So when buying insurance you can buy from;
Direct; You call directly to the insurance company, just about every company has this option available.
Agent; Similar to buying direct you are calling directly to a company but speaking with an agent of the company. Think State Farm, Allstate, Nationwide, Liberty Mutual, etc. Definitely a step up and many times this produces a positive result. On the plus side you SHOULD be getting a human being that has a vested interest in your policies, happiness and rate. On the negative, more times than not they only have one company available. So if rates go up aw well, if you need an insurance they do not offer aw well. There is also the inherent problem that you have an agent trying to earn a living.
Don’t panic, somewhere a rate has gone down we just need to find it. So here are some steps;
- Call you current carrier and make sure everything is accurate. Like it or not unchecked rates go up, let’s just make sure no mistakes occurred.
- So we know your policy is correct, now make sure you are getting all discounts you can
- Now we check on your annual mileage***typically 8000 or less per year gets a savings
- Have you done a driving or other applicable safety course your state allows?
- Improve your credit score…huge factor can make a bad driving record irrelevant
- get a college degree…it helps but not everyone
- own a home/condo..helps a lot and gets a multi-policy savings
- take a defensive driving course..boring but profitable
- make a point to review ANNUALLY
- Know the value of your car…Do you still need physical damage coverage?
- Be loyal to a good agent not a company….nuff said
- take higher coverage…you’ll look better when shopping
Insurance has been commoditized set your coverage plan than your rate!!!
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So I was driving down a pretty well trafficked road that I use pretty regularly. The difference is that yesterday I noticed two large billboards for Geico. Now this is a company whose rates, service, website, etc. are supposedly excellent.
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Do you really need a billboard if you are so good?
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My guess is you are likely overpaying. What’s the difference? Overpaying can be thought of as allowing your policy, regardless of type, to renew year after year after year without checking in with your agent or company. In that case most companies gradually allow an unchecked policy to go up in rate and likely not keep up with the needs of the owner.
Yes I do, one at home and one in a nice space in Wappingers Falls. Do I need an office? That is debatable. Do you need me to have an office? Not really. How often have you gone to your insurance company or agent’s office? My guess is not often since there is no need to go.
This is not me advocating for the Internet just me trying to make a point. The Internet is a wonderful thing, meeting people in person is even more wonderful. Does the meeting have to take place in an office? NO!
You may want to read this.
So supposedly a Nor’Easter is making it’s way up the east coast bringing 3 inches of rain and maybe some snow. So in the event it gets here and you or a friend has some problems that may mean an insurance claim here are some tips:
1. It is your job to try and limit the loss once it occurs. Do the best you can to tarp over any damaged parts of your home.
2. The coverage you have is for your house and other buildings and structures. If trees and branches fall in your yard you will likely not have coverage for the clean up.
Maybe it’s just me but my mailbox, inbox, tweet-stream, radio-stations and T.V. are not flooded with companies pitching a savings on my oil bill, electric bill, health insurance, lawn care and even my mortgage is not overrun with advertisements about lowering my bill. Yet we review these annually if not sooner to make sure our rate is consistent.
Now compare that to the amount of insurance advertising you hear about “saving” money. The problem is none of it actually tells you how to consistently save. The hope is you will call and provide your personal information and they will hope you fit into the rate structure they have available. The odds of you getting some actually useful information about your coverage and adjustments you can make to customize your policy is pretty slim. That’s a shame.
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Get a consistent insurance rate IGNORE advertising
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questions? To put it simply if you want a quote you do not need that many questions. If however you want a policy that actually does something the more questions you are asked the better. Most people prefer a plan that is customized to their situation as opposed to buying what everyone else has. Every company has at least a dozen separate endorsements you can add to your policy. Each household has something that makes them unique, why shouldn’t there policies also be unique to them?
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Let’ start with the typical two person household; You own vehicles so you have (1) auto insurance , whether you have a mortgage or not you are smart enough to own insurance for your residence (2)renters/home/condo/mobile home , you have also decided to by some extra liability insurance so you have an (3) umbrella policy. Now you also have other interests so you have insurance plans for your (4)boat, (5) atv (6) motorcycle (7) motorhome and (8) classic car .