Here’s three tips for why adding umbrella insurance is a must.
It’s that time of year that car thefts seem to be on the rise. Help avoid your car being stolen by following these tips.
The best bet is to keep your vehicle in a locked garage. But for some people, this may not be an option. If you have to keep your vehicle parked outside, start by parking it in your driveway. If your vehicle is front wheel drive, park front end first, and if your vehicle is rear-wheel drive, back into your driveway. This makes it harder to thieves to tow your vehicle. If you have to park in the street, park in a well-lit, highly trafficked area, but make sure you’re following the posted rules. Turning your wheels towards the curb, using your emergency brake, and parking in between other vehicles can also make it harder for your vehicle to be towed away.
When leaving your vehicle, always roll up all your windows and lock the doors, even if you are just leaving it for a few minutes. Also, try to avoid leaving your vehicle unattended for an extended period of time, but if you have to, make sure you park in an attended, well-lit lot.
While locking your vehicle or leaving it in a well-lit area can certainly help prevent auto theft, you may want increase your peace of mind by purchasing an anti-theft device. Many different types are available, and it’s easy to find one that fits your budget and needs. Some of the more common anti-theft devices include:
- Electronic security systems
- Steering wheel and column locks
- Ignition kill switches
- Fuel kill switches
- Locks for the floor board, gear shift, tires/wheels or hood
- Vehicle tracking systems
Whatever type of anti-theft device you choose, make sure that it is installed properly. Otherwise, you may risk damaging the device or your vehicle. Hire an alarm installation professional to do the work for you. Also, consider etching the vehicle information number (VIN) into different parts on the vehicle, as this makes it easier to trace stolen automobiles/parts.
To protect your automobile from theft, always use common sense. Don’t leave the car running unattended with the keys in the ignition. Don’t hide a spare set of ignition keys in the glove box, or within close proximity to the vehicle. Don’t leave personal identification documents like titles or credit cards in your vehicle. Don’t keep valuables in plain sight in your vehicle. And if you park using a valet, or leave your keys with an attendant, make sure you only leave the key to the vehicle.
If Your Vehicle Is Stolen
Unfortunately vehicles are stolen all the time in this country. If you become the victim of auto theft contact the police first. Make sure you know as much of the following information as possible:
- Year, make, model, and color of your vehicle
- License plate number
- Approximate time of the theft
- Location where the vehicle was parked
- Names of eye witnesses (if there are any)
Next, inform your insurance company that your vehicle was stolen. Have your policy number on hand when you call.
Insure Your Investment
In addition to being confident that you are doing what you can to protect your vehicle; it’s important that you have the right insurance. Not all automobiles are the same and neither are all automobile policies. You need an insurance policy that offers the coverages that are important to you when you’re behind the wheel.
Here’s what a new DISTINCTCHOICE Auto policy can offer you:
- Security and Peace of Mind. Foremost has experience with the kind of insurance you want. Foremost has been in business since 1952 and has a long, solid history of providing superior value to our customers.
- Coverage Essentials. A Foremost policy provides the coverage you want for your vehicle and the drivers, including medical payments and permissive user.
- Additional Coverages. A Foremost policy recognizes that every driver is different and offers additional coverages, like loan or lease coverage and rental reimbursement, so you can tailor your policy to fit your lifestyle.
- Choice of Payment Plans and Deductibles. A Foremost policy offers flexibility, like being able to choose from different deductible levels and payment plans. This allows you to choose when you want to pay and helps make your premium payments affordable.
Doing Business With Your Insurance Company
When you have a loss, it’s an inconvenience, and you want it to be taken care of quickly and efficiently by adjusters who are courteous, helpful and knowledgeable. The new DISTINCTCHOICE Auto policy is backed by expert claims service that will get you back on the road quickly and fairly in the event of a loss.
Source: Foremost Insurance Group
- Did you know a majority of tornadoes typically last for a few minutes?
- Did you know there were confirmed 23 tornadoes in Iowa and 26 in Illinois in 2018?
- Did you know tornadoes in the Midwest are most common from May to July?
- Statistics show our area is at a very high risk for tornadoes and average 3 or more a year.
What should you do to prepare for a tornado?
- During any storm, listen to local news or a NOAA Weather Radio to stay informed about watches and warnings.
- Know your community’s warning system. Communities have a different ways of warning residents about tornadoes, with many having sirens intended for outdoor warning purposes.
- Pick a safe room in your home where household members and pets may gather during a tornado. This should be a basement, storm cellar or an interior room on the lowest floor with no windows.
What should you do if a tornado is threatening?
- The safest place to be is an underground shelter, basement or safe room.
- If no underground shelter or safe room is available, a small, windowless interior room or hallway on the lowest level of a sturdy building is the safest alternative.
- Mobile homes are not safe during tornadoes or other severe winds.
