JULY 2017 ISSUE OF THE PROTECTION COACH

The July 2017 update of Mike Stromsoe’s The Protection Coach® has arrived.  This issue is jam-packed with all the latest news and tips for clients and friends of Stromsoe Insurance Agency.

The Protection Coach® – July 2017 (Click Here to Download)

Inside this edition..

  • Welcome Our Newest Team Members—TWINS!!
  • Camper Trailer Tips
  • Want To Save Money? Check It Out!
  • Quick Tips: 4th of July Safety Tips
  • Our Client Of The Month for July is David & Christine Ripka of Ripka’s Equipment Repair.  Thank you so much for allowing us the opportunity to serve and protect everything you work so hard for.

El Niño & Your California Flood Insurance Needs

Why El Niño makes flood insurance especially important for your home.

All of sudden, it’s fall in Southern California. While we enjoyed (or didn’t enjoy – depending on your weather preference) unseasonably warm weather into November, the weather’s taken a turn.

No, it’s not just the usual weather patterns. Actually, experts are saying El Niño could be to blame for the sudden cold. They’re also predicting this weather pattern will bring serious storms our way.

If you can remember back to 1997’s El Niño, it caused millions of dollars of damage and cost over a dozen lives. According to people in the know, today’s climate models look a whole lot like they did in ’97. In other words, we need to be prepared for a very wet winter here in Southern California.

One of the best ways to be prepared is to buy flood insurance.  Don’t assume your homeowners insurance will protect you because, quite frankly, it won’t. Standard home insurance policies don’t include coverage against flooding, so you need a separate policy to be protected against rising waters this winter.

Also, don’t assume you can just wait until a major storm is rolling in to buy coverage! Flood insurance policies require a 30-day waiting period before they can take effect, so you need to buy your coverage now to be prepared against the seasonal surprises El Niño is projected to bring to Southern California.

Would you like more information about how to pair flood insurance with your existing homeowners insurance or renter insurance policy to be fully protected this winter? To talk to an expert who will evaluate your specific insurance needs and help you get covered, contact Stromsoe Insurance Agency. We’re dedicated to helping California renters and homeowners have the insurance policies they need to matter what our seasons bring our way!

The Reality Of Renters Insurance

Do You Need This Kind Of Coverage?

When you rent, you do not have as many worries about your property as a homeowner. If your shower clogs, or your oven breaks, or your neighbors are being too noisy, all you have to do is pick up the phone and have someone else handle the issue for you. Just because you do not have to worry about maintaining the property on which you live does not mean you should not worry about the personal property you store in it, though.

As a renter, you can rest easy knowing your rental property would be rebuilt after a fire because it is covered by your landlord’s insurance coverage. If that fire crept into your unit and touched your belongings, though, your landlord’s coverage will not extend to replace or repair your possessions.

Consequently, it is important to carry renters insurance. This kind of coverage is very affordable (usually between $15 and $30 a month, depending on how much property you have to cover) and will offer protection for your personal property. That means that a thief breaking in and swiping all of your valuables will not leave you facing a financial deficit. Have you protected your possessions with renters insurance?

There is an additional benefit of this type of coverage. Renters insurance also offers liability coverage, which means that a guest getting injured in your rental will not end up being a huge legal expense for you if they decide to sue you. Protect yourself from being held responsible after an injury with renters insurance.

Do you have an insurance expert showing you how much coverage you need to protect your rental, your personal property, and your liability? To get that kind of guidance, contact Stromsoe Insurance Agency today. We are here to meet all of your California renter’s insurance needs.

Must-Know: Insuring Your College Student

Congratulations! Your child just received their acceptance letter to an accredited university! Now it is time to start planning the big move. Many parents fail to realize that sending their child off to college has a variety of insurance implications. In between determining how you will get all of your child’s belongings to their new home and planning their class schedule for their first college semester, you must keep these insurance factors in mind:

  • Will your child be bringing their car with them to college? Depending on the state in which they move to, you may notice a spike in your auto insurance premium. Encourage your child to maintain a B average in school and they will be eligible to receive the good student discount. Likewise, your child may be able to receive a discount for taking additional driver’s education classes.
  • Will your child be moving into a dorm this semester? If so, your homeowners’ insurance policy will likely extend to cover their personal belongings under property off premises coverage. You will want to speak with your insurance carrier about the deductible that would be applied to claims at this remote property.
  • Will your child be moving into an apartment near their near college? If so, your homeowners’ insurance will not cover their personal belongings. Therefore, you will need to purchase a renters’ insurance policy at a very affordable rate. A renters’ insurance policy will cover the contents within the property and liability coverage in the event that someone is injured on the property.

Schedule a review at Stromsoe Insurance Agency to make sure that your student is receiving all discounts that they qualify for. We want you to receive the peace of mind knowing your college student is safe when living away from home. Contact us today with all of your remaining questions regarding insuring your new college student.

Insuring Your College Student 101

As you plan to be an empty nester and send your child off to college, there are multiple steps you must take to make the transition a smooth one. Many parents forget to consider how they will insure all the valuables their child brings with them to college. There are a variety of insurance options you can choose from when it comes to insuring your college student’s belongings while away from home.

