Switching Auto Insurance After an At-Fault Accident

Switching Auto Insurance After an At-Fault Accident

Whenever you’re determined to be at-fault in a collision, your auto insurance premium is going to go up. Risk is a huge factor in determining what your auto insurance premium is going to be, and the more collisions you cause, the higher your risk, and therefore the higher your auto insurance premium. This often leads people who find themselves to be at-fault in a collision to wonder if they can change auto insurance companies to try and get a lower rate. Unfortunately, doing so isn’t always a good idea. You can change your auto insurance company any time you want – even after an accident where you’re the at-fault driver – but the company you had at the time the collision occurred is the one that will deal with the accident and any subsequent lawsuits (if any). If you’re sued for damages beyond what your policy limit was at the time of the collision, you’ll still have to pay out-of-pocket to cover the difference. When you’ll want to seriously consider changing auto insurance companies after an at-fault accident is when you’re facing a sharp increase in your insurance premium. Unless you have accident forgiveness on your policy, you’re going to face an increase in the price of your premium. However, if the increase is relatively minor, odds are you aren’t going to find a better price by switching companies. If you do, the difference would likely be insignificant. However, in some cases, a person’s car insurance premium can go up by as much as 50% to 80% after an at-fault accident. If this is the case, looking for a...
What is the Best type of Homeowners Insurance in Santa Clarita?

What is the Best type of Homeowners Insurance in Santa Clarita?

Santa Clarita homeowners insurance shoppers want to get the most “bang for their buck” when it comes to their insurance policy. It’s a common desire, and certainly isn’t limited to home owners in the Santa Clarita Valley. However, for those who do live within the confines of Santa Clarita, that finding the best homeowners insurance policy is going to depend on a variety of factors which will need to be taken into account. Location A big determining factor regarding homeowners insurance value is going to be the location where the home sits. If it’s in or near an area at high-risk for brush fires, then home owners need to know that the typical homeowners insurance policy isn’t going to provide them with all the coverage that they need; they will also need to purchase wildfire insurance. Age of the Home In Santa Clarita, some of the homes were built decades ago, while others were built just last year. Older homes usually have older materials that are more likely to cause problems. Plumbing is a huge factor here, as old pipes tend to rust, burst, or crack which will inevitably lead to an insurance claim filed by the owner. Contents of the Home Every homeowners insurance policy comes with coverage that will provide protection for the home owner’s personal belongings that are inside the house. Homeowners insurance policies will vary in the amount of coverage they offer, so people who own expensive furniture, appliances, and/or other things like televisions and stereos may want to look into a policy that provides a higher level of coverage. However, if there will be...
Auto Insurance for the Disabled

Auto Insurance for the Disabled

Driving with a disability can alter your auto insurance needs. One thing it cannot alter, though, is the price of your auto insurance. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, it’s illegal for an auto insurance company to charge someone with a disability more for auto insurance than someone else without a disability. The Americans with Disabilities Act goes even further by prohibiting auto insurance companies from charging a disabled person more for auto insurance even if their disability makes them a higher risk. As long as a disabled person is legally able to drive, even if they have restrictions on their license, it’s illegal to charge them more for their insurance. On the other side of that coin is that most insurance companies don’t provide discounts for disabled people, either. While a disabled person will not have to pay more for their auto insurance policy than someone who is not, they may need to buy extra insurance if their vehicle has been modified in some way to accommodate their disability. Vehicle lifts, wheelchair-accessible seating, hand controls, and other steering wheel attachments are quite common among disabled drivers. Depending on what type of car insurance one buys, the typical policy may not be enough to cover expensive customization options that drivers with disabilities often have. However, auto insurance companies make it relatively easy to add additional protection to one’s plans to accommodate them. To cover custom equipment, you must have comprehensive and collision coverage on your vehicle. Liability coverage will do nothing for damaged equipment in your vehicle. When custom equipment costs less than $1,000 or so, it’s up...
Choosing Your Homeowners Insurance Coverage Limits and Deductibles

Choosing Your Homeowners Insurance Coverage Limits and Deductibles

One of the most important decisions you’ll have to make regarding your homeowners insurance is how much coverage to acquire. The exact amount will vary from one homeowner to another, but a general rule is to get enough protection to cover the cost of rebuilding your home. The cost to rebuild a home is highly likely to be different from its purchase price and current market value. The purchase price is what you paid for the home, its current market value is what the home is worth right now, and its rebuild cost is the cost of materials and labor if the home were to be completely destroyed and rebuilt using similar materials. You can get a ballpark figure of the rebuilding cost by taking the square footage of your home and multiplying that by local construction costs per square foot. Your home insurer or your real estate agent can help you if you need it. When it comes to personal property coverage, some home insurance companies will automatically set it at 50% of your dwelling coverage amount. If the policy you’re looking to buy doesn’t have a set coverage limit for personal property, you can use 50% as a guideline. If you have particularly expensive personal property – such as jewelry or artwork – your homeowners insurance policy almost assuredly won’t provide enough coverage. For expensive items, speak with your agent about riders that can be added on to your policy that cover these items specifically. When it comes to choosing deductibles, the higher you go the lower your premium is likely to be. Going with a higher...
Frequently Changing Auto Insurance Providers Can Cost You

Frequently Changing Auto Insurance Providers Can Cost You

Saving money where and when you can is essential to living on a budget, and getting the best auto insurance rates available when it’s time to renew your car insurance policy is part of that. When it’s time to renew your policy, you’ll sometimes find that you can get a better rate if you switch companies. Doing so can save you money in the short-term, but if it happens too often, you’ll end up paying more for insurance no matter who you go with. For auto insurance companies to make money, they need to obtain – and retain – as many clients as possible. That being the case, companies tend to reward customers who stick with them by offering lower rates. If you work with one agent and one company long enough, you’ll probably find that continuing to do so will be the best deal, provided you have a good driving record. Additionally, the timing doesn’t always work when it comes to switching companies. For example, company A may have a deal running if you can sign up right away. However, your policy doesn’t end for another three months, and by then company A’s deal may no longer be available. Most auto insurance policies have cancellation fees that you’ll be obligated to pay if you prematurely end your contract. Incurring the expense of a cancellation fee will seriously reduce the value of the new policy. Switching companies can also lead to gaps in coverage. If your current policy expires before you’re able to find a good deal with another company, that gap in coverage is going to look bad...
Is Home Warranty Insurance the Same as Home Insurance?

Is Home Warranty Insurance the Same as Home Insurance?

When buying a new home, some buyers will have the option for a home warranty. In some cases some folks get confused because of the similar terms and think they don’t need to buy homeowners insurance because their home warranty will cover them in the event that something happens. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case and home insurance and a home warranty are not the same thing. A home warranty can be beneficial, as it covers major household appliances and systems like the oven, a/c, water heater, and furnace and duct systems. If something goes wrong with one or more of the covered items within the time frame that the warranty is in place, it will save the homeowner from having to come out-of-pocket for repairs or replacements. Home insurance covers the physical structure of the home, and other surrounding structures like the garage or the shed. It also covers your personal property inside the home and provides liability coverage in the event someone is injured in your home or if someone else’s property is damaged. While appliances are considered personal property, home insurance doesn’t cover them if they malfunction or break. For that kind of protection you’ll need either a home warranty or a manufacturer’s warranty. Instead, home insurance will cover damages to your appliances if the cause of the damage is due to something described on your homeowners insurance policy; typically fire, water damage, or a windstorm. Having a home warranty can be nice – especially if you’re buying an older home with older appliances – but it isn’t necessary. Homeowners insurance, on the other hand, should be...