Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I rent. Can I get insurance for my things?

Yes, you can and you should. Renters insurance is an affordable way to protect your belongings. Renters insurance also provides liability coverage, theft, fire, damage by vehicles, living expenses, vandalism, and smoke damage.

Some people feel like they do not have enough valuable possessions to worry about insuring. What they fail to think about is how much it will cost to replace their possessions. Do they have enough money in the bank to buy everything they own again? Insurance can't replace everything, like your family photos, mothers dishes and other keepsakes, but it can help you rebuild after a loss.

Another thing to keep in mind is what if you are sued? Say a friend is visiting you and trips over a table and is injured. They sue you for their medical expenses. The Landlord's policy will not cover the claim, the landlord is not responsible for where your furniture is or that your friend is clumsy. You are. Renters insurance will provide money for court costs and legal fees.

What if the house you are renting burns down? Not only will you lose your belongings, but you need a place to stay. Additional living expenses coverage, typically included in a renters policy, will provide money for you to stay in a hotel or find another place to stay.

You can even add on identity theft protection in the event your credit cards or other documents are stolen or lost and misused. Earthquake coverage is also available if you desire it.

An affordable range of deductibles and payment options are available through most carriers. There is no reason to wait, even the quote is free!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Flood Insurance - Why you might need it

Many people do not think they need flood insurance. They live on a hill, their lender did not require it, they don't live in a flood prone area, my homeowners insurance will take care of it.

The truth is that you can have a flood anywhere. If you live on a hill, did it burn recently? When it rains, mud, water and debris can enter your home due to a lack of vegetation holding the hill together. Don't live in a flood prone area you say? What about the water main up the street? It could break and water enters your home. A broker fire hydrant can be just as bad.

You don't need to be in a high risk flood area to have a flood.

The standard home owner's policy does not cover flooding. Flooding is defined water and or mud entering the home from outside, filling up to a level with in the home and then receding or going back out. Many people find out too late that they do not have coverage. Worse still, many lenders in the areas affected by Katrina did not check or did not require flood insurance in areas that FEMA designated as a high risk flood area. They thought the levies would protect them. They did not.

A flood quote is free and a determination report can be ran by your agent to find out what type of flood zone you are in or you can check http://www.floodsmart.gov/floodsmart/.

It's better to be prepared than wait until something happens and you don't have coverage. Be safe, not sorry.