Insurance FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)
If you own a home, a homeowners insurance policy is an absolute must. Not only does homeowners insurance provide protection for what may be the biggest investment of their lifetime, but it also provides insurance cover for your personal property such furniture, appliances and clothing. It would be wrong, however, to assume that you can store an unlimited amount of jewelry and even pure gold bars and gold coins on the premises, and your homeownesr insurance policy will automatically insure coins such as gold, silver, jewelry or bullion. There are many exceptions and limits of which you should be aware.
To what extent does standard homeowners insurance cover jewelry or precious metals?
Homeowners insurance policies typically only cover jewelry up to a certain amount. Most home insurance policies the limit for jewelry is somewhere in the region of $1,500. For example, if your engagement ring costs $6,000 is stolen, your home insurance policy will only cover you for up to $1,500. And that doesn’t even include the standard deductible that applies to most policies.
What are your options if you want to have better jewelry coverage?
If you own jewelry, there are two ways to increase the amount that your homeowners insurance covers.
– Increase the liability limit. This will certainly help. But remember that, even if you increase the total limit for jewelry losses to let’s say $5,000, the maximum amount for an individual piece of jewelry might still be much lower, e.g., $2,000. If you own more expensive items of gold jewelry, you will have to find another way to get them covered.
– Buy what is known as a ‘floater or scheduled personal property’. A floater, inland marine or scheduled personal property (SPP) policy provides significantly better protection. A floater is basically an appendix to the basic homeowners insurance policy. It covers any type of loss, including ones that are not covered by the basic homeowners policy. Examples include forgetting your pure gold wedding ring in a Hawaii hotel room or accidentally dropping your 100% pure gold pendant down that same hotel room’s bathroom sink.
To what extent will my homeowners insurance cover gold bars and coins?
In the current uncertain economic climate, many people are switching from stocks, mutual funds, and bonds to gold. With the gold price not long ago breaking the $2,000 per fine ounce barrier, they believe this will protect their family wealth. If you think, however, that you can turn your home into Fort Knox and your standard home insurance policy will cover all of that, think again.
A typical homeowners insurance policy comes with either a zero or a very small limit such as $250 when it comes to providing cover for gold bars or coins. As is the case with jewelry, you can buy extra cover. But even that might not be enough. If you increase the total limit for precious metals to $5,000 and the per-item limit to $2,000 it might take care of your basic needs, you will still end out of pocket though if there is a burglary and you were storing gold bars worth $1 million under your bed.
The bottom line
After examining the facts it would seem that your homeowners insurance policy is a viable option to protect you against potential losses when it comes to gold jewelry. It is, however, not meant for insuring gold bars or gold coins. Instead of storing these under your bed, you would be much better off getting a proper safe. Otherwise, rent a safe deposit box at your bank.
You may ask yourself “What are the advantages to using an Insurance Agent to purchase Insurance?”
There are several, but most people would agree as a client, you receive more personalized service.
At Greene Insurance Group, we are an Independent Insurance Agent. As an Independent Insurance Agent, we offer insurance from dozens of top-rated insurance companies saving our clients the hassles of shopping for insurance. We compare insurance coverage and rates among the top-rated insurance companies.
Finally, having direct contact with Greene Insurance Group can be very important when purchasing insurance, and always very helpful when filing a claim. Greene Insurance Group is able to deliver quality insurance in Arizona with competitive pricing and local, customized service.
Not typically. The only reason would ever charge a fee is if a risk is difficult to insure and we have to use an Excess or Suplus Lines Insurance Company. We hardly ever insure this type of risk unless as a courtesy to an existing client.
Like most Insurance Agents, We are paid by the insurance companies for our work.
We welcome the opportunity to quote and earn your business. We hope to welcome you as one of our newest clients.
** On rare occasions there could be a small fee on excess and/or surplus lines policies which are for reserved typically for risks that are difficult to insure. Ask an agent for more info.
Standard renter’s policies cover only you and relatives that live with you. If your roommate is not a relative, each of you will need your own renter’s insurance policy to cover your own property and to provide you liability coverage for your own actions.
