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Did You Know  | Not Having Collision Coverage on Your Auto Insurance CAN be Bad

Ottawa OH Insurance

Many topics are hotly debated concerning auto insurance but probably none are more discussed than how large your insurance collision deductible should be. Some people are  under the opinion that you need very low deductible. Other state that you need a high deductible to keep the premium down. Still other state that if the vehicle is more than 3 years old you don’t need collision coverage on the vehicle.

So WHO is correct?

Unfortunately, there is NO correct answer. Not having collision coverage on your vehicle WILL save you some money each month. The risk is that, without collision coverage, you have a HUGE risk of not having a vehicle, should something unfortunate occur. If you were to wreck your vehicle, you would have no insurance coverage to replace your car.

Ottawa OH Insurance

If you have enough financial resources, not having collision coverage MAY make sense, depending on the value of your vehicle and the amount of damage incurred. If there are not sufficient financial resources, then the scope of the risk is much larger. Another point in this discussion is what happens to the money that is saved from not paying your insurance company for the collision coverage. If you place the funds into an account for use IF an unfortunate incident should occur, then not having collision coverage could make sense.

Ultimately, it comes down to the level of risk the policy holder is willing to accept.

To find someone to help you work through an insurance concern like this, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa OH Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Did You Know ……  Lowering Your Deductible is Probably Bad in Ottawa OH

Ottawa OH Insurance

One topic continues to generate a LOT of discussion in the insurance world: How small should my deductible be?

That one question is often despised by agents and feared by clients. Unfortunately, it is NOT a simple question to answer due to each client’s financial position being different. Many factors enter into the deductible discussion, such as income, assets, possibly age, and risk tolerance.

Yes, determining the deductible CAN be that complex although many simply take whatever deductible the insurance agent proposes.

So, what IS the best answer. In my opinion, that depends. The deductible is the transfer of risk from the insured (person) to the insuree (company). The value of the deductible is a factor in how the premium for the policy is calculated. Simply, the lower the deductible, the higher the premium. On a homeowners policy, a $500 deductible will have a much higher premium that a $2,500 deductible meaning the company has more risk than the person being insured.

Ottawa OH Insurance

One way of looking at this discussion is the transfer of money based on whether an “incident” occurs that requires the deductible to be paid. For instance, a policy having a $500 deductible may have a premium of $1,000 while a $1,500 deductible may have a premium of $700. If you would go more than 3 years without a claim, you would save the $900 in premium that you would have paid with the smaller deductible.

However, if you don’t have the cash to pay the deductible, should an unfortunate incident occur, then the smaller deductible MAY make more sense. Again there is not a right or wrong. It’s better versus best. Some people are not comfortable with a large deductible. Period. That is their choice as long as they understand the financial side of the discussion.

Ottawa OH Insurance

The downside of the deductible has to do with the people that purchase their insurance online or over the phone. In almost all situations like that the client does not have the opportunity to discuss deductibles since, most of the time, these people are not licensed agent on the other side of the conversation. This means he client never has a good conversation about how large or small of a deductible they should have. This, in turn, creates a black eye for the insurance industry when the client has an incident and complains to EVERYONE about how they got taken by the insurance industry.

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, OH Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Ottawa OH Insurance

Ottawa OH Insurance | Get A Insurance Quote In Ottawa OH … REALLY?

Recently, a new insurance office opened locally. It’s a name brand company that provides good products at competitive premiums but I noticed that this agent has fallen for the curse of the insurance industry. He posted a sign in his front window that likely will hurt him for a while. The sign states:

“Stop in today and get an insurance quote”

Yes, ALL of the online companies are using that line hoping to build their business. However, this process creates HUGE problems for the insurance industry. Creating a “commodity” mindset, this process will also create a significant problem for the population has a whole. The more these companies push this mindset, the harder it will be for most people to get an honest opinion about their insurance program.

Ottawa OH Insurance

The primary issue with the online insurance companies is that the majority of the people that respond or answer the phone are not licensed insurance agents. This means, by law, they are not allowed to answer insurance questions or give insurance advice. So when you call to get an answer about an insurance problem or to file a claim, the person on the other end of the phone probably won’t be able to provide any answers to your questions. This will create frustration and MAY cost you money by having a claim denied or because you couldn’t get accurate advice.

