Holiday Safety Tips
The holiday season is upon us once again. This is a time for family, fun trips and shopping. It’s the most wonderful time of year…
Unless, you happen to be one of the many people who will face a disastrous situation that puts them at risk for losing property, being liable for an injury or having their identity stolen.
It is well known among insurance agents that the Holiday season comes with an uptick in the amount of claims we receive. Auto insurance claims rise 20% in December alone on average so there are real dangers that you must protect your family and yourself from.
Here are just a tips to help you stay protected.
Holiday Safety For Seniors
If you are hosting a loved one over the age of 55 then you need to know that they are at a higher risk for injury. Being proactive to keep them safe during the holiday will go a long way toward avoiding unnecessary hospital visits.
Take these 6 steps to avoid dangerous situations with a senior this holiday season.
Secure all floor coverings
Check your chairs
Limit dim lighting
Say safe when cooking
Monitor for sound
Holiday Safety For Pets
Keeping your pet’s out of danger can also be a tall order. Our furry friends are very curious, which could often lead to danger for our pets as well as our homes.
The hazards that pet cause during the holiday season are vast simply because they don’t understand what’s happening but they want to explore all of the new things in their environment.
What are some of the things you can do to keep your pet safe?
Bolt down the tree
Keep Cord and Batteries out of your pet’s reach
Avoid Tinsel and breakable tree ornaments
Never leave lighted candles unattended
How To Keep Your Home Safe While You're Away For The Holidays
A common problem during the holiday season is theft. Many thieves expect many homes to be empty because they know that many people like to travel during these times of year.
There are a few things you can do to keep your home protected while you are away during your holiday travels...
Don’t announce your holiday plans on social media
Cancel your regular services
Invest in affordable security lighting
Let your close-by friends know you’re going away
Don’t hide your spare key outside your home
Safety Tips For Holiday Travel
In an article by CNTraveler.com, they asked a former CIA operative how to stay safe during the busiest travel time of the year?
Here’s a list of what the 14-year veteran of the CIA had to offer:
Leave valuables at home
Stay in touch with family and friends
Keep a low profile
Travel in groups
Book the right hotel room
Pay attention to your whereabouts
Leave your passport in your hotel room
His basic advice, be prepared for the most likely scenarios. Fairly simple
Holiday Driving Safety Advice
Before you get on the road, make sure you…
Get your standard maintenance up to date
Have an emergency roadside kit (See the whole kit here)
Have a mapped route plan
Take the necessary weather safety precautions
Keep the kids safe and entertained
Take a break every 2 hours or 100 miles
Keep an eye out for potentially intoxicated drivers
Taking these steps during your holiday road trip can help you avoid unnecessary car insurance claims.
Deliver Safety For Holiday Packages
One of the most often overlooked groups of people when it comes to creating a safe environment during the holidays are the postal workers. They can often be so busy trying to deliver our last minute packages that they don’t see the hazards that could endanger them.
Many homeowners end up having liability claims against them because of injuries to postal workers during holiday deliveries.
These are a few of the things you can do to avoid having that happen to you
Holiday Safety Tips: Cybersecurity Safety for the holidays
Holiday shopping almost always come with the threat of having a holiday cyber breach along with it. Hackers know that we have much more online shopping activity during this time of year and they lurk behind their scams to try to steal from us.
KnowBe4, a company that specializes in security training put together a great video to help people keep from getting hacked by criminals that hope to prey on our holiday shopping habits.
Get A Quote Ahead of the Holiday Season To Make Sure You're Fully Covered
This guest post is by Ingrid Walter, who is a blogger and freelance writer.
Big data started as a way to describe data sets that are too big for traditional databases to capture, store, manage, and analyze. But now the term has evolved to define a set of technologies that can solve complex problems by analyzing trends from large and variable data. Big data is already commonplace in industries like banking, construction, retail, and transportation. One of the latest industries to take advantage of big data is motor insurance, which is using the modern technology to provide a more personalized service to customers.
What if you can accurately asses risks?
On Ferguson Insurance Center we have a list of the most common car insurance mistakes you can commit. Using big data, insurers can now create a better picture when it comes to claims. Forbes notes that risk assessment in car insurance is what the industry is built on. Some insurers now use “telemetry-based packages” that feed data direct from the vehicle to their system. This allows the insurers to get an accurate record of a driver's behavior, which can then affect their assessment of an accident or theft.
