Hold Your Horses… We Do All The Work!

horse-1006376_1920How To Prepare For A Personal Insurance Quote

We have all heard the advice “knowledge is power,” and in the personal insurance world, this is very true.  The more information we have as your personal insurance agent, the better and more competitively priced your personal insurance will be.  Keep this in mind as you prepare for your agent to quote your personal insurance.

Here Is the Good News

We will do all the heavy lifting for you.  All you need to do is have your information ready to give to your agent.  This may be information you already have at your fingertips, or information that is listed on your current personal insurance policies.  Then, we will do all the rest for you.

Now if you were going to try to apply for insurance online, the process is much more complex.  Not only would you have to know what information you need, but also how and where to use it to obtain the most competitive personal insurance products.

Keys to Getting the Best Price on Your Personal Insurance

Use an independent agent.  An independent agent has a number of advantages going for them.  Find an agent who has experience with the kind of insurance you need.  Your agent should be licensed and have an office you can visit if needed.

Benefits of Independent Agents:

  • They are not employed or controlled by any one insurance company.
  • These agents have access to dozens of markets.
  • They are locally owned; which means they live and work in your community.
  • When you call the office of an independent agent, you can talk to a licensed professional who cares about you.
  • Independent agents are a one-stop-shop for all of your personal insurance needs.
  • You get a choice of products and insurance companies that best suits your needs.
  • They not only find you competitively priced personal insurance, but they also make sure you have coverage that is designed for your individual situation.

Be honest concerning your personal information – Agents are held to strict confidentially standards.  We will never share your personal information with anyone with your permission.

Provide Information to Your Agent

There will be some necessary information needed for your agent to provide options for you. This information will vary based on the kind of personal insurance products you desire. Here are some of the types of information you may need to provide:

Homeowners Insurance

  • Personal information
  • Description of home
  • Any repairs or upgrades
  • Current condition and amenities
  • Age of roof and furnace, etc

Life Insurance

  • Health history
  • Family health history
  • Any illness

Auto Insurance

  • Personal information
  • Driving history
  • Vehicle use and description

Remember, knowledge is power.  Therefore, the more information your agent has the better pricing and coverage they will provide for you.  North Bay Insurance Brokers. is your trusted solution for homeowner’s insurance. We offer coverage options that are both flexible and affordable, and will work with you on an individual basis to find a policy that best suits your needs. Our team is dedicated to providing the assurance that your family and your possessions are secure.

 

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Shake Rattle And Roll

earthquake-3167693_1920 (1)A California Earthquake Update

May 2018 saw a number of small earthquakes in California. Many experts are predicting a major quale on the west coast in the next 12 months. The only thing we have control over is how prepared we are when an earthquake hits our area.

“California sits at the border between two major tectonic plates—the Pacific plate, which is moving northwest, and the North American plate, which is sliding past it to the southeast. The two plates don’t just meet at a single line, and the state is crisscrossed with dozens of earthquake faults. The San Andreas is the most worrisome, because it generates the quakes that are really dangerous to California residents.”  Sarah Zielinski

What You Can Control

  1. Get earthquake insurance on your home. Earthquake insurance covers damage to your home and your possessions. Most earthquake policies also cover costs incurred to minimize further damage after an earthquake, plus costs for additional living expenses. Deductibles are generally 10-15% of the insured amount. Exterior structures such as pools, irrigation systems, driveways, and detached garages are generally not covered.
  2. Create a disaster plan.
    • Know where to go. If you are ordered to evacuate, know the local evacuation route(s) to take and have a plan for where you can stay. Contact your local emergency management agency for more information.
    • Put together a “go-bag” or disaster supply kit should you need to evacuate, including a flashlight, batteries, cash, first aid supplies, medications, and copies of your critical information.
    • If you are not in an area that is advised to evacuate and you decide to stay in your home, plan for adequate supplies in case you lose power and water for several days and you are not able to leave due to blocked roads.
    • Make a family emergency communication plan and review it regularly with members.
    • Many communities have text or email alerting systems for emergency notifications. To find out what alerts are available in your area, search the Internet with your town, city, or county name and the word “alerts.”
    • Disconnect electrical appliances and do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water. You could be electrocuted.
    • If instructed, turn off your gas and electricity at the main switch or valve. This helps prevent fires and explosions.

