Packed, Primed & Into the Wild: A Guide to RV Insurance Coverage and Pricing

As families nationwide prepare to hit the road and enjoy recreation opportunities and peace of the wild, motorized RVs are frequently the choice to get the show on the road! A motorized RV acts as both a form of transportation and a source of lodging, and now offers more luxury features than ever before. Huge TVs, larger sleeping areas, and very comfortable overnight quarters are luring more new explorers than ever before to experience the calling of the open world.

What Is RV Insurance?

RV insurance will cover financial losses when your RV is involved in an accident that causes damage to property or sustained injury. The familiar bunch of Allstate, Farmers, Geico, Liberty Mutual, Nationwide, Progressive, and State Farm all offer RV insurance, offering their various forms of coverage to protect you while you embark on your next adventure. Even though RVs are large and sturdy, drivers can undergo some unexpected circumstances on winding roads and in many holiday situations. 

Here are two common forms of RV insurance:

Full-time RV Insurance: full -time RV insurance is for those who enjoy taking up permanent residence while on the road. This technically means living in a motorhome or travel trailer for at least six months out of the year. This type of coverage will typically provide: 

  • Comprehensive Coverage and Collision Coverage for your RV. These two types of coverage are usually paired together and will assist with paying for repair or vehicle replacement if it is damaged or stolen. Falling objects, floods, fire, acts of vandalism, and hail are some of the elements you will thankfully be protected from.
  • Personal Liability Protection will protect you from property damage and bodily injury you accidentally cause to others. RV campgrounds and state parks can be very busy locations, and it’s best to always have peace of mind for any freak accidents.
  • Medical Payments Coverage will help with covering the often-exorbitant bills for injuries that happen inside or close to your RV.
  • Loss Assessment Coverage will cover association fees if you happen to park in a location within an association that suddenly needs to make necessary repairs within the commons area.

Part-time RV Insurance is an excellent option for those who don’t call their RV home for six months a year or more. This type of policy includes vacation liability coverage that assists with damage and injuries in and around your RV during shorter trips. You can also purchase additional optional coverage that is considered a feature of full-time RV insurance.

Do I Have to Have RV Insurance? If your RV is officially considered a motorhome, you are mandated to purchase coverage in every US state except Virginia and New Hampshire. Even though these two states do not mandate coverage, it’s still a good idea to prepare sufficiently for anything that could happen to you while on the road.

If your RV can be towed behind your vehicle with the trailer, this could alleviate the need for separate RV insurance coverage. In this very common situation, as you’re preparing the tackle box and delicious foods for grilling, your car insurance policy may kick in and provide coverage for the RV. In some instances, you may even be able to locate cheaper car insurance options that will offer a form of RV coverage. If you’re financing your motor home purchase, your lender will mandate that you have comprehensive and collision coverage, as well as a solid liability auto insurance plan.

What are Some Forms of Optional RV Coverage?

  • Total loss replacement coverage pays to replace your RV with a similar make and model if it is completely destroyed. 
  • Actual cash value coverage will offer the replacement value minus depreciation. 
  • Coverage of Injuries will cover medical expenses for injuries caused by underinsured and uninsured motorists.
  • Campsite and vacation coverage will pay for injuries after incidents you cause to property or individuals when you are using your RV for leisure travel. This can happen during bad weather, or even in close quarters when personal items can be backed over or hurt when the departing party is in a rush.
  • Emergency expenses will allow for reimbursement for a hotel stay if your RV winds up seriously damaged. This can prove to be incredibly useful, as losing your sleeping quarters in a split second can provide a fair amount of duress!
  • Roadside assistance helps with towing, jump-starts, and the sinister + plan-sabotaging random flat tire!

How can I Enjoy Discounts on RV Insurance?

Here are some of the ways that discounts can become available for RV insurance:

  • Bundling Policies: if you can purchase multiple types of insurance, you will surely see significant savings. You can include auto and RV insurance with home insurance, condo insurance, or renters’ insurance. This is also a great way to save time every month and just deal with one easy payment.
  • Keeping a Good Driving Record: if you’re fortunate enough to have no accidents at all on your driving record, you could be eligible for a very welcome discount. As is common with auto insurance as well, this gives the company insuring you a clear picture of what they can expect.
  • Paying in Full: since so many covered individuals choose to divide up their payments over the cumulative year, insurance companies gladly offer discounts for paying the lump sum in full.
  • RV Safety Courses: this is an excellent way to learn more about the medium that will provide you so many future hours of enjoyment on vacation and reduce your costs after completion. Each year more Americans are choosing to excitedly hit the road in an RV, and these classes provide a way to get a handle on unique driving challenges.

