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Heuer Insurance Agency’s August Newsletter

As we look to close summer, families are planning for their Sons or Daughters to be moving into a college dorm or residence. We often get asked, “How does Lauren or Mark moving out of the area to attend school affect our insurance?” That’s a great question and we need to look for both the exposure of Liability/Property insurance AND Car insurance.

       Now keep in mind, some policies coverage details are different than others, so we talk in general terms for today’s blog. If you have specific questions I recommend you talking to your friendly agent at Heuer Insurance. In a nutshell most homeowners policies coverage for the distant student will automatically extend from your home, in the amount of 10% of your coverage C, or Property coverage. The Liability coverage for that distant student is also typically extended from your homeowners’ policy. Any “high valued” items like a computer or expensive bike, might want to be specifically listed in your homeowner’s policy, that way you can be sure you have the proper coverage and the deductible is also waived. Sounds simple huh?

       The situation on how it affects your car insurance policy is a little different but straight forward as well. Again, I suggest a conversation with your Heuer Insurance agent to discuss any specifics. First off, the rates remain the same as though they still lived at home. Even better than that, at times there are discounts for “Distant Students” and “Good Students”. If this scenario sounds like your family, that call to Heuer Insurance is important!

 


      

       As for agency news, we had two work anniversaries since we last wrote. Two key players celebrated another year with the office. Debi Baucom hit 41 years and LaRee Cobb 32. We couldn’t do it without these guys. Please help me in congratulating them on another milestone!

 


      

      Thanks for reading this month’s blog and THANK YOU for all the business we get to handle for you! Don’t forget our referral program. Some good money has been handed out as well as two tickets to see Keith! Get in on the action and you could be our next lucky winner!

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What To Do If You Get Into a Car Accident

Being in an accident can be a very frightening event. Being prepared to know how to handle the situation when it occurs will help you deal with the shock of it, as well as ensure you are covered for the loss when it does happen. While accidents will happen to almost every driver, whether their car is parked and unattended, or while they’re driving, knowing these important steps will help you deal with the unfortunate situation.

Safely park your vehicle: If you happen to be driving when the accident occurs, safely pull the vehicle over to the side of the road. If possible, carefully write down the license plate and description of the other vehicle(s) involved in the accident. If you are reporting a hit and run, this information will aid police in locating the driver. In the event of a hit and run it most likely happens when your vehicle is unattended. If you return to your vehicle to find damage, look for clues to help you prove your case, i.e. Security cameras.

Assess any Injuries: If someone is injured, take care of their immediate needs and quickly call 911. It is typical to be jittery after such an event so catch your breath too.

Call police: Once you’re safely parked, you should call the police to file a report, especially if another party is involved. It’s important to always have documentation of how the accident happened. Some people want to settle the claim without going through insurance, but this comes with risks. The other driver may not live up to their word and without contacting the police, it turns into a he said, she said scenario.

Exchange Information: Exchanging insurance ID cards is always recommended. Be sure to have their name and phone number too. It’s simple to take a picture with your phone. Be sure to include the car’s license plate number, year, make and model too.

Take pictures/Gather any witness information: If you have a witness who wants to share their side of the story, jot down their phone number and name. Your insurance company will want to talk with any witness to the accident. Taking pictures also gives your insurance company more details on the damage of your vehicle.

Call your insurance company: Sometimes even though vehicles collide, the damages may be limited, so you’ll want to take a close look and determine if you want to pursue a claim or get an estimate first before calling your insurance company. If someone was injured or if you have major damage, it’s always best to call your insurance company immediately. Your insurance company can assist you with your claim so if you have taken pictures and provided all the information above, your claim can be settled quicker.

While we hope you never have to experience a car accident, being prepared will help you tackle the unfortunate situation.

