Types of Insurance Policies and Why We Need Them

Why Insurance is Our Life Jacket

Insurance is our safety net when preparing for tragedies that might come our way. Without these policies, we may end up drowning in a sea of debt. However, something that is so crucial to our well being can be quite complicated to understand. With so many types of policies, from auto insurance to renters insurance, how do we know which plan best suits our needs? Well, let’s break it down and simplify all the fine details so we have a better understanding of the policies that may be available to you — and why you might need them.

Auto Insurance

An automobile driver will have an accident claim once every 17.9 years on average. There are several options when it comes to selecting your auto insurance policy that proves affordable while providing the protection you need when you have a fender bender or vehicle theft or injury from an accident.

The level of coverage you select for your auto insurance will determine your monthly rate. The higher the out-of-pocket expense (known as the deductible), the less you will pay for your monthly rate (or premiums). If you choose to select a lesser deductible then you will have higher monthly rates.  Some other factors that are part of determining your rate/premiums are your driving record, insurance score, years of driving experience and where you live.  

A local insurance agency will be able to assist you with picking the best plan for you and your family. Every state has different laws that pertain to driving any motorized vehicle and they will be able to walk you through the process. Other details that will be important to you and the insurance agent is if an Sr-22 form is required and proof of insurance coverage maintained for the past several years. These two items are relevant when determining how to locate the lowest rate to fit your financial budget.

Home or Renter’s Insurance

If you own your home or are in the process of buying a new place of residence, then homeowners insurance should be at the top of your list. This policy will cover costs when damage is caused to your property. Whether it be fire or tornadoes, your policy is intended to repair or replace the damage that has been done.  Homeowners coverage can be complicated, be sure to read the policy terms carefully and purchase additional coverage options when necessary. Speak to your agent about the various options available. Again, your rate will be determined by the level of insurance coverage you purchase and what exactly you decide to have placed under the policy.

If you don’t own a home, consider Renters insurance.  There are various levels of coverage to protect you and your family’s personal property.  Break-ins, theft, and fire or wind damage to your property are always a possibility. Give some serious thought to speaking to your agent about Renters insurance.  Prices for these types of policies are usually quite inexpensive.

High-Risk Insurance

If you have had accidents, tickets, or past issues in finding a lower-cost car or home insurance rates, you might want to consider a high-risk insurance agency.  This type of agency has multiple companies that specialize in customers that may have been denied coverage from other companies and may have a claim history or driving history that cause high rates.  Once you have been successfully without incident for a length of time, they can transition you to more preferred insurance companies and your options will expand. Keep in mind as you search through the internet seeking policy protection that you do have options and don’t settle.

Now that we have simplified the confusion, what steps do we take next? Contact local insurance agencies to learn your options.  Don’t settle just because your driving record may not appear to be the prettiest, try a high risk agency that can check for multiple options.    

If a Natural Disaster Strikes Are You Protected? Renters Insurance Protects!

Here is an eye-opening fact for a lot of tenants, your landlord’s insurance in Madison, Wisconsin will not protect your items in the case of tornado, fire, vandalism or burglary. If you are a tenant, you need renter’s insurance to protect your personal property.

As a tenant, it is considered your responsibility to have a renter’s insurance policy that covers your possessions, your landlord does not cover them.  Many property management companies and even some private owners require proof of insurance to show that you have secured a renters insurance plan before you can move into your new apartment or home.  The good news is these plans are relatively inexpensive so they are affordable.

A lot of renters are starting to understand the importance of renters insurance.  From 2011-2016 the number of renters with insurance increased from 29% to 41% but that still leaves over half of renters without coverage.

What if You Are Displaced?

What if a storm strikes and leaves the property you are renting uninhabitable during repairs? What are your options? Many renter’s policies include coverage for temporary housing costs for the time the property you are renting is uninhabitable. 

Without coverage you will have to absorb all these costs on your own and figure out how to replace all your possessions that were lost as well. The costs can start to ring up and get out of control rather quickly.

Affordable Peace of Mind

With the right policy you can worry less about “what if’s” and enjoy the protection you deserve. Renters insurance in Madison Wisconsin from a trusted insurance agency will deliver the peace of mind knowing you are protected with a plan that fits your budget perfectly.  If you have questions, feel free to contact us today.