With the rising trend of families enjoying the great outdoors in RVs, safety and precautions have never been more critical. At the Alexander Insurance of St Charles, we understand the value of your family’s well-being and your investment in your RV. Contact us now to find out more about your RV insurance options, and secure your future of adventuresome open-road exploration!


How Age Affects Rates: How Insurance Coverage Varies for New and Used Cars

While you visit dealerships to try and find your next vehicle, it’s important to consider how costs for new car vs. used car insurance compare. As the value of a vehicle goes down, the insurance for it usually does too. So, a used car will generally cost less to insure than a new model. Read more to get Alexander Insurance Agency’s breakdown of how the age of your vehicle can affect your rate.

How do Costs Vary by Provider?

The Quadrant Information Services group claimed that most drivers with very good records pay about $168 per month to have full coverage on a brand new vehicle. They also found that drivers pay on average about $150 per month to secure full coverage on used vehicles from 2018. These statistics were recorded based on married male drivers aged 35 years old. This data shows that annual car insurance costs will go down by an average of $221 total during the first four years a vehicle is driven.

Factoring in Make and Model:

The price of your insurance will vary depending on not just the age of your car, but also its make and model. As an example, if you have  Progressive, a Ram Pickup will cost more to insure than crossover SUVs like a Honda CR-V. The Toyota Rav-4 is one of the most budget-friendly vehicles out there, with other dependable staples such as the Toyota Camry costing less than the high-tech and eco-conscious Tesla Model 3. No matter the make or model, insurance companies pay less and less for a total loss as time goes by and the vehicle depreciates.

How Coverage Level Affects Monthly Cost:

Getting full coverage on your vehicle gets you peace of mind that you would be covered in case of an accident or theft, especially if you get the highest coverage limits for liability. The downside is that Full coverage will cost you hundreds more annually than Missouri’s bare minimum liability requirements. If you choose to finance a car with a loan, you will be required to get full coverage. One good rule of thumb is that if your vehicle is worth more than $5000 or you would find yourself unable to pay for repairs after an accident, full coverage is the best option. 

Gap Insurance is required by some lenders if you owe more than the car is worth, and will pay for coverage if your car is totaled. New Car Replacement is offered by insurance companies for brand-new and recent-model year vehicles. If you happen to suffer a total loss, the company will pay to replace the car  without accounting for depreciation. 

Tips for Lowering Your Monthly Insurance Costs:

Aside from comparing new vs. used car insurance, there are a few other tactics we use to get you a lower monthly payment. Here are a few things we consider to ease the burden of premium costs and still keep you protected:

  • Switch Providers: We can shop around for a better option for you at any time, not just when you are buying a new(er) car. Switching companies often will not result in penalties.  
  • Change Coverage Amounts: You may be able to lower your coverage limits or eliminate features you don’t need to provide savings instantly. The industry is changing now more than ever before, and it pays to be aware of variations in your options every single day. We can help you re-evaluate your coverage options to find what works best.
  • Increase Your Deductible: If you choose to raise your deductible, you will have to pay more out of pocket for a claim before your insurance provider kicks in with coverage. It’s important to seriously consider whether you would be able pay your deductible when the time comes. If yes, raising your deductible can often lower your monthly payment.
  • Explore Usage-Based Insurance: As technology allows for opportunities to have your driving tracked, mobile apps and devices can be used to get incentives and rewards for good driving. Allowing yourself to be monitored can sometimes pay off over time (if you’re a good driver!).
  • Compare Various Models: As we mentioned previously, car insurance costs will differ depending on the model you are driving. It’s not just the difference between high-performance sports cars and a family sedan: many different traits make for a drastic difference in cost. Make sure to evaluate your options before making a purchase.

In summary, full coverage car insurance will generally cost less as years go by and your vehicle depreciates. We have quite a few paths we can take to re-evaluate your coverage and (hopefully!) lower your monthly car insurance payment. Contact us here at the Alexander Agency of St Charles today to find out how to save money while still getting the protection you need!


Slightly Underprepared “State of the Nation:” Many Small Businesses Face Lack of Insurance Coverage

We know that as soon as your advertising plan is set in stone and your pay method is up and running, there are so many things to take care of for a business’ daily operations. The detailed findings from a recent NEXT insurance survey shed light on very serious stressors facing small businesses in 2023, and the level of preparedness they have when it comes to insurance coverage. Even though many small business owners have done great with the innovation and planning required to get started, they may lack sufficient insight when it comes to being adequately covered. 90 percent of the small business owners surveyed were unsure if their current coverage was enough to weather any event.

