Are You Prepared For The Next Flood? Part Two

flood bf 567Historic storms in the Gulf of Mexico, such as Harvey, Irma and Maria have emphasized the importance of homeowners securing flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

Flood Hazard Zone…Know Your Location

Flooding and other surface drainage problems can occur well away from a river, lake, or ocean. If you are looking at a property, it’s a good idea to check out possible flood hazards before you buy. Here are some reasons why:

  • The force of moving water or waves can destroy a building.
  • Slow moving flood waters can knock people off their feet or float a car.
  • Standing water can float a building, collapse basement walls, or buckle a concrete floor.
  • Water-soaked contents such as carpeting, clothing, upholstered furniture, and mattresses may have to be thrown away after a flood.
  • Some items such as  photographs  and heirlooms  may never be restored to their original
  • Floodwaters are not clean: floods carry mud, farm chemicals, road oil, and other noxious substances that cause health hazards.

Floodplain regulations: The City of Punta Gorda regulates construction and development in the floodplain to ensure that buildings will be protected from flood damage. Filling and similar projects are prohibited in certain areas. Houses substantially damaged by fire, flood, or any other cause must be elevated to or above the flood level when they are repaired

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.

 

 

 

 

 

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Are You Up To Your Waist With Flood Insurance Myths?

7AdXNgXZOO3lF4e0Flood insurance

Most, if not all, homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover floods, but if you live in certain areas, your mortgage company may require flood insurance.  You do not have to live close to a river to be exposed to a possible flood.  If you do live in a special flood risk area, you need to have flood insurance; especially if you need help from the federal government.

Flood Insurance Facts

  • Floods are the most common natural disaster.
  • 30% of floods occur in moderate risk areas.
  • If you live in a flood community, you have a greater chance of having a flood than you do of having a fire.

Federal Flood Insurance

The law requires coverage in an amount equal to the outstanding principal balance of the loan, the value of your home, or the maximum limit of coverage under the program whichever is less.

The only way to purchase flood insurance is through the federal government, (FEMA).

Flood Insurance Myths

  1. “We have had a flood, so I cannot get coverage.” It does not matter how many times your home has been flooded; you are still eligible for coverage if your community participates inthe National Flood Insurance Program.
  2. “I do not live near water so I do not need the coverage.” Flood waters can travel hundreds of miles. Check with our office for information on how we can help you determine your risk.
  3. “I live in a flood zone, so I cannot get coverage.” You can get federal flood insurance no matter where you live, if your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program.
  4. “Flood insurance is only for homeowners.” Flood insurance is available for renters, condominium owners, businesses, and manufactured homes.

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.

Please Call our office for more information.

 

The Risks of Owning a Swimming Pool

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Summer is here and many of us are enjoying our backyard swimming pool.  It is good to remember that owning a pool not only has liability risks, but there are property risks as well. However, most important is keeping your friends and family safe, so here are a few pool safety reminders.

It is also important to have a personal insurance review to make sure all your summer activities are covered.  For example, if you have purchased a boat, you may need a separate watercraft policy.  In addition, if you have installed a pool you will need to add that risk to your homeowner’s policy.  We want you to have an enjoyable and safe summer, so here are some reminders about summertime safety

Property Risks and Pools

Some insurance companies consider a pool to be an external structure, and it may not be covered under your personal property.  If that is the case, your pool needs to be declared and listed on the policy, just like a shed or any other extraneous structure.

  • Pumps and related equipment can be damaged. Make sure your homeowner’s policy will cover this kind of equipment, including equipment failure
  • Water damage to the pool. Unless the damage is a result of a covered event, there is no coverage for cracks in the pool and related walkways.
  • Falling objects like trees may be covered.
  • Faulty workmanship is not covered under a homeowner’s policy. If you have a contractor working on your pool, make sure they have the proper insurance.
  • Are your pool cage supports or screening covered? They can be but it depends on your homeowners insurer.

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.

Summer Can Be Risky for Everyone

download (1)A Personal Insurance and Safety update

Summertime means more of us are heading to the pool, lake, ocean, or river to relax and have fun.  Unfortunately, these activities can lead to accidents and injury.  Summer also brings increases in heat related illness and teen driving accidents, according to PC260.com.

It is also important to have a personal insurance review to make sure all your summer activities are covered.  For example, if you have purchased a boat, you may need a separate watercraft policy.  In addition, if you have installed a pool you will need to add that risk to your homeowner’s policy.  We want you to have an enjoyable and safe summer, so here are some reminders about summertime safety.

Some of the Top Summer Risks

  • River water can be very cold, especially as the early snowmelt flows downriver. Even if it is 100 degrees outside, the river water temperatures can be very cold.
  • If you are planning foreign travel, remember to check travel advisories. Also, be sure you have all your medical issues managed correctly.  Check with your health insurer, as many will not provide coverage in foreign countries.
  • Don’t forget your pets. Summer heat can affect your pets, so make sure they are not left in vehicles or in homes during long heat waves.
  • When you are on the water, do not mix drinking and water craft driving. Verify that you have life vests for everyone and keep life vests on all children all the time.
  • Heat stress is one of the most common illnesses during summertime. The risk of getting skin cancer is much higher among people who sunbathe, and especially those who have experienced multiple sunburns.
  • Barbecues and fire related risks increase during the summer. Always keep children away for open fires, and keep barbecues away from buildings.
  • When riding your bike we recommend you always use a helmet.
  • Do you know if your pool cage or supports are covered?