Heuer Insurance Agency in Sparks has worked with a variety of clients in the Reno area over the years and we are confident in our ability to meet your personal or business insurance needs. We understand how important an insurance policy can be and we take time to match each of our clients with the perfect insurance policy. Whether you are looking for auto insurancerenters insurancehomeowners insurance, or life insurance we can help you. Not only can we provide you with each of these personal insurance policies, but we can also help you find a general liability policy, workers compensation policy or commercial building insurance policy. Give us a call at 775-358-5554 or visit us.

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Choosing The Lowest Insurance Cost Likely Isn’t Your Best Plan

We’re flooded daily with insurance commercials claiming that shopping with them will get you the lowest insurance premiums of any company out there. Saving money on your insurance is important, but the lowest insurance premiums are usually accompanied by the lowest insurance coverage.

Determining what insurance coverages you need is something that only a qualified local insurance agent can help you decide. We care more about you being covered adequately than simply giving you the cheapest premiums.

Do you need the auto insurance coverages below? Discuss with us & we’ll help determine what makes the most sense for your personal needs.

Collision Coverage: protection for your car from damage whether at-fault or not. Premiums weigh heavily on the value of your vehicle.

Comprehensive Coverage: pays for damage to your vehicle from things such as contact with an animal, fire, theft or vandalism.

Medical Payments: Commonly known as MedPay or PIP, this covers medical bills as a direct results of an accident regardless of fault.

Uninsured Motorist: Coverage for being involved with an uninsured driver. Both physical damage (your car) and bodily injury are offered.

Underinsured Motorist: Coverage to help cover a gap from a motorist who has insurance, but not enough to cover the loss.

When deciding on what coverage options to have, take these situations into account:

Scenario 1: You purchase a low cost, low coverage liability policy with only $25,000 in Property Damage. You rear-end a new, two week old Toyota Camry totaling the vehicle. The Camry’s replacement cost is $35,000. You have to pay $10,000 out of pocket.

Scenario 2: You are t-boned by an uninsured motorist and have extensive medical bills in excess of $50,000. You do not have uninsured motorist coverage or personal health insurance and your auto medical payments only cover the first $10,000. You have to take the uninsured driver to court to pay your $40,000 in medical bills, in the meantime, you’re responsible for the $40,000 in bills.

Regardless of whether you’re shopping for a new home, auto, boat or motorcycle insurance policy if you want the lowest insurance premiums you should be aware that you’re usually lowering the amount of insurance coverage you have. Depending on your situation, this may not be a wise decision because it puts your financial future at risk by carrying low limits. As always, reach out to Heuer Insurance Agency for all your insurance needs!

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Do You Know What Determines Your Car Insurance Rate?

We bet you’ve wondered how car insurance premiums are calculated. Do you ever have discussions with friends of similar age and driving history and find you’re all paying very different premiums for what would appear to be similar coverage?

Insurance premiums are based off of many factors, all of which play a role in your total premium for your auto insurance. A single difference of any of these can give dramatically different outcomes. Some factors insurance companies use to calculate premium can include:

  • Gender, age & marital status
  • What’s your past driving history?
  • What’s your claim history?
  • Your Zip Code where the vehicle is garaged
  • Your credit score
  • How many miles you commute
  • Will you or do you have other policies with the same insurance carrier such as home or renters insurance?
  • Are you currently insured?
  • What types of overage do you want? What limits?
  • What limits did you have on your previous insurance policy?
  • Type and age of vehicle being driven (think safety equipment)

Insurance companies do their best to determine a premium for your situation and calculate a premium that will be profitable for them. It may surprise you to know that many insurance companies try to earn just a few cents on each dollar of premium they collect.

While it is impossible to guess what you are going to be paying each year, you can improve your odds of getting a great rate and terrific coverage by calling a local independent insurance agent. Heuer Insurance Agency represents multiple insurance companies, so we can provide you with comparison quotes from several of the top insurance companies in your state.

