There are 15 types of people who absolutely must consider an umbrella insurance policy if they want to make sure that they have the right amount of protection that they need to control and protect their families and their assets from loss.
In this article, we will talk about who these 15 types of people are, as well as how umbrella insurance works and what you need to do to get the right amount of coverage at the most competitive rates on the market.
How Umbrella Insurance Works
Umbrella Insurance is essentially “extra” liability insurance.
If you have a homeowners policy or auto insurance and have a claim against you, umbrella insurance will help pay for any liability that exceeds the liability insurance that is in your homeowners or auto policy.
For example, you run a read light and injure a surgeon in a Ferrari. The vehicle has $200,000 worth of damage, the doctor breaks his arm and has $300,000 worth of lost wages on top of $50,000 worth of medical bills.
If your cars insurance policy has $150,000 of liability you would be responsible for $400,000 of out of pocket.
Without umbrella insurance coverage, you would most likely have to use your savings or liquidate a portion or your assets to pay for this.
However, umbrella insurance would pay for this extra $400,000 if you did have it.
Who Needs Umbrella Insurance?
Now that you know the basics of how umbrella insurance works, let’s see who should be considering umbrella insurance in the first place.
People who own property
If you own any property of value then you need to consider umbrella insurance coverage.
Have significant savings or other assets
We live in a society that can lead to legal actions that could wipe out your families wealth.
If you have an decent net worth it is important that you protect it in every way possible.
Travel outside the U.S.
If you are in an accident while traveling abroad your normal insurance coverage may not cover you. In these cases, it is always wise to protect yourself from any unforeseen loses.
Own things that can lead to injury (pools, trampolines and some breeds of dogs)
If you have a trampoline or pool in your backyard and someone is injured, you’re homeowners policy may not cover it as a liability. There could also be injuries that exceed the amount of liability coverage that you have in your homeowners policy. Having an umbrella policy will keep you from having to pay out of pocket for any surprise accidents because of pools.
If you're a landlord, you are more likely to be sued than someone who isn’t. It’s just a fact. Also a fact, you need to consider getting an umbrella insurance policy.
Coaching kids’ sports
You mentor the youth and help them build character through sports…
But one slip and fall could lead to a big loss if your aren’t covered fully.
Nonprofit board member
Being a board member for a nonprofit is a huge responsibility and it comes with a lot of risk. Best to stay safe and protect yourself from excess liabilities.
You know the saying, “No good deed goes unpunished”. While we always hope that isn’t true it’s always a great idea to be prepared...
Regular product and business review poster
You see it as part of your civic duty to warn potential customers about poor quality products or service from companies you do business with. If you say something that hurts a business they could sue for defamation of character, which would put your personal business in jeopardy.
Athlete in sports where you could easily injure others
If you are a skier or participate in any other extreme sports and you injure someone, that person may need more money that your personal liability covers alone.
Teen driver at home
Teens are typically not as polished of drivers as an adult. It’s best to cover your cars with umbrella insurance to make sure that your teen is not putting your life’s savings at risk.
Own more than one residence
Own a vacation rental or summer home? Better look into an umbrella policy to cover anything that goes over the total amount of your regular policies liability.
Employ domestic workers
Having a baby sitter could become a disaster if you aren’t fully covered.
Having house guests and hosting parties is great fun and an excellent way to get to know your neighbors but no one wants to risk losing their home because of it.
Active on social media
Some people use social media to speak their mind, which could present a little danger when it comes to slander and libel claims.
How To Buy Umbrella Insurance
If you are among the list of those who need umbrella insurance you need to know this before we go any further.
If you have the minimum liability on your car insurance policy of $100,000 there is over a 50% chance that a personal liability settlement would exceed your total coverage amount. As a matter of fact, 19% of settlements had an award over $1 million according to Current Award Trends in Personal Injury.
The good news…
Umbrella insurance is likely sold at much lower rates that the liability insurance attached to your car insurance.
Umbrella coverage is sold in increments of $1 million with the first million costing between $150 to $300 per year and every million after usually costing an additional $100.
How To Get An Umbrella Insurance Quote
Getting an umbrella insurance quote seems like it should be a very simple and straightforward thing because it really is.