- If you have access to a sturdy shelter or a vehicle, abandon your mobile home immediately.
What do you do after a tornado?
- Continue listening to local news or a NOAA Weather Radio for updated information and instructions.
- If you are away from home, return only when authorities say it is safe to do so.
- Wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt and sturdy shoes when examining your walls, doors, staircases and windows for damages.
- Watch out for fallen power lines or broken gas lines and report them to the utility company immediately.
Source: Werner Restoration Services
Every year there are thousands of homes being damaged by a water related issue. Some are preventable and some are not. If your home or business has been damaged by water, it is crucial that you call your insurance agent and use a restoration company immediately to minimize the damage. The top ten most common water damages are:
- Drains Quit Draining
- Toilet Runs and Drips
- Frozen Fire Sprinkler
- Washing Machine Line Burst
- Sump Pump Failure
- Leaking Water Heater
- Leaking Garbage Disposal
- Leaking Air Conditioner
- Backed up Sewer Lines
- Frozen Burst Pipes
Are you at risk for water damage? Check these ten areas to make sure you don’t end up with unwanted water in your home or business.
Source: Werner Restoration Services
Consumers be aware of the identity theft epidemic that is happening around us. Thieves only need one single piece of personal information to steal your identity and turn your financial life upside down. With technology advancing every day, it is important to know what you can do to protect yourself before it is too late. Here are some identity theft prevention tips to start following today.
Check your credit report
Is available free once a year with nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.
Protect your Social Security number
Do not use your SSN as an identifier at work, school or an your driver’s license.
Create passwords and PINS and change often
Use passwords that are difficult for others to guess but easy for you to remember.
Buy a Shredder
Use to destroy any financial and personal documents before throwing them away.
Be aware of your surroundings
Especially when using an ATM, entering PINs or making credit card purchases.
Contact Mel Foster Insurance for more tips or to inquiry about identity fraud expense reimbursement insurance.
If you approach a flooded road, path, or walkway follow this rule: Turn Around, Don’t Drown. Driving through flooded roadways can be deadly. Did you know…
- As little as 12 inches of moving floodwater can be enough to float and carry a small vehicle.
- 6 inches of moving water can knock an adult off their feet. Stay away from moving water!
- Driving thru 6 inches of standing water can cause vehicles to lose control and stall. Avoid flooded roads.
- Be aware of areas where waters have receded. Roads may have weakened and could collapse under the weight of a vehicle.
- 12 inches of water is enough to make most small vehicles float. Don’t drive through flooded waters.
- Even a small amount of floodwater can hide dangers such as road collapse and debris.
The Quad Cities and Midwest is getting slammed with rain this Spring. Here are some tips to help you and your family.
- Have a family emergency communication plan and include pets.
- Have emergency supplies in place at home, at work, and in the car.
- Check on your neighbors to make sure they’re okay.
- Know what to do before, during, and after a flood.
- Flood insurance takes 30 days to take effect, so it needs to be purchased before disaster.
- Listen to local officials by radio, TV or social media.
- Evacuate when advised by authorities or if you are in a flood or flash flood prone area.
- If you are on high ground above flooded areas, being prepared to stay where you are may be the best protection.
- Never drive or walk through flooded streets; Turn Around, Don’t Drown! Do no go through flood waters.
Tips for Preventative Maintenance
- Keep leaves and debris cleaned out of gutters! Make sure all downspouts are clean and water flows properly; replace leaky gutters or downspouts. Make sure your downspout runoffs extend far enough away from the house.
- Do not burn leaves or other items near your home or garage.
- Duct and dryer vent cleaning: Clean inside of dryer duct; check outside outside exhaust area.
- Be careful when pulling out or pushing back a refrigerator, if may damage ice maker line.
- Make sure you know where your water shut off valve is in case of an emergency.
- Make sure the ground, landscaping, concrete, etc…is always falling away from the home.
Source: Werner Restoration Inc.
Do you have a list of your items in your home? Here’s three tips to compile a home inventory list.
Purchasing the homeowners insurance that is right for you and your home can be confusing, especially for first-time buyers. By learning the basics on how to get the most for your money, you can save on your homeowners insurance and feel confident you have adequate coverage. Here are tips when you purchase your homeowners insurance.
Raise your deductible.
Companies generally have deductibles (what you pay before your insurance policy kicks in) starting at $250. By choosing a higher deductible $500, $750, $1,000 or higher), you’ll have a lower annual premium payments.
Improve home security and safety.
If your home has certain types of fire alarms, burglar alarms, locks or smoke detectors, you’ve reduced your risk and may qualify for a credit.
Insure your car and home with the same company.
You can save money if you have more thank one type of policy with the same insurance company. The more business you give a company, the more savings they can pass along to you.
Contact Mel Foster Insurance today to customize your product to match your needs and wants.