Instead of advertising “get a quote”, the insurance agent needed to advertise “stop in today to discuss how WE can help YOU”.

Without understanding precisely what the prospective client needs and wants, it is almost impossible to provide an accurate assessment of their insurance needs. Yes, any agent can provide a “generic” quote for an insurance request but it probably won’t be accurate enough to be issued. When the necessary information is assembled, many times the premium increases significantly, possibly even doubling in cost.

Ottawa OH Insurance

A larger concern of the insurance industry is that clients are being mislead by companies not providing correct information concerning their insurance needs. Most times, without a qualified insurance agent being involved, the client may not understand precisely what their insurance covers and what it doesn’t. The terms and restrictions of insurance policies are sometimes difficult to understand because of the way they are written due to legal requirements. Without an agent to contact, these people may go to friends or relatives or online resources for their insurance answers which MAY not be correct.

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, OH Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Ottawa OH Insurance

Ottawa OH Insurance | The Myth of Mold Remediation in Ottawa OH

Many different views exist about what insurance companies will pay for a property that has a mold problem. The primary view is that all someone needs to do is to contact their insurance company and the insurance company will handle all of the problems. Unfortunately, that will probably NEVER happen that way.

In almost ALL insurance policies there is an EXCLUSION for mold.

Some companies do not exclude mold  but probably list the items covered by the policy and state that “Only listed perils are covered”. This means, if the issue is NOT specifically listed, there is no coverage for the problem. In many circumstances this viewpoint seems contrary to logic, but it really is not when the mold problem is reviewed in-depth.

Ottawa OH Insurance

Here is the problem with mold, other than the physical issue. Mold grows due to damp conditions and a food source to grow on. So, a leaky faucet that causes water to stand on a wood floor is a prime candidate for mold. The REAL problem here is the leaky faucet. If the faucet was NOT leaking, there would not be a mold problem.

From an insurance company’s viewpoint, there is a provision in ALL policies that excludes damage from “abuse and neglect”. Leaking faucet equals NEGLECT, so no coverage for any damage resulting from the leak. Unfortunately, failing to notice the leak, and the resulting mold, is a problem but the policy states no coverage regardless of whether one SHOULD have known about the leak.

Ottawa OH Insurance

One caveat to this exclusion involves the people that have just purchased a home and find a mold issue shortly after. If the home warranty was purchased with the purchase of the property, the home warranty would cover the repair of the mold damage, unless the mold damage is specifically excluded. If there is no home warranty purchased, the mold issue would then default back to the home inspection company. If there was not a home inspection, the problem then becomes much more complex.

If the property was not inspected and the homeowners insurance policy was issued, the homeowners insurance company would “probably” cover the mold issue but the issuing agent would have a MAJOR problem with his insurance company.

In this situation, probably the homeowners best friend is their local insurance agent. Your insurance agent will work with you to insure all of the possible problem areas are addressed to protect YOU, the new homeowner. If you made the decision to purchase your homeowners insurance online or on the phone, you MAY have a problem. Most of the people that you interact with are NOT licensed agents and are prohibited by law from giving insurance advice. This means you may not have the opportunity to have someone make sure you are protecting your self and your investment.

Ottawa OH Insurance

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, OH Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Did You Know ……..   “I Didn’t Know That” ….  WILL Cost You Money on Your Insurance

Ottawa OH Insurance

Many things happen in the insurance world that most people never hear about. Many things happen in the lives of their clients that most insurance companies never hear about either. Unfortunately, the second item costs people tremendous amounts of money.

How can this happen?

A known fact, that is seldom discussed, is that failing to notify your insurance company about changes in your life or belongings CAN leave you without insurance … and possibly a huge bill to pay. I believe every insurance policy has a statement that goes something like “Failing to notify the insurer will leave the insuree (you) liable for any damages”. It’s really that simple. You remodel part of your house, buy another car or truck, or any number of other changes could leave you in a not good situation with your insurance company.

Ottawa OH Insurance

Most insurance companies will give you time to contact them with the information concerning the change in your life. The time period ranges from 14 days up to 30 days, in some situations. Failing to notify the company within this time frame could mean that a claim may not be paid or only partially paid. Either scenario could have been avoided by simply contacting your agent to inform them of the change. The agent would then get the necessary changes processed so you are covered adequately.