More than half of the leaders surveyed reflected that making a professional mistake was one incident that could harm their business during the year. Additionally, 96 percent of survey respondents were not able to reach the 70 percent or higher threshold for a test that covered the basics of insurance. 82 percent of small business owners were reviewing their coverage in depth or conducting a thorough risk assessment.

Small Business Owners are Fine Combing Their Details:

The NEXT survey used artificial intelligence to provide a comprehensive snapshot of how much knowledge and preparation business owners had when it comes to assuring that they are properly covered. 51 percent of the respondents listed making a professional mistake or clerical error as a potential event that could negatively impact their business this year. Inflation was a primary concern for 68 percent surveyed, with a looming recession and supply chain issues following closely behind. Many consumers become meticulous about the services rendered when money gets tight, and this can lead to issues that require sufficient policy coverage.

The Vital Component That Tends to be Brushed Aside:

The findings of this survey showed just how consumed small business owners are with their day-to-day operations, and how the importance of being properly covered can easily be brushed off. 29 percent of respondents don’t have any coverage at all, and more than 50 percent conveyed that they don’t have adequate coverage to face potential risks. 18 percent of those surveyed claimed that they knew they could potentially not be covered up to speed, but still were not going to take any steps in the next six months to protect their business.

Insurance and Taxes Gaps Rank as Neck-and-Neck

Many small business owners struggle with the knowledge needed to fully understand the different needs of insurance coverage. Knowing what coverage and policies their business needs make for not knowing just how to proceed, and only one third of individuals in this situation seek professional help. Even though insurance coverage is so vital when legal issues and serious accidents arise, not even one of 500 respondents were able to nail down a perfect score on a quiz about general liability specifics. Many entrepreneurs have an excellent knack for running their business but are not quite in touch with the dire importance of their coverage needs.

Tailoring Your Coverage for Your Specific Needs:

This survey focused on various cities, rural areas, and suburbs, collecting opinions from entrepreneurs of all ages. This resulted in a portrayal that showed just how many types of needs the small businesses of today can have. 71 percent of rural business owners were concerned about inflation, and 41 percent of business owners over the age of 45 were concerned with the potential of a cyberattack. 35 percent of women who run their own businesses are likely to not have adequate insurance coverage, compared to just 25 percent of men. Since times continue to be stressful in general, having small business insurance is one way to free up time for the tasks that matter most, and know you are prepared for the worst while executing your best strategy.

Once your fantastic idea is in the so very exciting “true life” form, your storefront is open, and the customers are trickling in, there can be so much to take care of that it’s easy to put insurance needs on the back burner. Don’t let a single instant of bad judgement or accidental occurrence be the reason why you can’t generate positive revenue in the future! Contact us at the Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles today to put a plan in action that leaves you with no uncertainty or uncovered gaps while daring to dream every day.  


Guidance for On-The-Go Coverage: Insurance Tips Delivery Drivers

We all know that one of the most popular ways to make extra money these days is to deliver food for companies such as DoorDash, Postmates, or Grubhub. Here’s something you might not already know: using your vehicle for business or transportation of goods is not usually covered by your personal auto insurance. If you decide to take on this “side hustle” you will need to secure a commercial auto insurance policy as well. 

Is a Special Form of Insurance Mandatory as a Delivery Driver?

Drivers are required to insure any vehicle that is driven or parked on public roadways with state-minimum liability coverage. Without this coverage, you could suffer a ticket or even a license suspension if you were to get in an accident, as well as any costs incurred by the accident itself. Many delivery companies require that you must maintain or exceed the liability limits in your state.

Since delivery drivers use their vehicles to transport goods such as food, making deliveries typically falls outside of personal auto insurance policy guidelines. If an accident occurs while you are working your delivery job, you could risk having claims regarding the incident denied.

As an example, here are two forms of coverage that we think work well for Postmates:

  • Business Use: this would be an add-on to your existing policy, and is designed for minimal business use. 
  • Commercial Policy: this is a form of coverage designed specifically for businesses and vehicles of daily use.

Can I Secure Coverage From my Place of Employment?

This varies on the type of business, but Postmates is a good reference point. Postmates clearly states that responsibility for vehicular damages will always be the burden of the driver, but their official platform may step in when a driver’s coverage does not take care of the damage that occurs on third-party vehicles. Postmates’ form of assistance includes:

  • Excess auto liability – $1M per accident limit for bodily injury and property damage to third parties.
  • General Liability – $1M applies to Postmates couriers who deliver by bike or on foot, and have inadvertently caused damage to others or their property.

What Kind of Options are Available for Delivery Drivers?

