Learn How to Get the Best Deals on Your Summer Vacation

Planning for your summer vacation doesn’t have to be financially stressful.

Summer vacations mean school is out, and your family vacation has finally come! If you were smart, this trip means you can splurge because you looked for the best deals that were available to you when you booked your trip. If not, it sounds like you’re going to have to dig deep into your pockets for any change that may be lying in there somewhere. Planning a summer vacation doesn’t mean you have to have monetary anxiety. On the contrary. Planning a summer vacation can be easy with the proper, planning, and research. Here are 3 things you can do to get the best deals on your summer vacation.

  1. Time it Right – Hotel rates fluctuate with supply and demand, so it pays to go against the flow of other vacationers. High-peak vacationing happens between the 4th of July to mid-August. So planning on early June or late-August can mean better savings.
  1. Don’t leave empty handed – Before you depart, order the Entertainment Book or such other coupon books. These editions are packed full of discounts and attractions. You’ll likely recoup your investment within the first few days.
  1. Meals don’t have to break the bank – Dining at restaurants for every meal can add up real fast, so make restaurants a singular daily thing. Keep a cooler in your car and plan picnics at least once a day. Make sure to stay at hotels that offer free breakfasts to cut down on costs. And, when you treat yourselves to a restaurant make sure to go during lunch when costs are lower, and to make sure your restaurant offers a lunch special.

If you want to save money, contact Stromsoe Insurance Agency for that perfect summer vacation. As California insurance experts, we can help tailor your coverage to meet your exact needs – including your budget. For the best coverage at the best price, call us today!

Curbing Corporate Identity Theft: A Three-Step Approach

The Supreme Court ruled in the controversial Citizens United case, that corporations have rights similar to those of an individual. If follows that they have identities and are vulnerable to identity theft.

Although insurance offers one way to manage this risk, it might well be a long time before a company discovers the theft — at which point, it would be too late. To avoid or minimize the danger of having your corporate identity stolen, we’d recommend a three-step approach:

  1. Storing sensitive information. Sensitive files and information (credit card numbers, medical data, Social Security numbers, etc.) might be stored on computers, external drives, filing cabinets, or mobile devices. It’s wise to consolidate and secure this data either physically behind lock and key or by using electronic network security measures. Be sure to train employees on handling, storing, and disposing of this type of information properly.
  2. Your business documentation. Identity thieves might use highly sophisticated or surprisingly elementary and low-tech techniques for delving into a company’s records and misappropriating them. These might include intercepting paper mail, stealing trash, or physically taking documents. To safeguard this information, determine what records you need to run the business, inventory them, and use electronic statements to limit the amount of mail containing company information. Never share financial details or documents through e-mail!
  3. Credit reports. Check your company’s credit reports regularly for unusual charges or bills.

The Federal Trade Commission (http://www.business.ftc.gov/documents/bus69-protecting-personal-information-guide-business) provides a variety of resources you can use to help protect your corporate identity and confidential customer information against identity thieves.

Our Protection Coach’s will be happy to offer their help — just give us a call. 877-994-6787

Property Coverage Fluctuates With Inventory

Many businesses can pick an amount of inventory coverage at the beginning of the year and know that at any given time, their actual inventory values will be within a few dollars of that amount. This makes the choice easy; just pick an amount that will cover the most you’ll ever have on hand.

However, suppose your inventories vary widely from one month to another, depending on production, pricing, or marketing cycles. For example, a florist who specializes in having a large inventory of live flowers on hand for certain holidays might have very little inventory at other times of the year. Certain retailers might bring in a great deal of stock at the beginning of each sales cycle, and then sell it off gradually (with their merchandise on hand dropping steadily), only to restock and have their values shoot back up at the beginning of the next sales period.

Does your business inventory vary greatly over time? If so,  shouldn’t your Property insurance do the same? Otherwise, if you have a fixed amount of coverage, although your inventory values vary, there will be many times that your coverage will be out of sync with your needs. If your coverage is too low, a loss at a time of high inventory values can be devastating. On the other hand, a high fixed amount might mean that you’re paying for too much insurance during those periods when your inventory values are low.

Is there a way to provide adequate coverage at all times, yet with a cost structure that tracks the actual values you have at risk?

Yes! If your current policy doesn’t offer this valuable option, contact one of our Property insurance professionals today. If you have inventories that fluctuate, let us show you how a “value reporting form” can provide the coverage you need at all times.