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.

What Is Assignment of Benefits?

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How Assignment Of Benefits May Impact Homeowners

There have been an increasing number of homeowners who have unknowingly signed contracts or forms that include Assignment of Benefits (AOB) agreements. These forms are sometimes provided by contractors, often for water damage restoration, and must be read carefully. The end result is that the contractor is assigned your rights under the insurance policy. This can be a problem in that there are some contractors and attorneys that use this as a scam to sue insurers. This has resulted in homeowners losing control of the claim process and it could mean having to pay amounts beyond what is covered in their policy. The contractor could place a lien on the home.

How To Protect Yourself

  • Call your agent or insurer first
  • Do not sign anything without reviewing it with our office
  • Most insurers have 24/7 claim hotlines
  • Read all documents before you sign them

While there may be some good reasons to use AOB, there can be abuses, and it is always good idea to call our office first.

The assignment of benefits scourge in the homeowners’ market has been mostly concentrated in South Florida but is quickly spreading to Tampa Bay. We’re already the No. 1 hot spot for auto glass lawsuits, according to Tampa Bay Times staff writer Malena Carollo, and the numbers keep growing. Hillsborough County alone accounted for 35 percent of cases statewide in 2016. That’s not a list the region should want to be atop, and the only current remedy is for drivers to be informed and careful. If you have a cracked windshield, contact your insurance company directly to start the claim process, then follow the claim to conclusion. If you do allow a repair company to negotiate with insurance on your behalf, understand that a lawsuit could eventually be filed in your name.

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.

Please Call our office for more information.

I Just Got a Ticket…Will My Auto Rates Go UP?

car-1531277_640 (1)Have you recently had the bad luck of receiving a speeding citation? A ticket for speeding or other moving violation may increase your auto premiums. Some of this depends on the timing of your ticket and your renewal date. If you have had several traffic violations in a three year period, your carrier may decide to drop you. We will always search the market for the best alternative for all our clients.

Your auto insurance rates are determined based on how risky the insurance company considers you to be. Insurance carriers will have different methods for calculating risk, and thus different methods for determining rates.

Violations that relate to unsafe driving that will cause your premiums to increase include:

  • Drunk driving
  • Texting while driving
  • Failure to stop or yield right of way
  • Speeding
  • Reckless driving
  • Failure to stop at a light
  • Speeding in a construction zone

One leading industry research company studied 500,000 drivers and found that auto premiums went up by 20% after one of the violations listed above. Remember these are national averages and your individual circumstance will apply to what the carrier may or may not do.

Driving safely may be enough for you to avoid any spikes in your premiums. Of course, if your rates go up, they can also go down. By being a safe driver, you may see the price you pay for auto insurance decrease over the years.

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.

 

Why You Need A Carbon Monoxide Detector

Protect your home and family

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless, invisible gas that is created when certain fuels do not burn completely. Many homes can have exposure to carbon monoxide and may not even know it. That’s why it is important to know how to prevent it, detect it, and protect yourself and your family from its effects. In the home, carbon monoxide is most commonly formed by flames and heaters, as well as vehicles or generators that are running in an attached garage.

Detection and Safety Tips

  • Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarms should be installed in a central location outside each sleeping area, on every level of the home, and in other locations where required by applicable laws, codes or standards. For the best protection, interconnect all CO alarms throughout the home; when one sounds, they all sound.
  • Never use a gas range or oven for heating.
  • Have your home heating systems (including chimneys and vents) inspected and serviced annually by a trained service technician.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for placement and mounting height.
  • If the audible trouble signal sounds, check for low batteries. If the battery is low, replace it. If it still sounds, call the fire department.
  • If the CO alarm sounds, immediately move to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door. Make sure everyone inside the home is accounted for. Call for help from a fresh air location and stay there until emergency personnel arrives.
  • If you need to warm a vehicle, remove it from the garage immediately after starting it. Do not run a vehicle or other fueled engine or motor indoors, even if the garage doors are open. Make sure the exhaust pipe of a running vehicle is not covered with snow.
  • During and after a snowstorm, make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove, and fireplace are clear of snow build-up.
  • A generator should be used in a well-ventilated location outdoors and away from windows, doors and vent openings.
  • Gas or charcoal grills can produce CO — only use outside.

Amberg Insurance Center, Inc. was established in 1974 to serve the growing insurance needs of the many businesses and individuals located in the Charlotte and surrounding counties. We take pride in the quality service provided to our customers, our community concern, and our commitment to the overall development of our employees.

Amberg Insurance has been voted First Place for Best Insurance Agency and Best Agent by the Charlotte Sun Newspaper and First Place for ‘Harbor’s Hottest’ Insurance Agency by Harbor Style Magazine.