of our customers have had a variety of problems with the highest part of their house and also the most infrequently visited-their attic.

The bottom line is that inadequate roof ventilation can lead to many concerns including premature shingle failure, attic mold, and higher utility costs.

One of the first things to do is figure out the size of your attic space. Generally speaking you need 1 square foot of ventilation for every 300 square feet of attic space.

Once you know the amount of ventilation needed you can achieve this by a combination of different types of installations including vent-a-ridge (at the peak), soffit venting, baffles, and roof vents including power vents.

Common mistakes that people make include installing the vents in the wrong locations, covering up soffit vents with insulation, and over ventilating. Another common mistake (a huge contributor to mold problems) is ventilating bathroom fans into the attic-they must go through the roof.

If you buy a power roof vent they typically come with a thermostat that will turn on/off based on temperature setting. Recommended temperature settings range from 90-110 degrees. What most people don’t realize is that these units should also have a humidistat (helpful if you live in an area with higher humidity levels) for moisture control. Humidistats are sold by the manufacturer for an additional cost and should be set around 75-80%.

Remember, properly ventilated attics will lead to cooler attic temperatures in the summer extending the life of your air conditioner since it will work less to cool your home. This will add extended life to your air conditioner and roof shingles.


reuss-brian
Article by Brian Reuss, Director breuss@MassaroRestoration.com