There are a number of factors you should consider when purchasing any product or service, and insurance is no different.
Below is a checklist of things you should consider when you purchase homeowners insurance:
- Determine the amount and type of insurance you will need. The coverage limit of your house should equal 100% of its replacement cost. If your policy limit is less than 80% of the replacement cost of your home, any payment from Greene Insurance Group will be less than the full cost to replace your home – you’ll have to pay the rest out of your own pocket. Also, decide if the personal property and personal liability limits are adequate for your needs.
- Decide which, if any, additional endorsements you want to add to your policy. For example, do you want the personal property replacement cost endorsement, an earthquake endorsement or a jewelry endorsement?
- Once you have decided on the coverage you want in your homeowners insurance policy, please consult us at Greene Insurance Group. Greene Insurance Group will be able to help you determine if there are any gaps in coverage that you might not have been aware of, explain the details of the policy’s exclusions and limitations, as well as recommend an insurance company that will live up to your expectations.
The typical homeowners policy has two main sections:
Section I covers the property of the insured
Section II provides personal liability coverage for the insured.
Almost anyone who owns or leases property has a need for this type of insurance. Usually, homeowners insurance is required by the lender to obtain a mortgage.
A number of factors can affect the cost of your car insurance – some of which you can control and some that are beyond your control.
Some of these factors include: the type of car and value of the vehicle you drive, how many miles you drive annually (business, pleasure or commuting), your driving record (very important), prior claims history and where the car is garaged. There are discounts available for those who own multiple vehicles and insure them on the same policy, package your auto and home insurance for a discount and more.
Ask your Greene Insurance Group agent for additional information.
Collision Insurance Coverage: Losses you incur when your car collides into another car or object. For example, if you hit a car in a parking lot, the damages to your car will be paid under your collision coverage.
Comprehensive Insurance Coverage: provides coverage for mostly other direct physical damage losses you could incur, including theft. For example, damage to your car from a hailstorm will be covered under your comprehensive coverage.
When you apply for Car Insurance, you will be asked a number of questions.
For example, Greene Insurance Group might ask your name, age, marital status, residence address, driver information, vehicle information, and review your present car insurance policy coverage.
You will also be asked a series of other questions such as if you have had prior claims or losses, about the drivers in the household and their driving history, vehicle information etc.
Greene Insurance Group offers a variety of programs for different customers. Adults with good driving records will generally pay less for car insurance, than young drivers with traffic tickets. In order to determine which program you qualify for, Greene Insurance Group will need basic information about you.
In addition to your age, gender and driving experience, information about the car you drive, and your driving record, is also needed to determine a fair price. For example, a large luxury car costs more to repair or replace than a compact car. Also, someone in Scottsdale who commutes 30 miles each way is more likely to be in an accident, than someone who commutes via bus and only drives on weekends.
Covered losses under a homeowners policy can be paid on either an actual cash value basis or on a replacement cost basis. When “actual cash value” is used, the policy owner is entitled to the depreciated value of the damaged property. Under the “replacement cost” coverage, the policy owner is reimbursed on an amount necessary to replace the article with one of similar type and quality at current prices.
A renters insurance policy provides named perils insurance coverage for your personal belongings (personal property) such as furniture, clothes, appliances, linens, etc. This means the policy only pays when your property is damaged or destroyed by any of the ways specifically described in the policy. These usually include:
- Fire or lightning
- Windstorm or hail
- Vandalism or malicious mischief
- Falling objects
- Weight of ice, snow, or sleet
- Accidental discharge or overflow of water or steam
- Sudden and accidental damage from artificially generated electrical current
- Volcanic eruptions (but this doesn’t include earthquake or tremors)
Renters insurance coverage applies to your personal property no matter where you are in the world. This means you’re covered when you are on vacation as well as at home.
You might ask yourself, “Why should I buy renters insurance?”
If you live in an apartment or a rented house, renters insurance provides important coverage for you and your possessions or personal property.
A standard renters insurance policy protects your personal property in many cases of theft or damage, and may pay for temporary living expenses if your rental is damaged.
Renters Insurance can also provide protection for through personal liability insurance. Anyone who leases a house or apartment should consider this type of coverage.
