Five Keys to Improving Your Personal Insurance

 

A Personal Insurance Update

We work to ensure that your personal insurance provides the protection you deserve and need.  We understand you may need different coverage like a personal umbrella, RV insurance, valuable articles coverage, earthquake, or flood coverage.

Over the years, we have found that homeowners who adhere to the following strategies have a better chance of obtaining the best possible combination of coverage, price, and service.

Use an agent like us to represent you in the market.  We know and understand personal insurance, and we are much better equipped to help you manage your personal insurance program.  We will stand by you in every claim situation.

Only use financially strong insurers.  It is vital that your insurance is there to pay for claims.  Look for insurers with an “A” rating by AM Best.

Make sure you have high liability limits.  It is essential that every homeowner have enough liability insurance to cover the unexpected events.  This is especially true if you own an RV, ATV or boat.

Consider increasing your deductibles.  Often a slight increase in your deductibles can reduce premiums.  If you are able to manage a larger deductible, you may be better off in the end.

Allow your agent to manage your entire personal insurance needs. Having one source for all your policies will save you time.  Also having one professional handle all your needs gives them the ability to understand your entire needs.

We Answer Common Home Insurance Questions

We Answer Common Home Insurance Questions

Whether you are a new homeowner or have owned your home for a longer period, there’s no doubt you have any questions about homeowner’s insurance. You want to protect your home, your possessions, and your family. Below are five of the most frequently asked questions about homeowner’s insurance.

As a homeowner, am I required to have insurance? Yes, in most cases, especially if you have a lender. It’s also wise to look into insurance if you are in the process of constructing your home and even renting your home to someone else.

What types of coverage does homeowner insurance provide? Two types casually, which covers the home and contents, and liability, which covers anyone who is injured on your property. With both types, the amount of coverage depends on the policy.

Will the replacement cost be the same as the sale price of my home? No. The replacement cost will cover the amount needed to replace the structure and/or contents. Replacement cost is usually calculated based on the individual policies formula. It’s wise to take inventory and photographs of your home and contents.

Will homeowner insurance cover damage or theft outside of my home? It depends on the policy. Sometimes standard policies offer this kind of coverage, but if not, ask if purchasing the coverage at additional costs is an option.

Are home-based businesses covered under homeowner insurance? No, unless you qualify for an endorsement to your current homeowner insurance policy. Otherwise, look into getting a business owners insurance policy.

Of course, homeowners will have more questions about homeowner insurance particular to their own situations (including protection against the elements, possessions that are no longer in the home, contents of vehicles, etc.). When searching for a homeowner insurance policy, be sure to ask about coverage relevant and beneficial to your own situation.

 

We Know And Understand Insurance

The leading trends in insurance today

We live in a new age, and that means insurance professionals need to be prepared to meet the new demands of the insurance buyer.  Home and auto insurance buyers have changed the way they select insurance companies and their agents. One thing that has not changed is that everyone needs home and auto insurance, and business owners need commercial insurance.

We know and understand your needs

Here is what our clients are telling us they need from us in order to meet their changing needs.

We offer coverage for Uber and Lyft drivers.

Our home insurance products can be designed to include coverage if you rent your home to third parties, or if you own a vacation rental.

Our web page is constantly being updated to reflect the buying habits of all generations.

For the environmentally conscious buyers we offer insurance products that include premium discounts for homes that meet stringent efficiency and sustainability standards, discounts for using eco-friendly building materials, and even unique “pay as you go” auto policies so you only pay for the miles you drive.

Filing a claim has never been easier. Most of our insurers have online reporting, but we are always here to help manage your claim if needed.

We understand how the technology of a “connected home” works and the importance of proper homeowner’s coverage.

There is new technology that can be added to your vehicle that monitors your driving and provides discounts for safe drivers.

You want, and deserve, more choices and personalization concerning your insurance program. Our friendly team is always ready to serve you.

Home Insurance Update

Many homeowners have experienced premium increases. Our agency works very hard to bring our clients the best possible combination of premiums, coverage and service.

What Can We Do To Help?

We are an independent agency.  This allows us to search the market for the best possible combination of premiums, coverage and service. We compare insurance company’s rates and use the competitive market to your advantage. Here are some ways to save on your premiums:

Purchase all your insure through our agency

Ask us about additional discounts

Consider increasing your deductible

Keep your home well maintained

Replace your roof, water heater and other equipment when needed

Review your policy regularly- you may not need the same kind of coverage you did a few years ago

Remember to call our office today. We will work hard for you.

Does Your Business Need Insurance?

