Tag Archives: Home insurance

The Not At All Annual Phoenix Insurance Holiday Gift Giving Guide 2016 (Part Two)

I feel like I did pretty well writing about insurance related gifts in the first installment of The Not At All Annual Phoenix Insurance Holiday Gift Giving Guide 2016. I also did a really good job of researching that first blog for gifts, and I ended up with enough to do a part two. As the great Jerry Reed once said, “when you’re hot you’re hot” , and I am about as hot as I am going to get at doing this task for our independent insurance agency. As I look out of the window here at our Dallas World Headquarters, the weather is beautiful, and the boss is buying lunch for our office, and promises to unchain me from the blogging table as soon as I write a few more blogs about home insurance, and auto insurance.

Buckle up, buttercup; here are more of the best gifts for 2016 that might just help to keep your auto insurance and home insurance rates down.

 

  1. Vino To Go Double Wall Acrylic Tumbler. $10.79 for two.

 

Put white grape juice in and let the kids use them in public!
Put white grape juice in and let the kids use them in public!

 

So I know it says “to go”, but I am legally bound as an insurance man to say that you shouldn’t use these for “to go” wine situations, unless you are just a passenger. I think they are a great gift for your friend who has a white carpet but loves red wine. There are lots of home insurance policies that cover “all risks”, including a red wine stain on the white carpet. Obviously, avoiding making a claim for a red wine stain will keep your friend’s house insurance rates down, which is a wonderful gift for you to give. As a bonus, there will be broken glass should they refill too many times and fall down.  I think it was Ben Franklin who said, “A plastic tumbler that looks like a wine glass keeps the liability insurance claims away!”

Buy Here! 

 

  1. D-Link Wifi Water Sensor $59.99

 

I'm actually buying myself one of these when I finish this post.
I’m actually buying myself one of these when I finish this post.

Like the Nest smoke detector we talked about last time, this is one of those fancy new “connected home” devices. This one will alert you via an app on your phone if you have sudden water rising problems, and are not at home.  Inevitably, that’s when you are going to have flooding problems, and guess what – flooding absolutely ruins your home insurance rates. If you can find out immediately, you have a better change of limiting damage to your home, bumping that water damage insurance claim up, and washing away your home insurance savings. (See what I did there?)

Buy Here! 

 

  1. CellControl Drive ID $129.00

 

this is a super neat gadget as well.
this is a super neat gadget as well.

 

This neat gadget is a “jammer” of sorts for your teen’s (or your own) cellphone that keeps you from texting while your car is moving. I can about guarantee that your teen won’t see this as a gift, but hey, they also don’t really understand that life is a gift, am I right? Texting is a big problem while driving; look around sometime.  2/3rd of drivers are out there driving distracted, paying attention to their phones rather than piloting their 3000 pound death machine. Obviously not having a car accident will keep your auto insurance rates down, and keeping your  17 year old from killing people while he texts  his buddy an “LOL” at the dank meme he sent will keep you from having a liability insurance claim on your record. Win/Win.

  http://cellcontrol.myshopify.com/

 

 

  1. Fire Resistant 8 Gun Safe. As low as $349.00

 

Lock your stuff up. It just makes it safer.
Lock your stuff up. It just makes it safer.

Sure, this is a gift for the gun lover in your life; but it’s also a gift for anyone who has things to protect. The little personal sized fire safes are all well and good, but they are small, and don’t hold much. This safe will resist fire, can bolt to the floor,  and hold lots of things – so it’s actually three gifts in one. It protects your stuff in general, and it protects you from making a theft claim on your homeowners insurance, as well as making an inflated fire claim on your house insurance. (I know they are the same thing, but hey, this is an insurance blog, so deal with my keywording, will you? )

Buy Here! 

 

 

There you have it: lots of gifts you can buy that have the potential to keep the recipients paying the lowest rate for their auto insurance, home insurance, and even their liability insurance.  Now the big question is “how can I afford to buy these gifts? “. There are a couple of answers to this question, and the first is that love has no price tag. The second answer is for you to call us today for an car insurance or home insurance (or even an insurance package) quote today. Our licensed advisers will make the process simple, and you will wonder why you haven’t given yourself the gift of great insurance service until today.

Have a happy holiday season from all of us here at The Phoenix Insurance.  

This is what grocery stores used to look like. We loved the color yellow back in the old days.

Service Like It Used To Be

Service like it used to be.