Call us today and our Total Protection Team will be happy to help. 877-994-6787

Advertising the Safe Way

 Congratulations! That new billboard outside your office is the talk of the town. It’s no wonder that advertising is a critical element in the success of most companies. For several  businesses, however, it’s an incidental activity that’s not part of the firm’s primary business.

All advertising involves a risk exposure. In many cases, your Commercial General Liability policy will include Advertisers Liability protection. However, be aware that this coverage is limited.

For coverage to apply, a third party must have suffered a business injury as a result of certain specific actions that occurred during the course of your company’s advertising activities. Among the most common activities are:

  • Oral or written publication of material that slanders or libels another
  • Oral or written publication that violates a person’s right of privacy
  • Misappropriation of advertising ideas or style of doing business
  • Infringement of copyright, title, or slogan

If your company has a potential advertising liability exposure that might fall outside these areas, the chances are that you need specific coverage. In any case, it’s always a good idea to review coverages so that you’re aware of the risks that you might face — whether you decide to insure them or not.

For a review of your business coverages, please feel free to get in touch with us today.

One of our Protection Coaches® can provide advice on the types and amounts of coverage a business owner needs. Here are 4 Easy Ways to Reach Us:
Call 951-600-5751 or 877-994-6787
Fax 951-677-6265
Email – insure@siaonline.com
Visit www.siaonline.com

Protect Your Business From Fire

A recent report describes the fire-protection systems in many of the nation’s assisted living facilities are dismal. Many are missing basic safeguards such as smoke alarms and sprinklers. As a result, these facilities have suffered an average of one fatal fire per month during the past five years. In an industry this large, and with deep emotional implications, this matter will continue to receive nationwide press coverage.

This media attention should help businesses in all industries understand the importance of adequate fire protection. The cost of updating these systems pales in comparison to the huge emotional, physical, and economic damages that a single fire can cause.

As a business owner, you need to ask yourself these questions:

  • Is your structure capable of withstanding a blaze?
  • Is your staff aware of safety measures to both prevent and combat a fire?
  • What about your surroundings? Are the businesses near or next to you prepared?
  • If the worst were to happen, how long would it take your business to bounce back?

Although it might take intensive effort to protect your building against fire, carrying the proper insurance is one decision you can make immediately. Invest in comprehensive Property and Business Income coverages today!

Contact us for more information on how these policies can help your business bounce back after a fire or other disaster. Our team of knowledgeable business insurance experts for your free insurance quote at 877-994-6787, that’s 877-99-INSURE!

Small Businesses Can Benefit From New IRS Health Care Tax Credit

The recent health care legislation signed into law by President Barack Obama contains a Small Business Health Care Tax Credit that will help small businesses with the cost of providing their employees with health care. The tax credit’s benefits are available immediately for the 2010 tax year.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, small businesses are expected to save an estimated $40 billion by 2019, due to the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit. The tax credit is effective retroactive to January 1st, 2010 and covers up to 35% of a small business’s premiums, with the rate increasing to 50% on January 1st, 2014.

Although non-profit organizations are eligible for the credit, they will receive a lower percentage. Tax exempt organizations will be able to receive up to a 25% tax credit in 2010, which will be raised to 35% in 2014.

The tax credit has broad eligibility, covering 4 million small businesses. Any business that pays at least 50% of employee health care costs, employs the equivalent of 25 or fewer fulltime workers (allowing eligibility for companies with 50 part-time workers), and pays an average employee salary of $50,000 or less (not including owners and their family members) will be eligible for the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit.

The maximum credit of 35% is available for small businesses with 10 or fewer fulltime workers and an average salary of $25,000 or less. For businesses that pay employees between an average of $25,000 and $50,000, the tax credit gradually phases out. The gradual phase out also applies to businesses that employ an equivalent of 10 to 25 full time workers (20 to 50 part time workers).

Businesses are able to claim the credit for a total of six years. They will be eligible to claim the credit for four years, from 2010 to 2013, and then any two years after the 2013 date.

To keep businesses from abusing the system by picking a high-cost plan, the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit will only be eligible for the average health insurance cost of the state where the business is located. This information will be provided by the IRS at a later date.

For more information, refer to the IRS website.

We hope this helps you add a little more to your bottom line, we know none of it comes easily!

Any questions or thoughts, 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 Our Website – www.SIAonline.com

To Your Success!