If you have questions about your car insurance, call the agents at Heuer Insurance Agency. Heuer Insurance Agency in Sparks has worked with a variety of clients in the Reno area over the years and we are confident in our ability to meet your personal or business insurance needs. We understand how important an insurance policy can be and we take time to match each of our clients with the perfect insurance policy. Whether you are looking for auto insurancerenters insurancehomeowners insurance, or life insurance we can help you. Not only can we provide you with each of these personal insurance policies, but we can also help you find a general liability policy, workers compensation policy or commercial building insurance policy. Give us a call at 775-358-5554 or visit us.

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5 Simple Tips to Avoid Having Your Vehicle Stolen

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a vehicle is stolen every 44 seconds in the United States. Having your vehicle stolen is not only a huge inconvenience, but it is also frightening and violating experience that can sometimes be avoided by taking certain precautions.

5 Tips to Avoid Your Car from Being Stolen:

  1. At nighttime, always park your vehicle in well-lit areas. Thieves thrive in dark places where they can easily be hidden.
  2. Keep the inside of your car clean and avoid leaving valuables exposed. Use your trunk if you are transporting valuables.
  3. Always lock your car door and windows. The most basic tip of them all. Many people feel comfortable leaving their car unlocked while it’s parked at their home or other safe areas. Get in the habit of always locking your car to avoid any unexpected surprises.
  4. Keep your spare key in your home, not under your car. Thieves tend to check for spare keys in common areas like under the car.
  5. Invest in an alarm system or anti-theft device. The simplest form of protection is an anti-theft device like an alarm or a wheel locking device such as “The Club.”

While these tips can’t guarantee your car will never be stolen, protecting your assets in the event of a car theft can be as simple as having the right insurance policy. Investing in comprehensive coverage will cover the loss of car theft. Contact your licensed insurance agent at Heuer Insurance Agency to make sure you have this coverage is on your insurance policy.

Heuer Insurance Agency in Sparks has worked with a variety of clients in the Reno area over the years and we are confident in our ability to meet your personal or business insurance needs. We understand how important an insurance policy can be and we take time to match each of our clients with the perfect insurance policy. Whether you are looking for auto insurancerenters insurancehomeowners insurance, or life insurance we can help you. Not only can we provide you with each of these personal insurance policies, but we can also help you find a general liability policy, workers compensation policy or commercial building insurance policy. Give us a call at 775-358-5554 or visit us.

Rate Increases Explained..

 

Welcome back to the much anticipated HIA blog!  I say that with a great deal of humor involved because this thing called the Internet and Social Media seem to be the GO TO place  for all important things to know. I find it amazing to see what information is available at the ease of a click and wham!  You got what you need!  Or do you….?????   We have all heard fake news stories and other inflated internet stories, so sometimes what you read, may not be what you really thought….or worse…thought you needed??

 

Heuer Insurance Agency has been around since 1929.  We wouldn’t still be here if the buying public hadn’t seen the value of using an Independent Insurance Agent  as their Trusted Advisor in the crazy world of Insurance all those years.  Today’s insurance contracts are more limited, more confusing, and more difficult for the average consumer to understand than ever before.  To make matters worse, those same insurance contracts are WAY more expensive than they ever have been, and hint, they aren’t going to get any cheaper in the future!  Why you ask???  Surprisingly it isn’t because of the profits taken to those ivory towers we have all heard about…  Trust me on this fact and let’s get past this thought process.  So, why are the rates really going to increase?  It’s not attractive but the reasons are exactly what you buy insurance to protect you against. The primary expenses claims adjusters see are medical bills, attorney bills, body shop invoices, car rental reimbursements and various construction estimates which can all be involved in a single automobile or property claim.  Do you think ANY of those industries are charging insurance companies LOWER rates today?  Not hardly folks.  So as long as those costs continue to sky rocket, the pure cost of insurance is going to continue to rise.  In addition to the cost of claims, the industry is seeing more new cars purchased,  more miles driven, and a higher frequency of claims involving speed and death.