Working as a food delivery driver is a great way to earn money while you are in school, or to supplement your household income, especially if you’re feeling the effects of inflation. You have options: acquire a commercial auto insurance policy, inquire about adding coverage with a business-use personal policy or (and this is NOT recommended by all of us here at the Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles) you could decide not to report your occupation to our team. 

A Commercial Policy can be slightly more expensive than a personal policy, with the cost based on your vehicle and other geographical factors. This is the most extensive form of coverage, but you can rest assured that most any incident you encounter will be covered. 

A Business Use Policy is designed specifically for drivers who use their vehicles for limited business use. It can be very convenient if you only deliver part-time, but it might not work for you if you deliver full-time, or if you only deliver seasonally. Make sure you contact us to find out if you qualify for this type of coverage.

A Personal Auto Insurance Policy 

If you choose not to report your delivery occupation to us (or your insurance provider), you face some massive risks! You could have your coverage canceled and/or any ensuing claims denied. The safest bet is to let us know and we’ll help you secure the coverage that works best for your situation.

What is a Rideshare Insurance Endorsement?

Coverage for delivery drivers looks a little different depending on your provider. For instance, Geico offers a Hybrid Rideshare Insurance option, which covers instances of personal use and during your delivery hours. Progressive, State Farm, USAA and Allstate, for example, also offer great options for delivery drivers, just a bit differently. Give us a call and we can further discuss your options with you. If you’ve recently started a rideshare or delivery job, the team here at Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles is ready to help! Give us a call and we can further discuss your options, and provide you with our recommendations for the coverage that is best for you!


A Savvy Insurance Agent Shares a Crucial Checklist: Important Things to do After a Car Accident

In a large and fast-paced world, car accidents can happen very quickly, and often when you least expect it. In the United States, a car accident occurs every six minutes. This rate is 4 times higher than in any other country, and not every driver has full coverage to weather the storm. No matter the incident, whether you are rear-ended or undergo a serious wreck due to weather, it is crucial to try and remain as calm as possible.

At the Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles, we recommend you take the following actions after an accident to ensure a smooth recovery process and proper documentation.

Find a Safe Place ASAP:

Right after an accident, it’s common to be in shock, so it’s best to take a brief minute to collect yourself. It is also very important to get off the road as quickly as possible, and be aware of your surroundings while not blocking traffic. If your car is immobilized, exit quickly and turn on the hazard lights to let other drivers know the vehicle is impaired. 

Do a Thorough Damage Assessment:

If anyone has been injured, it’s important to get emergency help as soon as possible. Sometimes in traumatic situations, victims may not even realize that they have sustained an injury. Even if a driver or passenger is just a bit rattled but seems to be alright, it’s always best to seek the counsel of a medical professional. After you get over the initial impact, immediately replace booster and child safety seats to make sure everyone stays protected in the future.

Get a Police Report:

After an accident, dial 911 and ask for a police officer to be dispatched to your location. Even if the wreck seems minor, the police report will provide evidence for any claims that will need to be processed. Even if there is no apparent damage, someone could claim injury, or be charged with a misdemeanor offense, like a hit and run charge. A police report is your best means of defense against those who aren’t honest during the claims process. 

Thoroughly Document the Accident:

After you have made sure that you and your passengers are safe, take as many photos of your car and the event as you can. It is crucial to have a record of all vehicles involved and any damage that occurred. Get documentation of the site of the accident, marks on the road, all parties and vehicles involved. Once adjusters begin doing their work, photographic documentation becomes the best means of speeding up the process.

Take a Moment to Exchange Information: 

Make sure to exchange information with the other driver(s) involved and get a picture of their Photo ID and insurance card. Don’t discuss the accident, as any statements that you make can be held against you. If you have a dash cam, make sure to share that footage with the responding police officer and your insurance company (as needed), as that footage provides solid evidence that can aid in your case.

Notify Your Insurance Agent as Soon as Possible:

Some drivers may think that if an accident is not their fault, they can take a little while longer to notify their insurance company. Regardless of fault, you should definitely notify us here at the Alexander Agency within 24 hours of your accident. If you are seriously injured, notify us as soon as you are able. 

We know that any car accident, small or large, is stressful and adds even more to your task list. We want to help alleviate that stress, and make sure you are confident about your car insurance coverage. Contact us today, and we’ll take a look at your existing coverage to make sure you have all you need. And, if that day comes, we’ll be there to help you through the dreaded claims process.