Easier application process
ZhongAn Online P&C Insurance, the first internet-only insurer in China, is a great example of how big data is making the application process easier. They are using machine learning and analytics to analyze data. Wang Yu head of car insurance at ZhongAn told the South China Morning Post: “We have broken the online purchase process into 45 parts. We monitor and analyze data flows from each part and if we notice that users spend too much time in one part, then we know something may be wrong with it or it has potential to be optimized.” Don't be surprised to see this method of application spread across the globe.
Fairer risk assessment
There's an ongoing debate about whether or not insurance companies should use a consumer's credit score as a way to assess risk. While credit scores have helped companies assess a consumer's personal responsibility, the Insurance Journal points out it isn't popular: "it’s never been obvious to the typical consumer what one’s credit history has to do with one’s likelihood to get in an accident". With big data insurance companies have even wider scope to determine credit scores by providing even more variables. However, the article also notes that the wide range of personal information that could be included in the data scan, such as social media accounts, is likely to put off many customers.
Better fraud detection
In the US, insurance fraud accounts for $80 billion a year. Fraud also makes up about for about 10% of the property-casualty insurance losses and loss adjustment expenses each year. To battle this, 48 states, including the District of Columbia made insurance fraud a specific crime.
Most insurers have to manually assess and report suspicious insurance claims before they can verify an actual fraud. With big data, specifically predictive modeling and strict data management, insurers can quickly identify when there is a high-risk case that needs investigation. They can simply match variables in claims against profiles of past fraudulent activities.
This type of protection can be seen in the trucking industry. Verizon Connect explains how advanced fleet tracking software helps with insurance claims in the event of stolen assets. This is mainly because every part of a truck’s journey is recorded, and insurers can see “exactly what happened where”. Monitoring high-value assets has never been easier. Driver ID technology comes in handy, too, allowing the right people to take responsibility for any loss in company assets.
The bottom-line for the motor industry is: if every data generated is traced, tracked, recorded, and stored, insurance claims can be easy to handle—both for the customer and the insurer.
Exclusively written for fergusonins.com by Ingrid Walter
Did you know that 25% of Americans have a side hustle business? That number equates to 57 million people looking to make additional income from a side business.
And while so many Americans are doing what they can to provide a valuable service to their communities in hopes of growing their bottom line, many are leaving themselves exposed to both personal and business liability by not having the proper insurance.
The number of side hustle owners who are going without having insurance is huge, as it is estimated that only 12% of these small business entrepreneurs have insurance coverage.
The reason most of them go uninsured is that the simply think they don’t need it.
The fact is…
YOU NEED TO INSURE YOUR SIDE HUSTLE!!!
Especially when you consider that 61% of part time businesses make less than $10,000 per year, any claim against you or your business could send you spiraling into bankruptcy.
Especially with new side hustle apps and services like Lyft and Airbnb, you need to consider all of the risks that you could face before you make the mistake of not having coverage for your side business.
What If You Run A Side Business From Home?
Many people who want to earn a side income decide to take on a “make money from home” approach to cut down the costs of their new side business.
Typically, they mistakenly believe that their homeowners insurance will cover them in case of liability.
In most cases, insurance companies do provide personal liability coverage with a homeowners insurance policy, but they tend to deny claims stemming from any business activity, whether from a home business or otherwise.
What If Your Side Hustle Is Online?
Selling from a website as a side hustle is something that has only gained popularity over the last 20 or so years. The legal system and governments have been slow to keep up with the rate of growth and change that the internet has created.
One of the things that has not kept pace is taxation, simply because the internet creates the ability to have an international supply chain with a very low overhead that can be set up with almost no budget over a weekend.
However, as we spoke about in an article about the dropshipping business, there are still dangers in having a side hustle online and not having the proper insurance.
If you’re customer receives a defective product, you could be liable for any and all injuries and claims brought against you by them. Without proper insurance, you would be looking at potentially coming out of pocket for court cost, hospital bills and damages.
It just doesn’t make sense to risk your financial well being to save a few hundred bucks a year.
Get Side Hustle Insurance Today
If you are operating a side business and need insurance call us immediately to get covered. You can also get an online quote here.
Even if you don’t think you make enough to need to insure your side business, having a basic general liability policy for you business could protect you from the risk of losing your personal assets.
Don’t risk it. Insure your Side business with the right coverage asap.