The main issue that people run into though is getting insurance buy going directly to the insurer that is most popular.
The reason that this is not always a good idea is because they tend to give you what you want at a whatever price they have.
While the insurance policy is good, the rates are “one size fits all”
What most people want is the right insurance at the best rates…
That’s why we work with over 40 insurance carriers to find our clients the most competitive rates on umbrella insurance available today.
Get an umbrella insurance quote today
Fill in the form on this page to get an umbrella policy quote
What Is Cyber Liability Insurance Coverage
Cyber liability policy covers losses that come from cyber attacks. Typically, policies will include coverage for first party and third party coverage.
First Party Cyber Coverage
A First party coverage helps protect the company from losses that it directly sustains. These losses may be damages to electronic data stored on the companies database or computers.
It also helps to protect your business from a loss of income or extra expenses due to losses cause by a computer system interruption
One of the most valuable coverage benefits is that cyber insurance can help cover the cost for marketing and public relations to protect your company’s reputation should a cyber attack occur.
This type of coverage is also known as Crisis Management.
Third Party Cyber Insurance
Third party coverage protects your business from individual claims from people who have been injured as a byproduct of your business experiencing a cyber attack.
Some of the things that third party covers include
Some policies may also allow you to cover cyber terrorism and funds transfer fraud.
Who needs cyber liability insurance?
Often many people struggle to know when they need to get cyber insurance coverage for their business. One of the best ways to know when you need to consider getting a cyber liability insurance policy is to take our short cyber insurance questionnaire
Cyber Insurance Questionnaire
If you answered yes to either of those questions you need to consider cyber liability insurance.
What many people don’t know is that these days just owning a homeowners insurance policy means that you most likely have a very small amount of cyber insurance to help cover a limited amount of risk.
Getting the best coverage boils down to making sure you and an Insurance pro go over your potential risks.
How To Get The Right Cyber Insurance For Your Small Businesses
Did you know that 62% of data breach victims are small to mid sized businesses?
That is a massive problem, especially when you consider that 75% of U.S businesses are underinsured.
No wonder the average small-business that experiences a cyber security attack ends up paying over $20,000.
Each small business is unique and faces many different types of risk and also different levels of risk as well.
For example, a local clothing retailer with 3 employees that has a closed network is exposed to a much lower risk than a regional gym that has 2000 employees and 50 locations.
The difference isn’t just the exposure that your company faces, it also is your employees, your customers and more.
To protect your business from cyber attacks you have to know what to cover and how to react to a data breach.
Find Out Your Cyber Insurance Rates
By now it should be apparent that you need cyber liability insurance for yourself and your business…
And you need it today.
Like most people though, I’m sure that you also want to make sure that you don’t overpay for cyber insurance.
The fact is that we all have budgets that we want to stay within.
Although there are many factors to the policy rate prices, the average ranges from as low a $750 up to $8,000 for small businesses.
Find out how much coverage you need
Call us and get a quote to cover your business today or get an online quote
1 (888) 258-8808
In December 2018 a posted their story of loss on lawnsite.com
"4 landscaping companies including myself got robbed of commercial equipment Friday
Overall, this landscaper lost over $25k in equipment without counting trailers.
This is a big loss and its one that would have to be paid out of pocket to recover the theft if these landscaping businesses don't have the proper insurance coverage.
And while having the right insurance is an expense, it should always be seen as an asset.
How Much Does Landscaping Insurance Cost?
More often than not, people start out our conversation by asking something similar to this...
"I'm a landscaper in Chesapeake, Virginia and I need insurance for my business. How much will it cost?"
Even though it's an easy question to understand what they don't know is how many different factors actually go into the answer to this question.
I could talk to two landscapers and the answer for one would almost certainly not be the answer for the other.
One of the major factors is the amount of coverage that your landscaping business actually needs
Basic Landscaping and Lawn Care Insurance Coverage
What does landscaping insurance cover?
The simple answer to that question can be found by knowing that you will need some kind of coverage in these two areas.
This will help to protect your business from the most common liability claims, things like property damage and bodily harm. This coverage is typically required by most clients.