Complete Coverage on the Road and Beyond: Tips for Bundling Home and Auto Insurance in 2023

When you need to insure both your home and your vehicle, a great way to save money is to bundle your coverage with the same company. Home and Auto insurance bundles can yield you a sizable multi-policy discount with many national coverage providers. All of us here at the Alexander Insurance Agency of Saint Charles have spent an abundance of time researching companies based on the discounts they offer, measured up against the number of consumer complaints they receive.

Here are some of the Pros and Cons of bundling them together:

Pros of bundling Home and Auto insurance:

  • The Attractive Savings: a multi-policy discount for buying home and auto insurance policies with the same insurance company can save you as much as 14%. This can really add up, as annually you could enjoy up to $466 of savings in your pocket. 
  • Having Multiple Policies Under One Account: It’s pretty convenient that your home and auto policies are under one account or app. You won’t have numerous logins to remember.
  • Just One Deductible to Manage: Some well-known companies like Progressive will apply one deductible to bundled home and auto policies if damage occurs to both during a single event. If a storm knocks a tree down, having a single deductible will require payment for only one occurrence instead of two.

Cons of Bundling Home and Auto Insurance:

  • A Few Rungs Under the Best: occasionally, you may find it cheaper to buy home and auto coverage separately. We research multiple providers to help you make this decision.
  • Double-Check the Convenience Factor: if your car insurance company is partnered up with a different home insurance company to offer this bundle, you may not notice the benefits of having a single account.
  • Not Necessarily Being the Best Fit: if you are after certain coverage types that may not be available with a company that bundles home and auto insurance, it may be the most sensible idea to stick with a company that is offering you the specific things that cater to your needs. One example is that not all home insurance companies will offer extended replacement cost if your rebuilding note is higher than the original listed amount you recorded while obtaining the policy. 

What to Look for When Choosing your Home and Auto Insurance Company:

Our team will help you explore coverage options and help tailor your insurance to suit your lifestyle. As part of our process, we look for ways to save you money on insurance, while still balancing your needs. You already know that you can sometimes get a pretty substantial discount for bundling your home and auto coverage. Did you know that your deductible choice also has a large effect on your home and auto insurance costs? For example, if you opt for a higher deductible, your policy price will be cheaper, but the insurer will ultimately pay out less for the claim. As we previously mentioned, many providers will also offer a single deductible when you bundle home and auto. Your specific driving style or property type may mean that bundling isn’t the best possible option, but it is always a great idea to explore your possibilities. 

Additional Tips to Save Money on Bundled Home and Auto Insurance:

We want you to save your money for the good things in life. Check out some of our additional recommendations to save money on your bundled insurance below. Be sure to contact us today if you have any questions, our team is happy to help!

  • Advance Quote Discounts: if you buy your new policy before your current one expires, some companies will give you a discount.
  • Anti-Theft Devices Discounts: if your car has anti-theft features, you may save on your car insurance costs. And for your house, sophisticated deadbolts and a burglar alarm can merit discounts as well. 
  • Claims-Free Discount: Both home and auto insurance will give substantial discounts if you can remain claim-free for an extended amount of time.
  • Multi-Home Discount: if you choose to insure more than one property with the same insurance company, you can receive substantial discounts.
  • New Car Discount: you may also qualify for substantial savings if your car is less than three years old.
  • Pay in Full Discount: paying your entire year in full upfront can qualify you for a discount for either type of policy. If this is something you are able to do, it can benefit you greatly.

Safety Features Discount: Safety features such as anti-lock brakes and airbags can save you money on your policy as well. For your home, add-ons such as smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and fire alarms can save money on your premiums.


Resilient Coping Skills Amongst an Ebbing Tide: Car Insurance Outlook for 2023

As we look ahead to 2023, many of us are very reasonably concerned about rising costs of day-to-day living. Inflation, supply chain issues, and an uptick in car accidents are sure to take their toll on our pocketbooks and will no doubt lead to higher car insurance costs next year.

The number of car accidents dropped drastically during the pandemic but now, with an increased number of drivers on the road, the number of accidents has increased as well. More money is also being spent on car insurance claims, due to expensive parts, medical bills and costs of labor. 

Because we know that the cost of car insurance will continue to rise in 2023, we wanted to inform you of the factors governing this, and warn you “how the chips could fall”.

Inflation’s Rampant Effects on Rising Costs:

The Consumer Price Index saw an increase of 7.7% for the 12-month period that ended in October of 2022. Unfortunately, this much-used benchmark for fiscal health saw its largest annual jump in 40 years, with costs of housing, energy, food, and car insurance rising and creating general discontent. Year-over-year, car insurance prices are up by 12.9%, and in the last two years, costs have risen an astonishing 19.9%. 

