The Physical Damage Dilemma

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(Photo courtesy Stockvault.net)

 

The Physical Damage Dilemma

This week we discussed the dilemma many have when it comes to their vehicles – when is it time to reduce/remove coverage from the vehicle? Some call it going from “full coverage” to “PLPD” (Public Liability/Property Damage) or from “Two-Way” to “One-Way” insurance coverage. However you term it, there are things to consider before making the move to reducing/eliminating coverage from the vehicle.

  • What is the vehicle worth? Both KBB & Edmunds can give semi-accurate information as far as the worth of your vehicle, but to truly determine what your vehicle is worth is to check websites like your local Craigslist/Facebook Marketplace/Auto Trader. These will generally give you an idea of what your vehicle is worth in the current marketplace. If similar vehicles are worth between $2,000-$2,500, it may be time to look at reducing coverage.
  • If the vehicle were totaled, how long before you replace it? If you can replace the vehicle within 14-21 days or sooner, you could look at reducing coverage on the vehicle in question. If it is your only vehicle and you don’t have the funds to replace it within the 14-21 day time frame, you may need to keep coverage on the vehicle so you receive some money in case of a total loss to purchase a cheap vehicle or put a down payment on another vehicle.
  • Look at the savings by reducing/eliminating coverage. As was mentioned in one “real world” example, to change a Standard Collision $500 deductible (deductible applies regardless of fault) to a Broad Collision $500 deductible (deductible applies to at-fault accidents only) was a little over $50/yr more. For me, I would pay the additional to avoid the hassle of recouping my deductible (if possible) for not-at-fault accidents.

 

Ultimately the choice is yours as far as whether or not the reduce eliminate coverage on your vehicle. Be smart, look at the options before you jump in!

 

Contact Us!

At M. Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized

4th of July Fireworks Safety

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4th of July Fireworks Safety

It’s that time of year again, a time to celebrate our nation’s freedom by blowing pieces of it! Yes, firework stands are going up in parking lots and along roadways all over the country in preparation for the 4th of July holiday. Here are a few tips we shared from the Prevention Magazine article, we highly recommend reading the full article for more tips on being safe with fireworks!
– Know Local Laws. The area I live in has changed the ordinance regarding when fireworks may be lit. The day before, the day of, and the day after designated major holidays and no fireworks after 12:00am. The ordinance also outlaws Japanese lanterns (the paper lanterns that float in the air).

– Watch Firework Packaging. Make sure you are purchasing “consumer grade” fireworks that are properly labeled. Brown paper or nondescript packaging is indicative of ordinance that should be handled by professionals.

– Keep Pets Inside. Most animals become extremely frightened by the loud noises and burning smell emitted from fireworks. They may run away, so it is best to keep them safe inside.

– Don’t Light Fireworks in Your Hand. Place the fireworks on a stable non-flammable surface and follow all instructions included with the firework.

– Don’t Drink & Light Fireworks. You need to be clear-headed and focused when lighting fireworks. Just as you shouldn’t drink & drive, don’t drink & light fireworks.
Be sure to check out the full article from Prevention Magazine for more tips on being safe this 4th of July holiday!

Contact Us!

At M. Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized

Roof Replacement Signs & Tips

 

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(Photo courtesy of M. Vander Plow)

 

Roof Replacement Signs & Tips

As I mentioned on the podcast, I go for walks around the local neighborhood before I start work. The above photo was taken of a home that is in serious need of roof replacement. This week’s podcast shares signs from a Good Housekeeping article & tips for replacing your roof from Sears Home Services. We do not endorse either entity, just want to share their articles.

Remember, as a part of the insurance contract YOU are responsible for maintaining your property and preventing any potential claim or liability hazards. Knowing of a potential claim hazard and failing to take care of it will result in the denial of the claim and cancellation of your home insurance policy.

Be sure to check the articles from Good Housekeeping & Sears Home services to help you determine if your roof needs replacing & what to look for when replacing your roof.

 

 

Contact Us!

At M. Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized

Tips for Father’s Day

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(photo courtesy of Stockvault.net)

 

Tips for Father’s Day

 

This coming Sunday marks Father’s Day, a time where we recognize the men who (hopefully) raised us right and made us what we are today. Instead of the old tie or coffee mug gifts, here are some tips from Everyday Family to help make your Father’s Day special!:

– Do Something He Wants To Do. Go fishing, take in a ballgame, go hiking. You might not be interested in the same things, but spending time and making memories are the goal.

