How much insurance should I buy for my house?
In selecting an appropriate amount of coverage, be sure to avoid the most common consumer mistake- insuring your home for what it will sell for (the market value) rather than what it costs to replace. Homeowner policies are designed to cover the cost of reconstructing your home should it ever be destroyed. Therefore, you should select an amount of insurance that represents the replacement value of your home.
Do I need collision protection on my automobile?
Many people wonder if they should always purchase Collision protection. To make the decision, you need to know the current value of your automobile and the cost of coverage. Generally speaking, vehicles decline in value as they age. Only you can decide if collision coverage is necessary after considering the cost of insurance is more economical than the cost of repairing or replacing the car at your own expense. Nonetheless, here are some guidelines to help you make a decision that is best for you.
1. If your car is leased or financed, you are probably required to maintain Collision as well as Comprehensive coverage.
2. If the value of your vehicle is slightly higher than the deductible chosen, then it makes no sense to purchase Collision or Comprehensive coverage.
3. If your annual premium for the sum of these coverages (Collision and/or Comprehensive), when multiplied by 8, is greater than the value of your auto, then it is not economically feasible to purchase physical damage for that vehicle.
Is my jewelry fully covered by my homeowner's policy?
Most people dont realize that many homeowners policies offer only $1,000 in coverage for jewelry. Given that this limit is generally less than the cost of an average engagement ring, it is doubtful that most customers will have enough coverage for their jewelry. The solution is to purchase a Valuable Articles Policy so you can insure specific jewelry items. Tips on selecting a valuable articles policy:
1. Look for a policy that doesn't mandate that you can replace an item to receive full value of the settlement.
2. Select a company that makes it easy to insure your jewelry by requiring appraisals on high value items.
What is Excess Liability Insurance?
Judgments from lawsuits can exceed the liability limits on your automobile or home insurance policies, especially if there is a critical injury or loss of life. Excess Liability or Umbrella Insurance is the extra protection you need in the event a liability lawsuit were filed against you. An Excess Liability Policy gives you two types of coverage:
1. Additional Liability Coverage for you and your family over and above the present amounts you now have on your auto, home, boat, or recreational vehicles.
2. Primary Coverage for liability claims not covered under other policies such as defamation of character, libel, slander, or false arrest.
What is Workers Compensation Insurance?
Every state requires most employers, by statute, to provide either formal workers compensation insurance or post some form of financial responsibility for injuries or sickness suffered by employees while in the work place. The law in each state of employment defines coverage. Every job in America falls into one of hundreds of broadly defined job classifications published by the industry standard National Council of Compensation Insurance (NCCI). Each classification, by state, has an assigned rate per $100 of employee payroll.
The final premium is further modified by the following factors that can include an experience rating, state taxes, and variable rating offered by some insurers that deviates from NCCI suggested rates. Because so many states have their own variations on workers compensation policies, it is important to have an expert who can clarify this complicated area.
Does where I live affect my car insurance premium?
Yes. Where you keep your car directly affects your chances of having an accident or becoming a victim of theft or vandalism. Insurance companies use statistical data about each city, county, and territory to determine specific rates for each area.
What happens when I loan my car to someone? Is that person covered by my policy? Am I still covered?
Yes. Liability and physical damage (comprehensive and collision) coverages always follow the vehicle as long as the person borrowing the car is doing so with your permission and they are a valid licensed driver. Plus, if the driver you loan to is insured then their policy can also come into play if needed. The same rules apply when you borrow a friends car. Your car insurance policy will provide protection for you but the insurance policy for the vehicle will most likely be primary in the event of a claim.
Am I covered by my car insurance policy when I rent a vehicle?
It depends. Your car insurance policy will transfer the coverages that you have on the policy to a rental vehicle when certain conditions are met. The vehicle must be rented to you in your personal name and not the name of a business. Only the coverages that you have on your policy will transfer so if you do not have full coverage on at least one vehicle on your policy then you do not have the coverage to transfer. Also you need to be renting a personal private passenger vehicle such as a car, SUV, or Pickup Truck. Please keep in mind that most personal car insurance policies are not designed to provide coverage on a commercial vehicle such as a large Uhaul truck or 15 passenger van. In those situations, it is best that you purchase the coverage from the rental agency directly.
Are floods, earthquakes, and other natural disasters covered by my homeowners policy?
Many catastrophes are covered, however Flood and Earthquake are usually excluded from a standard homeowners contract. Please consult with us if you wish to secure flood and/or earthquake coverage. The policy does provide coverage for Wind damage, Hail damage, lightning and fire damage, etc...
Are there exclusions in my policy that I should know about?
Yes. Every single insurance policy contains exclusions. Please make sure to read your policy carefully or consult with us to make sure you are aware of the specific exclusions in your policy. Common exclusions can be "intentional loss" and "normal wear and tear"
Why is my home covered for a different value than what I paid for the house when I purchased it?
Please keep in mind that a homeowners insurance policy is designed to replace your dwelling in the event of a total loss. The amount you paid for the home is the real estate market value and not necessarily the dwelling replacement value . We want to be absolutely certain that there is enough coverage built into your policy so that if you suffer a total loss we can help you replace your most important asset as easily as possible. Many factors help calculate the replacement value of a home specifically type of construction, size of home, age of home, number of bathrooms, special features that may be built into your home. Please consult with our agency for a Replacement Cost review of your home.
What if I have an accident while carpooling someone else's children?
In an auto accident, drivers can be legally liable for their passengers injuries. Most personal auto policies will extend coverage for injuries to passengers when driving your own car. Adults driving kids to athletic and other events should consider maintaining the highest liability limits possible, as well as a personal umbrella policy. The umbrella can provide much higher limits of liability, some well over $1 million. Click here for more information: