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November 17, 2017
Different Types of Car Insurance Coverage
At Affordable Insurance in Aurora, we know you might need some extra help understanding the different types of car insurance coverage. Here in Colorado, it is essential to have the right type of auto insurance coverage in order to be protected. Unfortunately, many drivers are not fully covered, so it is even more important to make sure that you and your family are!
Here is a brief description of the different types of car insurance coverage:
Bodily Injury Liability
If you or anyone on your policy are in an accident in which the other party is injured or killed, this type of auto insurance will keep you covered. But keep in mind that it only covers people, not property or vehicles. So, you will still need other protection to take care of that end of the coverage spectrum. Additionally, bodily injury liability coverage will provide legal defense in the case that the other party files a lawsuit against you. For this reason, you will want enough coverage to cover the lawsuit costs without jeopardizing your personal assets in any way.
Comprehensive Physical Damage
This type of insurance for your car pays for losses other than that of a collision. Examples of this include fires, flood damage, stolen vehicle, vandalism, and damage by animals. To keep your premiums down, you may consider selecting higher deductibles. However, keep in mind that this coverage includes hail damage. If your vehicle is primarily parked outside (at home and at work), think about how much cash you can come up with for a deductible in case one of our infamous Colorado hail storms completely destroys your car.
Collision coverage pays for damage to your car if it is hit by another vehicle or other object, as well as the other party's vehicle if hit by your vehicle. This is another area of auto insurance where it’s important to find the right balance of deductible and monthly premiums. Keep in mind that coverage is generally limited to the value of the vehicle. So if you own an older car that is worth much less than a new one, you may consider skipping this coverage option.
Personal Injury Protection, No-Fault, or Medical Payments
The injured driver and passengers of your vehicle will be covered under this insurance coverage. Additionally, if injured as a pedestrian, this type of coverage can help.
Property Damage Liability
If your car damages another vehicle or object, property damage liability will come in handy! Also, this protects you with a legal defense in the instance that a lawsuit is filed against you, so be sure to have a decent amount of this coverage in order to protect yourself sufficiently.
Uninsured Motorists Coverage
Uninsured drivers and hit-and-run drivers do not help with car insurance costs, so in the event of either of these circumstances, you will be covered. Some states offer uninsured motorist coverage for vehicles too. And because of a large number of uninsured motorists, better to be safe than sorry!
Knowing the different types of car insurance coverage will keep you and your family better protected in the event of a motor vehicle accident or other scenario involving pedestrians, or local wildlife. Rely on the helpful team at Affordable Insurance in Aurora to get the insurance coverage you need to be covered all year long on every road you travel. Call us today!
October 12, 2017
Homeowners Insurance and Winter Damage
Today, Affordable Insurance in Aurora, Colorado offers our tips on dealing with homeowners insurance and winter damage in the Denver metro area. Each season brings different hazards, but winter can be particularly brutal for Colorado homeowners. Heavy snowfall and ice can wreak havoc on your home. It is important to know what kind of damage is typically covered by home insurance and what is left up to the responsibility of the individual.
Keep reading to find out more about what home insurance covers and the process of making a claim. Just remember that every policy is different, and this is just a general guide. Be sure to review your own policy for specifics and contact your provider if you have more questions about your homeowners insurance and winter damage.
Damage Covered by Home Insurance
As we said, to figure out exactly which type of damage is covered by your insurance along with the deductibles, you will need to check your policy. But in general, homeowners insurance will cover some damages caused by winter weather.
Homeowners insurance usually covers direct, unpreventable damages to the structure of your Denver home, due to extreme weather events or storms. This can include hail damage to roofs, trees falling onto houses, accumulated snow causing a roof to collapse and damage caused by high winds. In some cases, burst pipes are also included.
Damage that May Not be Covered
For homeowners insurance and winter damage, remember that coverage is not guaranteed. If it is found that the damages to your home were preventable, your insurance may not have to pay out. For example:
- A roof that collapses after a heavy snowfall may not be covered if it is proven that the roof was past due to be replaced, or that it had not received the recommended regular maintenance checks.
- Damages by fallen tree branches will not be covered if the tree had been neglected by the homeowner and knowingly allowed to become a risk.
- Burst pipes may not be covered if the insurer can show that you did not take steps to prevent the damage by draining or insulating the pipes, or keeping the heating on.
- If a home is left unoccupied for more than 30 days and damage occurs during this time.
If it is proven that you did not make an effort to protect your home from a damaging storm, your insurer may not be obliged to pay out. In some states, the occupants of a home are legally obliged to clear accumulated snow and ice from their sidewalks within four hours after snow stops falling. Failure to comply with these laws can void your homeowners insurance coverage if a claim is made concerning snow or ice accumulation.
Damage Not Covered by Homeowners Insurance
One specific type of damage that is rarely covered by your home insurance policy is flooding. Flooding is a widespread problem in winter, often caused by an accumulation of ice and snow melting quickly as soon as the temperature rises. Most homeowners insurance policies will specify that damage from flooding is explicitly excluded and that a separate, dedicated flood insurance is required for this type of damage. To lower the risk of flooding, be sure to remove as much snow as possible as it falls, and to clean your gutters and drains out thoroughly before winter. Often, an accumulation of leaves and debris left over from the fall season will obstruct drains and make it more likely for them to overflow and flood your basement.
To Make a Claim or not to Make a Claim, That is the Question
If extreme winter weather conditions damage your home, it is instinctive to want to make a claim on your homeowner's insurance to cover the cost of repairs. That's what it's there for, right?
Before rushing into a debate with your insurance company, first, check the deductibles set out by your policy and compare them to the cost of repairs. If the deductible is very close to the cost of damage, you may be better off paying out of pocket. Each time you make a claim on your insurance policy, the cost of your premium can be expected to rise. You can expect an even sharper increase in premium cost if you make two claims within the same year.
When it comes to homeowners insurance and winter damage, it is best to approach claims strategically. If the savings are minimal, keep the slate clean and your overall insurance costs low. In the case of a major disaster, such as a roof collapse, you can claim for this enormous cost to be covered by the insurance and get the best value from your home insurance policy.
Prevention is the Best Medicine
Taking some steps to protect your home before the winter weather hits can pay off in the long run. Avoid having to deliberate on making a claim or paying for damage out of pocket by preventing them in the first place. Trim overhanging or unhealthy trees every year during the fall. Give your roof a visual inspection for loose shingles or broken flashing and have any repairs done before the snow arrives. Apply weather stripping and caulking around the frames of windows and doors and check for damage on shutters and storm windows.
Drain water from exterior pipes, sprinkler systems, and hoses before the freezing weather sets in. Make sure your gutters, downspouts, and drains are free from blockages. It is a good idea to document this preparation for winter in case you do need to show evidence of maintenance to your insurer to support a claim. Keep all receipts from professional tree trimmers or roofing contractors and take pictures of any preventative maintenance you do. These preventative measures will lower your risk of damage by winter weather and provide a sound basis for making a claim if you end up needing to.
When it comes to homeowners insurance and winter damage, the most important things are to know your policy and take precautions. If you are not sure about the specifics of your policy, or want to make changes to your homeowner's insurance the next time it comes up for renewal, do not hesitate to contact Affordable Insurance in Aurora, Colorado. We specialize in providing easy-to-understand insurance advice to homeowners across the Denver area.
September 16, 2017
Need High-Risk Auto Insurance?
Whether you’ve had a serious accident or DUI, you may need high-risk auto insurance. Luckily, Affordable Insurance caters to all types of drivers across Aurora and Denver. We understand that every driver is unique, and the best insurance plan for one driver may not suit the needs of another. Whether an experienced driver with a clean record or fall into the high-risk category, our expert team can help you get the best deal.
