Your Insurance and Renting Out Your Home

Your Insurance and Renting Out Your Home

Home sharing has become more and more popular over the past few years with companies like Airbnb and Homeway.  But before renting out a room or the whole house, it’s always best to consult with your insurance agent to make sure you have the right coverage.  Below is a blog that gives a some information to consider before you begin home sharing.

 

Educating homeowners about home-sharing insurance coverage

Home-sharing continues to grow in popularity as owners use their homes for income generation, and travelers look for unique experiences. If fact, experts are predicting vacation home rentals will increase 25% this year – up from a 19% jump last year – and it’s expected this growth trend will continue for some time.

 

Movie Claim Monday- Beauty and the Beast

Movie Claim Monday Beauty and the Beast

Movie Claim Monday: where our insurance minds speculate whether certain incidents in the cinematic universe would in fact be considered a covered claim.*

This week’s movie claim Monday is on Disney’s Beauty and the Beast** (the new one), simply because the writer of this blog has a two year old and that is the only movie we have been watching for the past month.  Disregarding the fact that this is taking place in revolution-era France, there are a few parts in this movie that the insurance agent in me kept noting:

-During the Gaston song, Gaston uses his gun and shoots the ceiling.  Would the business insurance cover that?  Maybe—it could be considered vandalism.  But if he owns the tavern, as it seems that he might, then no, because he (the owner) is knowingly damaging his own property.

-In terms of homeowner’s insurance, would the castles crumbling walls be covered?  Nope.  Though it is due to magic, I still think it is wear and tear and that is never covered by any homeowner’s insurance.

-Lastly, would the enchanted objects need life insurance or would they just be considered personal property?  Not like they’re constantly being destroyed or anything, but near the end Chip almost gets smashed to smithereens, and I just have to wonder if and how he would have been covered.

 

 

*Disclaimer: Each insurance policy is different, and while we speculate here for enjoyment purposes, you will need to discuss your insurance policy directly with your agent or CSR.  Our speculations here are in no way an indication that a similar occurrence would in fact be covered.

**All characters described and mentioned are copyrighted by Disney

Movie Claim Monday Injuries

Movie Claim MondayFor this month’s movie claim Monday we wanted to share a list of actors injured on set. On site job injuries are usually paid through the company workers comp policy. This list does not specify if a claim was made or of any kind of pay out. We just imagine these instances would be covered losses.

 

 

19 Times That Actors Have Been Injured On Set

Sometimes, the show really must go on. They may play larger-than-life characters on screen, but actors are human and sometimes get the short end of the stick when it comes to on-set injuries. Here are 19 times where big stars were in the wrong place at the wrong time. 1.

 

 

 

Why Your Auto Premium Increased

why your auto premium increasedYou just received your renewal for your auto policy. You skim down to find the new premium for the following year and you see it has increased by a couple hundred or more. Most auto policies take an annual rate increase otherwise known as an inflation guard.  There are also other factors that could cause this increase.

Below is an article that gives insight into what determines your premium and what may increase your premium upon renewal.  Keep in mind as your agents, we are here to review your policy if you ever have questions.

 

What’s Driving My Personal Auto Insurance Rates?

If you drive a vehicle, you are required by law to have insurance. But why do we need it? Consider hitting a car and injuring three passengers. If both your vehicle and the other vehicle are valued at $20,000 and considered total losses, and each passenger has medical claims of $20,000, this quickly adds up…

 

 

 

Renters Insurance

The Importance of Renters Insurance

renters insuranceIf you live in a rental home or apartment, chances are you don’t have the proper insurance. Despite the fact that rented homes are more likely to be burglarized than owner-occupied properties, nearly 60 percent of renters don’t have a renters policy.

Why does it matter?

“If you rent a house or apartment and think that your landlord is financially responsible when there is a fire, theft or other catastrophe—think again,” warns the Insurance Information Institute*. “Your landlord may have insurance to protect the building you are living in. But your landlord’s policy won’t replace your personal possessions or pay for your living expenses while the building is being repaired. The only way to protect yourself financially against disasters is to buy a renters insurance policy.”

Renters insurance covers your possessions, liability and additional living expenses. Let’s take a look at these three types of protection:

Possessions

Standard renters insurance protects your personal belongings against damage from fire, smoke, lightning, vandalism, theft, explosion, windstorm, water and other disasters listed in the policy. Floods and earthquakes are not covered.

To decide how much insurance to buy, you need to know the value of all your personal possessions—including furniture, clothing, electronics, appliances, kitchen utensils and even towels and bedding. The easiest way to figure this out is to create a home inventory, a detailed list of all of your personal possessions and their estimated value.

There are two types of renters insurance policies for your possessions:

  • Actual Cash Value pays to replace your possessions minus an amount for depreciation (the reduction in the value of items due to age and use) up to the limit of your policy.
  • Replacement Cost pays the full cost of replacing your possessions (with no deduction for depreciation), up to the limit of your policy. The price of Replacement Cost coverage is about 10 percent more than Actual Cash Value coverage, but can be well worth the additional cost.