At North Bay Insurance Brokers, we know how hard you’ve worked to turn your house into a home. Since your home is one of the most important financial investments of your lifetime, you’ll need proper coverage in order to keep your investment protected and provide your family with the guarantee that they’ll always be safe and sound.

 

 

 

Are You Kidding Me?

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2018 is here, and 2017 is in the rear view mirror.  Last year we saw and experienced many hardships and disasters, but also hand many successes.  We hope 2018 brings you much happiness and success.  2017 was a year in which many entire communities were destroyed by storms and wildfires, 20 million or more people experienced an identity theft, and a number of women come forward describing their sexual harassment.

Here is a list of the top risk issues for 2017

  • Wildfires in California and Oregon – over $8 billion in damage
  • Storms in Texas, Florida, and the Northeast
  • Mid slides in California
  • Flooding in California, Washington, Oregon, and most of the Midwest
  • Identity theft and cyber breaches
  • An increase in sexual harassment claims
  • The continued evolution of driverless vehicles
  • The regulation of drones
  • Advances in home technology
  • Retention of key employees
  • The ability to attract quality workers
  • Terrorism
  • Random shootings

Over the next few months we will try to help you develop a clear plan on how to manage these risks. Please contact our office and we will be happy to help you identify what is important to you and then put together a plan to help you manage you risks most effetely.  Here are two important issues you may be facing in 2018

Identity Theft and Cyber Breaches

Identity theft insurance provides reimbursement to victims for the cost of restoring their identity and repairing credit reports.  This type of insurance will help you with certain kinds of expenses to aid you in restoring your credit.Cyber policies cover the liability arising from website media content as well as breach related property losses such as: (a) business interruption, (b) data loss/destruction, (c) computer fraud, (d) funds transfer loss, and (e) cyber extortion.  It can also provide notification and other services for a covered loss.

Harassment Claims

Your business must address this issue head on.  First, you need to secure employment practices liability insurance.  This insurance will offer defense and indemnification coverage should you be involved in an employment litigation.  Second, your business needs to have a clear anti-discrimination policy.  The policy should include reporting procedures and anti-whistleblower provisions.

North Bay Insurance Brokers is your trusted solution for homeowner’s insurance. We offer coverage options that are both flexible and affordable, and will work with you on an individual basis to find a policy that best suits your needs. Our team is dedicated to providing the assurance that your family and your possessions are secure.

 

The Crystal Ball Says

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When was the last time you reviewed your personal insurance coverage? The New Year is a great time to review your personal insurance. Most of us know that major life events can make it necessary to update our insurance coverage. But did you know that even subtle changes can have an impact on your financial needs and plans?  Call our office today, and we can help you find the right combination of personal insurance coverage and price.

Personal Insurance

  • Review my insurance to make sure I have the right coverage
  • Take the time to read my insurance policies
  • Does my independent agent have all my correct information, including new phone number, address, and newly purchased property?
  • Make sure I have identity theft insurance
  • Do I have enough life insurance?
  • Do I need life insurance for my spouse?

 Other Items To Consider (you may need insurance for some of these)

  • Bought a new car or sold a car
  • Changed your marital status
  • Bought a boat, RV or ATV
  • Change of address
  • Welcomed a new baby into the family
  • Major inheritance
  • Have a new teen driver in the family
  • Child headed off to college
  • Purchased second home
  • Plan foreign travel
  • Started a home based business
  • I now drive my personal car for work

North Bay Insurance Brokers is your trusted solution for homeowner’s insurance. We offer coverage options that are both flexible and affordable, and will work with you on an individual basis to find a policy that best suits your needs. Our team is dedicated to providing the assurance that your family and your possessions are secure.

 

 

Insurance Jeopardy… What Is, I Need Business Insurance For $500

Test Your Business Insurance IQ

We don’t expect you to be experts in business insurance, but we thought it might be fun to test you on what you do know about your business insurance. Business insurance is designed to cover unexpected losses. We can offer a wide range of business insurance options, so please call our office today.