Like our landscapers in the beginning of the article, Most landscapers use a business vehicle to carry tools and supplies that they might need available for most jobs.
The main difference between Commercial auto insurance and a standard auto policy is that most personal car insurance policies limit the use of vehicles for work.
You can also cover landscaper specific work vehicles like Pickups, dump trucks and utility trailers.
Other Types of Insurance for Landscapers
From here, there are a couple other types of insurance landscapers should consider when buying coverage for their business.
Business Owners Policy (BOP)
A BOP, or Business Owners Policy, is a product that combines general liability, commercial buildings and personal property coverage into one package.
Workers' Compensation, which is sometimes called workmans comp, helps to protect your employees should the be injured or get ill from their work.
Workers Comp Insurance also helps the business to protect from paying unexpected medical bills for employees out of pocket.
Getting Landscapers insurance through Ferguson Insurance Center
We want to help you protect your business by getting you the right landscaping insurance at the best price available.
We shop over 40 insurance carriers to find the most competitive insurance rates for you
Get a Landscapers Insurance Quote Today
What does it mean to have a culture of safety?
A good safety culture creates an environment that influences workers to want to do the right thing—even when nobody’s watching. It promotes and recognizes the safe work of employees. It makes clear to employees that doing a good job means stopping work if they feel unsafe.
Every company already has a safety culture. However, many owners are frustrated because it isn’t the culture they want. Often safety begins as a top priority—until it starts interfering with production, or until it starts eating up profits when it calls for an expensive piece of safety equipment.
To have an effective safety culture, business owners must make safety a core principle of the company. Holding safety as a core principle means safety must be considered in all company choices, receiving equal weight with quality and production on the job-site.
No matter what state a company’s safety culture is in, there is always room for improvement and always a way to elevate its importance.
How can a company change its safety culture?
This 10-step list will help you analyze and improve your safety culture:
What else can you do to get your employees onboard?
None of this will work if your employees feel like they are being manipulated. Employees must know that you care about them personally. They must know that you are not making these changes to improve your bottom line but to make your organization a better and safer place to work. The improvement in your bottom line will be only a byproduct of these changes.
No matter how big your organization is, you must get face time with the front line. Remember their names. Show up onsite and talk to your workers personally. Invest in their lives. Get their feedback and show them how valuable they are to your company. These changes are not focused on how to improve your organization but on how to improve each individual who works in your organization. The best companies are not the best because they have the best equipment or processes. They are the best because they have the best people.
You’ll find it is easier to effect cultural change when you focus on improving your employees’ lives and making their jobs and decisions easier. Encouraging transparency, honesty, and integrity is a sure-fire way to improve work environments. The job-site is no different.
These efforts may seem overwhelming, especially if you want to change the culture of your entire company. Start small by focusing only on safety culture. Take baby steps to develop goals and strategies, implement proactive accountability, be consistent, and get more face time with your employees. Over time, you will start seeing this spread throughout your organization. Remember, if you can change the perspective of just one employee a day and you have 500 employees, in less than two years you will have the culture you desire.
More information on these concepts can be found in the book 6-Hour Safety Culture by Tim Autrey.
When you are in the insurance business for over 25 years you start to see a common line of questions that will likely happen.
One of these questions that are sure to be asked when talking to a first time landlord is whether there is really a difference in homeowners insurance and landlord insurance.
In this article, we’ll cover:
Landlord Insurance vs. Homeowners insurance
landlord insurance coverage for multiple rental properties
Typical landlord insurance costs
What the best landlord insurance companies are
Let’s dive into it.
Also Read: 15 Types of People Who Need Umbrella Insurance
Is Landlord Insurance More Expensive than Homeowners?
Yes, landlord insurance is typically more expensive than homeowners insurance by up to 20%.
For example, if you own a home that has a homeowners insurance policy that costs $800 per year, expect to pay somewhere around $1,000 per year for landlord insurance.
We’ll cover why the cost goes up a little later.
Most people who ask this question are trying to avoid spending more money on insurance than they are used to, which unfortunately means that they are likely asking the wrong question.
The right question would be “is there a difference between landlord insurance and homeowners insurance coverage?”
Landlord Insurance vs Homeowner Policy
Let’s say you are moving your family into a new house and keeping your last home as a rental property.
