Are You Missing Discounts?

There are more and more discounts added every year to help you save $$!

The most common discount is the Home & Auto Bundle Discount you receive when using the same company for both.

You may not know it, but you can save BIG money by combining your home and auto insurance with our agency.

You can receive extra discounts including a Multi Policy Discount, and you could qualify for more! Saving money is not the only benefit …

You will also benefit by:

  • NO headaches or hassle of having multiple insurance providers
  • Preferred customer status
  • Saving time!

If you have multiple insurance policies with multiple companies, call us today to consolidate and lower your rates!

Want to make sure you are receiving all possible discounts on your insurance? Call us today to review your policy and help you find the biggest savings and best coverage.

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Why Rental Car Insurance?

You and your family may be planning an upcoming trip or a big vacation after this pandemic is over.

Sometimes when we will be driving a farther distance than usual, my family chooses to rent a car rather than drive our own.

There are many reasons why people choose to do this… to get a car that is more fuel efficient, to avoid adding miles and wear and tear to a personal vehicle, for a change of scenery on the long road, or that their tried-and-true clunker just wouldn’t survive the trip (remember college road trips back home?), among others. I frequently get questions about coverage on rental cars, so I wanted to give you a reminder as the prime time of year for rentals gets underway.

Getting insurance on a rental car is a necessity that often goes overlooked. Whether the rental is covered through our agency or through the rental service, it is something you need.

You can check your current policy or call our agency to find out which coverages extend to your rental car. The limits and deductibles on your policy still apply to your rental car so long as you drive it for personal use. If it is a commercial or business rental, your personal car insurance may not apply. We can help you review your policy to find any gaps or places where you might need more coverage.

Your rental car coverage is not something that you need to ponder while waiting in line to pick up the keys. As with all insurance coverage, it is best to know what you are and are not protected for ahead of time.

Call or come by our office so we can help you make an informed decision!

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Are You Prepared?

Along with flowers and warmer weather, spring can bring something that is not so pleasant—the threat of severe weather. I wanted to make sure that you and your family were aware of some important preventative tips to keep in mind if severe storms come your way this season.

  • It is best to always keep a battery-powered radio in your home so that you can tune to radio stations if you lose electricity. Do not forget to check or change the batteries every so often.
  • Keep a flashlight in an easily accessible spot on every floor of your home. Check the batteries monthly and replace them as needed.
  • Keep a supply of candles on hand in case the power goes out.
  • As a safety precaution before leaving the house on vacation, unplug all electrical appliances except for lights connected to automatic timers.
  • If you live in a storm-prone area, nail down roof shingles or use adequate adhesive to keep them from blowing off in a violent wind. For roofs with shingles that are not the seal-down type, applying a little dab of roofing cement under each tab will do the trick.
  • A lightning-protection system should offer an easy, direct path for the bolt to follow into the ground and thus prevent injury or damage. Grounding rods (at least two for a house) should be placed at opposite corners of the house.
  • Do not go out during a tornado or hurricane. If there is the possibility of flooding, get to higher ground.
  • When a major storm is on its way, close shutters, board windows, or tape the inside of larger panes with an “X” along the full length of their diagonals. Even a light material like masking tape may give the glass enough extra strength it needs to resist cracking.

On top of the safety of your family, the safety of your house and property are important too. In case anything in your home is damaged, it is important that you have taken steps to keep those items safe.

If you must make a claim, you will need the following:

  • Pictures or video of items of value
  • Receipts for large purchases
  • Serial numbers for the items that require them

You will want to make sure to keep all records in a safe place – like a fire safe lock box or a safety deposit box.

Hope you have a great Spring!

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Do You Know Your Flood Facts?

You know how the saying goes: “April showers bring May flowers”, but have you ever thought of what else those April showers bring with them? An increased risk for flooding.

The term “April showers” signifies spring rains that take place in much of the northern hemisphere during the month. In addition, in cooler areas, the frozen ground in the early Spring makes flooding a bigger risk because water from heavy rains cannot properly enter the ground.

Regardless of where you live, nearly everyone is vulnerable to flooding. In fact, more than 20% of flood claims are from people that do not live in high flood risk areas.

