What is Accident Forgiveness and is it Worth it?

Many insurance companies are advertising accident forgiveness, but not everyone knows what that means or if it is worth it. Basically, accident forgiveness is part of your auto insurance policy that will allow you to be involved in an accident for any reason, but it will not raise your premium. Of course, to include this as part of your plan, it will also cost a little more and usually you will need a specific length of time where you have not had any accidents before accident forgiveness will go into effect. So, is it worth it? That depends on your past driving history.

If you are a safe driver and you have never had an accident in the last 20 years, you may not need this type of coverage. Some people live in a very safe location without a lot of traffic, or maybe they only drive their vehicle once or twice a week. In this instance, accident forgiveness may not be worth the extra money. Although, if you live in the city where there are frequent accidents, it may make sense to get this type of protection. Sometimes families will also choose to purchase this type of policy when their teenagers begin driving. Just remember, the policy must be in effect without accidents for a certain number of years before the accident forgiveness will go into effect.

Your situation will determine whether you need accident forgiveness insurance. Once you start searching for quotes on car insurance, you can see how much this type of protection will cost and whether it will be worth it to include it on your policy. Just make sure to compare the rates from several companies for the same amount of coverage. You can find a great policy and an affordable payment when you compare quotes online.

What to Consider when Planning to Buy an Alarm System to Lower Insurance Costs

Homeowners are always looking for ways to lower premiums without sacrificing coverage. For many, the answer is as simple as purchasing a home security system. If you are planning to buy an alarm system to lower insurance costs, there a few things you need to know first.

Types of Alarm Systems

There are two types of home security systems – monitored and unmonitored. Some insurers offer premium discounts for both, although the greatest savings are always provided through monitored systems. Although monitored systems usually cost more than unmonitored systems, much of the cost is offset through discounted insurance premiums.

What to Consider

On average, you can expect your homeowners insurance premiums to drop by as much as 20 percent once you install your alarm system. Considering average homeowner’s insurance premiums in America are approximately $800 to $1,000 annually, this could mean a savings estimated at $160 to $200 per year, or $16 per month. Chances are, the insurance savings will not completely pay for your monthly alarm monitoring costs, but it can lower your alarm costs by 30 to 70 percent.

Keep in mind, however, that your insurance premium discount will vary based on your insurance company. Contact your insurer to find out what alarm system discounts are available to you. This may also be a good time to shop and compare rates from other insurers as well.

Considerations

Keep in mind that other similar discounts may be available to you as well. For example, some alarm system companies also offer monitored smoke and heat alarms. Like burglar alarms, smoke monitors help ensure the fire department is deployed as soon as possible in the event that your home catches fire while you are away. This can help contain damage, as well as insurance replacement costs, resulting in an insurance premium reduction.

What is an Insurance Deductible?

What is an Insurance Deductible?An insurance deductible is the sum of cash you must pay out of your own pocket for an insurance claim prior to the insurance company starting to pay on the claim. It’s typically stated in the policy as a fixed dollar amount, rather than a percentage. As a general rule, insurance deductibles and insurance premiums are inversely related. That is, the higher the insurance deductible, the lower the insurance premium. And of course, vice versa.

For example, a typical automobile insurance policy may have a deductible of $500. What this means if the insured has an automobile accident, you have to pay for the cost of repairs up to $500. Therefore, if the total car repair costs are $1,200, you will have to pay $500 (your deductible) and your insurance company will pay $700. Once you have paid the $500, you are said to have met the deductible.

Deductibles are usually defined per incident or per year. They can also vary depending on the origin of the claim. For instance, the same insurance policy may have varying deductibles when the loss arises from fire, theft, or natural disaster.

Based upon the insurance company and policy, an insurance deductible can be raised or lowered depending on how risk the insured is willing to assume. Insurance deductibles typically work the same whether the policy is for the home, car, or medical.

A policy with an exceptionally low premium will typically have an exceptional high insurance deductible. The key is finding the right balance for you when buying an insurance policy. A too high deductible can lead you into a financial bind should you find you need a claim. Additionally, a too high of a deductible on a car that has limited value may not make the most financial sense. On the other hand, a too low deductible can result in you overpaying in premiums.