 

 

So what can you do about that sobering fact??? My sincere advise is this…when you get your renewal increase, take a deep breath and think about your insurance and your relationship with those trusted advisors that brought that insurance product to you.  Have you had a claim, how did it go?  Did you have a question about insurance and call our office for first hand human advice?  How did that conversation go?  Was the agent helpful, sincere and polite?  If you called the office about a rate concern, was the highly trained staff at Heuer able to help?  Was it nice to be able to sit at a local agent’s desk and talk one on one about rate concerns?  Did that Agent point out options for you that brought the price back into the acceptable range?  Did that Agent give you TRUSTED advice on ALL of these issues that were important to you?

 

If the answer was YES on any of those issues, we sincerely ask you to consider those same concerns and comments when it comes time to pay that expensive insurance renewal.   In today’s world, you can buy your insurance on line, or at a swap meet, but is it really your best option in today’s difficult world?  My advise after a lifetime of being in the insurance industry, and being PROUD of all 88 years for what the industry does for the citizens of our Country,  is to shop around if you don’t think your local agent has earned your renewal.  Hopefully you will see that our prices are in line with the industry as a whole.  Most Independent Agents can tell you historically we haven’t been the cheapest insurance on the street for almost 200 years….but NO ONE can stand up to the advise we give our clients, day in and day out!  If you are happy with what your Trusted Advisors at Heuer Insurance have done for you, and appreciated their advice, call em and tell them!  Trust me again….they will be thrilled to hear from you.

 

Above all, THANK YOU  for all the years Heuer Insurance has been your Trusted Advisor, we can’t thank you enough!

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Life changes, so should your insurance policy.

Imagine if we could buy just one insurance policy and be set for life. That’s a nice thought, isn’t it? Like the good things that happen in life, your insurance policy should change and adapt to your situations. The beauty of having a local, independent insurance agent is that they represent multiple insurance companies. One that surely will fit your current and future needs. Some things to consider when reviewing your current insurance:

Did I get married?

Marriage discounts, multi-car discounts, combined insurance policies, jewelry endorsements, life insurance, a new home? A lot happens when you get married – be sure your new life together is properly insured.

Did I complete a major remodel?

A new kitchen can add tremendous value to your home. Simple changes like bay windows, granite counter tops and hardwood floors dramatically improve and increase the value of your home, not to mention if you blow out a wall and add some additional square footage. Be sure your current insurance policy has enough coverage for all your changes. Review these changes with your agent.

Did I or do I want to get a new car?

If you’re considering a new car, your independent agent can tell you what the new premiums will be on that fancy new ride before you buy it. Be sure to consider the increased premium in the sticker tag of the vehicle.

Do I have a teen who will soon be driving?

Teen drivers can be quite the sticker shock. If you have a teen driver in the house, it is important to let your agent know. Most insurance companies require your teen driver be listed on the policy. Not adding the driver to the policy could cause major problems and even a claim denial if they’re not added timely. Be sure to ask your agent about teen drivers.

Did I purchase a new exterior building for my home?

Many insurance policies automatically include exterior buildings coverages for 10% of the value of your home. While not all do this automatically, if you install or build a detached garage or other structure, be sure you have enough coverage in the event it is damaged or a total loss.

Did I protect my home with a new burglar alarm?

Reviewing what discounts you currently have and looking for new ones is always a good thing to do. Burglar alarms, driving less, multi-policy discounts and more are great ways to reduce your premiums. Your agent can look for these automatically. They’re discount detectives. Next time you talk with yours, be sure to have them go over what discounts are available so you can take advantage of them.

Understanding insurance is difficult. Fortunately, when you’re insured with an independent insurance agent they can review your policy with you anytime and shop from multiple companies to determine the best company for your needs.

Heuer Insurance Agency in Sparks has worked with a variety of clients in the Reno area over the years and we are confident in our ability to meet your personal or business insurance needs. We understand how important an insurance policy can be and we take time to match each of our clients with the perfect insurance policy. Whether you are looking for auto insurancerenters insurancehomeowners insurance, or life insurance we can help you. Not only can we provide you with each of these personal insurance policies, but we can also help you find a general liability policy, workers compensation policy or commercial building insurance policy. Give us a call at 775-358-5554 or visit us.