The American property casualty insurance association produced a new report over the year that took a close look at car insurance companies’ daily struggle with these rising costs. They found that the cost of claims is rising even faster than the CPI, which will force car insurance companies to impose rate increases in order to keep up. This is of grave concern to consumers, who already felt the strain of increased costs.

Medical Claims Reach the Red Zone After Dangerous Collisions: 

Since people are back to enjoying their freedom and driving more than ever, serious car crashes have occurred with greater frequency. Data from the Federal Highway Administration shows 43.2 billion miles were traveled by vehicles in the first half of 2022, which was a 2.8% increase when compared to the same period just one year ago. Any driver with increased mileage will also see their opportunities for an accident increased. Just in the past year there has been a 7% increase in fatalities on America’s roads.

The frequency of injury claims themselves has decreased by nearly 25% in recent years, but the severity of each incident has risen by nearly 40%. Many drivers speed or are reckless on the road (and maybe enjoy their recovered freedom a little too much), making the insurance payouts higher. The average cost per collision has now reached over $5,000 in the first quarter of 2022, a quite astounding 36.5% higher than the first quarter was a mere two years ago.

Costs for Repair Hastily Heightening:

Once a serious accident occurs, repairs need to be made, and inflation has hit this area quite intensely as well. Parts and labor costs have been directly impacted by the events of the last two years. Not to mention, aftermarket parts can be a challenge to procure to complete the repair. Rental cars now must be used for longer periods, situated at 4.5 days higher than last year’s total of 18.2 days. Since repair times have gotten longer, the pressure is on for entities to raise rates.

Other factors, such as the rising costs of used vehicles, the increased instances of catalytic converter thefts, or even overinflated claim payouts due to litigation have impacted premiums as well. Unfortunately, high litigation court and verdict payouts are passed down to you, the consumer.

We know that change has already been taking place for quite some time, and it can feel like there isn’t an escape from the rising costs of living. At the Alexander Insurance Agency in St. Charles, our experts will help you assess the best policy to suit all of your needs AND your budget. We want to keep costs down for you and your loved ones during such challenging and turbulent times. Contact us to set up a meeting today!


Bridging the Gap When Possessions are Gone: Recoverable Depreciation After a Home Insurance Claim

After you successfully accomplish the goal of purchasing a home and covering it with an insurance policy, you’ll be presented with the option to choose replacement cost coverage. This will protect you by providing the funds to replace damaged or stolen property. This is the process of recoverable depreciation, which covers the gap between the depreciated value of an item, and the actual cost to replace it with one that is “fresh out of the box.”

What is the Calculation Process for Recoverable Depreciation?

If the depreciated value of a stolen stereo is $700 while a brand-new model is $1800, the gap of recoverable depreciation is $1100. When you encounter an issue and make an insurance claim, all of us here standing by for you at the Alexander Insurance Agency will calculate the actual cash value of the item that is damaged, missing, or destroyed from peril. If the item was damaged because of an issue that was covered by the policy such as a flood or fire, the company will assign an adjuster to determine what the value of replacement will be.

This provides a close-up look at the deprecation of the item including its age, normal wear and tear, and predicted longevity. If you purchased a home computer for $3,000 three years ago and it turns up missing, your homeowner’s adjuster could determine that a desktop computer’s typical lifespan is five years. Since the laptop was then three years old, the depreciation stat is $1800. The ACV Payment is $1200, which is $3000 – $1800. Your deductible also kicks in and applies for a claim, of which an average amount is $500 – $1000.

What Type of Payments can I expect for Depreciation Insurance?

If your homeowner’s policy does not currently have replacement cost coverage, the check you receive after a claim will be for the ACV minus the deductible. If you are currently covered for replacement cost, you will get a first payment for the ACV of the item so you can begin the process of fixing it or obtaining a new one, and the second payment will then be issued for the recoverable depreciation. Once you receive an ACV insurance payment and begin the process of repair or replacement, you’ll receive a recoverable depreciation payment after you submit your receipts.

Sometimes after a disaster “life just happens” and you get too busy to take care of everything that stacks up on your to-do list. If you don’t follow through with finishing a repair or replacement, you won’t receive the second payment for recoverable depreciation. In this case, you would just receive a check for the item’s ACV. The items that were destroyed are what you are being reimbursed for, and if you decide not to replace them, you won’t receive full compensation.

How do I Begin the Process of a Recoverable Depreciation Claim?

If a disaster or theft happens to you, here are the appropriate steps to take:

  • Notify your insurance provider as soon as possible about the event.
  • Gather all the important information such as receipts, high-res photographs, and police reports.
  • Submit the vital claim form together with supporting documents to the insurance company for prompt assistance.
  • Wait for the company to process your claim.
  • You’ll then receive your first payment to reimburse you for the cash value.
  • Take the time to fully repair or replace the item.
  • Submit the receipt to your insurance provider.
  • You will then receive the second payment to cover recoverable depreciation.