There are a number of things you can do to lower the cost of your homeowners insurance.
The easiest thing to do is request a comprehensive review of your policy through a Licensed Insurance Agent such as Greene Insurance Group.
It’s not surprising to find quotes on homeowners insurance that vary by hundreds of dollars for the same coverage on the same home. When you shop, be careful to make sure each insurer is offering the same coverage.
Another way to lower the cost of your home insurance is to look for any discounts that you may qualify for. For example, many insurers will offer a discount when you place both your car and homeowners insurance with them. Other times, insurers offer discounts if there are deadbolt exterior locks on all your doors, or if your home has a security system. Be sure to ask Greene Insurance Group about any discounts that you may qualify for.
Another easy way to lower the cost of your homeowners insurance is to raise your deductible. Increasing your deductible from $500 to $1000 or more will also lower your premium, sometimes by as much as 10% – 25% percent. Ask an Agent for details.
“Rule of thumb” suggests an amount of life insurance equal to 6 to 8 times annual earnings. However, many factors should be taken into account when determining the right amount of life insurance for you and your family.
Important factors include:
- Income sources and amounts other than salary earnings
- Whether or not you are married and, if so, what is your spouse’s earning capacity
- The number of individuals who are financially dependent upon you
- The amount of death benefits payable from social security and an employer-sponsored life insurance plan
- Whether any special life insurance needs exist – (mortgage repayment, education fund, estate planning need, etc.)
Calculating the correct amount of life insurance to buy in Arizona is not as simple as it appears. We recommend contacting Greene Insurance Group at: 480-657-2800 to help determine the right amount of coverage you need. As an independent agent, Greene Insurance Group has unbiased advisors that will help you avoid buying too much, show you appropriate and optional coverages for your need, and recommend a company that will best serve your interests in Arizona.
It used to be that the only people who needed personal umbrella liability policies were wealthy individuals, who had sizable amounts of personal assets that would be at risk in a lawsuit.
However, in our very litigious society, even individuals with modest incomes and assets are often subjects of large lawsuits. Since those with modest incomes are even less able to pay damages than a wealthy individual, Greene Insurance Group recognizes the need to provide coverage limits greater than what can be obtained from their homeowner insurance or car insurance policies.
Most states have insurance laws that require drivers to have at least some car liability insurance. These laws were enacted to ensure that victims of car accidents receive compensation, when their losses are caused by the actions of a negligent individual.
Often times the cost of repairing the damages to an older car is greater than its value. In these cases, your insurer will usually just “total” the car and give you a check for the car’s market value less than the deductible. Many people with older cars decide not to purchase any physical damage coverage.
Why do some apartments or landlord’s require renters insurance?
Owners of apartment complexes and homes, purchase their own insurance to cover their liability, buildings and personal property.
However, these policies do not cover any of a tenant’s property or liability.
By requiring tenants to have renters insurance, the apartment owner or landlord is assured the tenants will not mistakenly believe the apartment complex owner’s policy will provide coverage for a tenant’s personal property or personal liability.
Every tenant or renter should strongly consider renters insurance regardless of the requirement. Renters Insurance will provide personal liability insurance protection and will provide coverage for your personal property such as furniture, clothing, bedding, linens, dishware, etc. Renters Insurance is very important coverage for both the tenant in case of a loss to their property such as fire, theft, vandalism or other named perils. Ask an agent for more information.
The personal umbrella liability policy is designed to increase your liability protection. This single policy acts as an “umbrella” over all of your other personal liability policies – home, car, boat, RV, etc., so you have a higher personal liability limit, than what would otherwise be available. In certain circumstances, an umbrella insurance policy may provide personal liability coverage that is otherwise excluded from your other policies. For example, an umbrella insurance policy provides coverage anywhere in the world, whereas your car insurance policy usually provides coverage in only the US and Canada.
*** We assume no liability for incorrect information. The information above is meant for general informational purposes and insurance laws vary by state and by insurance company. Consult with your licensed insurance agent, insurance company claims adjuster or an attorney before making any important insurance or legal decision.