Travelers Insurance in Sept of 2018 reported $7.72B in revenue, which pales in comparison to Amazon's $52.89B last quarter.
Still, these two companies are giants when you consider the competition.
Amazon is the most valuable retailer in the US and the second most valuable public company in the world behind only Apple.
Travelers, also known as the travelers companies is the second largest writers of Commercial property casualty insurance and third largest persona insurance writer in the U.S.
So it only makes sense that these two giant's would team up to bring us the first ever digital storefront in the insurance industry at Amazon.com/Travelers...
And they've decided to incentivize those who participate in the history they are making.
For new or existing Travelers Home Insurance customers who are eligible, Travelers will provide a free Amazon Echo Dot.
This is in effort to promote Smart Home Kits that are available through Amazon, though purchase of a kit is not needed to get the free Amazon Echo Dot.
However, if you choose to get a Smart Home Kit you could also receive discounted rates through your Travelers Home Insurance Policy.
These Smart Home Kits are designed to protect homeowners from the most common causes of loss so your home is safer just by having one.
These smart home kits include:
You can pre-order the kits on the storefront and they will be released on Thursday.
If you are in the areas that are serviced by Ferguson Insurance Center, then unfortunately, you are not eligible for this offer just yet, though more states will be added to the giveaway soon.
Until then, be sure to get a Homeowners Insurance quote so that you can see how Travelers home insurance rates stack up against our other insurance carriers. (We have 30+ to choose from...)
Building A Smart Home: Cyber Security Concerns With Smart Home Kits
In recent years, cyber attacks have become a more common occurrence that it used to be. How will building a smart home affect the level of security you have?
Michael Klein, the executive vice president and president of personal insurance at Travelers said this...
"We suggest that customers read manufacturer's recommendations when using smart home devices to understand best practices for safely using these devices"
It also advised that you know how to handle a cyber attack and have a system for lowering the risks you face by resetting passwords regularly and keeping your eyes peeled for unauthorized transactions or suspicious activity on your accounts.
It still surprises me how often homeowners don’t know that there is personal liability insurance coverage on homeowners insurance.
Even more surprising, the people who know about the personal liability written into their home insurance coverage but don’t know what it helps them protect against.
The fact is that the personal liability coverage that you get when you buy homeowners insurance is actually very broad and covers you and your family from certain dangers.
In this article, we’ll dive into a few of the things that it covers...
Your homeowners insurance provides personal liability coverage for your family
Homeowners insurance protects the property but most don’t know that it also provides a very broad personal liability coverage as well.
This coverage typically applies to:
Your Homeowners policy covers some boats (but it varies)
Small, unscheduled boats may be covered under a homeowners policy. However, this liability coverage varies based on the size and type of boats and motors. This coverage is limited to certain situations and risks but when they are covered, your homeowners policy provides up to $1,500 of coverage for unscheduled watercraft.
Your homeowners insurance (may) cover “dead storage” and other types of vehicles
The keyword in this is “dead storage”. It’s very difficult to know what is legally considered dead storage. One leading legal dictionary says a vehicle is considered dead storage if the battery has been removed, however, there are many other legal definitions for dead storage that could be used in the case of liability or injury.
In most cases, Golf carts can be covered under your home insurance policy
Golf carts are covered when you live in a property with access to a golf course and you are using it properly.
These carts are protected unless they have been modified to be able to pass the speed of 25 mph, carrying more than 4 persons or outside of the legal boundary of the the golf course or it’s set points, which at times cross public roads.
If the you are a member of a private residential community and riding a golf cart on the communities public roads then your homeowners policy will cover that as well.
Your homeowners policy needs to be updated frequently.
If you make improvements to your home, have children that tend to break or damage things or if your policy is a few years old, you need to update your policy every so often.
Some insurers provide a special personal property coverage that allows you to cover “all risks” to property other than the home (floors, walls, windows and roof). They may cover personal belonging as well, which comes in handy when your 3 year old smears play doh in your fur rug.
Insurance agents can discuss your options but we do not recommend how much you need.
We are happy to discuss the coverage that you get when doing business with us. We want you to be informed and we want you to know exactly what you’re covered for, what you aren’t, and what you need to consider.
We also have an obligation, morally and ethically, to never make recommendations. We want to make sure you are covered properly but making recommendations could lead to some missteps.