You have been paying homeowners insurance from the time you bought that first home. Now that you are getting ready to rent the house you are wondering what the difference is between homeowners insurance and landlord insurance.
First, let’s dive into homeowners insurance coverage.
Homeowners insurance is usually only made to cover owner occupied, single family residences. These policies typically just cover the homeowner if their house burns down, or if they need to cover medical or legal bills when someone is injured on their property.
Most of these policies will also cover an occasional short-term rental but if you rent it out on more than just a couple of weeks per year, you may want to consider getting landlord insurance coverage.
What Does A Landlord Insurance Policy Cover?
Landlord insurance is a much better option for someone who plans to rent their property for full time…
But, before you just go buy landlord insurance you need to know what it covers and what will not be covered.
Landlord insurance policies typically cover:
This is what is typically covered in a basic landlord insurance policy but if you want to make sure you’re covered in as many areas as possible then you may consider adding optional riders to cover things such as:
This additional coverage will help you prevent having to come out of your own pocket to pay for unexpected emergencies that could arise.
*Note: These types of coverage are great for the landlord, however, they do not help the tenant cover their own personal property. That is why it is important to require renters insurance and to see a copy of the tenants policy.
Other Landlord Insurance Policy Types
Outside of a general landlord insurance policy that you will need to cover any rental properties you may own, it would be wise to consider getting a few other types of optional insurance coverage.
You may also want to consider owning your rental properties under an legal entity like an LLC to help further protect yourself from liability.
Landlord Insurance Coverage For Rental Properties
For the real estate investor that owns 10 units and up there are a few more things that have to be considered from the beginning.
Real estate investors who own 10+ units will have to deal with emergency repairs, vandalism and tree removal on a more consistent basis than someone who owns less property.
They will need to consider protections that help them cover short term vacancy and short term rentals more often simply because they can’t afford to spend so much time on these issues because of the size and scale of their rental property business.
Typical Landlord Insurance Cost
So now that we have covered the many different aspects of landlord insurance you can most likely see that the typical price of landlord insurance coverage varies because of the amount and different types of liability a landlord will face and also how often they are likely to face it.
Now, lets look a a simple example to see how much a typical landlord insurance policy costs.
Let’s say that you own a $200,000 single family home that you want to rent out that with mortgage, Taxes and homeowners insurance ($104 per month) comes out to about $1,291.
In the basic example given at the beginning of the article, your new insurance policy would end up being around $125 per month ($1,500 per year) on the high end of the estimate. That’s not really a huge jump.
This raises your monthly mortgage payment to $1,312 per month.
You find a tenant who is in the military and just got stationed here and wants to find a comfortable home she and her family can stay in for the next 3-5 years. She is willing to pay $1,500 per month.
This scenario means that you will receive just under $200 extra per month. As you can see, there is no real cause for concern here.
Let’s see another scenario
Johnny owns a triplex and want to plans to rent it out. The property is located in a decent part of town but the area has had a few vandalism issues in recent years.
Johnny wants to cover his triplex with more optional riders to insure the property from vandals, burglary and other issues. Plus, he want to get an umbrella policy to make sure he is covered in case someone is injured on the premises.
Johnny gets an insurance quote that show that his premiums will be $2000 per year, which sounds like a lot of money until Johnny does the math.
He realizes $2,000 per year for a triplex end up only costing $667 per unit each year, or $56 per unit per month.
After all things are considered, Johnny realizes that his mortgage, taxes and insurance only end up costing him $1854 per month while his total monthly rental income end up being $3,300 and puts an extra $1,446 in his pocket each month.
As you can see from these two examples, the cost of landlord insurance is not as important as the net income of the property.
Plus, when you consider just how much it would cost if either of these cases got just one liability claim against them the cost becomes negligible.
One thing that is important to remember is that each insurer offers something different based on the types of insurance they focus on and want to cover, which is all based on the amount of risk they are willing to tolerate.
Therefore, here is a quick list of the best insurance companies for landlord insurance
Best Insurance Company For Landlord Insurance Policy
If you would like to get a landlord insurance policy quote call us immediately at 1(888)258-8808 or get an online quote here.
