So, you have questions about car insurance. Maybe your current policy is too high, you just bought a new car, or your teen just received their license. Perhaps you had damage to your car and you don’t know what is covered. Doing your own research can be a huge headache, let alone having to deal with online sites. Auto Insurance policies are complex, especially if you do not know the basics.
As an Independent Agent I represent many of the best insurance companies available. I can help navigate you and your family through all of the confusing information presented in Auto Insurance plans. Below, I have provided common questions and answers to help you understand auto insurance.
Auto Insurance Q & A
Q: What kinds of questions should I be expected to answer when I’m applying for an insurance policy. Why do insurers need so much information?
A: When you apply for an insurance policy you will be asked a number of questions. For example, your name, age, gender, address, etc. for each driver in the household. You will also be asked a series of other questions which will be used to determine how likely you are to make a claim.
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 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. In a nutshell, the more you drive, the higher the rate.
Q: I have an older car whose current market value is very low – do I really need to purchase car insurance?
A: 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 it’s value. In these cases, your insurer will usually just “total” the car and give you a check for the car’s market value less the deductible.
Q: What is the difference between collision physical damage coverage and comprehensive physical damage coverage?
A: Collision is defined as 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 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.
This is also another name for “full coverage”
Q: What factors can affect the cost of my car insurance?
A: The type of car you drive, the purpose the car serves (i.e. business use, pleasure, or driving to work), your driving record, and where the car is garaged can all affect how much your car insurance will cost you.
Even your marital status can affect your cost of insurance. Statistics show that married couples tend to have fewer and less costly accidents than those who are single.
Have questions about Auto Insurance? Contact me at 708-444-0050 or click below
What will YOU do to celebrate and participate this Earth Day
People are thinking more and more about the environment — whether it’s something that affects the quality of life here in the Southwest Suburbs or global issues such as climate change, extreme weather and extinction.
But more importantly, people aren’t content with simply thinking about these things any more. They’re focused on taking action. Earth Day, which is celebrated April 22, is the perfect time to take action, whether you are looking to take part in a community event or organize your own.
This year’s theme is “Protect Our Species!” Currently, the world is facing the fastest rate of extinction since the loss of the dinosaurs more than 60 million years ago.Find out more about this years theme.
Here are some tips to help you get involved — and think about our planet Earth all through the year.
Find an event
It’s easy to find Earth Day events, whether you live in Orland Park or any of our surrounding suburbs. City and town Facebook pages are a great place to start, along with the websites of local environmental organizations. Newspapers, radio and TV often publicize events as well.
What can I
There are all kinds of Earth Day activities, even some you can easily complete by yourself or with your family. Examples include:
Cleaning up litter from a natural area or park
Adopting a road for litter control
Talking about Earth Day and helping to educate others
Using alternate transportation, instead of taking your car
Holding a garage sale or clothing swap, rather than throwing out unwanted items
Learning more about actions you can take to reduce your environmental impact and help save the species
Make it more than a day Of course, one of the best ways to have an impact is to make every day your own Earth Day. You can take part in earth-friendly activities at any time! So in addition to celebrating once a year, make this April 22 just the beginning of something special And whether you find an event or create your own, the important thing is getting involved.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This is a worldwide annual campaign to help increase awareness and raise funds for research, prevention, treatments and cures for the disease. This month also emphasizes the importance of early screening and offers information and support to those affected by breast cancer. The good news is that most women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early.
Breast cancer is the most common kind of cancer in women after skin cancer.
About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point.
Men can also develop breast cancer, making up slightly less than one percent of those diagnosed each year.
In 2017, it’s estimated that about 30% of newly diagnosed cancers in women will be breast cancers.
As of January 2018, there are more than 3.1 million women with a history of breast cancer in the U.S.
About 5% to 10% of breast cancers are thought to be hereditary, caused by abnormal genes passed from parent to child.
As with many other diseases, your risk of breast cancer goes up as you get older. About two out of three invasive breast cancers are found in women 55 or older.
1 in 8 women, you really do not realize how many people this will and does affect, and how close this will hit home. One of our own…Dana handles all of the social media marketing and newsletter production for my agency. She’s been an asset to the agency for 2 years and we were shocked when she told us the news. This is her story.
You never think you will be the one to hear the words, “You have breast cancer”. Like many females, we look at our calendar and realize it has been a year since our last mammogram. We sigh because we know it must be done, so we make the dreaded call to schedule our ta-tas getting squished like pancakes. For the past few years, I had to get ultrasounds after my mammograms because I am one of the fortunate souls who has cysts. To me, it was always just routine, and I never thought anything of it. But unfortunately, this last time, they found an abnormal lump. Even though my mother passed away from colon cancer and my grandfather from skin cancer, I never thought I would get cancer.