You check yourself out at the grocery store; you at least bag your own groceries. You check yourself in at the airport at a kiosk.  You get your own drinks at fast food joints. You pump your own gas. You even have to get your own shoes off of the wall at sporting goods stores.  Things weren’t always this way.

This is what grocery stores used to look like. We loved the color yellow back in the old days.
This is what grocery stores used to look like. We loved the color yellow back in the old days.

You probably don’t remember, but there was a time when people had professionals the counted on to be experts in their field; retirement planners, Insurance agents, travel agents, even bankers. Sadly, those days seem to be long gone in many fields, unless you have a lot of money to invest or spend – except in one remaining industry; insurance. Specifically, the kind of insurance we do here in our Dallas headquarters; auto insurance and home insurance.

 

I’m sure we all see the commercials, “Call or go online today to get your home insurance quote” or go online for your fast and free auto insurance quote.” They practically shout at you that IT SHOULD BE CHEAP!.  Do you know what makes it cheap? There are no insurance agents. These companies count on you to do the job of a licensed insurance agent and choose the proper coverage for yourself without the guidance of an experienced professional.

Usually cheap insurance is advertised by cartoon characters.
Usually cheap insurance is advertised by cartoon characters.

 

I can tell you that when that happens we see awful coverage, because car insurance and home insurance aren’t best approached as a commodity that must be as cheap as possible. When it comes to auto insurance or house insurance the guidance of a professional insurance agent will help you get the best insurance value, with the lowest possible premium.

 

Inexpensive insurance is different from cheap insurance though; inexpensive insurance can properly cover your assets. Cheap insurance usually covers the over driver better than they cover their own insurance clients.

 

Why? When you work with a licensed independent insurance agent (like we are here at The Phoenix Insurance) you get a lot for your money. Our agents are trained to get you the best insurance value for your dollar. Since we are independent insurance agents, we have the ability to look at your needs with a different perspective than most. We make sure that you pay the least amount of money you have to  for your home insurance, and your car insurance, and even for your umbrella insurance. When we shop multiple companies for our insurance clients, we try to find the best fit for them. Every company has a client that they give the absolute lowest insurance rates to, and we are able to find that company for our auto insurance and home insurance clients over and over.

The best part? We do it painlessly. Our reviews show it. We believe that when you buy car insurance or home insurance that it should be easy; that’s why you hired a professional. Every step of the way, from your initial quote to cancellation of your old insurance is handled by our staff to make the process as easy as possible for our clients. We are insurance advisers. We don’t sell anything.

 

Give us a call today and find out what service used to be. We’ll spoil you for anyone else.

Now is the time to shop your home and auto insurance if you live in North Texas.

If you are reading this article, odds are you live in the North Texas area. If you live in the North Texas area, you know that we have had significant storms in the area since December 26 of 2015. One tornado, two bad hail storms, and as of this writing, who knows what comes next.

 

A photo of hailstones from the first storm in the Dallas area in 2016.
A photo of hailstones from the first storm in the Dallas area in 2016.                      Photo credit: RC Graphic Designs.

So you are going to pay more for insurance. Everyone in the area is going to pay more for their home and auto insurance. All of the major companies have paid out enough in claims that they will have to raise rates (or as we say in the biz, “take rate”) over the next year. This isn’t great, obviously, but it presents an opportunity for you as a consumer. If you shop your home and auto insurance with an agency like us right now, you can lock in the lower rates that we can most likely find you, and you can lock them in for a year. That means that when your current company raises rates, it won’t affect you, and if/ when the new company rates go up, it won’t be until your renewal, which would be a year away if you buy today.

If you have not shopped your home and auto insurance for a long time, it will be harder to find a great deal if you wait until your current company raises your rates. Insurance companies don’t change rate mid policy, but they do at renewal. We represent so many different companies, it’s hard for us not to save someone coming from a Farmer’s or a State Farm insurance policy a good amount of money. Just yesterday we saved a former Farmer’s insurance client $4000 a year. That’s not the typical amount of savings, but it does happen.

Why not give us a call today and make sure you are in the right spot?  As insurance agents we are knowledgeable and honest. We would love it if you bought insurance from us, but we love it just as much when we find that you have a good deal and a good policy. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, we always advise with the customer’s needs in mind – not our need to sell a policy.

