Here in California we’ve had one of the worst fire seasons ever. Property damage has been concentrated in the Camp Fire (northern CA) and the Woolsey Fire (Malibu). Total insurance payouts are expected to near $20 billion. Continue reading “Fire Insurance in California: What You Need to Know”
Here are Bella and Reagan, my favorite Yorkies getting ready for a road trip! They’ve got their little bandanas, their cozy bed and….their pet insurance! Continue reading “Does Your Pet Need Health Insurance?”
2017 wasn’t very happy for the insurance industry thanks to three nasty grinches named Harvey (in Texas), Irma (in Florida) and Maria (in Puerto Rico). Because coastal development has been so strong over recent decades, these hurricanes could result in total losses of $100 billion! Despite that massive number insurance carriers are not forecast to be overly stressed because only 18-20% Florida and Texas residents have flood insurance, and carriers have their own insurance (called reinsurance) to cover excessive loss.
Still, homeowner rates in Florida and Texas are expected to rise. Rates in Florida are already twice as high as the national average and after 2017 will likely increase more.
The news isn’t much better on the automotive side. The recent increase in miles driven was the most in 25 years. And everybody loves their cell phones: more than 400,000 people were injured in distracted driving incidents last year. Then when they are in accidents, new technology makes cars more expensive to repair. A study showed minor front-end damage to an Acura ILX that cost $1,844 to fix in 2014 cost $3,551 in 2016. It all adds up to pressure for auto rate increases nationwide.
Here in California we had devastating summer fires in the north and surprising winter fires in the south resulting in nearly $10 billion in insurance claims. Claims are high because of coastal development, questionable land management practices and the high cost of homes, particularly in Southern California. And unlike flood, fire is covered by all standard homeowners policies.
What does that all mean for you? Because many areas previously thought safe were proven to be dangerous, carriers will be taking a hard look at how they define “fire prone area”, particularly for new business. So if you live in or even near a fire prone area it’s important to keep your insurance paid up because if you let it lapse for even one day it may be non-renewed. If you buy a new house in a fire prone area and can’t get insurance from your existing carrier don’t be alarmed… at Desert Insurance Solutions we have multiple carrier options for each situation, but you can expect new policies in fire prone areas to be more expensive.
Who could forget the scenes of devastation as hundreds of California homes burned to the ground by wildfires? Imagine for a moment driving up to your home and finding everything gone: house, furnishing, computers, files, safe… maybe even your wallet and cell phone. Continue reading “Vital Data Map is a Great Risk Management Tool and its Free!”
Fall will be here soon and with it comes open enrollment for many health plans. Today I’ll cover issues for employers, employees who get insurance at work, individuals who aren’t covered at work and Medicare participants. Before I start, here are some general points to consider: Continue reading “What You Need to Know About Health Insurance”
Did you know that 75% of all motorcycle accidents involve a car or that 67% involve a car driver who fails to see a motorcycle? For most motorcycle accidents, it takes two. It’s no surprise that riding a motorcycle is dangerous: fatality rate per mile driven is 35 times higher than when in a car! Only 25% of motorcycle accidents don’t involve cars, typically slide out on turn from inexperienced riders. So if most motorcycle accidents are caused by car drivers not seeing motorcycles, what can we do?
“Apples to apples” is an idea that affects billions of dollars of insurance advertising spending, even though it doesn’t really work. A more useful phrase is “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing”. Continue reading “Exclusions and Sublimits | What You Need to Know”
This month brings us a new president who has pledged to change the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare. The details of the changes are yet unknown, but I wanted to give you some background in case you’re concerned. Continue reading “Obamacare Under President Trump | What You Need to Know”
International travel is one of the most interesting experiences life has to offer. And although terrorism has been in the headlines recently, you are much more likely to be hit by lightning than die in a terrorist attack. In this article I talk about the real risks of international vacations, and the fact that your US insurance coverage may be of limited value overseas. If you are moving or considering buying property overseas, call me because the issues are more complicated. Continue reading “A Guide International Travel and Your U.S. Insurance Coverage”
Last spring a hummingbird built a nest outside my window so I was able to watch the whole process from egg to first flight. After the new hummingbirds leave the nest the mother spends two days showing them how to get nectar then she chases them off for good to live on their own. If only it were that easy. In this post, I’ll cover liability risk issues related to adult children and steps you can take to protect your assets and theirs. Continue reading “Protecting Your Adult Children’s Future”