– Hold A Competition. If you’re dad is of the competitive type or enjoys sports, create an obstacle course in the backyard & invite other families over to participate. Again, the goal is to make memories that he will remember forever.

– Skip The Tie, Get A Tablet. If your dad is of the “techy” sort, get him some technology. Upgrade his phone or tablet, maybe spring for some accessories to help with his gadgets.

– Cook His Favorite Meal. Everyone is going out for Father’s Day, why not stay in and create his favorite dishes? Having a home-cooked meal with family is much more important than being in a crowded & noisy restaurant.

 

Check out the full article from Everyday Family with more tips on ways to make this Father’s Day even more special!

 

Contact Us!

At M. Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized

Summer Festival Safety

Summer Festival Safety

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(Photo courtesy of StockVault.net)

 

These tips can work not only for music festivals, but any outdoor festival/fair/carnival/attraction where lots of people like to have a good time! Be sure to check out the full article from Foremost with more tips on making your summer festival visit more fun!

 

– Wear Sunscreen. This is a no-brainer, especially if you will be outdoors for long periods. Be sure to re-apply every 2 hours.

– Bring Food & Water. Where available, bring your own water & healthy snacks geared to keeping you fueled and moving. Stay hydrated is of utmost importance.

– Think Twice about Electronics. Bringing a fancy camera to capture the concert or the atmosphere may be a desire, but consider the venue. If it’s wet/muddy/dusty, you may want to reconsider whether it’s worth it to bring them in case of damage.

– Be Strategic with Your Vehicle. Plan ahead where you are going to park so you can choose a convenient location with an easy-out when the festival ends. Don’t keep valuables in plain sight and certainly don’t store food/medicine/electronics in the trunk or vehicle due to extreme heat.

Be sure to check out Foremost’s other tips on the full article.

 

Contact Us!

At M. Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

 

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized

Home Emergency Plans

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(Photo courtesy of StockVault.net)

 

Home Emergency Plans

 

The country has been pummeled the past few weeks with dangerous weather conditions from snowstorms in the North, flooding in the South, & tornadoes/storms in the Midwest. Having a family disaster plan is more important than ever because severe weather can strike anywhere. Here are some tips we gleaned from one of our insurance carriers, Grange Insurance, for developing a home emergency plan:

 

  • Consider Your Needs. Take stock of what natural disasters can occur in your area and prepare accordingly. Take into account your family dynamic – infants/disabled/elderly, these are some of the factors that will affect how to develop your emergency plan.
  • Disaster Supply Kit. Some call them “bug out bags”, these kits should be easily grabbed in case of an emergency. The article has a list of suggestions for items to include in your disaster kit.
  • Know Where to Go. Finding a safe place for shelter in your home is different for everyone. Some may live in an apartment, others may live in a mobile home. Some may have basements, others may not. Do research to find the safest place either in your home or nearby where you and your family can find safety.
  • Stay Connected. Develop a communication plan to keep in contact with family members in case of a disaster. The plan should include how you are going to receive alerts about the weather, emergency contact numbers, and how you will keep in contact with family members in case of disaster. It may be helpful to designate an out-of-town contact to help coordinate with you.

 

We highly recommend checking out the full article with more tips including what to do with your pets in case of a disaster.

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized

Memorial Day Tips

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(photo courtesy of Stockvault.net)

 

Memorial Day Tips

Memorial Day is coming up this weekend (at the time of the recording), a time to spend thanking those who fought/are fighting for our country. It’s also the “unofficial” first day of grilling/picnic season. We found an article from the Epicurious with a bunch of helpful tips to make your Memorial Day picnic the best it can be!

  • Buy a charcoal chimney & use REAL charcoal. The chimney helps get the charcoal to the “cooking coals” stage much quicker and easier than just lining/stacking the charcoal in the grill and lighting it
  • DON’T USE LIGHTER FLUID if you are using natural charcoal. The chemical smell/taste of lighter fluid isn’t very appetizing…
  • “Seasoning” your grill grate is important. cleaning the grill with a wire brush and then using a pair of tongs with a cloth towel dipped in vegetable oil and rubbing on the grate while the grill is heating will help. You may have to “season” several times based on what you are grilling.
  • Make Sides. Utilize one side of your grill for direct heat (over the coals or fire) and the other side for indirect heat. This way you can cook 2 dishes at once.
  • Baste it. have a spray bottle handy with water to help quell flare-ups. You could also use it to baste your meat & veggies by using wine/apple cider/herbs instead of water.

 

Be sure to check out the full article at Epicurious for more tips (including a recipe for grilling hot dogs!).

 

Contact Us!

At M. Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized