|Farmers Insurance and Financial Services||
Most homeowners policies exclude damage caused by an earthquake. Talk to your agent to see if you can get coverage in case of an earthquake. If not, than let us get you covered for as low as $5/month, depending on the value of your home. Earthquake coverage is affordable and as little as $5/month, Farmers Insurance can protect you!
Most know that homeowners insurance covers them if there is a fire, the roof blows off, the hot water heater leaks, or personal property is stolen. But by just skimming the policy, you might be pleasantly surprised to find that it covers more than your run-of-the-mill incidents. Yes, it also pays for living expenses while the house is getting repaired from a covered loss, and liability if you are involved in a lawsuit, but here are 6 more items you may not know about.
1. GRAVESTONES: A cemetery plot is consider an "insured location" so the headstone or marker may be considered personal property if it is damaged or vandalized.
2. DORM BURGLARY: Homeowners policies cover a certain amount of personal property anywhere in the world. This includes your son or daughters property while away at college. If it is stolen or damaged due to a covered peril, coverage may be available. Renters Insurance has many advantages though, and you should discuss those with your agent.
3. FALLING OBJECTS: It doesn't matter if it is hail, a tree, or a airplane tire. Anything that falls and damages home or property is considered a falling object.
4. FOOD SPOILAGE: If a covered loss or electrical service interruption off premises causes food in your freezer or refrigerator to spoil, most policies provide coverage for that up to $500.
5. IDENTITY FRAUD: Many homeowners policies provide coverage for identity theft such as unauthorized use of credit cards, forgery, and acceptance in good faith of something counterfeit.
6. CRIME: Criminal acts by an insured are not covered. However, if someone innocent falls victim to domestic violence, the policy may provide coverage for trauma clean up and litigation.
THINGS YOUR POLICY WON'T COVER:
1. Wear and Tear
2. Flooding - Flood insurance can be obtained through the National Flood Insurance Program.
3. Earthquake - Although coverage is available for an additional with some companies.
This is not a comprehensive list, but I hope it helps you realize how valuable your homeowners insurance is and how important it is to have an agent willing and able to explain what is covered and what isn't.
1. Home Security Signs - By sticking a home security sign in your yard, next to the front door, near the garage, and/or on the windows, a thief will think twice before trying to enter that home.
2. Beware the Garage - Make sure the garage is locked! Many thieves will attempt to enter a garage, knowing that there may be valuable tools inside. And there is less of a chance the residents will be disturbed. If you have a dog, keep him in the garage on guard duty!
3. Be a good neighbor - Watch out for each other. If you see something suspicious, give your neighbor a call or call the police to check on the property. Like our local Sherriff likes to remind us - "See it, hear it, report it".
4. Cash and valuables - Keep your cash, jewelry, and other valuables outside of your master bedroom. Often that is the first place a theft will look for expensive items.
5. Landscape - Keep large bushes and other landscaping in your yard someone could hide behind to a minimum.
6. Motion-Sensor lights - Motion-sensor lights can deter nighttime break-ins. It is a great deterrent.
7. Keep a radio on - Your house is most likely going to be broke into during the day. By keeping a radio on, the theft will be less likely to search the home thinking that someone is still there.
Make sure you have insurance coverage against theft! Take pictures or a short video of each room and it's contents. Our homeowners and renters insurance policies provide great coverage against theft. Give us a call to find out more!
One of the most common questions I get is "Which deductible should I choose?" Or "What deductible do most people choose?" And my answer is always, "It depends." Very helpful right? The fact is, you need to evaluate what deductible works for you - it doesn't matter what your neighbor has, because at the end of the day, when you have a claim, it is YOU who pays for it. So, now the hard question is figuring out which deductible to choose.
Here are a couple of considerations to help with that:
1. The higher your deductible, the lower your premium -Why is that? Because when you are willing to pay more if you have a claim, the insurance company is taking on less risk. It's that simple! But is a higher deductible worth the savings? For example, if you switch one vehicle from a $250 deductible to a $500 deductible on your auto policy, the savings may only be $90/year. So, it would take you three years with no claims before that decision pays for itself. But that's just on one vehicle, if you have three vehicles and your premium decreases by $270/year, then you only need to go without a claim for one year before that decision pays off!
2. Establish a "deductible" savings account - With the above information in mind, choose a deductible for your cars and your house that you are comfortable with, then just set that money aside in a savings account and forget about it! So if the time comes when you are in an auto accident or the wind blows your roof off, meeting your deductible is one less thing you have to worry about, because the money is already set aside.
It basically boils down to what you can financially and emotionally handle when you have a claim. If you are living month-to-mouth, then a lower deductible is most likely better for you. If you are good at setting aside money for unexpected expenses, then you may be better off with a higher deductible and a lower premium. As I said in the beginning, there isn't a cookie-cutter approach to selecting a deductible. Just do what you feel is right for you!
You know that warm, fuzzy feeling you get inside when you help someone solve a problem? What is more rewarding that sacrificing your time, your resources, your energy, to help out someone else! It's so gratifying! That is the feeling that I get when I can save someone money, get a client back where they belong after an accident, and make myself readily available to all of my clients when they need me or have a question. It's rewarding to know that someone has put their trust in me to protect them from unforeseen accidents.
Just a few real-life examples to prove that I love my job:
1. Literally chiseling up ice frozen on the floor from a busted pipe to avoid the messy thaw later.
2. Meeting my clients after hours and on the weekend, because it is most convenient for them.
3. Trimming limbs above the roof of a house.
4. Providing proof of insurance immediately when my clients are at the license bureau and realize they left theirs in the car!
The list goes on... Why do I love being an insurance agent? Because I can help people when they need it most! End of story!