It is a good idea to always have savings set aside in the amount of at least the size of your deductible, should you have to make a claim in the future.

Accident Forgiveness 101

Accident Forgiveness sounds wonderful, especially for those of us who have an accident or two.  Here is a little insight to help you decide if this is the type of policy for you.  For a lot of people, price is the bottom line.  For others the security of knowing their premiums will not increase beyond their budgeted amount is important.

Did you already know that an accident, claim or moving violation would increase your insurance rates?  The insurance company can charge you higher premiums for 36 to 60 months depending on the insurance company, for a claim.

Accident forgiveness is offered by some insurance companies as a way to forgive an accident, claims or moving violations so that your rates do not increase.  The accident still shows up on your claims history, but is not counted as a rating factor or increase in your policy. Sounds great, doesn’t it?

Here are a couple of pointers when considering this type of policy:

Who is eligible for accident forgiveness?

  1. Many insurance companies will look at your driving and claims history.  Any many of the insurance companies will only offer accident forgiveness to those with a clear driving record, no tickets, no accidents, and no claims within a 3-5 year time period.  This time period varies depending on the insurance company.
  2. Some insurance companies will offer accident forgiveness to brand new customers, and some will require a longevity period with the company or require you to carry higher limits on your policy.
  3. Most likely, if you are willing to pay the additional premium to have accident forgiveness, there is an insurance company out there who will sell you a policy.

Accident Forgiveness Pros:

  1. Your first accident is forgiven, which means the insurance company will not increase your premium or charge a surcharge to you for that accident.
  2. Accident forgiveness allows you to manage your budget easier by knowing you will not have the surprise of an increase for 3 – 5 years because of an accident surcharge.

Accident Forgiveness Cons:

  1. The premiums are on average 40% to 50% higher than a policy offered by the same company without the accident forgiveness feature.  So yes, they will forgive your accident, but they are charging more for your premium upfront.
  2. Accident forgiveness does not remove an accident, claim or moving violation from your driving record.  Therefore you are still given points by your state and some states charge you for these points.

Accident forgiveness is not a transferable part of your insurance policy:  in other words, should you change insurance companies or move to another state, the time spent building the claims forgiveness is lost, and you have to start over with a new policy.  So all the time you spent paying the higher premium for that option on your policy is not carried over in the same way longevity would be.

What is Accident Forgiveness?

Accident forgiveness is a type of automobile insurance policy you can buy that will “forgive” your first accident and not surcharge your policy premium.   Many insurance companies are advertising this type of automobile insurance policy as a great way to not get caught in the financial pinch of having your automobile insurance premiums increase over your first accident, or your first accident in a long time. The idea is that you are not charged additional premium, or a surcharge, for the accident.  The drawback is the fact that the insurance policy cost up to 50% more than a policy without the feature known as accident forgiveness.

So do you choose to pay more now, and for the next five years?  Or do you take your chances, save money on automobile insurance premiums now and gamble to see if you have an accident?

Some of us are very safe drivers, never had an accident in all our driving years.  Maybe you would like the luxury to know if that first accident happens that you are not going to have to pay higher automobile insurance premiums for it.

Things to know about accident forgiveness:

  • This policy will not keep tickets, accidents or claims off your driving record.
  • The policy is not transferable, so if you choose to switch automobile insurance companies, you will have to start over with a new policy, and new premiums.
  • The premiums for accident forgiveness are higher than the lowest pricing tiers insurance companies offer.
  • If you often shop for your insurance, or if you have tickets and/or accidents on your driving record, this is not the best policy for you.

Keep in mind most insurance companies now surcharge you for all claims, whether they are your fault or not and whether they are non-collision claims such as vandalism and hail.  Accident forgiveness will keep your first claim off your policy, but if there is a 2nd claim or a 3rd claim, your policy will be surcharged.   And since the accident forgiveness policy cost quite a bit more than insurance policies without accident forgiveness, those surcharges will be significant.  Or the insurance company may have to take you off the accident forgiveness policy all together, and place you on another type of policy at which point the first accident is not forgiven, and now you are being charged for 2 or 3 accidents.   General, one accident surcharge is not so bad, add another and you will see a much bigger increase, make it 3 accidents, and your policy will be surcharged tremendously.