Which Party is the Valid Recipient of the Depreciation Insurance Check?

The final depreciation payment may be issued to you, a lienholder, or the company you employed to repair the item. If your home undergoes damage, your mortgage company may be the one listed on the check because they hold a legal stake in your property. If you are replacing something such as a couch or stove, the payment will be issued directly to you as the owner. These important details can make a difference when it comes down to how quickly you can obtain or deposit the funds you are due.

What Factors Will Affect the Terms of my Recoverable Depreciation Payment?

  • If the actual cost of the replacement item remains at less than the value of your original item, the recoverable depreciation payment will be calculated based on what was originally yours. If you had paid $2000 for a guitar that got destroyed and its replacement cost $1000, you won’t get to claim a check for the difference.
  • If you choose to not replace or repair an item, you will only receive a check for the item’s actual cash value and not a fully-fledged recoverable depreciation check.
  • If you filed a claim for an item that doesn’t depreciate over time such as machinery or jewelry, you won’t receive a second check.
  • Some states will mandate a rigid time that you need to make a claim to receive recoverable depreciation. This has quite a bearing on when you will receive the payment and be able to thoroughly replace what was lost.

Does my Situation Recoverable Depreciation Insurance?

Everyone’s situation is different, but personal belongings are incredibly important to your daily thriving and healthy existence. If anything ever happens to them, you need to ask yourself a very serious question of if you have enough money to cover the full replacement cost. If there is any question about your ability to do this, it’s best to make sure you have replacement cost coverage to allow you to meet that need during a time of extreme stress. Here at the Alexander Insurance Agency of Saint Charles, we have been assisting families and businesses to build their dreams for years and are eager for you to have a plan for the times when the unexpected affects the possessions you have worked so hard for!


Safeguarding Your Lifelong Endeavor: Things to Know About Commercial Liability Insurance

In the busy world of commerce, unforeseen accidents and incidents can occur that put you at immediate risk. At the Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles, we have come to learn that no matter how much “good energy” you put into your work, there are harmful individuals who look for opportunities to file legal action. Some so frivolous that it is clear they are just playing a “numbers game”, waiting for a payout at another individual’s expense.

After a longstanding nationwide analysis of these occurrences, the estimate is that the average cost of a legal claim by an employee against a business is around $160,000. This is a heavy hit to absorb for any type of business, but for a much smaller operation, it can result in a bankruptcy or even potentially shutting your doors for good. By taking measures to make sure that your operation or trade has the right commercial liability insurance, you can protect yourself from many risks that all have massive costs in the long run. Today, we’ll look at three examples where not having this protection could have serious implications.

The Potential of Peril for a Sole Proprietor:

Many of the small businesses out there today are run by a single owner/sole proprietor. One of the things you must be aware of is that a sole proprietor can bear a hefty amount of responsibility financially if an accident or incident should arise. Any costs or judgements incurred by sole proprietors have to derive from their monthly income or any of the assets they have already accumulated.

Everything may be running smoothly one day, and then all of the sudden an employee may get injured, say during a contracting job. This could result in legal costs along with other forms of compensation, resulting in an astronomical final cost. If you don’t have commercial liability insurance, you would be forced to come up with the money yourself, very quickly in order to remedy the issue. We can provide a clear snapshot of what your risks are, ideal coverage options for you and direction to secure a productive and safe future for your business.

A Policy Addition Due to Legal Obligation:

Depending on which country your business operates in, it may be a legal requirement to carry business insurance coverage, with commercial liability insurance bearing the brunt of the potential for legal issues. When this is the case, not having coverage is likely to result in fines or other forms of legal action against you since you are not in direct compliance with mandated orders. Other entities that you wish to do business with may want you to have coverage as well, to protect both of your entities as you navigate various transactions and interactions. 

Contacting the experts such as us here at the Alexander Agency is always the best option, because our years of experience have allowed us to see how different types of coverage options protect owners when they encounter legal issues and potentially frivolous individuals that are looking for a payout. If you visit a client’s place of work or any vendor comes to do business at yours, there is always the potential that someone would need medical treatment or have another issue. 

Maintaining All-Important Appearances:

In the current climate, many businesses are held to a standard of making sure you have compatible levels of commercial liability insurance. It is one of the best ways to establish strong credibility with others around you, and send the message that you are a thriving professional operation when it counts most. Making sure you have your bases covered as far as commercial liability insurance is also an ideal way of appearing as a top-notch entity when undergoing the task of generating outside capital.