Self driving cars are the future of the automobile industry but with the new autonomous vehicle technology changes comes questions about how the auto insurance industry will be affected by it.
Companies from Kroger to Google, through its subsidiary Waymo, and Tesla all have their hands in the pot for technology and services using driverless vehicles to improve customer service, road safety and more.
In this article we’ll cover a few of the most popular question about self driving car problems that we could face in the future.
Self Driving Car Problems
Many critics say that self driving cars will never happen for one reason or another.
The say that the idea of having a driverless car is dangerous and that they will fail because accidents and injuries will happen, all without anyone having true legal responsibility for an autonomous vehicle which is essentially just a robot without a master.
You may be wondering to yourself whether these driverless cars are good or bad.
Some of the common thoughts are:
Will self driving vehicles take away jobs?
Can they be hacked?
What if they get stranded because of potholes or snow?
These are all valid concerns, even though most are beyond the scope of our website.
Still, let's take a moment and look at how autonomous vehicles could affect your car insurance policies in the future.
Self Driving Cars and Hackers
The question of self driving cars being hacked is fundamental. After all, any technology that is linked to the internet has been the subject of a security breach. And while there have never been any reports of a cyber attack on an autonomous vehicle, realistically, it's only a matter of time until we start to see reports of it.
So what should be considered when we think about protecting ourselves and our future ai powered mini vans, sedans and coupes from cyberattacks?
Protect your Identity
These vehicles are most likely going to help us stay connected while we are on the road. To hackers, staying connected gives them a huge amount of information about us. Who we are, where we commonly go, and where we are at the current time could all be information on the menu for ambitious hackers who are willing to dig for the details.
Protect your vehicle
Imagine your autonomous car taking you on an "unplanned vacation" while you are on your way to pick up the kids from school. Only later to find out that some teen with a touch for tech thought it would be a great prank.
The future version of prank calls can be more dangerous than ever before.
Protect your devices
More and more the internet of things is becoming a reality. All of the devices in our homes will eventually communicate with each other and one of the biggest weaknesses could end up being our phones, smart tvs and self driving cars. In the future, being hacked will mean that all of your information will be accessed, not just the files of your computer or phone.
Those smart refrigerators, home lightings systems, even video games your kids enjoy will be open to hackers.
How do you protect your family in the future?
Know what steps to take if your self driving car gets hacked.
If you have any connected devices, you should already be looking into protecting yourself from cyber security theft. Many homeowners policies have a small amount of coverage but you should get a policy consultation to be sure.
Teach the family to be security aware.
Most cyber breaches happen when someone inadvertently does something they were not supposed to do. Many times it can be as simple as downloading an app or inserting a USB drive. Teaching your family what should be done and not be done with connected devices will be one of the most important things we can do moving into the future.
Self Driving Cars and Safety
One of the hopes that people have is that these driverless cars will make the road safer and because of the fact that humans are always more unpredictable than robots.
Humans get tired, humans get distracted and humans hesitate.
All of these things are not something that artificial intelligence would do in a vehicle so the assumption is that autonomous vehicles will make the road safer than it has ever been before.
But is it true?
Curious to see what a ride in a driverless taxi is like? Watch this.
Self Driving Cars and Accidents
Axios conducted a study that looks at vehicle incidents in California involving self driving cars for the years of 2014 through 2018 and found that out of 38 incidents all but one were caused by the humans in the vehicle.
The most odd thing is that, of those 38 incidents, three were caused by humans intentionally attacking a self driving car by hitting it or climbing on top of it.
With this data, it's hard to say what to expect if the self driving car was at fault for a collision simply because their has not been enough accidents to see a common thread.
But this does lead us to the question about insuring a self driving car
Self Driving Cars and Insurance
The question at hand is this...
Who is liable if a self driving car is at fault for an accident?
The answer is just as groundbreaking as the technology itself.
If a self driving car is found to have caused a car accident without human error being a part of the cause then the manufacturer takes on the liability.
Google, Volvo, and Mercedes-Benz have already accepted liability for these types of cases. Tesla has gone as far as offering an insurance program to purchasers of their autonomous cars.
Why are they so confident?