We don’t know how much coverage will be enough in your specific scenario. The purpose of our service is to help you make an informed decision by letting you know what options you have and what each policy covers for you. The rest is up to you.
*several qualifications apply
AIG Insurance is one of the insurance carriers that Ferguson Insurance Center is authorized to represent, among many others.
We have seen a trend that people are asking more about the history of AIG, as well as searching for honest AIG insurance reviews.
To be fair, we decided to cover these topics, not from the standpoint of a company who sells insurance provided by AIG, but as a researcher who desperately wants to uncover as much about AIG as possible so that they can make an informed decision to do business with the right insurance carriers.
Along the way, I was both shocked and inspired by what I learned about the history of the company, which I’m sure will surprise many of you as well.
So without any more delay, let’s dive into it...
The History of AIG
AIG has a long an surprising history, including war and espionage. AIG Insurance history and founding read like a mystery novel. But first, let's start with something simple.
What Does AIG Stand For?
American International Group, Inc., also known as AIG, is an American multinational finance and insurance corporation with operations in more than 80 countries and jurisdictions.
Where is AIG?
Aig has many offices and affiliate brokers and agents all around the world but the east coast headquarters is located in New York City, NY at 70 Pine Street with the west coast headquarters in Los Angeles, CA.
They also have important office locations in Atlanta, San Francisco and Stowe, VT
Who is AIG Owned By? Who Founded AIG?
One of the more difficult things to find is a single owner of a company the size of AIG. If you go according to AIG Stock price and information, the company is owned mostly (upwards of 91%) by investment institutions.
AIG was founded by Cornelius Vander Starr, who originally founded AIG in Shanghai, China on December 19, 1919. Then known as American Asiatic Underwriters, the first office in the united states opened in 1926, and the headquarters would eventually be moved to New York City in 1939.
Later, it was reported that he was also an Operative with the Office of Strategic Services which would lead to the creation of the CIA. These Secret Insurance Agents were written about in the Los Angeles Times back in 2000.
Currently, AIG is run by President and CEO Brian Duperreault, who was inducted into the Insurance Hall of Fame in 2011.
How Many Employees Does AIG Have?
As of December 31, 2016, AIG employed 56,400 people though wikipedia lists that number to down to 49,800 in 2017.
The company also has almost half a billion in total assets: $498.30 billion (2017)
AIG Insurance Products: Coverage & Policies
AIG Travel Insurance
AIG travel guard is a global travel insurance company that allows you to get AIG trip insurance to protect cancellations and delays. You are also covered with travel health insurance in case you have an emergency illness or injury during a trip.
AIG Auto Insurance
AIG car insurance offers broader coverage to help minimize risk. They offer high liability limits and new vehicle replacements so that you can protect your your most important possessions.
AIG Home Insurance
With AIG homeowners insurance, you can extend your coverage to 100% of the rebuild cost of your home, which means that you will be able to be fully covered in the situation that your home is completely lost from damages.
AIG Commercial Insurance
Insurance for business and enterprise customers is much more complex that personal insurance because they must insure against many different risks.
Each business needs to be covered from different risks based on what they do and AIG helps businesses get all of the protection they need for each unique scenario.
AIG Boat/Yacht Insurance
With AIG’s Private Client Group, you get the opportunity to get Yacht Insurance with people who understand the specific needs of yacht owners. AIG offers customized Yacht insurance coverage and loss prevention services to provide that ‘white glove’ level of service.
AIG Ratings & Reviews
Most people will end up reading reviews and looking up ratings while shopping online for insurance, so it only seems natural for this article to dive into the reputation of the company. Here's a look at AIG insurance ratings as well as a summary of the reviews that were found online.
AIG Insurance Rating
On the AIG investor relations page they list the company credit rating for S&P, Moody’s, and Fitch are that of Moderately risk in Senior Debt, Non-Life Financial Strength and Life Financial Strength.
The AIG insurance AM Best rating is an A, which means...
That means that AIG has a somewhat stable outlook when it comes to the companies financial stability. Great to know if you are an investor but for those who plan to buy insurance soon what is most important to know about AIG is that they are a very solid company and the coverage you get through them is going to be good for a long while.
AIG Insurance Reviews
Reading reviews on insurance can be a very slippery slope to climb. Why? You tend to only see bad reviews for certain industries.
Think about it...
When you go to a restaurant, you most likely are willing to review it whether you have a good experience or a bad one.