Here are a few flood facts you need to know:

  • Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. From 2003 to 2012, total flood insurance claims averaged nearly $4 billion per year.
  • Just one inch of water can cause detrimental damages to your property.
  • Your car can easily be carried away by only two feet of water.
  • Construction and new development affect natural drainage and create new flood risks.
  • If you are a victim of flooding, federal disaster assistance is typically in the form of a loan that must be paid back, with interest.

Flood coverage is a part of any fully protected insurance portfolio. Whether the flood damage is a result of Mother Nature or something else, you cannot expect flood-related damage to be covered unless you have flood insurance. Standard homeowners and renters policies cover things like storm damage from wind, including hurricane damage and any wind-driven rain entering a home from the sky. However, damage from water on the ground, or water seeping into a basement from below, isn’t covered unless you have a flood insurance policy.

Make sure to call or come by our office to review your existing coverage. We can talk with you about adding this very important type of coverage to your insurance portfolio. (You may even qualify for a special multi-policy discount!)

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Don’t Get Blown Away!

With springtime in full swing, there’s no doubt that spring weather brings storms and the unfortunate flood that can wreak havoc on your home. Now is the time to be thinking about your current coverage. Even if a hurricane or flood will never hit close to home, here are a few tips to make sure that you’ve got all the bases covered, just in case the unthinkable happens:

  • Take a property inventory: It’s easier to file a damage claim if you know exactly what you own and can document it. Write down a list of major possessions in a notebook, and take photos, noting key information about each item on the back.
  • Check policies: Read your insurance documents and review the scope of your existing coverage. Know your policy numbers, and where to call to file a claim. Call our office with any questions.

After the storm –

  • Water inside? You need flood insurance: Don’t expect flood-related damage from a hurricane to be covered unless you have flood insurance. Standard homeowners and renters policies cover damage from wind, including hurricane wind damage, and any wind-driven rain entering a home from the sky. But damage from water on the ground, or water seeping into a basement from below, isn’t covered unless a homeowner has a flood insurance policy.
  • Water in your car? You need comprehensive auto: If your car is damaged by flood waters from a hurricane or other disaster, you’ll be covered if you’ve purchased a comprehensive auto insurance policy. If you only have liability coverage, flood damage to a car won’t be covered.
  • Tree damage? Standard homeowners policies cover damage to a house from a fallen tree, and tree damage to garages, sheds, fences and outdoor pools. Comprehensive auto insurance will cover damage to a car.

Call our office TODAY to make sure that your policy is up to date and that you are fully covered!

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You Can Do It!

Tax season is here and for many of us, just hearing the words “tax season” bring anxiety and worry… but they don’t have to! Don’t let deadlines and paperwork intimidate you—everything will still be okay after the dust settles on April 15th.

Remember during this busy season to take a few seconds to relax and center yourself.

>Here are a few common-sense tips to help you relax and get things done during this busy time.

  • Take deep breaths.
  • Take a walk outside.
  • Say no to what you don’t have time to do.
  • Leave work on time.
  • Ask questions if you don’t know and communicate openly.
  • Take care of stressful tasks in the morning to get them out of the way.
  • Look at large projects as a series of steps to complete one by one.
  • Laugh at least once a day.

Let’s have a happy, productive season!

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Don’t Make This Common Mistake?

In the event of an accident, most people will file a claim with their insurance carrier, no matter what happened. Doing so seems like the logical thing to do—right? I mean, you have insurance for just this reason, in case something happens.

The problem with filing a claim before speaking with your insurance agent is that many times this could hurt you and actually COST you money!

Here’s an example: Let’s say your insurance costs $1,000 per year. You have a fender bender and file a claim for a small amount, a mere $700. Your policy carries a $500 deductible. You pay the $500 and the insurance company pays $200 to the body shop. Because of this claim, you may lose discounts up to 20% for the next 3 years. That’s $200 for 3 years, $600 out of your pocket.

Avoid making this common mistake by always checking with us first before filing a claim. We can guide you through the claims process smoothly and efficiently, while making sure to deliver the best value to you.

We’re here to help! Call us every time before you file a claim.