Homeowners’ Insurance

If your child will be living on a college-owned property or in a dorm, their possessions will likely be covered under your existing homeowners’ insurance policy. However, typical homeowners’ insurance policies only cover 10% of the policy’s coverage for those personal belongings. That means that you will only receive $10,000 of coverage if your policy covers contents for $100,000. You can also expect to pay a deductible for this coverage.

Renters’ Insurance

Whenever your child lives on a non-college-owned property, your homeowners’ insurance will not cover their belongings. Therefore, you will need to purchase a renters’ insurance policy. This is one of the least expensive insurance policies and will provide them with sufficient coverage to protect their valuables.

Student Policies

Depending on your insurance provider, you may be able to purchase a student policy, known as a specialized property insurance policy. This applies to students who live in dorms, in an apartment, in a college-owned property, or studying abroad. This inexpensive insurance option will offer you the peace of mind knowing your child’s valuables are protected if they are stolen or damaged from one of the covered perils.

At Stromsoe Insurance Agency, we can help you determine the best insurance option based on yours and your child’s unique needs. Contact us today and allow us to provide you with the peace of mind knowing your assets are adequately protected. We are available to answer any and all of your questions around the clock.

 

Insuring Your Home-Based Business

As the commonality of home-based business continue to rise, it is becoming increasingly more important to make sure that your business is adequately protected. Many business professionals that run their business from their home are misinformed and assume their assets will be covered under their existing homeowners’ insurance policy or business insurance policy that applies in the office. However, depending on your line of work, you may need additional coverage in order to receive full protection.

If you answer yes to any of the following questions, you may need to purchase additional coverage:

  • Does your standard homeowners’ insurance policy have a limit in coverage of business equipment?
  • Do you work from home on a regularly basis as opposed to your office at work?
  • Do you ever conduct business in contacts’ homes or allow contacts or employees to visit your home?
  • Is any of your business data stored at home?

Typical Home-Based Business Insurance Policies Include:

  • Rider to a Homeowners/Renters Insurance Policy – This is the least expensive option because it only provides limited additional coverage. If your business is run by a one-man operation system with limited liability exposure, this may be the perfect choice for you.
  • In-Home Business Policy – This will offer you coverage for business liability protection, and replacement of lost income from fire, theft, or any other disaster. This will act as a single policy, eliminating any gaps or duplications in coverage.
  • Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) – This will over you the most comprehensive coverage, protecting you from unexpected business interruption, damage to data or business equipment, and protection from malpractice or professional liability claims.

Stromsoe Insurance Agency is available for all of your California business insurance needs. Contact us today and allow us to provide you with the peace of mind knowing your assets are adequately protected.

Understanding What’s Covered Under Your Renters Insurance Policy

A renters insurance policy is designed to protect the personal property of a tenant. While most property owners will have a homeowners policy or commercial insurance for the actual building, that policy does not cover personal items belonging to tenants.

What’s covered under renters insurance

While the exact coverage can be different depending on the carrier you choose, most policies provide several standard features. As a renter, your belongings would be covered up to your limit if the items were destroyed by a covered event. Fire, storm damage and theft are the common events.

Coverage normally includes personal liability protection. This protects you from a lawsuit if a guest is injured in your residence. Medical payments for injuries to guests are included up to your chosen limit. If you, or a family member, damage someone else’s property, it is also covered under your liability protection.

Most policies will provide you with coverage for additional living expenses (ALE) if your current residence is destroyed and unlivable. ALE pays the difference between your regular expenses and those you incur for temporary shelter.

Purchasing renters insurance in Murrieta and the Southern California area is well worth the low cost, likely less than you pay for two movie tickets a month. Contact Stromsoe Insurance Agency and let a professional explain all of the benefits of renters insurance to you.

Tenant, Beware! The Perils of Leasing

If you are a tenant, you might believe that you have avoided many loss exposures, such as fire damage to the structure, associated with owning the building. However, have you read your lease lately? Really read it?

Many leases contain extensive insurance requirements that the tenant (you) must agree to meet. Although these usually include liability from your actions and responsibility for covering your property for loss, it’s easy to overlook the extent to which you might have agreed to cover exposures usually assumed to be the responsibility of the building owner.

For example, retail shopping areas often have an abundance of external glass windows. Although these are clearly the property of the building owner, many leases transfer any responsibility for damage to the windows to the tenant. The idea is that because you directly control the potential loss exposures for the glass (such as vandalism, accidental breakage, and maintenance inspections), you should provide the insurance. Similar reasoning might lead you to being held responsible under the lease for other losses not directly attributable to your own negligence.

Now is the time to pull out that copy of your lease. Review it with your legal counsel to see if there might be language or agreements that need addressing. Then let us review the document for its insurance implications (be forewarned — they won’t all be contained in a paragraph titled “insurance”). We’ll review with you, what your lease requires, how your current insurance program matches up with these requirements, and then offer guidelines for making any necessary changes to your protection.