Business Insurance Quiz (answers at the end)

  1. Your deductible is the amount you are responsible for if a covered loss occurs.

True       False

  1. Flood and earthquake coverage are always part of your business property coverage.

Ture       False

  1. Cyber Insurance is protection against losses caused by hackers from businesses dealing strictly in e-commerce, but it does not exist.

True       False

  1. Business Interruption covers your lost income no matter what kind of loss closes your business.

True       False

  1. My employees are prohibited from suing me, as this would be a workers’ compensation claim.

True       False

North Bay Insurance Brokers provides industry-specific insurance to businesses in Sonoma, Napa, Marin, Santa Rosa, Petaluma, American Canyon, and surrounding areas.

Every industry has specific needs when it comes to insurance. Industry-specific risks make it impossible for insurance companies to lump together one insurance plan for every business. At North Bay Insurance Brokers, we understand that being unique is what makes your business successful across the board. That’s why we provide industry-specific insurance options for businesses of all types.

Answers

  1. True-
  2. False- You need to add this coverage under a separate policy
  3. False- Cyber insurance can be purchase by all business
  4. False- Business interruption only applies to covered losses under the policy
  5. False- Your employees have rights under federal and state laws to sue you if they feel they have been wronged. You would need employment practices liability insurance in order to protect you and your business from employee lawsuits.

Are We Crazy! – Is Earthquake Insurance Really Needed?

Structural DamageMany Sonoma homeowners go without earthquake insurance.  Often people mistakenly think that earthquakes are covered under their homeowner’s policy.  Other people figure the odds are low, and that nothing will happen.  Let us correct you; unless you have added earthquake coverage, it is excluded from your homeowner’s policy.  Some mortgage companies may even require earthquake coverage, depending where you are located.

North Bay Earthquake Insurance

Earthquake insurance covers damage to your home and your possessions. Most earthquake policies also cover costs incurred to minimize further damage after an earthquake, plus costs for additional living expenses.  Deductibles are generally 10-15% of the insured amount. Exterior structures such as pools, irrigation systems, driveways, and detached garages are generally not covered.

We recommend you consider earthquake coverage.  We can help you analyze the cost benefits.  Insurance is all about understanding risks, and many homeowners are at risk for earthquake losses.

As a locally owned and operated insurance agency in Sonoma, California, North Bay Insurance Brokers is committed to providing quality insurance products for individuals and businesses. We combine our strong insurance background and product knowledge to assist both current and future clients in managing and planning for all types of risk.

If It Quakes It is To Late

Earthquake1 bf6Everyone knows they need earthquake insurance, but not every business buys it. Let’s review some facts.

  • The U.S. has about 20,000 earthquakes a year, mostly small, and 42 states are at risk of quakes, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
  • Just 10 percent of California businesses with property insurance also carry earthquake coverage, according to a recent Napa Valley Register story.
  • Global losses from earthquakes were about $313 million in 2014, higher than 2013 losses of $45 million but far below 2011’s $54 billion, the highest amount ever recorded, according to Swiss Re.

Insurance Coverage for Earthquakes in the United States: Standard business insurance policies do not cover damage from earthquakes. Coverage is available either in the form of an endorsement or as a separate policy. Earthquake coverage is available from private insurance companies rather than from the government.

  • March 2015 forecast from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has upped the likelihood that California will be hit by a magnitude 8 earthquake over the next 30.The most recent calculations differ from those in the earlier USGS forecast in that scientists took into account the possibility that a quake can move from one fault to another, releasing more seismic energy, as well as including newly discovered fault zones. Scientists also said that the probability that the state will be shaken by a magnitude 6.7 quake, similar to the devastating 1994 Northridge temblor, is higher than 99 percent.
  • Most commercial earthquake policies for businesses have a deductible that is based on the value of the building insured. They commonly range from 5 to 20 percent
  • If an earthquake collapses your foundation, you’re not covered. If the earth shakes and a sinkhole swallows your business, you’re not covered. If the earth causes your merchandise to falls off the shelves, shattering on the floor, guess what? you are not covered.

As a locally owned and operated insurance agency in Sonoma, California, North Bay Insurance Brokers, Inc. is committed to providing quality insurance products for individuals and businesses. We combine our strong insurance background and product knowledge to assist both current and future clients in managing and planning for all types of risk.

Some information provided by Insurance Information Institute.