So what’s the big deal? Don’t insurance agents ALWAYS say …. Don’t worry, it’s covered?

Well, some do. The issue becomes whether the change you made, before you notified your insurance agent, is eligible to be covered by the insurance company. Some items are not covered or may cause a significant increase in your premium. Some items are strictly not covered and would allow your insurance company to cancel your policy. Receiving a notice from your insurance company stating that “your policy is being cancelled in 10 days due to your failure to abide by the terms and conditions of the policy” would make your day not good quickly.

Ottawa OH Insurance

You are probably wondering items or conditions what would cause your insurance company to cancel your insurance? Actually, that list is significant in length. Probably the top items, on a homeowners policy, would be the purchase of a trampoline or swimming pool. If either are eligible for your particular insurance company, the rules and restrictions about how they are used need to be followed closely. Not notifying the insurance company until you have an incident is really dangerous, from an insurance standpoint, since the company probably WOULD pay the claim …. and then they would cancel your policy for failure to notify them.

The worst case scenario would be that the insurance company would NOT pay the claim …. and STILL cancel your policy. Yes, they can do that ….. if you failed to notify them of the changes. If you notified your agent and they failed to notify the insurance company, you would be covered and the agent would have a problem. If you have an online company as your insurance company, you could have more issues, since many of the people that answer the phone are not licensed agents and not authorized to make changes to your policy.

Ottawa OH Insurance

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, Ohio Palte Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Did You Know ………. Where You Live Can Cost You Money

Ottawa OH Insurance

Few people know that there are some interesting factors that are part of your insurance program. Yes, your personal history plays a role in how your insurance premium is calculated. Any incidents in which you are personally liable, whether for your homeowners or automobile insurance, will impact the level of your premium. There is also another major fact that enters into this calculation. Where you live.

So, you are asking, “How does where I live have anything to do with my insurance premium?”

Actually, unofficially, where you live can have a huge impact on both your homeowners and auto insurance premiums. The people that live around you can have a huge impact on your premiums. The incidents of these people are recorded, as are all incidents that are insurance related, and analyzed to build actuary tables. These tables are then used to determine insurance rates for the different geographic areas in which the insurance company issues premiums.

Ottawa OH Insurance

Why does where you live play into ANY calculation? Probably the best analogy is “Birds of a feather flock together” or something like that. Meaning the people that have a similar lifestyle are likely to live near each other. This also means that they will likely perform similar activities, work in similar places and have similar non-work activities. If these activities cause incidents that would involve an insurance company, the number of claims will increase due to the lifestyle. Statistically, the likelihood of similar events occurring in other neighborhoods of a similar makeup are quite high.

Is there a way to change this? Probably not without moving. Whether the practice is right or wrong is probably irrelevant because insurance is based on probability. The higher the probability of a particular action or set of actions to occur, the higher the odds of the insurance company having to pay a claim. In reality, simple math. Circumstances lead to events. Events sometimes lead to claims.

Ottawa OH Insurance

Life has a strange way of working. Just when you think you have it all worked out, someone changes the rules and then life has changes that go along with it. Most people will not change where they live just because of an insurance premium. They should not have to ….. but many things happen in life that are beyond a person’s control. Sometimes you just have to deal with the circumstances around you.

Unfortunately, if you don’t have someone to explain why an insurance premium is the way it is, you always wonder if there is something that you should or should not have done. Talking to a person on the phone, who is not an agent, won’t get you any answers. Most of the online companies don’t have agents answering the questions online either so you really can’t get  a straight answer. Having a local, personal insurance agent is still probably the nest solution to getting insurance questions answered.

Ottawa OH Insurance

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, Ohio Palte Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Did You Know …… Reading and Understanding Your Insurance Policy is Critical

Ottawa OH Insurance

There is one thing in common with over 90% of the population. They have NEVER read their homeowners or automobile insurance policy. This, in itself, is not a true earth changing event but it is something that could cost you, the insured, a significant amount of money in the evident of an unfortunate incident. Yes, insurance policies are sometimes hard to read but the NEED to read the policy still exists.

Reading an insurance policy is really NOT complicated. It just requires some diligence to complete. Almost every insurance policy includes a “glossary” or index of the terms used in the policy. Typically this glossary is located at the back of the policy and covers a list of terms that are used as a major part of the policy. These terms will help explain what is covered by the policy and what items of conditions are excluded from the policy’s coverage.

