Driving Tips for Rainy Weather

rainy

7 Tips to Help You Handle Rainy Days Behind the Wheel

At some point, every driver in Evansville has to deal with rainy weather. But, many don’t know what to do, so they just drive as they normally would.

However, with slick roads, flooded streets and reduced visibility, that can be a recipe for disaster. So instead, follow these simple tips for safer rainy day travels.

  1. Stay visible. Turn on your headlights so you can see — and be seen — more easily.
  2. Be patient. Give yourself more time to get where you’re going, and give people more room. Increase your following distance two to three times.
  3. Expect slippery conditions. Rain often combines with oil and grease buildup to create slick roadways. Not to mention you can hydroplane — meaning your tires are riding on water instead of pavement — at speeds of as little as 35 mph. If it happens, slow down, gently apply your brakes and keep steering straight ahead.
  4. Check your car’s systems. How are your wipers? Do your blades need to be replaced? What about your defroster? Driving in the rain is hard enough; don’t do it with fogged-up windows, too.
  5. Inspect your tires. Are they inflated properly? Do you have enough tread? Put an upside-down penny into the tread. If you can see Lincoln’s entire head, you probably need new tires.
  6. Never drive in flooded areas. In a flood, it won’t take much water to sweep you away, believe it or not — just 12 inches for a smaller car or 24 inches for almost any vehicle, according to the National Weather Service, which advises, “turn around, don’t drown.”
  7. Get – or stay – off the road. When conditions are really bad, pull over and take a break. Or, if you can, just stay home. You’ll probably be happier to stay out of the weather, anyway! And you’re certainly likely to be safer.

With a little extra care, you can help keep your car on the road and your rainy day blues to a minimum even while traveling in wet conditions. And, as always, if something does go wrong, we’re here to help guide you through it.

Contact Us!

At Jason Wright Insurance, 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 812-402-9008 or send us a note at jason@jasonwrightinsurance.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Our Newest Insurance Partner

At the Jason Wright Insurance Agency, we’ll work with you to understand your unique insurance needs. We’ll follow up with many fine insurance providers to deliver high-quality, affordable insurance options tailored to deliver the value and coverage you’re seeking.

Call us today at 812-402-9008 to get free insurance quotes.

Our newest partner:

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Jason Wright Insurance is independently owned and locally operated to handle your insurance needs. We focus on Evansville, Indiana and offer affordable and reliable insurance choices all across Indiana.

Jason Wright Insurance Agency: For The Right Insurance, Choose Jason Wright Insurance. Call for a quote today at 812-402-9008.

3 Misconceptions That Can Put Your Home at Risk

Cost to Rebuild Coverage

The neighborhood, the amenities, the square footage – you carefully considered everything about your home before purchasing it. So carefully that perhaps your insurance policy was just an afterthought.

However, a home is one of the most valuable purchases you’ll make in life, so it only makes sense to protect it with adequate insurance coverage. But, what exactly is adequate for your home and why? The general rule of thumb is this: You insure your home for what it would cost to rebuild at today’s prices, using today’s building codes and standards.

In the insurance world, we generally refer to this as the “cost to rebuild,” and it’s essential to understand why it’s important. I’ve addressed three insurance misconceptions that should help.

  • Misconception 1: You should always insure your home for the market value.
    The cost of labor, materials and other expenses oftentimes make it more expensive to build a house than to buy one that already exists. And, that’s why you typically insure your home for more than what you purchased it. A home you buy for $200,000 may require $500,000 of insurance to completely rebuild it. Then again, if you pay a premium for the location of your home, you may need to insure your home for less than the market value. For example, you may pay $1.5 million for an oceanfront property and be able to rebuild the home for $750,000. Your home insurance policy would reflect only the cost to rebuild, without factoring in the high value of the land.
  • Misconception 2: Homeowners coverage should stay the same – or even decrease – over time.
    Your homeowners coverage shouldn’t decrease as your mortgage decreases. Just because you owe less on the home doesn’t mean it would cost less to rebuild. If you think about it, the cost of milk right now is far different than it was 20 years ago. Labor and materials go up in price as well, so your insurance shouldn’t fall behind. As you maintain and update your home, such as remodeling the kitchen or adding a deck, you should reassess your insurance coverage, too.
  • Misconception 3: You’re covered if your home needs to be brought up to code during a claim.
    Not necessarily – it depends on your policy. In some instances, you may need to purchase optional coverage to handle the increased cost of bringing your home up to code or complying with local ordinances.