Not so in the insurance industry...
Outside of the occasional outstanding review here and there, most people will only review an insurance carrier if they have had a less than desirable experience with a claim.
Still, it’s important that you understand what you are potentially getting from the insurance carrier that you work with.
AIG travel insurance reviews
AIG travel insurance has many mixed reviews online, some sites give 1 star while others give 4.5 stars. How could you ever know what people are getting from their AIG travel guard insurance policy?
One of the key factors to understand is that buying insurance from someone who doesn’t specialize in insurance (i.e. Travel Agents, Travel Websites, etc.) is never a good idea.
Almost all of the bad reviews that I saw online during my research for this article come from someone who booked through a travel site or a travel agent, not a qualified insurance broker or agent.
You wouldn’t get a medical exam from a kitchen supply store because it doesn’t make sense. Same rule applies to travel insurance.
AIG Auto Insurance Reviews
AIG car insurance also had plenty of bad reviews on consumer affairs. The 2 star review came from what seemed to be quite a few complaints of long wait times during calls, and 5 star reviews from people who were long term customers of AIG insurance.
Mixed in with these reviews were several people who obviously were not familiarized with the coverage that they had purchased. Unfortunately for them, they purchased coverage from an agent who either didn’t inform them of what their policy covered or one who was incompetent.
AIG Homeowners Insurance Reviews
Again, consumer affairs gives AIG home insurance a 2 star review, although it seems that many of these reviews are positive but seem to have 3 star reviews instead of 5 stars.
Still, AIG has many complaints in this area.
AIG Business Insurance Reviews
There were not review for AIG business insurance available on Consumer Affairs. Having said that, AIG is definitely a go to for business owners policies, general liability insurance and workers compensation.
They typically offer very reasonable rates and provide highly comprehensive policies to cover business owners.
AIG Insurance Review Conclusion:
From all of the research that I’ve been through for this AIG Review, plus my years of experience in the insurance industry, I can tell you with complete confidence that AIG is a good company that has also had some low moments in its past with some of the customer service issues.
Here’s what I suggest if you plan to do business with AIG
Find an AIG Insurance Broker
Find an AIG insurance broker who has at least been in business for 5+ years. Many of the bad reviews that I saw online came from customers buying insurance from sales people who just aren't knowledgeable enough to sell them the right policies.
The best way to avoid that is to choose to work with an experienced Insurance professional only.
We’re An AIG Broker: 100% Certified!
With almost 30 years of experience in the insurance industry, we know how to avoid the pitfalls that many newer insurance brokers and agents struggle with. If you are looking for a new policy let us help you get it done right the first time.
Get A Quote
We work with over 30 insurance carriers so you won’t just get an AIG insurance quote, but many other competing quotes as well.
This allows us to get the perfect coverage for your home, car or business with the best rates you’ll find.
Get An Online Quote or Give Us A Call at 1(888)258-8808
How Important is Workers Comp for Contractors to have? Well, you could be arrested if you don’t have it, depending on your states law.
Even if having workers compensation isn’t a law in your state, it’s vital that you have it because it helps you to protect yourself, your employees and your business from any injuries faced on the job.
As a contractor, injuries at work are very common. The issue doesn’t seem to be “if an injury will occur” but when an injury occurs and how bad it will be.
Let’s face it, contractors have a very dangerous job and in 2016 the industry lead all other in mega, workers compensation claims, which is when a claim exceeds $10 million.
Imagine being one of these contractors who doesn’t have workers comp and having something like this happen
No matter if workers compensation is required or not, when an injury happens you will be much happier to have it than not to have it.
Is Workers Comp Insurance Required for The Self Employed?
Again, it depends on your state. If your state requires workers comp insurance for all employees then you will most likely count as one of those employees while you are on the job.
However, in some states you don’t have to have workers compensation on yourself if you are self employed.
The most important question to ask yourself in these cases is if you are comfortable without having any coverage should the unexpected happen?
If you are ok with taking the risk of not having coverage if you get injured as a self employed person then you may make the decision to forego it.
However, as we addressed before, it’s not a question of “if” but “when”.
In about 70% of cases, serious work related injuries happen either from a fall from height or a motor vehicle accident. Still, having someone who works your phones and computers still put you and them at risk for injury.
The best course of action is to go ahead and get the workers compensation insurance.