Look before you back up!

This month we will be talking a little more about claims, but this time, we are going to talk about car insurance claims. I regularly attend social events and other networking events and am commonly asked; what is the most common type of claim you see? I thought about it for awhile, and if it isn’t the dreaded water losses we have been discussing the last few months, it has to be the seemingly endless amount of BACKING UP claims! We are so fortunate that in today’s day and age most new vehicles come with back up cameras, because making cars for 100 years WITHOUT back up cameras, has led to thousands of parking lot accidents. These are one of the easiest claims to prevent, yet, I bet we see at least 5 of these per week and that’s just at Heuer Insurance! PLEASE, as the old saying goes, look left, right and left again…. maybe even twice. Another reminder, always check your rear view mirror too! Let’s all do what we can to stop these accidents; it will save us all in the end. All good words of advice from a grateful bunch of Insurance Agents!

So… what else is Heuer Insurance Agency doing? Gina and Adam recently staffed a beer booth at the Reno Rodeo doing their part to give back.

Tips for Charity

As we often mention, we are supporters of many not-for-profits, specifically Rotary, and this was another fundraiser where all tips went towards the Achievement Beyond Obstacles Scholarship Program. The offer is always out there, if you too would like to get involved and give back to your community please let us know, we are always looking for help. Or, if you support a cause and are looking for some support let us know that too… we may be interested in helping!
Last but certainly not least, congratulations to Ashleigh Martinez on winning our July referral contest!! Ashleigh hasn’t yet come to pick up her gift card but when she does we will be sure to post her picture.
Thanks for reading and above all, thanks for your business.

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What To Do If You’re Involved in a Hit and Run Accident

Being in a hit and run accident can be a very frightening event. Being prepared to know how to handle the situation when it occurs will help you deal with the shock of it, as well as ensure you are covered for the loss when it does happen. While hit and run accidents will happen to almost every driver, whether their car is parked and unattended, or while they’re driving, knowing these things will help you deal with the unfortunate situation.

Safely park your vehicle: If you happen to be driving when the accident occurs, safely pull the vehicle over to the side of the road. If possible, carefully write down the license plate and description of the vehicle that struck you. This will aid police in locating the driver. Often time, your vehicle will be struck in a parking lot while unattended. In the event this happens, look for any signs of the other vehicle. Is their paint transfer that would indicate the color of the vehicle? Is there a note on your windshield? Are their security cameras such as at the gas station?

Assess any Injuries: If someone is injured, take care of their immediate needs and quickly call 911. It is typical to be jittery after such an event so catch your breath too.

Call police: Once you’re safely parked, you’ll need to get a police report. Many police stations will not respond if there are no injuries, so you’ll want to still turn in a police report for the incident. Many insurance companies will require this documentation in order to use your UMPD (uninsured motorist property damage) insurance coverage.

Gather any witness information: If anyone is standing there and offers you their statement, jot down their phone number and name. Your insurance company will want to talk with any witness to the accident.

Call insurance company: Sometimes even though vehicles collide, the damages may be limited, so you’ll want to take a close look and determine if you want to pursue a claim. While hit and run accidents may be a scary encounter, they may not require body work to your vehicle. Also keep in mind that if you don’t carry the correct coverages for hit and run (often times referred to as uninsured motorist property damage) your claim will be handled under a collision loss. Deductibles will likely apply in both cases.

While we hope you never have to experience a hit and run accident, being prepared will help you tackle the unfortunate situation.

Heuer Insurance Agency in Sparks has worked with a variety of clients in the Reno area over the years and we are confident in our ability to meet your personal or business insurance needs. We understand how important an insurance policy can be and we take time to match each of our clients with the perfect insurance policy. Whether you are looking for auto insurancerenters insurancehomeowners insurance, or life insurance we can help you. Not only can we provide you with each of these personal insurance policies, but we can also help you find a general liability policy, workers compensation policy or commercial building insurance policy. Give us a call at 775-358-5554 or visit us.