Primarily because the data shows that 94% of all accidents are caused by preventable human error.
But, the process of being able to prove that no human error was present isn't very clear at this moment. Expect that there will be years of legal battles to come before there is a clear understanding of these procedures.
Self Driving Cars Pros and Cons
So after all of this, what are the pros and cons of self driving cars?
First, the pros:
Self Driving Cars - Pros
Some people believe that human operated vehicles will be banned in the next 20 years or so and with it we should see a decline in deadly road crashes, as well as car insurance premiums.
No more drunk driving accidents
If an AI is driving (and the human doesn't interact with the car) then it will save thousands of lives each year.
No more traffic tickets
Police would no longer need to spend time writing traffic tickets, which would lead to more important crimes being prevented.
Self Driving Cars - Cons
Self Driving Car Prices
The cost of these self driving cars would be significantly higher than the average vehicle.
Self driving cars are heavily dependent on computers, which means that they are more vulnerable to being hacked than the cars of today.
Inclement weather conditions
The self driving cars we have today can handle normal driving conditions but can't handle snow or rain as well.
These are just a few of the pros and cons of self driving cars but what we know is the future of the automotive industry is going to revolve around self driving cars. Whatever happens within this industry will have the potential to affect almost every other sector of the economy for the foreseeable future.
When will self driving cars be available?
Fully Autonomous vehicles are rumored to be available already, though most of the car companies point to the early 2020's. Still, we don't know how long it will take for self driving cars to have clear legal precedents in terms of liability, as well as when they will be likely to handle bad weather conditions.
My advice, prepare for the future by staying prepared and cautious about what may come.
For over 10 years, Bruce Gilbert and his wife, Alice ran a workers compensation insurance fraud scheme that paid them over $700,000.
That's a very long time to collect workers compensation benefits fraudulently and it's quite a large sum to have to pay back when you get caught.
Still, some employees, business owners and even some doctors and lawyers plot against workers compensation insurance companies to get money for nothing.
For Bruce Gilbert, the only work he had to do for nearly 10 years was to talk to investigators like a 5 year old. He even went as far as to tell the investigators that his favorite foods were "Pizza and spaghetti" and that his favorite books were "about animals".
He and his wife claimed that he had a regressive mental ailment that gave him the mental capacity similar to that of a toddler.
During the time that Bruce thought he wasn't being watched, he would drive, golf and even hunt, until the day he was arrested.
A golf course in Columbia county, Fl.
He and his wife were each placed on 15 years probation and ordered to pay back the $774,000 they received illegitimately.
This story highlights the massive problem of workers' comp fraud. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, workers compensation insurance fraud costs businesses $30 billion annually.
The Coalition Against Insurance Fraud says all types of insurance fraud cost the average American household about $950 a year.
The most common type of Workers' Compensation Insurance fraud is claim-related fraud
The definition of claim-related fraud - when an employee attempts to gain a workers' comp benefit by falsely stating an injury or illness occurred at work or by exaggerating an existing injury or illness.
Top 10 Most Common Workers Comp Insurance Fraud Warning Signs
Workers' Compensation Insurance companies see a lot of fraud, and because of that these companies can also see the trends and signs that most commonly happen when someone or a group of people are trying to scam a workers compensation insurance company.
Here are 10 common "red flags" to look for when an employee is trying to commit workers' compensation fraud.
1. Monday morning injury reports - injury occurring first thing monday morning or lat on friday afternoon but not reported until monday
2. Employment change - immediately before or after termination, layoff, end of a big project or conclusion of seasonal work
3. Suspicious providers - medical providers or legal consultants have a history of handling suspicious claims, or groups of claimants using the same doctors and lawyers
4. No witnesses - there are no witnesses to the accident.
5. Conflicting descriptions - the injury report or medical history don't match the employee's description
6. History of claims - claimant has a history of making suspicious claims
7. Treatment is refused - claimant refuses a diagnostic to confirm the nature or extent of an injury
8. Late reporting - employee delays reporting injury or claim without a reasonable explanation
9. Claimant is hard to reach - they injured employee is hard to reach at home
10. Changes - claimant changes jobs, addresses and physicians frequently
If an employer notices that two or more of these red flag behaviors and begins to suspect that an employee may be committing claim-related fraud, they should report the behavior immediately to their workers' compensation insurance carrier.