How Much Does It Cost To Get Contractors Insurance?
If you buy workers compensation directly from an insurance carrier then most likely you will get a different answer than if you bought from a broker.
The biggest difference is that as a broker we can offer great rates because we shop up to 30 carriers for the most competitive rates.
The main benefit though is actually that we focus on making sure you actually get the coverage you need, not just what cost the least.
Which is huge since more than 60% of U.S. businesses are under insured.
Get a Workers Compensation Quote Today
Contractors Workers Comp insurance is a very serious thing to have done properly since it is actually dealing with your life, the lives of your employees and your overall livelihood.
This isn’t something that should be left up to chance and it definitely isn’t something that should be taken lightly.
We understand that what you want is the right coverage at the best price possible, that’s what we have built this company on.
We focus on getting you what you need in order for your business to survive because without it we wouldn’t.
That’s why we have such great testimonials and reviews and that's why you can trust us with your business.
If you want to know what the best E-commerce business insurance available is today then you're gonna want to read this to the end.
Over the past few months, we've seen the unbelievable rise of the E-commerce industry to the point that Amazon became the second company to ever reach $1 Trillion dollars.
This is a huge opportunity for almost anyone to get their slice of a $22 trillion world wide dollar pie...
But with great opportunity comes great risk.
With the rise of cyber attacks as well as the risk of fraud and product defects, you need to be protected with the best E-commerce insurance money can buy.
E-commerce and Insurance
For the typical E-commerce business owner, you know that the risks are much different than that of a brick and mortar small business owner. A small business owner can usually just get a standard business owners policy to cover most risks.
E commerce requires a much more comprehensive coverage option because of two risks that are uniquely challenging for an e-commerce business to address.
The first is business interruption.
If you have a drop shipping arrangement with your manufacturer, you could experience issues that stop business on your side of the table based on a problem they experience. Another example, web hosting. Imagine your business is launching a new product that has the internet buzzing. As soon as the product comes available and you put the word out, the site crashes from a huge spike in traffic.
Business interruption insurance can help you recuperate your losses...
Also, you need to cover data security.
Your business has valuable customer information that if breached could put your customers information in jeopardy... And you could be held liable for each piece of information that is exposed.
When you are shopping for business insurance for your e commerce store you need to consider as many potential risk factors as possible. That's where it helps to have a knowledgeable insurance agent on your team to help you figure out what you need to be mindful of when buying insurance coverage for your e-commerce business.
Generally, these are some of the main types of coverage to consider depending on the size of your business.
Small Business E-commerce insurance
If you are are under $1 million in sales then you need coverage dedicated to the problems that mostly plagues smaller e commerce sites. For an e-com business like this, you don't usually need to have as much coverage as some of the more experienced businesses.
What your e-commerce insurance coverage needs to provide:
Workers comp insurance may not be necessary for some businesses unless they plan to hire people to work for them but that is an other topic entirely.
Mid-Sized E-commerce Business Insurance
For E-commerce businesses between $1 million and $10 million dollars in sales you will need to consider a little bit more insurance coverage. These businesses typically have a few employees, have completed a seed funding and may have a brand that has built steam on social media.
At this point, having your business improperly covered is a huge risk because it risks the business, the well being of employees and the money entrusted to the business by investors.
These businesses need to have all of the same coverage that a smaller e-commerce business has but will definitely need Workers Compensation, as well as employee practices liability and coverage for directors and officers of the company.
Large E-commerce Business Insurance
$10 million dollars in sales is just scratching the surface for a business like this. These types of e-commerce businesses are typically going to own warehouses or even brick and mortar stores. They also are more likely to control the import process of the inventory they sell.
They usually hold the rights to intellectual property and may have patents, either confirmed or pending.
This type of business is one that faces challenges at every turn and, at this point, the business owner has much more to think about in terms of the distribution of the products that the business sells.
Along with the other types of coverage that smaller e-commerce businesses need, this type of business needs to consider:
These types of coverage are all about protecting a large number of transactions to ensure that the customer is happy while also protecting your business from unforeseen problems.
If you own an e-commerce business, whether small or large, it's important to know that your insurance policy is written correctly. Unfortunately, 75% of businesses in the U.S are under insured for varies reasons.
If you would like to have your insurance coverage looked over by a professional agent who specializes in business coverage, please contact us immediately.