The last thing any property owner wants is for their insurance policy to fall short when they need it. That’s exactly what might happen if you buy into any of these insurance misconceptions.

Instead, work with an independent insurance agent to help ensure you get the home coverage you want – not too little and not too much. An estimate of what it would cost to rebuild your home from a contractor or builder in your area may help, but it’s not necessary. Your agent will talk to you about the square footage, upgrades, special features and other aspects of your home to build the policy you want.

Remember, your insurance doesn’t buy you a house. It repairs or rebuilds the one you’ve got. So, be sure your homeowners coverage reflects the true cost to rebuild.

Why a Home Inventory Is Important

Let’s try a little exercise: Can you list everything you own from memory?

Didn’t think so.

The fact is most people own more things than they realize. It’s easy to remember the cars, the computer, the TV. But what about that holiday china in the garage? Or every pair of shoes?

All of it is regarded as personal property for insurance purposes. And if your home is destroyed by fire or some other disaster, having a list of your possessions makes filing a claim easier — and helps you put your life back together.

Why should I complete a home inventory? What’s the best way?

Comparing the value of your belongings to the “contents” limit listed in your policy helps you make sure you have enough insurance to replace them if they are lost, stolen or destroyed as a result of a covered loss. The easiest way to take an inventory is to use a video camera, recording and describing items as you walk through your house. Or, you can use a regular camera and create a home inventory checklist.

Here are a few tips for completing and storing your inventory:

Add brand names and descriptions where you can, especially on large-ticket items. Serial numbers are helpful to note.

Keep any receipts you have with the list to make the claims process easier.

Store your video or photo inventory offsite so you won’t lose it if your house is damaged.

Update your personal property records when you purchase new furnishings and valuables.

Though the task may seem daunting, it’s important to try. An incomplete inventory is better than nothing at all.

How much insurance do I need?

We can assist you in analyzing your insurance needs and help you decide how to most effectively protect your personal property. You should consider full-value coverage, which will pay for the replacement value of your personal belongings. A standard policy typically covers personal property only up to its actual cash value, determined by taking the replacement cost and deducting depreciation, which can be substantial. (For example, a 5-year-old TV is usually worth much less than what it would cost to purchase a new one.)

Finally, remember your homeowners policy covers valuable items such as jewelry, furs, art and antiques, only up to set dollar amounts. If the cost of replacing them exceeds these limits, you may want to purchase scheduled personal property coverage.

The Insurance Information Institute has a FREE online tool that can help you create your inventory. Just visit www.knowyourstuff.org for more details.

We hope you’ll never need the home inventory, but preparing for the worst can prevent a lot of hassle later!

Contact Us!

At Jason Wright Insurance, 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 812-402-9008 or send us a note at jason@jasonwrightinsurance.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Insurance Companies We Represent

At the Jason Wright Insurance Agency, we’ll work with you to understand your unique insurance needs. We’ll follow up with many fine insurance providers to deliver high-quality, affordable insurance options tailored to deliver the value and coverage you’re seeking.

Call us today at 812-402-9008 to get free insurance quotes.

Some of our insurance partners include the following industry leaders:

 

Jason Wright Insurance is independently owned and locally operated to handle your insurance needs. We focus on Evansville, Indiana and offer affordable and reliable insurance choices all across Indiana.

Jason Wright Insurance Agency: For The Right Insurance, Choose Jason Wright Insurance. Call for a quote today at 812-402-9008.

Making Smart Savings Choices

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In today’s unsettled economy, many people are looking for ways to stretch their money—but sometimes this includes altering insurance coverages to dangerously low levels or eliminating coverage entirely. If you’re thinking about changing your coverage to save money, consider these key issues below — and give us a call. We can help make sure you’ve got the right protection at a price you can afford.