Most states require drivers to hold a minimum level of auto insurance. However, some drivers struggle to even obtain basic coverage. Drivers categorized as being “high-risk” face more challenges in finding insurance at an affordable price. High-risk drivers are seen as being more likely to file a claim. This means that the insurance company will have a much higher probability of losing money. To counteract this risk, insurance companies will charge these drivers a much higher premium for basic insurance, and some completely refuse to insure high-risk drivers.
So, how do you know if you need high-risk auto insurance? by If you can answer yes to one or more of the following questions, you may be considered a high-risk driver.
- Are You a Teenage Driver?
Newly qualified drivers are seen as high-risk due to their lack of experience. Young drivers under the age of 18 are usually charged at extremely high rates as they are the most likely to take unnecessary risks and end up in accidents. If you are a teenage driver, getting added onto your parents' insurance policy will be much cheaper than taking out an independent, high-risk auto insurance policy. Premiums may even drop each year 20 as more experience is gained.
- Are You a Driver Over the Age of 70?
Older drivers are may also need high-risk auto insurance according to various carriers. As we age, our reflexes slow down, our eyesight and hearing diminish, and we are more prone to mobility issues. All of these effects of aging can compromise our ability to drive safely. For this reason, older drivers may have to renew their driver's license more frequently, and they may see their premium increase in proportion to the number of candles on their birthday cake.
- Have You Been in a Serious Car Accident?
After being involved in a serious accident, even if you were not found to be at fault, you can expect to be penalized when it comes to the price of your car insurance. A serious accident typically results in significant injury or property damage, but the exact definition varies between states. In addition to serious accidents, there are a few serious violations that will instantly put you in the high-risk insurance category. These include driving without a license, illegal street racing and any traffic violation that results in a fatality.
- Have You Had a Lapse in Car Insurance?
If you have had a lapse in insurance at some point in your driving career, you will find it more difficult to get a good price on your future auto insurance policies. Driving without car insurance is a huge financial gamble that leaves you open to crippling debt. It is also illegal and punishable by fines and legal penalties. Car insurance companies do not look fondly upon drivers who have delayed renewing their insurance policies. They will certainly place these drivers in the high-risk category and charge them accordingly.
- Have You Ever Received a DUI?
One of the most common reasons why you might need high-risk auto insurance is a DUI, one of the biggest red flags a driver can have on their record. Drivers who have received a DUI are statistically more likely to repeat the offense or partake in other high-risk behaviors, causing insurance companies to see them a huge liability. DUI recipients are required to file for SR-22 insurance and pay considerably more for their insurance plans as long as the DUI is on their record (usually at least three years). Some companies may fully refuse to insure SR-22 drivers.
- Do You Drive a High-Risk Vehicle?
Driving a high-risk vehicle is reason enough for insurance companies to view you as a liability, even if you have a perfect record. Sports cars and supercars are associated with high-risk driving behavior and more expensive accidents. Exotic cars and collectible or vintage cars do not usually have readily available replacement parts. If these cars are damaged, it will cost a lot to import the replacement parts and find a specialized mechanic to repair them. For this reason, the cost of insurance on these type of vehicle will be much higher than for standard cars.
- Is Your Driving Record Littered with Offenses?
Your driving record is the easiest way for an insurance company to analyze your future risk. If you have a history of frequent traffic violations, you may need high-risk auto insurance. Going a little too fast on the freeway may not seem too serious, but if your speeding tickets, minor accidents and traffic violations begin to add up, it does not paint a good picture of you as a driver. Insurance companies can get access to your record going back at least five years, so it pays off to be a careful driver with a clean record.
These are the most common reasons why insurance companies label a driver high-risk. If you have been categorized as a high-risk driver, it’s not the end of the world. You’ll have to pay more for your insurance premium the next time you renew your policy, but if you maintain a good driving record, you can eventually qualify for standard insurance.