Partial Government shutdown begins to impact flood insurance and home buying
According to Fox News, over 800,000 Americans are living without a paycheck. That number includes the people who work at FEMA, which recently posted this on their website.
If you already have flood insurance and have a claim, don’t worry because this will not affect you (yet?)
However, this is very troubling news for those who are currently buying a home.
Getting new flood insurance during the government shutdown is not going to happen as long as FEMA is out of work.
After such a hard hitting hurricane season, the effects of the government shutdown could be a real blow to many families living in the Carolina's, Florida and Georgia.
And it’s not just affecting flood insurance,it's starting to hit the entire U.S. Economy.
There is no way to know exactly when the government shutdown will end. One thing is for certain, If you are in the market to buy a home in a flood zone, be prepared to wait.
When people contact us about getting home insurance near water often it's someone who owns a vacation rental home.
Being located in Chesapeake, Va gives us a wide variety of people who want to buy a vacation home in places like Virginia beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk and Hampton but we also get some requests from our customers that live in the Carolina's and Georgia as well.
Owning a vacation rental homes near water are one of the staples for our business but on occasion we end up having clients that go into these investments based on the advice they get from books or TV shows that don't really give them a full picture of the ups and downs of owning a vacation rental home near water.
In this article we want to help you come to a more full understanding of what you should consider when buying a vacation rental home.
Also Read: 15 Types of People Who Need Umbrella Insurance
Are Vacation Rental Homes Good Investments?
Owning a vacation rental is a great investment for the right person. It gives you a comfortable way to enjoy your vacation and gives you the benefits of owning a real estate investment when you are in your primary home. But, the key is to know if you are the right person.
The right person has to be focused on what a vacation rental home actually is, a real estate investment, before they ever focus on what they get out of the deal. The right person also has to consider the financial strength of the investment first because, unlike buying a primary residence, banks tend to approach vacation rental property differently than they do with a home you plan to live in.
Many people who shop for vacation rental homes think that all they need to do is be able to put a down payment together and get a loan simply because they can afford it. Banks are usually a little more pessimistic when looking at a second home or vacation rental.
Because they consider what would likely happen in an economic downturn or if the borrow lost their primary source of income.
Most people who are living on their savings and other secondary income sources will prioritize paying for their primary residence over paying the mortgage for a vacation home.
The secret to investing in vacation homes is knowing who you will most likely be renting to.
Most first time vacation home investors think about renting the property through services like Airbnb or Homeaway, which could give you a decent amount of business. However, the place that you will most likely make the majority of rentals is..
Think of all of the people who want to have a beach front wedding.
How many of those people will likely hold a reception at a beachfront vacation rental with a pool? How many of those people do you think will want to use the same location to start their honeymoon?
Some times people will decide to get a large group of friends together a rent a vacation home.
How many? Sometimes over 20 people!
Do you think these people are going to be playing a game of chess by the fire? or are they likely to have a wild party?
These are some of the risks that you take on that most people who want to own a Vacation home for free (or for profit) just don't consider until it's too late.
What happens next is that you end up with a damaged vacation rental that isn't bringing in income, or worse, someone gets hurt on the property.
Another thing that many first timers don't think about?
Will you have staff?
Have you considered how much work it will take to maintain this vacation rental property? Are you going to be close enough to do the maintenance yourself? Are you skilled enough or do you even have the desire to maintain it yourself?
If not, you are going to need to hire staff or at least have a few service professionals that you can have maintain it on an as needed basis.
If you haven't considered this before you own the property, what was once a great investment and vacation home can turn into a money pit and a source of tension in the family.
BiggerPockets, a community for real estate investors, has a post that lists the 5 things no one tells you about owning vacation home rentals. Here's a quick review of their list. Be sure to read the full article for more detail.
1. Annual Returns can go negative
2. You My Not Be Able To Visit As Often As You'd Like
3. Repairs Can Come Up
4. HOA Dues Always
5. Vacation Homes Don't Always Increase in Value
Vacation Rental Home Insurance
One of the major costs that people don't always consider is that their vacation home near the beach is most likely in a flood zone that will eventually get hit by a hurricane.