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Save on Your Car Insurance

Now, almost more than ever, American’s are finding new ways to save money. As the economy strengthens, hopefully your ability to save money and plan for the future is too. Where better to save money than on your car insurance?

Here are 3 tips that can help you save big time on your automobile insurance:

  1. Choose a Safe Car — When you buy or lease a car, choose on the basis of safety features and the car’s record of crashworthiness (if it is easily damaged and repair costs). If the safety features you want such as lane departure warning are not offered, let the auto maker know. Safety sells.
  2. Drive Smart — Drive carefully and use safety belts and child restraints. Always drive defensively and stay alert. Even non-fault accidents could cause your rates to go up. Never get behind the wheel while impaired by alcohol or any other mind-altering substance. This is for your benefit as well as the benefit of other drivers. Obey speed limits and other traffic laws. Not only can this lower your rates, but you’re also setting a good driving example for others.
  3. Talk To Your Insurance Agent — You may be able to reduce your premiums by reviewing your policy and your current coverage. Remember, keeping your driving record clean can help lower your premium. Always take advantage of discounts offered, such as EZ Pay, Pay In Full, Multi-Policy discounts, and many, many more!

 Call our office TODAY to find out if you are eligible for any of the many discounts we offer!

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Do You Really Need Life Insurance?

Let’s think about this for a second…

Are you really:

  1. Never going to die?
  2. Going to inherit a fortune?
  3. Going to win the lottery?
  4. Going to let your children support you?
  5. Never going to retire?
  6. Going to let the government take care of you?

Hopefully you don’t believe any of this nonsense above…you really DO need life insurance! Our agency is now making it easier to get the life insurance you need.

Life insurance is one of the most important purchases you’ll ever make. In the event of a tragedy, life insurance proceeds can help pay the bills, mortgage, continue a family business, finance future needs—such as your children’s education, protect your spouse’s retirement plans, and much more. Life insurance plays a key role in having a sound family financial plan.

A majority of families do not have enough life insurance, leaving them one accident or terminal illness away from a financial catastrophe for their loved ones.

If you already have a life insurance policy with another company, now is a great time to do a free comparison with our agency. If you don’t have a life insurance policy yet, now is the BEST time to look into getting protection for yourself and your loved ones.

Call Our Office TODAY!

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Welcome to January!

Welcome to January, one of my favorite months. I love January because it, like New Year’s Day, the holiday that starts the month, represents a fresh start and a clean slate. In January we celebrate traditional holidays like New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and even wacky ones, such as National Popcorn Day (Jan. 19th) and National Handwriting Day (Jan. 23rd). One of my favorite observances is celebrating January as National Blood Donor Month.

The beginning of a new year is a common time for hospitals and clinics to hold blood drives. Especially so, when the nation has been hit hard by winter illnesses, the flu, pneumonia, and more that may have hospitalized many.

Winter weather disasters, an increase in traffic accidents due to poor weather and holiday travelers, plus much more can also leave blood donation centers in special need of donations in January. Although we see an increase in blood drives this month, please know that there is never a bad time to give blood and there is always a need.

Whether you are a first-time donor or a regular, you should know the importance of these drives and how pints of blood are needed to assist medical staff in communities where natural disasters have occurred.

To give during the winter is especially vital if part of the country has endured harsh storms and an increase in traffic accidents because of black ice.

Why else should you give blood? Consider these important points:

  1. You offer another person a chance at better health. Particularly if you are Type O Negative – the universal donor – your blood is needed to assist medical personnel in hospitals and disaster areas.
  2. You will discover something new about yourself. If you have never before given blood and don’t know your type, you will learn when you give blood. When you visit the American Red Cross to give blood, you will receive a donor card to keep that has your type printed. It’s always good to know your blood type in the event of a family emergency.
  3. You will feel better about yourself (and your body will feel better too!) You may feel queasy or lightheaded after the donation but knowing you have contributed to a good cause is a great way to begin the year. Contact your local Red Cross chapter or health care system and ask about the next blood drive. Give something of yourself this year.

To find a blood drive near you and get involved, visit www.RedCross.org.

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