Ottawa OH Insurance

So, to actually read the policy in the most effective process, starting at the beginning of the policy will make the most sense. Anytime a term is encountered that is not understood simply flip the glossary and search for the term and its definition. Sometimes one definition will lead to another definition but, most of the time, each term is defined appropriately.

As the policy reading continues, the precise items and issues that are covered are listed and explained  in detail. Typically, after each section that lists a policy coverage, is a section that lists that what is excluded from the policy coverage. The exclusion sections of the policy are critical to ANY policy. Any incident that is excluded from the policy coverage will probably end up being an out of pocket expense for the policy owner. Knowing what the excluded items and/or incidents are will help in keeping the policy holder in compliance with the policy.

Ottawa OH Insurance

If there are items in the policy that still don’t make sense, the best solution is to contact your personal insurance agent to have them help explain the parts of that policy that need a better explanation. Unfortunately, if the policy has been purchased through an online insurer or through the telephone agency, MOST of the people that you would have contact with are typically NOT licensed agents. This creates an issue since only a LICENSED insurance agent can provide policy details. If the person contacted is not licensed, the policy purchaser is on their own. Usually this is not a good situation.

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, Ohio Palte Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Ottawa OH Insurance | Uninsured Motorist Property Damage is Misunderstood

Ottawa OH Insurance

One of the most confusing coverages in the auto insurance world is the Uninsured / Underinsured Motorist Property Damage (UMPD) coverage. Most people have never heard of this coverage because they have some level of collision coverage on their vehicle. When a vehicle has collision coverage they can not have UMPD coverage on the vehicle.

Simply stated, Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Property Damage (UMPD) coverage covers the vehicle of the non-liable party when the liable party does not have adequate insurance to cover the loss incurred. In other words, if someone caused a incident and had no insurance property damage coverage and the incident totaled your $50,000 car, YOUR insurance would get you a car (subject to the terms of your policy). Then YOUR insurance company would pursue the liable party to recover what they paid you. Without UMPD coverage, you would have been responsible to try to recover the damages from the liable party, probably through a lawsuit.

Ottawa OH Insurance

The second part of this coverage applies when the liable person does not have sufficient coverage to pay for the damages. This is the Underinsured Property Damage coverage. In this situation, presuming the same accident as listed above but the liable person has $15,000 of property damage coverage, your insurance company would pay the amount above the liable party’s insurance. If you did NOT have UMPD coverage, the maximum you would have received for your incident would have been the coverage limit of the liable person’s insurance policy.

A number of people, when they have older vehicles, want to drop comprehensive and collision coverages. The risk of removing the collision coverage is that the vehicle is completely exposed to the uninsured/underinsured driver. The risk of removing collision coverage and NOT having UMPD is that an incident COULD leave you without a vehicle. Not a good situation.

Ottawa OH Insurance

Unfortunately, if you purchase your car insurance online or through a telemarketer, you won’t receive this advice since they can’t make that suggestion, unless the person is properly licensed. Apparently, the majority are not licensed since they seldom offer their advice on what coverages someone should have.

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, Ohio Palte Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Ottawa OH Insurance | Raising Your Deductible Could Make Sense

Ottawa OH Insurance

An interesting discussion occurs almost every time someone mentions insurance deductibles. Years ago, have a very small deductible made sense. As a percentage of the insurance, the deductible amount seemed small mainly because prices for almost everything was low, as compared to today. $100 deductibles were the norm in many situations. Anyone that had a deductible above $500 was considered odd.

Unfortunately, the world has changed. As “creeping inflation” has continued to increase the price we pay for everything around us, the level that we set for deductibles on our insurance policies need to be reviewed for relevance. Very few insurance policies have deductibles below $500 for ANY type of insurance policy. The deductible on an insure policy is neither right or wrong. The deductible is a factor OF the premium of the insurance policy and the amount of risk the policy holder AND insurer are willing to accept.

Ottawa OH Insurance

So what IS an appropriate insurance deductible for an insurance  policy?

That is an interesting question. Many factors enter into the discussion of how the deductible level is chosen. Each type of insurance has its own specific factors, so picking a single deductible level is virtually impossible. The deductible on a homeowners policy is going to be quite different than the deductible on a motorcycle or car policy. The risk potential for the insurer and insured also place into the discussion and the calculation of the policy premium. In “most” cases, the lower the deductible, the higher the premium.