I had the biopsy, and according to the doctor, I was lucky. It was the early stages of breast cancer (ductal carcinoma in situ). All I needed was a lumpectomy, and I would be fine. Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy. My biggest concern was getting my surgery fast enough so I could go on my vacation. Then, the floor dropped out from under me. The cancer had spread to my lymph nodes, and they found another tumor. Now, the whole game plan had changed. Six months of chemo, double mastectomy, and radiation.
All of these thoughts went racing through my head, as a single mom and self-employed, how was I going to do this? How was I going to take care of my 15-year-old daughter Alex?, How was I going to pay my bills, and how was I going to take care of myself? After my little pity party, I told myself, I can do this. Life does not always go according to plan. This is just another hiccup, and I will get through this like other obstacles I have faced. I always live life to the fullest and having cancer will not keep me down. I believe that having a positive attitude and holding your head up high helps. Yes, I have my bad days, but I always pull myself together.
The greatest gift in all this craziness is the huge amount of support and help from amazing friends, family, neighbors, etc. The Cancer Support Center in Mokena has also been my saving grace. The love and incredible support I received from everyone around me inspires me to stay strong and confront this cancer threat head on. “No One Fights Alone.”
I just celebrated my last day of Chemo, but I still have a long road ahead of me with surgery, radiation and then reconstruction. Even though I am not finished with my journey, I am hopeful and I am ready to continue this fight. It is so important to remember to get your mammograms and do self-checks.
College is expensive enough without the added cost of unexpected accidents or theft not covered by your insurance policy. If you have a student heading away to school, below are a few tips to help you get the most out of your coverage.
Personal Property: Most homeowners policies will cover personal property for up to 10% of your total policy while your child is residing at school (a $100,000 policy equals $10,000 in coverage). Not all types of damage are covered, so read your policy carefully. Some items such as jewelry or expensive electronics require special coverage. Renters insurance is strongly recommended.
Liability Coverage: General damage to a dorm room or apartment is not usually covered. If you are listed on the lease with your college bound child, you can extend liability coverage to cover the apartment as well. The cost is less than $50/year and meets the insurance requirements for the apartment complex.
Documentation: Creating an inventory of the items your child is taking to school is a good idea. Use photographs and keep receipts.
Car Stays Home: Keep your child listed on your auto policy if they will still drive your car while at home on school breaks.
Car at School: Make sure to notify us if your child will be taking a car away to school. In most cases, if the car is registered to you and listed on your policy, it will be covered. If your child is more than 100 miles away from home and does not have a vehicle at school, be sure to inform your insurance carrier asap as this will result in an added discount to your insurance policy.
Driving a Friend’s Car: Students are generally covered if they are listed on their parent’s policy and are not regularly using the vehicle. The coverage would be secondary. The insurance for the friend’s vehicle would be the primary coverage. Insurance follows the vehicle, if you allow a friend, family member to borrow your vehicle, they will be covered under your policy.
Discounts: A full-time student meeting certain academic requirements can qualify for a good student discount. The good student discount applies to full time students with a 3.0+ GPA. Distant student discounts may also be available. Drivers under 21 who have completed driver’s education may also get a discount.
Before your child leaves for school, contact me at 708-444-0050 or email@example.com. I can walk you through the steps to ensure you have the right coverage. I am here to help!
Hot Day Behind the Wheel? Here’s How to Beat the Heat
The forecast in the Southwest Suburbs: Hot and getting hotter. And, that can make for troublesome travel. When the temperature increases, decrease your risk on – and off – the road with these safety tips:
1. Check those tires. You’re already checking your tire pressure every month, right? Even if you are (most of us don’t), keep a closer eye on them during the warm months. Heat can increase tire pressure rapidly.
2. Keep cool under the hood and inside your car. If you don’t remember the last time you had your engine coolant checked and flushed (mechanics recommend flushing and refilling every two years), now is probably a good time – before you hit the road. Give your air conditioning a test run, too. If it’s not cooling you down, get it serviced.
3. Act quickly if your car starts to overheat. When your car’s temperature moves above the halfway mark on the dashboard, try turning off your air conditioning and turning on your heat to give your engine a break. Pull over if it’s safe to do so, and give your engine even more of a break. Call for roadside assistance if there’s steam or smoke, and get away from the car if it’s smoke. More of a do-it-yourselfer? Be careful opening the hood of an overheated car, and don’t add coolant or water until the car cools down.
4. See to the comfort – and safety – of your passengers. Within just 10 minutes of parking your car on a 90-degree day, the interior temperature can hit 110 degrees. Don’t leave kids or pets in a parked car, even for just a few minutes, and bring plenty of water for the trip. The back seats and cargo areas of many cars don’t get as much air as the fronts seats, so make sure your kids, both human and furry, stay hydrated.
5. Proceed with caution in an electric car. High temperatures (and cold ones, too) can reduce the charge of your battery, sometimes by as much as 40 percent. You’ll want to take that into account when planning a trip.
Different seasons bring different car maintenance needs in the Southwest Suburbs. Follow these tips to help make sure you and your car both stay cool in the heat.