If you are still unsure of whether you need high-risk auto insurance or not, our team of experts can help you. At Affordable Insurance in Aurora, Colorado, we specialize in getting drivers the best deal on their car insurance, even if they are categorized as high-risk drivers. For the past 20 years, our friendly team has been helping drivers save money by designing personalized insurance packages. For a free, no-obligation quote, simply visit our website today.
August 21, 2017
Auto Insurance Considerations When Buying a New Car
At Affordable Insurance, we help our customers work through auto insurance considerations when buying a new car. In the excitement of upgrading a vehicle, it can be easy to forget about the insurance. When researching potential new cars, it is important to take into account the possible changes in insurance cost that may arise. The insurance policy used to cover one car may not be suitable for a different car. Before switching, always consult with your insurance provider to make sure you have sufficient coverage for the new vehicle and that the policy does not include unnecessary charges.
When buying a new car, there are typically two options. The driver can switch their existing policy over to their new car, making any adjustments necessary in coverage options and cost, or they can find a different auto insurance provider and take out a completely new policy. Each case is unique, so it is up to the driver to research their options and make the best decision for themselves. It is always a good idea to compare the cost of your policy with quotes from other insurance companies.
Even if you are not planning on changing vehicles anytime soon, comparing prices once a year will ensure you are always getting the best deal!
Changing the type of vehicle you drive will affect the cost of your premium, making this one of the top auto insurance considerations when buying a new car. Vehicles that are cheaper to insure are usually lower priced, practical vehicles with good safety features. Luxury vehicles, sports cars and anything unusual with hard-to-get replacement parts will be more expensive to insure. If you are making a big change in the type of car you drive, expect a significant change in insurance cost. Many auto insurance providers are currently offering discounts on hybrid cars. This is an incentive for drivers to choose the eco-friendly option with the added benefit of being easier on the wallet.
Remember to budget for a possible increase in insurance cost when considering a new car. When upgrading your vehicle, you are not only paying for the expense of the new car. You need to be able to afford the actual car and the insurance premium that goes with it. Getting quotes on insurance when you are selecting a new car may help you to make your final decision.
When investing in a brand-new vehicle, it is wise to understand auto insurance considerations when buying a new car, such as taking out gap coverage insurance since the value of a new car starts to decrease the moment it is driven off the lot. If you are taking out a loan or leasing the vehicle, gap insurance will protect you in case your car is involved in a serious incident and totaled before you finish paying for it. Gap insurance covers the difference between the loan amount and the actual value of your car at the time of the accident.
If you are planning on buying a new car as an addition to your household's vehicles, and not as a replacement, you may be able to take advantage of multi-vehicle insurance discounts offered by some insurance companies. When children reach driving age and acquire their own cars, it is usually much cheaper to add-on the new car to an existing policy. This way you can benefit from multi-car discounts and get a much cheaper rate than is offered to teenage drivers insured by themselves. Young drivers are typically the most expensive to insure regardless of the type of vehicle they drive.
Driving a car without insurance is illegal, as well as very risky. Before you drive your new car off the lot, it is your responsibility to confirm that you have valid insurance coverage. If you choose to stay with your current insurance provider and simply transfer your existing policy to the new car, you will need to contact your insurance company to notify them and confirm any necessary adjustments. A new car may require mandatory comprehensive or collision coverage if you are taking out a loan to pay for it. When you provide the vehicle information of the new car to your insurance company, they will be able to help you with any adjustments.
If after shopping around you decide to change insurance provider and take out a new policy, remember to work out the details of your policy before you purchase the car. Organizing this well in advance means you will not be hit by any unexpected costs once you pick up your new vehicle. Confirm the exact end date of your old policy and the start date of your new policy before picking up your new car and taking it for its first spin. Assuming you are covered is a risk just not worth taking, especially with a brand-new car.
At Affordable Insurance, our aim is to give drivers flexibility and affordability when it comes to their car insurance. We believe that every driver has the right to solid and reliable auto insurance. For both new and experienced drivers of all types of vehicles, we can work to deliver a customized insurance policy that suits your needs and fits your budget. Our team has over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry and a passion for impeccable service. Without using confusing jargon and technical terms, we can make sure our customers know exactly what they are getting from their insurance plan and how to make any necessary adjustments when it comes time to change vehicle.