  • Make sure you’re getting the appropriate discounts and credits: Most insurers offer a variety of policy credits and account discounts that can translate into significant savings — without endangering the level of protection you need for your home, autos and other valuable property. And often, if you purchase multiple policies through the same insurance company, you’ll receive further discounts. People who own motorcycles or boats and who complete approved safety courses can qualify for discounts, and families with teen drivers who earn good grades in school may qualify for auto policy discounts.
  • Increase deductibles for cost savings: Only a small percentage of homeowners have claims in any given year, so you might consider increasing your deductible.
  • Specialty lines coverage options: Own a classic car or RV? If their use is seasonal, you can typically reduce your coverage to liability only during the off-season, then add full coverage only when you are actually using the vehicle
  • Full payment on policy: Depending on your financial circumstances, you may be able to make lump-sum payments instead of partial premium payments, such as monthly or quarterly. Partial payments often include small transaction fees, so paying the full amount can eliminate those extra costs.

Some decisions to avoid
It is just as important to understand what not to do as you look for cost savings. Here are some scenarios you should avoid:

  • It may be unwise to carry only the minimum state-required amount of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage on auto policies, or to cancel it entirely if it is not required in your state: According to the Insurance Research Council (IRC)*, the correlation between the percentage of uninsured motorists and the unemployment rate is high — when the economy is struggling, more people go without insurance. You want to make sure you’re protected in this instance.
  • Ignoring renters insurance: This coverage is often overlooked no matter what shape the economy is in. Landlords’ policies generally only cover the structure, not the individual renters’ contents. Imagine having to replace furniture, clothing and other personal property out of pocket because you excluded this essential, affordable coverage and then suffered a devastating loss from a burglary or other covered event.

Saving money is important, but so is making sure that what you’ve got is protected. If you’re looking for ways to save, or want to review your coverages, give us a call!

*Insurance Research Council, January 21, 2009

Contact Us!

At Jason Wright Insurance, 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 812-402-9008 or send us a note at jason@jasonwrightinsurance.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Fire Pit Safety

Be Careful When You Play With Fire, Even in the Backyard

It’s a great feeling to hang out with friends and family around a blazing fire in your backyard — unless, of course, that fire blazes a little too much.

While a fire pit can be a wonderful addition to your home, all fires are potentially dangerous. So before you sit down with some marshmallows to roast, we here at Jason Wright Insurance have gathered up some tips to help you keep that fire in the pit (and away from everything else).

Are you legal?

  • Before building or buying a fire pit, check the regulations in your area to learn about restrictions.
  • Your fire pit may be legal, but a fire might not always be. Monitor and follow community burn bans.
  • Be respectful. Nothing can extinguish the good vibes of a nice fire more quickly than police complaints from smoked-out neighbors.

What kind of pit do you want?

  • You can buy a fire pit or build one. If you choose the latter, there are plenty of resources online to help you design it. Don’t dig a hole just anywhere and throw some rocks down. Put some thought into it and you’ll have a better — and safer — spot to enjoy.
  • If you want convenience, a propane model might be right for you. They produce less smoke and have an adjustable flame.

Ready to build your fire?

Actually, you probably aren’t ready yet.

  • First, ensure the area under and around the fire pit is clear of flammable materials. Keep the pit itself at least 10 feet from any structures.
  • Before you start the fire, have a fire extinguisher or a garden hose handy.

Okay, now are you ready to build your fire?

  • Choose hard, seasoned woods. Sparks from softer woods like cedar can increase the danger of igniting something nearby.
  • Don’t use liquid fuels, even lighter fluid, to get your fire going. And don’t burn paper, cardboard, leaves, garbage, etc.
  • If you have a metal fire pit, don’t overload it and always use the included safety screen.

Is the fire out?

  • When you’re done, spread out the ashes and let them cool off for a bit. Then gently pour water or sand over them. Stick around for a little while to watch for flare-ups.

We want you to have plenty of nice, warm nights — without getting burned. Here’s to making memories around the fire!

Contact Us!

At Jason Wright Insurance, 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 812-402-9008 or send us a note at jason@jasonwrightinsurance.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

This article provided courtesy of Safeco Insurance.