Like many other types of insurance, commercial liability insurance is based upon a thorough assessment of your total risk, and if your business has passed with claims or is in a precarious field such as transport or underground drilling you may pay higher rates. If you’ve just gone into business, your rates may be based on your credit history and could be a bit higher for just the first few years. We are standing by to help with your business insurance needs here at the Alexander Agency, and assure that no misunderstanding big or small will prevent you from providing for your loved ones with the craft or service you always do best!


Looking out for Your Furry Family Members: Pet Insurance Solutions for 2022

All of us here at the Alexander Insurance Agency have noticed a trend toward adopting a furry family member over the past few years! In fact, pet ownership in the U.S. has risen drastically, as people nationwide realize how their mood, outlook and general happiness can improve after adding a pet to the home. The American Pet Association has also shown that around 70% of households added pets to their troupe in 2021, compared with just 67% the year before. 

The report also estimated that owners put forth an expenditure of over $30 billion on products and medical attention for their pets, which was an increase of 3% from the year before. The pandemic also brought about a record number of pet adoptions, as many workers were given the option to work remotely and found it to be the right time to bring a new pet into the home. After this period of growth, many of our customers are now asking us what types of insurance coverage can help with pet ownership.

What Type of Coverage Options are There for Pets?

The pet insurance plans that exist are designed to assist pet owners with the cost of expenses that come up when their pet becomes hurt or ill. Most policies require you as the owner to abide by a reimbursement-based plan and provide you the option of choosing which form of care or specialist to select for their pet’s needs. Here are the predominant categories that this type of coverage falls under:

Accident and Illness:

This is the most common form of pet insurance, and it will cover you for injuries such as bites, eye pain, poisoning, routine sickness, torn ligaments, broken bones, and infection. Many pet owners are satisfied with the fact that it can cover cancer and arthritis, which are more prevalent and detectable now in pets, as well as parasites and ear infections. It is recommended to obtain this coverage during younger years as well, because many providers will put the brakes on extended care for pets as they age, helping you cut down on cost while keeping your loved one healthy and happy.

Accident-Only Coverage:

Some insurers offer accident-only coverage that would aid you in the event of an accident that causes your pet a drastic physical injury.  It can be less expensive than Accident and Illness plans, and is ideal for an animal suffering from a pre-existing condition. Swallowing foreign objects and accidental poisoning are common occurrences covered, but your provider may impose a limit on how many total claims you are allowed coverage for.

Wellness Coverage:

This is a form of coverage that assists with the more routine side of things such as scheduled examinations. Many pet owners have great experiences with this type of coverage because you can get reimbursement for annual exams, spay or neuter procedures, routine blood panels, heartworm testing and treatment, fecal testing, urinalysis, routine vaccinations, teeth cleanings and flea and tick treatments!

What Should I Look for When Purchasing a Plan?

There are a few important factors to consider when choosing the pet insurance policy that will best fit your needs. Some of these are:

  • Deductibles: It’s important to consider how much you must pay before the policy pays out. There are only 2 types of pet insurance deductibles: an annual deductible and a per-condition deductible. If your policy has an annual deductible, you will pay the amount in each policy term. If it is a per-condition deductible, you will pay the amount for each condition or incident. 
  • Reimbursement: It’s also very important to consider the percentage of veterinary expenses that will be covered under your policy. Most commonly, policies offer 70%, 80% or 90% reimbursement options, but there are some insurers that will offer up to 100% reimbursement of veterinary costs.
  • Coverage Cap: The Coverage Cap is the highest amount your pet insurance policy will cover. Most policies have a cap of $5,000, but there are also insurers that offer unlimited coverage. It is important to consider your needs when choosing your policy.

Is Pet Insurance Worth the Cost?

Many industry experts agree that pet insurance is well worth the cost. First and foremost, it eases the stress of pet owners who worry about being able to cover an expensive illness or incident. While it is impossible to predict when your pet will become sick or injured, you can protect your finances (and your pet!) with a carefully selected policy that covers large and/or unexpected vet bills. You’ll get peace of mind knowing that you’ll never have to turn down treatments and/or care because of not being able to afford the bill.

Just as the cost of healthcare for humans has risen over the last few years, the cost of healthcare for pets is increasing as well! Here at the Alexander Insurance Agency of St. Charles, we understand how important it is to protect your entire family – even the four-legged family members! We can assist you with picking the perfect pet insurance policy to suit your needs, so you’ll never have to spend a minute worrying about whether or not your pet will be able to be cared for no matter what may happen.