If you don't properly insure a vacation rental home it's very likely the bank won't lend to you but if they do they could call the loan in full! Still, that is not the worst thing that could happen.
The worst thing that could happen is a severe weather pattern hits your area and you and the bank don't know that your vacation rental isn't properly covered until after you file a claim.
Flood Insurance Myths
You Don't Need Flood Insurance If Your Vacation Rental Isn't In A Flood Zone.
Even if you don't live in a flood prone area, if you own a vacation rental property anywhere on the east coast you know that we could be hit with a hurricane or a tropical storm at any time, as well as having to content with the risks of melting snow on occasion.
Homeowners Insurance Covers Flooding Because Its Water Damage
No homeowners insurance does not cover flooding just because they typically cover water damage. Homeowners Insurance will likely cover a pipe bursting but usually won't help in terms of flood damages.
Flood Maps Don't Change
Flood maps change overtime so you have to stay in contact with your insurance agent to be sure that you continue to check to see if your vacation rental is in a flood zone when flood maps are updated.
Problems Getting The Right Insurance For Vacation Home Rentals
Many people think that getting a vacation home rental property is as easy as going to google and typing "Vacation rental properties for sale" but that is not the case unfortunately.
It's not unheard of to see Vacation rental properties insurance policies get cancelled, even after closing on the home.
If you want to be certain that your vacation home will be covered properly and stay covered you need to know a few key things.
Not all insurance companies will cover vacation homes near water.
Getting home insurance near water can be difficult because many of these companies just don't want to take on the risk of having to pay out large claims in the first few years of holding a policy.
If you want to ensure a smooth process it's important to work with an independent insurance agent that can get home insurance near water from companies that are known to do business in those areas.
If you have been thinking about buying a vacation rental or already own one, it's going to be important that you continue to stay up to date with your flood map to make sure that you have the right flood insurance coverage. You should also consider how you will be insuring your home based on who you will be renting the property to, how much time during the year it could be vacant and who will be doing the maintenance.
If you want to work with an insurance agency that can cover homes near the beach, a river or any other body of water give Ferguson Insurance Center a call
...All of us face unexpected money problems at one point or another. Whether it’s job loss, an injury or the illness of a loved one. These kind of setbacks can put a damper on even the strongest of financial plans...
But these types of money problems don’t have to last a lifetime.
In this article, we’ll discuss 5 things you can do to fix your money problems so that you can get back on track no matter what comes your way.
How big is your financial problem?
Estimate how much it will cost for you to recover. For example, if you had an injury what would it take to cover your medical costs, plus lost wages during the time it will take to recover. You may not be able to pinpoint the costs down to the cent but it is important to have a clear idea of what resources you need to get through your setback.
Temporarily reduce your expenses.
There’s no easy way to put it. You will likely be a little uncomfortable but the goal here is to reduce your monthly costs to help speed up your process of getting back on stable footing financially. Depending on the size of your money problem, that could be as simple as cutting back on dining out and switching from Cable to Netflix or it could be as drastic as staying with family or downsizing to reduce rental costs.
How can you cover the problem?
Where can you get the money to cover the cost of financial setback you are going through? Can you cover it with your savings? Do you need to borrow from friends and family? Or do you need to use credit to handle it? Each has a negative and positive aspect so be sure to decide which option will fit your circumstances best.
Map your road back.
Based on how you cover the financial difficulty, how can you get back on track? For example, if you got a loan from a friend will you pay them back first? Or will you pay down your debts first? If so which ones? You need to take the time to prioritize where you money should be going so that you don’t have any decisions to make when you get it. Keep in mind, these aren’t permanent decisions so you can shift your focus once you have paid off your first priority.
Rebuild Your Emergency Fund.
The money problems you face in life are guaranteed to hit eventually. It’s inevitable but if you try to stay prepared then you put yourself on the fast track to the road to recovery. Set a goal to dedicate a specific amount of your monthly income to a savings account that is only for emergencies. Then, focus on saving three to six months of your living expenses in that account. This will help you in the event of any future financial setbacks you may face.