We are in the middle of hurricane season, which lasts from June 1 to November 30 each year, and we want to make sure that everyone has a chance to practice hurricane safety for their homes and businesses.
As you know, last year’s hurricane season was a very rough one and there are areas of the world, especially in the Caribbean that are still struggling to recover.
Being prepared and having a plan for your family and employees safety during hurricane season is highly important but it is really only half of the battle.
In this article, we will cover some of the things you need to be thinking about as we head into the last half of hurricane season.
Ultimate Hurricane Season Insurance Guide
Since we help cover both families and businesses with our insurance products, we are going to do our best to go over as many details about what you need to prepare for during this hurricane season for both.
This should help you whether you are a first time home buyer who wants to make sure you are fully covered in a emergency disaster situation or if you are the CEO of a fortune 100 company working in the top floor of the tallest building in the city when a hurricane hits.
First, we’ll cover businesses, then we’ll talk about protecting your home, then finally we’ll go into some supplies and action plan items that will help you and those around you stay safe.
Let’s get started!
Hurricane Preparedness Tips For Businesses
If you own a business, then you know that you are in a position of huge responsibility for the business, the property of the business and, more importantly, the well-being of the people you employ.
For business owners, hurricane preparedness isn’t just about covering potential loss but also communicating and training your staff to react properly in the event of an emergency.
Hurricane Preparedness: Checklist for Business
There are a vast number of risks that are presented when a hurricane touches land. Flooding, wind and debris and more…
It can get really hectic, but we have to ensure that you and your employees have a plan of action that is simple and easy to remember so that they can follow through during even a time where they may feel rushed to get to safety.
That’s why we suggest you use these 3 keys to create your hurricane preparedness checklist
For a more in depth checklist and a hurricane prep plan by one of our insurance carriers, click here.
Hurricane Preparedness: High Rise Buildings
If you work (or live) in a high rise building and you happen to be there during a hurricane, it’s important that you know a few things that will help you stay safe if you must shelter in place.
First, before we talk about how to prep your area of the building, it’s important to know that many high rise buildings will immediately ask you to evacuate, whether they are under a mandatory evacuation order or not.
That being said, if you happen to be a high rise building that has not been evacuated during a hurricane here’s a few things you will need to do to stay reasonably safe.
Balconies and Windows
If you are near a balcony, make sure that everything is put away. You don’t want furniture, plants or even windchimes out on the balcony. These things ordinary objects create considerable danger if the wind should pick them up and hurl them in any direction.
Also, you want to steer clear of any rooms with lots of windows. High velocity winds can break windows, sending shards of glass throughout and presenting danger to those in the vecentity.
If you are above the 3rd story of a high rise, there is typically less danger of broken glass because of the strength of the glass higher up. However, it’s of great importance that all of the windows remain closed, no matter how hot it gets.
Speaking of how hot it gets, cooling towers will usually be shut off at the breakers for safety. That means that you will be hot and uncomfortable during a hurricane in a high rise.
Elevators and Stairwells
If you are on a high floor, be prepared to stay their for a while unless you are ready for some serious cardio.
During a hurricane elevators will not be operational after the power goes out. Which means if you are trying to leave the building you will be walking all the way down the stairs.
The stairwell is the strongest and safest place during the hurricane because they are solid reinforced concrete walls from top to bottom.
The only problem is that it will take a long time for anyone to get to you in the aftermath in case of an emergency.
Travel Insurance During Hurricane Season
What if you are on business while traveling and you are in an area that is prone to hurricanes and tropical storms? How can you protect yourself during the time you are in these areas?
Delayed or Cancelled Flights
Delayed or Cancelled flights are covered if you have bought a travel insurance policy. You can be reimbursed for unexpected and added expenses because of it.
If you experience a trip interruption because of uninhabitable accommodations during a business trip or vacation, your travel insurance can cover having to go home early.
There’s one important thing to know, however. If the storm is named, your travel insurance will not cover your travel issues. So make sure that you are smart about taking trips during hurricane season to the Atlantic region (East coast or Caribbean)
Hurricane Preparedness For Your Home
If you are at home there is a laundry list of things you need to do in order to prepare for a hurricane listed here
A few of the things you need to cover for hurricane safety are:
If you live close on the water, you should evacuate. Don’t wait until you are told to leave. It’s better to be safe and away from your home than to stay with your “stuff” and face danger.