Even if you didn’t make a claim, these storms will end up raising your rates. We can offer you a chance to pay less than you are now, AND insulate yourself against rising insurance rates in the Dallas area. Don’t you deserve to have the best insurance agent in Dallas? We think you do. Try us today by calling us at  877-717-4054.

Head Rush Hot Rod Car and Motorcycle Show

Head Rush is a great show at a great location – as usual several of our classic car insurance clients took first place in their divisionaddison auto insurance antique auto insurance dallas antique auto insurance houston antique auto insurance plano antique auto insurance auto insurance southlake auto insurance car insurance dallas car insurance frisco car insurance plano car insurance southlake (2) car insurance southlake carrollton auto insurance dallas auto insurance (2) dallas auto insurance dallas home coverage dallas home insurance dallas homeonwers dallas insurance frisco auto insurance garland auto insurance home insurance dallas home insurance frisco home insurance plano home insurance southlake home insurance texas home insurance the colony home insurance home owners insurance dallas home owners insurance garland home owners insurance plano home owners insurance texas home owners insurane southlake homeowners insurance dalals homeowners insurance dallas homeowners insurance plano homeowners insurance texas inaurance expert dallas insurance experts plano auto insurance plano insurance richardson auto insurance texas antique auto texas home insurance – as did several motorcycle insurance customers!

Lakewood Grill Hot Cakes and Hot Rods

There is very little that is better than a morning car show. The weather her in Texas is cool, there is coffee and great conversation over some just beautiful cars. As usual, plenty of our clients that insure their classic cars with us were there. auto insurance dallas auto insurance texas bentley insurance car collection insurance Car insurance Dallas collector car insurance plano collectors car insurance dallas collector car dallas insurance experts exotic car insurance texas friscos best insurance highland park auto insurance highland park home insurance highland park insurance home insurance dallas homeowners insurance texas houston exotic insurance plano home insurance rolls royce insurance texas insurance experts

Paloma Creek Sonic Sock Hop

nothing evokes the”good old days” like Sonic and classic cars. As usual, we were tooling around town in our antique milk truck, looking for a place where our classic insurance clients were hanging out. The Paloma Sonic Sock Hop was full of our friends, and we made some new friends there as well! best insurance dallas best insurance price dallas best insurance texas best price insurance dallas best price insurance texass best price texas insurance best rates dallas car insurance texas Dallas Auto Insurance Dallas best insurance agent dallas best Dallas car insurance dallas exotic insurance dallas ferrari insurance dallas home insurance (2) Dallas Home Insurance dallas insurance agent dallas insurance rate dallas top insurance ferrari dallas ferrari insurance agent Frisco Auto Insurance Frisco Car Insurance Frisco home insurance Frisco homeowners insurance Frisco Renters Insurance homeowners insurance insurance advice insurance rates dallas lamborghini insurance Plano auto insurance plano best agent Plano Car Insurance plano home insurance plano home owner insurance plano homeowners insurance plano liability insurance race car insurance race insurance texas auto insurance rate texas auto insurance texas car insurance texas home insurance texas homeowners insurance

What Insurance Companies do We Represent

As Independent Insurance Agents,  We sincerely believe that we are the best way to shop for any type of property insurance.  Home insurance, auto insurance, and even motorcycle and boat insurance. Why an independent agent? We are authorized to represent many different companies in order to give our clients plenty of options when it comes to their property and liability insurance. So what companies are we authorized to sell?

Allstate Insurance

ASI Lloyds

Condon Skelly

Berkley Classics

Dairyland

Encompass

Foremost

GMAC

Grundy Insurance

Hagerty Insurance

Homeowners of America

Imperial Fire

Infinity

Kemper

Mendota

Metlife

Progressive

Republic Insurance

Safeco

American Modern

Texas Fair Plan

Travelers

The Hartford

Universal

Wellington

Chubb Insurance

 

This is not a static list, as we are always seeking out new insurance companies in order to give our clients even more choices. Contact your insurance consultant today, and take a look at how your current insurance rate stacks up against one of our many insurance companies.

 

How to Navigate an Insurance Claim – Part Two.

The last time we got together, I tried to explain how the deductible works, and some things that you should consider when choosing a property deductible. I’ll wait if you want to go back and read it again. Go ahead. Done? Good. Now that you have chosen how much deductible you are going to pay in the event of a loss, we can talk about when to use them.