If you still have more questions, go to AgentInsure.com and search for a licensed independent agent in your area that will answer your questions.

Will a Pool Make my Insurance Go Up

Will a Pool Make my Insurance Go UpHomeowners insurance is coverage that will protect not only the structure of your home, but also the contents and even out buildings and other structures. If you already have a pool on your property or if you are thinking about adding a swimming pool – this will probably raise the rate on your insurance.

You may wonder why adding a pool to your backyard would increase your insurance premium. The main reason is that it adds an additional liability to your property. You may also need to add a fence around the pool and other security features to make sure no one is hurt accidentally. Even though the pool is on your property – there is a possiblity that neighborhood children or other invited guests may go into the pool area and get hurt.

Another reason a swimming pool will increase your homeowners insurance is the possiblity that you, your family, or your guest may be injured in the pool. Accidents happen all the time and as the homeowner you will be responsible for the medical payments of someone injured on your property. No matter how careful you are, or how close you watch your children, there is a chance that a tragedy could occur in or around your swimming pool.

If you still want to install the pool – make sure you talk to your insurance provider and find out ways to earn discounts on your premium. Usually, if you install special security measures, your insurance company will reduce the amount you will have to pay on your premium. Another way to save money is to shop around and find a provider with a better rate. You can work with an independent insurance agent who can compare multiple quotes for homeowners insurance and find you a rate you can live with. Before you make any decisions about adding a pool, or purchasing a policy from your current provider, let an agent compare prices and save you money.

Is the Cheapest Type of Car Insurance Right for You?

Is the Cheapest Type of Car Insurance Right for You?Saving money on your insurance premiums is wise. Buying insufficient coverage just to save premium cost is not. Auto insurance coverage is not inexpensive and seems to consistently confuse shoppers. Those few remaining U.S. states that lack an insurance coverage requirement have financial standards that drivers must meet. Often, car owners need more financial assets than those who simply buy adequate insurance coverage in those states that accept no insurance protection.

However, if you are focused on obtaining the cheapest auto insurance available, you have some options. Understand that, in most U.S. states, insurance “follows the car.” Therefore, should you opt for the least expensive type of auto insurance, liability coverage, you may only be fully covered when you are driving your insured vehicle. Should you borrow a vehicle from a friend or family member and suffer an accident, the first line of defense will be the insurance (or lack thereof) on the borrowed car. Should you be deemed “at fault,” however, your personal liability coverage will probably be required to reimburse your friend’s company for paid claims.

The cheapest type of auto insurance coverage is liability. Do not misunderstand this statement, as liability insurance is not inherently “cheap.” Minimum state law typically requires, at least, liability coverage. Individual states determine he minimum limits each driver must carry. Common liability minimum coverages are in the $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident (regardless of the number of injured persons involved), $10,000 property damage and around $10,000-$20,000 uninsured (or underinsured) motorist coverage.

Although the cheapest car insurance coverage, minimum liability policies are often insufficient for many drivers who have more valuable assets (homes, boats, bank accounts, etc.) to protect than the least expensive insurance can cover. Further, neglecting to purchase collision and comprehensive, e.g., theft, coverage will save you premium dollars. However, should your car suffer physical damage, broken windows or theft, costs to repair or replace your vehicle will come from your pocket and personal funds.

Liability-only coverage will be the cheapest coverage in all U.S. states. However, it may not protect you to the level you want or need. Yet, it will help. Something (liability insurance) is far better than nothing. Even if you seek the cheapest car insurance, shop via the Internet. Good options are often those independent agents with interactive websites that allow you to shop multiple companies and receive several quotes for identical protection.