Whether you chose to evacuate or not, be sure to let friends and family know your plans. Where you will be and where you will go if you must leave. It’s also a good idea to have a hard copy of emergency contact information for those you might need to reach.
Hurricane Preparedness Supplies
Generally, you should always plan to have enough supplies to last a minimum of 3 days in a hurricane.
Still, there is potential that you can be without power for weeks if the storm is severe enough. I say that to impress upon you that your supplies could save you in an emergency situation so don’t skimp on what you need.
Hurricane Preparedness Supply Checklist
At Ready.gov, they provide a list of hurricane preparedness supplies that you need to have, as well as some additional supplies you should consider having as well.
You can download a copy of the supplies list so that you can take it to the store with you.
General List Of Hurricane Supplies
These are just a few of the things you will need and if you want to know everything you should get for your hurricane supply list go download it from Ready.gov
Hurricane Preparedness Training For Employees and Family
Now that we have covered how to prepare your business and home for a hurricane from the property standpoint, let’s talk about covering and protecting the people as well.
First, let’s talk about the family...
Hurricane Safety For Families
Knowing how to react to the potential dangers of a hurricane is something that highly important to protect you and your family.
In an emergency situation, having a plan in place that has been rehearsed will allow your family to act swiftly should the need to evacuate arise.
It is good to delegate jobs to each family member and practice going through the plan for a short period of time so that everyone is comfortable with their roles.
The goal is to make sure that your family knows what will happen in as many situations that could come up as possible.
Hurricane Preparedness: Email to Employees
It’s a smart decision to have an email template that can be quickly sent to your employees. At fema.gov has an email template that can be used to send to your employees at a moments notice.
If you plan to create your own template, make sure that it gives them a general idea of what they will need to stay safe during a hurricane.
Tell them about evacuation zones, family communication plans and to check their insurance coverage to make sure they are properly covered.
We hope this has helped you protect your business, home and family and given you some ideas on how you can improve your hurricane safety plan during 2018 hurricane season.
Owning a high end home is almost synonymous with the American Dream.
Most people aspire to own a luxury home with spacious rooms and a great view.
For those of us who achieve this dream, we quickly come to understand the old saying, "More money, More problems".
First, getting a loan requires much more patience because Jumbo loans take more time to close, then when you factor in that 40% of luxury homes are under insured, buying a luxury home can be a real nightmare...
But it doesn't have to be.
In fact, having your high end home insured properly only requires a few key points, which we'll get into in a few minutes.
But first let's look at some things you need to think about first.
High Value House Insurance
The first thing you need to know about buying a high end house is that it has about a 50% chance of being in a catastrophe prone area. These homes are typically in coastal areas, which means that a significant amount of them are going to be waterfront properties
High Value Insurance: Valuing Waterfront Properties
Generally speaking, a high value home is a relatively small market and is defined as having a value in excess of $1 million dollars.
Here are some things to consider when buying waterfront property insurance:
These things are vital because they all can increase or decrease the amount you pay in premiums for your home.
You should make sure that your insurance agent knows that you have a collection of rare books or custom wood floors. In the event that your home is lost and needs to be rebuilt, these items will be factored into the replacement costs.
Many high net worth homeowners lose their investment because they only have enough insurance to cover the mortgage or the sale price of the home and not the replacement value of the home because of the specialty construction work and other high value items that may need to be replaced.
When you are buying high value insurance, especially for a waterfront home, you may need to ask about general insurance, flood insurance and wind insurance because these are typically the ways that luxury homes are damaged.
How To Get The Right High End Homeowners Insurance
Unfortunately for 85% of high net worth home insurance policy holders, it's very difficult to get the right coverage and stay properly covered over time if you go directly to the insurance carrier for coverage.
They will give you the best high end home insurance they can, however, unless you have time to shop multiple carriers on a consistent basis, you will quickly become under insured.
That's because high value homes tend to be the most up to date homes and every time they are updated, the value of the home can change drastically.
And it's very common for luxury homes to actually overpay for less coverage because of it.
If you want the best luxury homeowners insurance you need to get a quote from an independent agent. Independent insurance agents can give you options that the insurance carriers can't. For example, we work with over 20 carriers which allows us to offer great coverage while also finding the most competitive rates available. It's like having a personal shopper.
We also review your policy frequently so that we can make sure that you are properly covered at all times.
If you would like a quote for your high value home, contact us today