So when it is financially wise to increase an insurance policy? The current opinion is that it makes sense to increase a policy’s deductible IF the financial situation of the policy owner is such that the policy owner can absorb the impact of having to pay the deductible in the event of an unfortunate incident. Obviously, the policy owner’s personal preference on what an acceptable deductible should be will play into the discussion. The benefit to the policy owner is that they will have savings from the level of premium paid, which will help offset the out of pocket expense should that unfortunate incident occur.

Ottawa OH Insurance

The inverse side of the discussion is that some people would rather pay a higher premium in place of having to generate the out of pocket cash for a deductible if an incident should occur. Sometimes this makes sense. Sometimes it does not.

The BEST solution is to deal with a qualified insurance agent that can work through the financial details and present the pros and cons in actual dollars and cents. The client’s acceptable risk level, along with the financial calculations, will provide a visible display of what level of deductible make sense.

To find someone to help you work through this insurance concern, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, Ohio Palte Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


Ottawa OH Insurance | Your Auto Insurance Liability Limits Depend on Your Lifestyle

Ottawa OH Insurance

Possibly the largest concern about any auto insurance policy is the determining what the liability limits on the policy should be. There is much discussion within the insurance world as to how these limits are determined. Each agent seems to have their own ideas and reasons for the liability limits that they propose. Many agents propose limits without regard to the clients financial situation. Unfortunately, this can lead to unpleasant discussions when an unfortunate incident occurs.

So what ARE the correct liability limits for a car insurance policy?

There are no hard, fast rules that lead clients or insurance agents to establish liability limits. Most experienced agents suggest a review all of the policy holders assets before they make a recommendation. This allows them to calculate and show the client what their risk COULD be in the event of an unfortunate incident. Most clients expect the insurance company to handle the claim completely. Generally that is what happens. However, sometimes the liability of the incident exceeds the limits of the insurance policy.

Ottawa OH Insurance

One way of determining an auto policy’s liability limits is to review what the client posseses as assets and what their level of risk is. Then  the agent should show what could happen to the client’s assets and life IF the incident were to occur. When the sequence of events that occur to satisfy an insurance judgement are revealed to the client, their reaction will help determine where the liability limits should be placed. Obviously, this presentation is a true “what if” scenario but also will show what “could” happen.

In a general overview, if a client has a low level of assets, the liability limits could be placed low, possibly to state minimum limits. The risk of the very low limits is, with the possibility of wage garnishment, that a client could be paying for an unfortunate incident for a very long time. The benefit to the client, of the lower limits, is usually lower premiums for their policy but they also need to understand what could happen to future income.

Ottawa OH Insurance

A client with a significant amount of assets should have much higher liability limits to allow the client to protect what they own. Yes, the premium of their policy will be higher but they also have a higher risk of losing assets as the result of an incident. Each client needs to be educated as to their liability risk so they can make an educated decision.

Many people believe the determination of their auto insurance liability limits are strictly the right of the client. Technically that opinion is correct. However, the insurance agent also has a significant risk in each policy. If an incident occurs and the client is deemed liable, the agent stands the risk that the liable client will accuse the agent of not properly insuring them, if a large liability judgement results. Because the only document that typically exists is the actual insurance policy, the discussion becomes who said what during the purchase and review of the insurance policy. There are very few times that a written document expresses the views of both the client and the agent.

Ottawa OH Insurance

Because this subject is not easily resolved, the best solution is to have a frank discussion with a licensed insurance agent to make sure the client’s assets are protected. Without having someone to discuss and analyze what plan of action is best, picking a liability limit is a random choice. Will you be OK regardless of the liability limit? Probably. All incidents are a matter of chance so everything that is determined is an educated guess.

To avoid some of these insurance policy issues, you should have a LOCAL Ottawa OH insurance agent, like the Palte Insurance Agency in Columbus Grove, Ohio. They are trained to answer ALL of your questions and make sure you  have the coverage that YOU need and want to protect your family. The Ottawa, OH Palte Insurance Agency can be reached at 419-890-1270 or by email: billpalte@palteinsurance.com or on the web at http://www.PalteInsurance.com


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