We will start with the easier of the two – your auto insurance. I want to start the restof this article by saying this; you pay for insurance to protect your things. Sometimes, a claim just needs to be made. With auto insurance, mist claims are worthwhile, because you have had an accident. The only claims we caution clients to consider avoiding are windshield chip claims. While they won’t raise your rates directly, they can be problematic if we need to quote your policy with other companies. Unless your windshield is broken, it is best to pay for the chip repair yourself. With other claims, my personal rule of thumb is to consider the payout – if you have a $500 deductible, do you really need to make a $600 claim? Those types of claims are pretty rare on auto policies, due to the rising cost of auto repairs.  Also, remember that most car insurance policies now come with some form of roadside assistance, and if you have to use that service, it does not count as a claim.

The big question you should ask yourself when it comes to homeowner’s insurance claims is whether or not the claim is “worth it” or not. Just like with auto insurance, if you have an $1100 claim and a $1000 home insurance deductible, it’s probably not “Worth it” to make a claim. Most home insurance policies here in Texas have a 1% wind and hail deductible, so if you are in a $130,000 home, then you probably have a $1300 deductible. However, a hail claim doesn’t “count against you” for rate purposes. A water claim or a burglary claim, on the other hand, will increase your rates, so it’s imperative to consider what the claim is worth before you call the insurance company. Your first call should be to our office to chat with one of our consultants about your claim.

In fact, we even have a “claims advocate” here at The Phoenix Insurance to help guide you through the claims process. Hopefully, you will never need the advocate’s help, but if you have a claim and have any questions, concerns, or needs, he is here to help you understand the claims process, and make it a smooth one. Whether you have had an auto accident or a water claim on your home, our claims advocate is here to help you get made whole again as quickly and painlessly as possible.

 

Four Types Of Policies For Your Home In Dallas

Now that you know how you should value your home for insurance, I’m going to take a few moments to tell you about some insurance coverage options for your home. In Texas, there are several different types of insurance policies, and today we will talk about four of the options you have to choose from. These are not all of your options, but they are the main four you will most likely encounter (and no, State Farm is not a magical policy not offered elsewhere).  Each type of policy has its ins and outs, so take a few minutes to read about what kinds of choices are available to you when you purchase a homeowner’s insurance policy in Dallas or anywhere.

1. The most basic type of home policy is a “Dwelling Fire” policy. Dwelling fire policies cover a very limited list of risks, with the most basic covering your home for fire only. These are generally intended for investment type properties, because they typically do not cover your personal propery inside the structure. If you want to just cover your home for the most basic of perils, this is what you want. I wouldn’t choose one of these policies without making sure that your home is covered for at least fire and wind. In Dallas, we get plenty of hail, and if you want your home policy to cover the roof, make sure you request that coverage as well. I certainly wouldn’t recommend this for your home, as the difference in price between a dwelling fire policy and an actual homeowner’s policy is usually negligible.

A photo of hailstones from the first storm in the Dallas area in 2016.
Pictures: Hail.

2. The  standard homeowner’s policy (and the minimum type of coverage we recommend for someone living in a house) is an HO-A type policy. An Ho-A policy covers wind, hail, fire, and theft, along with other named perils. The big thing missing from an HO-A type policy is sudden and accidental water damage – like if your dishwasher breaks.  An HO-A policy with replacement cost coverage is a good solid basic type of insurance policy  for your home.

Pictured: Theft.

3. The Ho-3 policy is a more comprehensive policy, that generally automatically includes some futher coverages. Things  like foundation water damage coverage, accidental water damage, and replacement cost content coverage are generally included with the HO-3. An HO-3 type policy is more of an “open” perils type policy – that means it covers more – though the limits offered for some of the extended coverage can be can be farly low.

4. The Ho-B policy. This is the Big Daddy home policy in Texas. The HOB is the most comprehensive type policy you can get for your home – it covers your house on an “all perils’ basis, meaning that unless it is specifically excluded, it’s covered. An HO-B comes with replacement cost coverage for your things and your house, it covers water damage and quite often includes some mold coverage. The HOB is generally only available to newer homes, usually no home built more than 30 years ago is eligible for this plan.

Pictured: Big Daddy Kane.

There are lots of choices when it comes to home insurance – especially here in the Dallas area. Make sure you are informed when buying home insurance; quite often, the HO-A from one company might be within a few dollars of another company’s HO-3. More coverage is always better in my eyes, but then again I am an insurance guy.

The Phoenix Insurance – Homeowners Insurance In Dallas