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
Many people dread hearing the phrase, “You’re being audited” and it is definitely an understandable feeling.
Being audited could get you and your business into a lot of trouble if you haven’t been keeping up with your paperwork.
But being audited doesn’t have to be a scary thing, if you are prepared. That’s why we put together this “audit 101” post to help you feel confident if you should ever run into an audit.
What Is Auditing?
In simple terms, an audit is a formal check of financial accounts whether for a business or an individual.
An auditor contacts you with a request for documents.
This is usually the point where business owners start to feel the stress rise. The don’t know what to do and this is also when business owners start to fall victim to their own ignorance, for lack of a better term.
The reality is that, unless you have a good working knowledge of how the audit process works, you will likely end up paying money that you don’t owe.
The audit process is fairly straightforward. These are the six steps:
The problem most people face when being audited starts right around step number 1. The freak out when the auditor requests the documentation.
Should You Buy Audit Insurance?
Some tax preparation companies offer audit insurance as a way to easy the mind of worried tax payers. But the odds of even being audited are fairly low so it doesn’t really make financial sense to pay for audit insurance even if the fee is a small amount.
For example, some tax services and softwares available on the market offer a type of tax audit defense program starting for as little as $40 a year but can range up to about $300 per year.
Still, to the average taxpayer who lives in horror of being audited this seems like a great deal…
Until you find out that only about 1% of individual taxpayers get audited, and for the average American who earns less than $75,000 annually those rates drop.
On the high end of the spectrum, those who earn as much as $5 million per year only have about a 10% chance of being audited.
Audit Help Is Here For You
Now that you know that you are highly unlikely to be audited, let me tell you what you can expect if you are one of our clients.
We have spent 30 years in the insurance industry looking after our customers wherever we can. One of those areas that we focus on is Audit help.
We provide audit assistance to our clients that feel the need for help should they be selected for an audit.
As soon as you find out that you are being audited give us a call.
Don’t contact the auditor to ask questions as this will only cause potential problems during your audit.
An auditor is not their to help you understand the audit process so your first call should be to us.
We help you with the jargon, as well as allow you to have your audit hosted locally in our offices to give you the confidence to successfully navigate the audit.
We will walk you through the process so that you understand what to expect and what you will need to get through your audit successfully.
When you become a client of ours, we always want to make sure we have your best interest in mind and audit assistance is just one of the services we provide.
Join Us Today!
If we don’t have your business already contact us immediately. If you earn $200,000 per year you are more likely to be audited and the average audit ends up costing over $10,000.
We can help you have peace of mind just by having a policy with us.
If you're a landlord then you always have something to think about. Either you're looking for the right tenants, doing repairs, or one of the many other things on your to do list. One of the major things that people are concerned about when they own a rental property is a loss of income if the property needs serious repair work.
If your tenants can't stay in the property, then they won't pay the rent which means you will have to pay out of pocket to cover the mortgage on the property. I'm sure that's not what you had in mind when you decided to become a landlord.
Thankfully, landlord insurance can help you cover your property from damages and you from losing income if the damages make the property temporarily unlivable.
What is landlord insurance?
Landlord Insurance is a little different than homeowners insurance. Why? Landlords have a much different risk factor when it comes to owning and protecting a rental property. The typical landlord insurance policy will address a number of risks that are highly specific to a landlord, which we will cover later in this post.
A landlord faces the risk of damage to property, as well as injury to the tenant that will not be covered in the average homeowners insurance policy
Do You Need Landlord Insurance?
Many new landlords will ask if they even need landlord insurance for rental property and often they don't end up running into any serious issues with the property. But not having the right is a huge risk, not only to you, but to your family as well as the tenants in the property.
It's vital that you understand the risks you run by covering a property with a homeowners policy instead of having a landlord insurance policy for your rental property. So, instead of trying to convince you, here's 8 things that should help you see the importance of having a landlord policy.
Landlord Insurance VS. Homeowners Insurance
The long and short of it is that if you have a tenant for more than one month they will likely be considered a long term renter. Rental Property is very different from a home that is occupied by the owner from an insurance standpoint.
A non-landlord tenant (the homeowner who lives in the home) has a much different risk profile than a renter. Some of the 8 risks stated above can be reduced if you require a copy of the tenants renters insurance but even then you still have a great deal of risk placed on your shoulders.
What Does Landlord Insurance Cover You For?
You get landlord property protection, which usually covers the dwelling, other structures like detached garage or fence, and any personal property used for maintaining the rental like lawn mowers and snow blowers.
You also get Landlord liability protection to help pay for another person's medical bills or your legal expenses if someone gets injured in your rental property and you are found to be responsible.
As optional coverage you can add:
Landlord Insurance usually doesn't cover equipment breakdowns, shared property or the tenants belongings.
Does Landlord Insurance Cover Tenant Damage?
"Does landlord insurance cover tenant damage?" is one of the most common questions that potential landlords typically ask.
The answer... It depends.
The actual damage must be covered in your policy and in some cases a tenant can damage a property without it being covered.
An example of what would most likely be covered? If the tenant has a kitchen fire that damages the property. You will still need to pay your deductible before your insurance benefits are in effect but after that you should be covered.
If your tenant were to vandalize the property, however, you would not be covered unless you purchased additional vandalism coverage.
Also, your tenants belongings will not be covered unless they have their own renters insurance policy
Read More: How To Insure Rental Property
Does Landlord Insurance Protect Commercial Rental Properties?
Typically speaking, landlord policies don't cover commercial property because these types of property carry a much different types of risks. Call us if you need more information about covering a commercial rental property.
Rental Property Insurance for Multiple Properties
Multifamily rental properties can be a little more complex. Many insurance companies will write coverage for a single family home or a duplex but once you go past two units it becomes a little more difficult to find insurers if it is owned under a personal name. If owned through a business entity, some companies will insure small apartments over 6 units.
To fully understand your best course of action, call us for a free consultation.
Temporary Landlord Insurance
If you are a landlord that wants to try your hand with short term rental apps like Airbnb, then you probably know that they have a "host guarantee" that promises to pay up to $1 million to a host for property damage caused by a renter.
Be aware that this guarantee is not insurance.
And if your insurance company finds out that you're frequently renting your home short term to paying guests, they will most likely claim that you are running a hotel or bed and breakfast business, which isn't covered under your policy.
If you plan to run a short term rental business be sure to call us for a free consultation so that you have all of your liabilities covered when you start.
How Much Is Landlord Insurance Per Month?
The simple answer is that landlord insurance coverage is typically 20% more that your homeowners insurance policy would be for the same property. That being said, there are many times that it would make sense to look at adding more coverage to make sure that all of your risks are covered.
For example, if you have a home in Chesapeake, Va that you lived in an paid $1,068 per year for homeowners insurance, you would be looking paying about $1,281 per year for landlord coverage.
When you consider the monthly increase in our example, your payments only go up from $89 to $106, the increase
Your actual rates will vary based on the homes age, how it's built and other factors so rather than estimate you should just call us so we can help you find the rate that you will actually pay.
What are Typical Landlord Insurance Rates?
Landlord insurance is slightly more expensive than homeowners insurance. The good news is that it's also tax deductible because it's considered an expense related to running a business.
If you are having a hard time nailing down an estimate of what you could pay for landlord insurance give us a call at 1 (888) 258-8808 for a free consultation or get an online quote today