Insuring Your Cheap Property and The Building

Insuring your Cheap property & BuildingBefore getting engaged in finding a cheap property, you might want to consider few things. Firstly, a protective measure by using safety devices such as alarms, dead bolt locks, fire extinguishers on every portion of your building gives you a discount up to 20%. Newly built houses are no less in obtaining a minimum of 25% discount. Growing older will get you lesser insurance price. Do not miss on holding a home inventory, list of every small thing in your house along with it’s replacement cost. This makes your claim easy and quick. Lastly, renew your plan and keep yourself updated with coverage price and inflation rates.

Tips to Consider

  • Know about deductibles. Higher the deductible, lower will be your insurance premium. You can save up to 30%.
  • Try to sign up with one insurance company to cover all your possessions. Be it the detached structures, valuables, home, personal belongings, let all be covered under one insurance policy and the same insurance company for a long time. This will fetch you good deductions and discounts. Any modifications done to these systems, keep your insurer updated on it.
  • Remember, you are insuring the house and not the land.
  • If zero claims made in the past, then do inform your agent. This is an added benefit.
  • Safe installations, signing up for neighborhood watch scheme and installing good quality safety locks could save your money on insurance cost.
  • Increasing the pay of your voluntary excess can help in reducing premium.
  • Joining up some special shopping sites which guarantee you cash back will also fetch those hidden cash back with your insurer

Factors That Affect Home Insurance

Factors That Affect Home InsuranceIt does not matter whether you are the owner of the house or a tenant, every one needs to have their home insured to protect from any disasters. There are few basic things which you must know before you buy a home insurance to protect your living.

  1. Area Crime Rate : For the calculation of your house risk, your neighborhood crime rates will also be evaluated. This is done based on the post codes. To adverse the effects of crime rates it would be helpful if you install safety features such as security alarms or dead locks and get discounts on your premium.
  2. Fire Hazards and Prevention : Try to check for the fire hazards and reduce risk from it. Update the faulty electrical wiring. You will be offered discounts if you have installed smoke alarms inside your house, but make sure that is working correctly by carrying regular checks.
  3. The Quality of Your Home : Your premium rate mainly depends on the age of house and the kind of material used for building the house. A brand new house will cost you less when compared to old house. If your house is built with light materials which can catch fire easily or which can easily get damaged by storm, then it would cost you more than the house built of sturdy materials. Do not buy cheap houses when you are looking for one, later you may end up paying more for your home insurance.
  4. Claims History : You will be branded as high risk customer by the insurance companies if you frequently make small claims. Evaluate each claim very carefully before filing and too many claims can rise your annual premiums.

Lapse in Your Oregon Car Insurance Policy

Lapse in Your Oregon Car Insurance PolicyMost Americans, in an attempt to hold onto savings they cut down on their daily expenses. An inclusion of even car insurance premium into the block list, affects you. If you are not owning a car insurance, it simply means you are going uninsured. This does cause trouble to the other person involved in any accident with you as he will have to turn to uninsured motorist coverage under his own policy. Do not try and save on that little money.

Lapse in Coverage and It’s Penalties

If there is any lapse in coverage then it will easily trigger penalties. This is often expensive and becomes difficult for you to obtain a policy in future. Unfortunately, it so happens that drivers who are uninsured tend to often meet with accidents. Such instances, with no insurance or a gap in coverage easily burns your pocket. You will be labeled as risky by the insurance companies and will end up paying heavy fines when you decide to get insured again.

Be it any state, driving without an insurance is illegal. With high number of uninsured drivers, Oregon state has rolled out stringent measures for those who fail to get covered and heavy fines for lapse in their coverage. Any driver can be easily held by the cops by just running down on the number plate of the vehicle and be punished severely for lapse or failure to hold a policy.

Financial Hardship and Insurance

There are drivers who cannot afford insurance due to unemployment, without work permit or even relying on other members for commuting. With small paychecks they are unable to pay premiums and obtain a car insurance policy. In such situations, talk to your agent or the insurance company and tell them about your financial condition. They would raise your deductible on comprehensive or collision coverages, cut down on policy rates to reach required state minimum liability and reduce your premium rate. You will also be given an option to pay premium only for the miles driven, framing an affordable insurance rate.