Note that a standard renters policy offers only limited coverage for items such as jewelry, silver, furs, etc. If you own property that exceeds these limits, it is recommended that you supplement your policy with a floater. A floater is a separate policy that provides additional insurance for your valuables and covers them for perils not included in your policy such as accidental loss.

Liability

Standard renters insurance policies also provide liability protection in the event you or members of your familiar cause injury to others or damage their property.  It also pays for damage your pets cause.

If you are sued, the liability portion of a renters policy may pay for both the cost of defending you in court and for court awards, up to the limit of the policy. Liability limits generally start at about $100,000. Your policy may also provide No-Fault Medical coverage. If visitors are injured in your home, regardless of fault, you can submit their medical bills directly to your insurance company. You can generally get $1,000 to $5,000 worth of this coverage. It does not however, pay medical bills for your own family or your pets.

Additional Living Expenses

Many people are pleasantly surprised to learn that Additional Living Expense (ALE) coverage is typically included in a renters insurance policy. If the home or apartment you are renting is damaged or destroyed and you need to live elsewhere while it is being repaired or rebuilt, renters insurance will cover your additional living expenses—namely the difference between your regular living expenses and the additional costs incurred by having to live away from your home, such as hotel bills, temporary rentals, restaurant meals, etc.

Need help deciding what coverage is best for you? Contact us today!

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*Insurance Information Institute, September 30, 2009

Distracted Driver

Avoiding distractions while driving could save your life

You’ve seen them on the roads; you might even know a few of them.

And you could be one yourself.

Distracted drivers in come in all shapes, sizes, ages and experience levels. Even if you’re not one today, you could become one at any moment — in the time it takes you to answer your cell phone or check the kids in the back seat when you’re driving through AlbuquerqueDistracted Driver.

If you or someone else you know thinks you can drive just fine while talking on your phone, think about this: More than 450,000 people were injured in crashes that reportedly involved distracted driving in 2009, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. More than 5,000 of those people died.

Distractions on the road come in many forms, according to www.distraction.gov, a U.S. Department of Transportation website. There are three main kinds of distractions:

Visual – taking your eyes off the road

Manual –taking your hands off the wheel

Cognitive – taking your mind off what you’re doing

 

To help you avoid all three kinds of distractions the next time you’re behind the wheel of your car  here are a few tips:
Put your phone in silent mode and store it away from the front seat or in a purse or bag. This helps reduce temptation.
Have a passenger answer your phone or return text messages for you. If a call or a text can’t wait, pull over in a safe spot before using your phone.
This one seems obvious, but finish shaving or applying makeup before you get in the car!
If you’re emotional, wait until you’ve calmed down before hitting the road.
Avoid road rage. You’ll be happier and safer.

Whenever you’re on the road, it’s not a time to multi-task. Focus on driving safely.

 

A Look Back At The Month of June

month-of-june

In the month of June, Brown & Brown Insurance of New Mexico co-hosted two events. On June 15th the Dental Lunch & Learn was held at the Northern Italian Grill, where we had the pleasure of having guest speaker Dr. Pino with Pino Periodontics discuss topics regarding todays dental technology and helpful tips and advice for oral care.
On Thursday, June 23rd the Wildfire Prevention Event was held at the Albuquerque Country Club. Chubb Insurance presented services they provide for the Wildfire Defense Services. Attendees also viewed a live demonstration of the effects of Thermo-Gel when applied to a dwelling. Visit our blog for more information and pictures of the events.
Below are some other blogs you may find helpful from the month of June.

Home Inventory

Firework Pet Safety

Dogs and Umbrella Insurance

RV Campsites

 

Renting your home

Dogs and Umbrella Insurance

Love Bites—Get Umbrella Coverage

In today’s economy, everyone is pinching pennies.  So why worry about umbrella coverage?  Shouldn’t a home and auto policy leave you adequately covered?

Unfortunately, we live in a world of lawsuits.  Large damages can be awarded, be extremely expensive and have long-term financial impact.  Those lawsuits can come from unlikely sources, such as our furry friends.

Take Herschel for instance.  Herschel is a much-loved, rather timid labradoodle who enjoys taking naps on the driveway while his owner mDog and Umbrella Insuranceows the lawn.

Herschel watched from eight feet away as his neighbor, a 39 year old man, showed off his rollerblading skills to his kids.  The man wiped out on the sidewalk in front of Herschel’s house and broke his leg.  He required surgery, costing around $35,000 in medical costs and $18,000 in lost wages.

Fair or not, the man brought a lawsuit against Herschel’s owner, suing for $220,000 in damages.  He alleged that Herschel had caused the accident by getting in his way, despite multiple witnesses to the contrary.

But Herschel’s owner was lucky–a jury vindicated Herschel. However, lawsuits such as these can easily exceed the limits on a homeowner’s policy, leaving the insured responsible for the remainder.  An umbrella policy would prevent that, giving you an extra $1 million to $5 million in coverage.

Our furry friends can put your assets at risk in other ways as well.   According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year, with half of those occurring on the owner’s property.  Dog bites, according to the Insurance Information Institute, account for about a third of all homeowner’s insurance claims, which only cover limited damages.

 

Protect what you love.  Call us to talk about your umbrella options.

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