New to High Risk Insurance? Learn More Here

If you’re in the market for auto insurance, there are a number of factors that can lead to you paying more to keep your car on the road. Today, we’ll spend some time discussing high risk insurance, the factors that are in play with higher premiums, and how checking with a high risk agency, safe driving and a little patience can help get your rates back down again.

What is High Risk Insurance?

High risk insurance is a description used for drivers who meet any one of a number of conditions that the insurance companies deem as making them riskier to keep covered on the road.  We’ll discuss the factors in play that make a high risk driver below. 

What Determines a High Risk Driver?

DUI or OWI Offense If you have been ticketed for Driving Under the Influence(DUI) or Operating While Under the Influence(OWI), you most likely will need to carry an SR-22 form on your insurance in order to continue to drive.  Most will be required to keep the SR-22 on file with the DMV from 6 months to 5 years.

Young/First Time Driver Young drivers, typically aged 16-27, are statistically at a higher risk for auto accidents, which translates to a higher bill. The same is true of late-in-life drivers who are getting their license for the first time. While there’s nothing to do but put time under your belt as a driver, it’s worth talking to your insurance company to see whether this would still be the case if you were eligible to be added to someone’s existing policy.

Lapse in Insurance Coverage Whether you dropped your insurance because you were not driving or because you had to retool your finances, any lapse in coverage will find you paying higher premiums when you begin looking to get insured again. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t worry.  After a period of driving without incident, typically between 6-12 months, you should be able to re-quote your policy for a possible lower price. 

Poor Credit This risk factor is one that can be a nasty surprise for drivers who are looking for auto coverage, regardless of driving record. While the logic might be hard to follow, for some providers, an insurance score based on credit acts as shorthand for the insurance company being able to estimate the responsibility of its drivers.

Driving & Claims History Insurance companies look at driving history for your past three to five years.  Any tickets, including minor traffic violations, and any claims, even those where you are not-at-fault, can affect your rate.  As they fall outside the three and five year windows, your policy premiums will decrease accordingly. 

How Can I Work to Lower My Rate?

There are insurance companies and agencies such as Compliance Insurance that specialize in high risk drivers that can have much lower rates versus the more preferred carriers.  Talk to an agent about what your period of high risk coverage will look like, and see if there are ways you can save.

For most of the risk factors, their effect lowers over time.  As tickets or accidents become older, as credit improves and as young drivers gain more experience, rates come down.   

While the prospect of paying higher premiums can be daunting, it’s important to remember the risk of getting into an accident uninsured. Having high risk insurance can mean the difference between paying a little extra from month to month or paying for damages out of pocket for years if you hurt someone and have no insurance.  Still have questions? Talk to your insurance agent or call Compliance Insurance today. 

Types of Insurance Issues You Need to Have Covered

Boat Insurance

You own a boat, you need insurance. While you may only use your boat a few times a year, having boat insurance is highly necessary. Why do you need this type of coverage along with the auto insurance and home insurance that you have already?

The reality is this: boat insurance is needed because the majority of homeowners insurance policies have very limited boat insurance coverage, and your vehicle and other recreational vehicle insurance policies exclude boats.  

Even if you think your boat itself is not worth insuring, be aware that boat insurance includes some Liability coverage for injuries or damage you do to others while in your boat.    

Other Recreational Toys

No matter how careful you consider yourself to be, statistics say that you may be more likely to be in a wreck or be put into potential danger when you are on a motorcycle or boat. This means you’ll want to have motorcycle insurance or boat insurance if you have these types of recreational toys in your possession.

If you drive an ATV or RV, you’ll need special insurance for these vehicles as well, even if you mainly use the ATV for home maintenance chores or the RV during certain times of the year. There are age restrictions and other legalities involved in this type of vehicle, so make sure you know what the laws are in your state and be properly insured with the right high risk insurance before taking your ATV out on the road.

SR-22 Insurance

When you are considered a high risk insured person either due to a legal issue or problems with paying insurance in full in the past — or if you’ve had lapses in automobile insurance in the past or currently — you may have to have an SR-22 included on your insurance. This requirement puts you in the high risk insurance policy category. Many insurance companies won’t sell this type policy, our agency has several that will.  Often once your SR-22 requirement is concluded, you can go back to traditional insurance policies and rates depending on your driving record.

Whether you are just curious about high risk insurance or you are looking for greater coverage, speak with your insurance agent to see what can be done to assist you. The right coverage will help you feel more confident in the things you set out to do.