Thursday, June 27, 2013

Do I need an umbrella or excess liability policy?

I hope, you hope, we hope that the unthinkable never happens. 
Insurance is meant to cover sudden and incidental-often unthinkable losses.
No matter how careful we are, sudden and incidental is always hiding and waiting.  A disaster can happen at any time.
Umbrella policy or excess liability policy provides additional coverage for when the unthinkable happens.  A devastating loss can take an emotional toll on all involved, but it doesn't have to be a financial burden.  Whether you are a recent college graduate protecting future earnings or a retiree protecting life savings an umbrella policy is for you.  
For many people an umbrella or excess liability policy can be as inexpensive as $170 a year; so next time you talk to your agent ask him about umbrella or excess liability policy.

Monday, June 24, 2013

What to look for when buying auto liability insurance.

Whether you are buying auto insurance for the very first time, or you have been insured for many years, my tips on buying liability insurance should be useful and keep you properly insured.

Before you think about price and coverage you should have an idea of where you want to buy insurance.  You have two choices: go online and do it yourself or go through a local agent.  I strongly suggest you find a local agent.  Ill talk about why some other time.  This blog post is only regarding auto liability coverage.

Most states require you to have auto liability insurance and most states have set minimum requirements.

A minimum requirement might look like this:
$25,000 per person/ $50,000 per accident.

States don't have maximum limit on how much you can buy, but insurance companies do.  Most auto liability insurance insurance company will sell you are $500,000 combined single limit.  Some companies can sell limits of $1,000,000 per person/$1,000,000 per accident.

How much liability insurance do you need?  The answer is: the more the better.

After reading the above line some of you might dismiss the article; and after meeting with thousands of people I know why.  You probably are $ conscious and don't want to waste $ especially not on insurance.  

But when you get your auto insurance quote ask the insurance professional to provide you with 3-5 quotes.
First quote- state minimum limits
Second quote-$100,000 per person/$300,000 per accident
Third quote-$300,000 CSL
Fourth quote-$500,000 CSL
If $1,000,000 liability limits are available ask for that quote as well.

What most of you will realize it this: 
1.  State minimum limits, although cheap, are not enough coverage and they keep you in exposed to a great financial peril.  You should NEVER, and I do mean NEVER buy lower than $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident.
2.  Difference in premium between $100,000 per person $300,000 per accident and $500,000 combined single limit is insignificant.  For me difference in premium was about $80 a year.  

So next time you look for auto insurance check to see how inexpensive increasing your auto liability limits it really is.  It might be the most important decision of your life.