Call us today to schedule an appointment. 877-994-6787

State Minimum Auto Liability Coverage: Is It Enough?

State minimum insurance requirements are minimal. Most states demand less than $100,000 for bodily injuries and $50,000 for property damage. Some states require only $10,000 for property damage coverage.

How many cars valued at greater than $10,000 travel the highways? How many trucks carrying cargo are worth more than $10,000? $50,000? $100,000?

According to the 2010 census, the median family net worth exceeded $200,000. That amount includes houses, cars, savings, retirement funds, cash in the bank, college savings, and furniture and personal effects. Half the families are worth more, half have assets less than $200,000; all of it is hard earned.

If the family is underinsured for liability, their net worth is vulnerable to be seized in a lawsuit based on injuries or property damage caused by any family member driving a vehicle. The car owner and the car driver become parties to the suit.

Bodily injuries sustained in car wrecks devastate lives. People unable to work, the high cost of medical treatment, rehabilitation expenses, and the pain and suffering can only be compensated with money. The money comes from the insurance company or the liable party’s personal wealth.

Not convinced you need higher limits? Not all liabilities are released in bankruptcy. Many states have specific legislation disallowing debt reduction for certain accidents, most notably driving while intoxicated. Wage plans reduce take home pay by as much as 33%. Many employers do not tolerate either bankruptcy or wage garnishments.

Still not convinced? How about a selfish motivation?

Other drivers are either uninsured or underinsured. Most insurance companies will not provide uninsured motorist coverage in limits greater than the liability limits of the policy.

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage from your policy pays on behalf of the driver who hits you if they are poorly insured. In a classic exercise of the golden rule, insurance companies only sell limits commensurate with the protection you offer others.

Proper limits of liability allow you to protect yourself from the improper coverage other people maintain.

So how much coverage is enough? What are reasonable limits of liability?

Call our knowledgeable Protection Team to get the right answers to your questions. And consider this:

Your assets are your excess insurance coverage. This means that when the limits of your policy are reached, your assets are at risk. Excess insurance – Umbrella policies, for example – is available in $1 million layers over your Automobile and Homeowners liability limits if those limits qualify – are high enough. Protect yourself against underinsured drivers by increasing your uninsured motorist coverage.

Here are 4 Easy Ways to Reach Us:

  1. Call 951-600-5751 or 877-994-6787
  2. Fax 951-677-6265
  3. Email – insure@siaonline.com
  4. Visit – www.siaonline.com 24/7

Just Because You’re A Renter Doesn’t Mean You Don’t Have Insurance Needs

Many renters mistakenly believe that they don’t need Renter’s insurance or view it as an expensive luxury. However, insurance needs aren’t negated just because one happens to be renting their home.

For those not familiar with Renter’s insurance, it’s an insurance coverage that protects the renter from property losses from damages like water and fire. It also provides protection for liability risks, such as lawsuits brought by the landlord of the property, pet attacks, falls and slips, and guest accidents. This type of coverage is available in most areas and has an average $20 monthly premium rate for around $500,000 dollars worth of liability coverage and $20,000 dollars worth of property coverage.

Trusted Choice, a network of financial and insurance service firms, recently found in a survey that almost 25 million American home renters didn’t have any insurance coverage to protect themselves from losses and that most renters have limited, if any, knowledge of Renter’s insurance.

Eight percent of the respondents without Renter’s insurance had never heard about Renter’s insurance before. Meanwhile, 17% said they weren’t aware that they needed Renter’s insurance and 26% percent felt that Renter’s insurance was too costly.

According to the study, some renters also mistakenly believed that their insurance needs were covered under the insurance policy held by their landlord. In reality, landlords don’t typically insure anything other than the building and infrastructural elements like HVAC systems and elevators. Other losses incurred will be directly on the renter’s shoulders. Even negligent actions caused by one tenant, such as a fire, that affects other innocent tenants in the building aren’t typically covered by the landlord’s insurance.

Other key findings of the study included:

  • Fifty percent of the surveyed renters owned pets. Thirty-two percent of the non-pet owners had Renter’s insurance. Although renters that own pets have a higher liability exposure than renters without pets, a mere 26% of the pet owners had Renter’s insurance.
  • Eighty-nine percent of the surveyed renters owned at least one expensive electronic device, such as a computer, camera, digital recorder, or home theater system. This group was more likely to have a Renter’s insurance policy than those that didn’t own such devices.
  • Fifty-three percent of the surveyed renters owned at least one form of exercise or sports equipment, such as a skis, bicycles, or a home gym system. This group was more likely to own Renter’s insurance than those that didn’t own such equipment.
  • Only thirty-one percent of the renters operating a home business from their apartment, condo, or other type of rental unit had Renter’s insurance.

Call 877-994-6787 for your FREE price-comparison Renters Insurance Quote Today, that’s 877-99-INSURE!!!

Here are 4 Easy Ways to Reach Us:

  1. Call 877-994-6787 or 951-600-5751
  2. Fax 951-677-6265
  3. Email – insure@siaonline.com
  4. Visit – www.siaonline.com 24/7