 

Business Insurance

The world is changing, and we understand the issues businesses face every day. There is constant competition for your customers, there are challenges in attracting and retaining top talent, and your cost of goods keeps going up. Part of your planning should include an annual business insurance review. Your business changes, and so do your exposures. Here are some of the major kinds of liability coverage found in most business insurance programs.

Commercial Liability

Bodily Injury – Bodily injury to a third party.

Property Damage – Damage to a third party’s property (equipment building etc.).

Personal Injury – Injury to the mind or emotions, as opposed to an injury to property.

Advertising Liability – Damages arising out of advertising, libel, slander and invasion of privacy.

Products & Completed Operations – Liability arising out of products you sell or business operations and services conducted, excluding professional services.

Premises – Covers liability arising out of injury to third parties while on your premises.

Management Liability – This might include cyber, employment, and professional liability coverage. Directors and officers liability also might fall under this category.

Umbrella – Provides excess liability over primary auto and commercial liability policies.

Pollution – Coverage for accidental release of pollutants. 

Business Auto- Covers vehicles owned by the company for business use and can include comprehensive and collision.

Risk is a factor for whatever business you are in. We provide business insurance solutions to help you manage your risk, which keeps you in business.

Call one of the experienced agents at Georgetown Insurance Agency today at(512) 863-4388 or start a free rate quote and let us review your insurance needs and tailor a program to protect your business.

How To Have A Safe Halloween

Halloween is approaching.  Kids and adults are looking forward to dressing up and going out to trick or treat in the neighborhood.  With a little bit of planning you can ensure your ghouls and goblins have a frightfully fun time this year.

More than twice as many children are killed in pedestrian-car accidents on Halloween between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 p.m., compared with the same hours on other days throughout the year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Police will be increasing traffic patrols on Halloween in order to keep our kids safe, and to catch drunk drivers.

Protect The Trick Or Treaters

Instruct your kids to never go into a stranger’s home.

When shopping for costumes, wigs, and accessories, look for, and purchase, items with a label clearly indicating that they are flame resistant.

Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers and, if possible, choose light colors.

Make sure that any props your kids carry, such as wands or swords, are short and flexible.

Only go to homes with a porch light on, and never enter a home or car for a treat.

Children under the age of 12 should not be alone at night without adult supervision.

Don’t eat homemade candy unless you know the family.

Carry a flash light.

Inspect all wrapped candy. If it has been opened toss it out.

Set a curfew.

 

Home Safety

  • Clean up your yard.
  • Make a clear, well illuminated path to your door.
  • Remember that a lot of Halloween decorations, like dried flowers, straw, and crepe paper are highly flammable. Make sure to keep your decorations away from all open flames.
  • If you have a large display, make sure all electric cords are taped or secure to prevent tripping.
  • Practice indoor fire safety by checking all smoke detectors. Make sure candles are placed in a secure area.

 

Personal Insurance 101

Has your perspective on personal insurance changed to fit the times?

The personal insurance needs of our society have evolved over the years. It is interesting to look back to see what has changed in the world of safety and insurance. As you think about these personal insurance issues, also think about how your insurance may respond today.

Here are a few examples of how safety, liability and personal insurance have changed in our society through the years.

20 years ago, it seemed normal for dogs to have total freedom in the neighborhood. Now leash laws prohibit that. This has reduced the number of dog bite claims.

Many people can remember when we used to hold babies in our laps in the front seat of the car while we were driving!  Fortunately, we now have car seats to protect our little ones.

Do you remember how every office used to be filled with second hand smoke? Now we have workplace regulations that protect employees from smoke-polluted air.

Do you remember “party lines”? We shared home phone lines with our neighbors. We often would pick up the phone and hear Mr. Smith talking to his daughter. Privacy laws would not allow that now!

Smoking in public was common 20 years ago. Now, through education and medical research we all understand the effects of second hand smoke.

Drinking and driving – Believe it or not, there was a time when a person could leave a party buzzed or drunk and no one would think twice. Thankfully, laws and education have helped us understand the personal liability issues around driving while impaired.

Cell phones – When mobile phones first came out, everyone was driving and talking on their phones. It seemed normal until we learned how distracted driving is like driving drunk.

Auto insurance – The number of uninsured drivers has been reduced since most states now require proof of auto insurance. However, in some state there are still 30% of drivers without auto insurance.

Smoke detectors – In the 70’s, the way we knew our home was on fire was to see the flames. With the introduction of smoke and fire prevention, we have reduced deaths form home fires.

Personal insurance needs change with the times, and the insurance we offer changes to meet your individual needs.

Are You Interested In Reducing Your Business Risks?

There is no question that operating a business comes with certain risks. But there are also many benefits. The range of business threats is evolving rapidly but your organization can thrive and gain a competitive advantage if you know how to manage your risk. Here are a few simple ways to manage risk:

Follow insurance company loss control recommendations. These are designed to reduce the probability of a loss and to reduce the severity if a loss occurs.

Develop an employee handbook. Having a set of procedures involving roles and responsibilities will help reduce employment issues in the long term.

Evaluate your facilities. Unused equipment, obsolete security systems and lack of attention to risks on the site present significant potential for loss.  Insurance companies encourage all business owners to maintain clean and safe premises for the health and safety of employees, vendors and customers.

Make safety a priority. Having a safety program can not only reduce your costs but will improve employee productivity.

Train your staff. Employees perform better if they have an understanding of what their roles and responsibilities are. Make safety part of every job description.

Keep employees healthy. A local company, for example, has instituted a comprehensive wellness program that includes disease management for afflictions such as asthma and diabetes, as well as offering flu shots, cancer screenings, smoking-cessation sessions and a round-the-clock phone line staffed by nurses. The company found that for every dollar it invested, it saved $4.23.

If your business changes, your insurance should too.  Meet annually with us to determine whether your business has changed in significant ways that require modifying or adding coverage.

Raise your deductible. Raising the deductible on your insurance usually lowers your premiums. Even if you end up having to pay the deductible, it’s likely to be less than the amount you save.

 

2017 Insurance Buying Tips

InsuranceNow that 2017 is here, it may be time to consider reviewing your personal insurance program. Most people don’t take time to review exposures, options, or their current economic condition before making their insurance purchase. We want to help you, so we prepared these insurance buying tips for 2017.

  1. Don’t buy insurance through the internet – Call our agency and let us provide outstanding service along with competitive pricing.
  2. Maintain good credit – Regularly check your credit score, since a low score may impact your premium.
  3. Review your auto limits – If you have limits of less than $100,000, that won’t even cover the medical bills in a serious accident. The minimum liability coverage that anyone with any assets or income to protect should be carrying is $500,000 to $1 million or more.
  4. Maintain a home inventory – Having an accurate account of your personal property can provide for greater recovery in the event of a loss.
  5. Bundle your insurance – Combine your auto, home and umbrella policies with one insurer to receive greater discounts.
  6. Set the right deductible – A higher deductible reduces your premium, but you have to pay more out of pocket in the event of an accident. If you have a good driving record and haven’t had an accident, you may want to gamble and opt for a higher premium. The reward for this risk could be up to a 40% savings.
  7. Consider Identity Theft – Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the U.S.
  8. Buy from a financially strong company – Your insurance is only as good as the company who stands behind the policy. The insurance company should have an “A+” rating or higher.
  9. Be prepared to make adjustments as your lifestyle and needs change.

Call us today and let us help protect what is important to you.

Make Halloween Safe for Everyone

pumpkin-995416_1920In the next few days, we will be watching children scramble from house to house in search of the elusive Halloween treat.  However, keeping our kids safe as they are out Halloween night is always a concern.  A little pre-planning can prevent unfortunate accidents that could turn out to be tragic.  Remember, your homeowner’s insurance will cover you in most cases should someone trip and fall on your premises.

Here are some pointers for ensuring your house is a safe place for trick-or-treaters on Oct. 31.

Provide healthier treats for trick-or-treaters such as low-calorie treats and drinks. For your guests, offer a variety of fruits and vegetables.

Be sure walking areas and stairs are well-lit and free of obstacles that could cause someone to fall.

Keep candle-lit jack o’lanterns and luminaries away from doorsteps, walkways, landings, and curtains. Place them on sturdy tables, keep them out of the reach of pets and small children, and never leave them unattended.

Remind drivers to watch out for trick-or-treaters and to drive safely.

 Safety tips for kids

Never, ever, go into a house.

Costumes should be short enough to prevent children from tripping and falling

An adult or an older responsible child should always accompany young children. Even older children should go trick-or-treating with an adult, or with friends. Never go out alone.

Only go to homes with a porch light on.

Plan costumes that are bright and reflective.

Do not eat homemade food.

Examine all candy. If it has been opened, toss it out.

Use a flashlight.

Sources: http://www.nsc.org/, https://www.aap.org, https://www.cdc.gov

Georgetown Insurance Agency knows that your home is the single largest investment you may ever make. Protect your home and cherished valuables from damage and theft with our comprehensive and affordable insurance policies. Rest easy knowing our experienced agents can create a personalized policy for even the most budget-conscious homeowner.