When changing vehicles, you cannot forget to take into account the potential changes in your insurance policy. The type of vehicle, the age of the vehicle, as well as your driving history and credit score are some of the most influential factors affecting the cost of your yearly premium. Remember to shop around and look out for multi-car discounts and insurance incentives for eco-friendly hybrid vehicles. Shop smart and remember these auto insurance considerations when buying a new car to avoid excessive insurance costs. For more help on finding low-cost auto insurance in Colorado do not hesitate to contact your local insurance experts at Affordable Insurance.
July 13, 2017
Is Summer Driving More Dangerous than Winter Driving?
At Affordable Insurance, we’re often asked, is summer driving more dangerous than winter driving? Most drivers will say that winter conditions are much more hazardous for driving than the easy breezy days of summer. While it's certain that snow and ice on the road in winter can make traction difficult and visibility worse, most road accident fatalities occur during the summertime according to studies by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
There are a number of factors that contribute to this surprising statistic. The overconfidence of drivers may come into play during the summer months. With clear roads and excellent visibility, it can be tempting to go over the speed limit, especially on long, straight highways. As we all know, the higher the velocity at the time of a car accident, the more severe the resulting damage.
Hot weather instantly increases the likelihood of a tire blowout and can exacerbate other problems with your car. Radiator failure and overheating the engine is more likely during the summer. It is important to keep up to date with regular maintenance of your vehicle as summer approaches. Otherwise, you could be the victim of an unexpected car failure. If this happens at the wrong moment, it can be hazardous.
In addition to affecting vehicles, increased temperatures can also have an impact on drivers. Hot weather makes it much easier for a driver to get dehydrated quickly. Falling asleep at the wheel is also more likely in warm conditions and on long monotonous journeys. Any alcohol consumed can have a more intense effect when under the conditions of high temperatures and dehydration. Drivers should be proactive in staying sober, keeping hydrated and taking rest breaks while driving in summer.
Summertime means schools are out and you are more likely to encounter young drivers on the roads. Young drivers are categorized as very high risk and more likely to be involved in collisions. Many teenagers learn to drive during the summer, and they cannot be expected to be faultless drivers straight away. It is important for more experienced drivers to be patient and to leave a very generous following distance behind learner drivers.
With school vacations in full swing, drivers also must be prepared to share the roads with more pedestrians and cyclists, many of them being children. There are also more motorcyclists out during the summer. Remember to be extra cautious and leave sufficient space for cyclists, motorcyclists, and pedestrians to easily pass. Good weather means more sports played outside and the possibility of stray balls and frisbees sending kids running out onto the roads. Be especially careful when driving around residential areas during the summer.
Road construction has to be completed at some point, and usually, it's done during the summer months. This can cause drivers some inconveniences with temporary road closures and partial blocking. It is important for drivers to follow the signals given by road workers and co-operate, especially when all traffic must go through one lane. Road construction sites are a hotspot for fender benders, crashes, even injuring a worker. There are high penalties involved, so remember to slow down and be patient.
Another hazard of summer driving is the vacation traffic. This issue depends on your location, but if you live in a vacation town or near an airport, you may experience a dramatic increase in traffic congestion as hundreds of tourists set off on holiday. For residents of tourist destinations, this can be especially frustrating. Drivers coming in from out of town are often disoriented, tired, and more likely to get into accidents when lost and going through unfamiliar junctions.
For many people, the sunny days and balmy nights of summer mean BBQs, bonfires at the beach and all-night parties. The good weather and relaxed atmosphere of summertime are never an excuse to drink and drive. Whether you are attending a 4th of July picnic or a block party, you cannot give in to the temptation to drink if you plan on driving by yourself or with others. Decide on a designated driver well in advance or arrange alternative transportation. A DUI can severely impact the cost of your insurance and is not worth risking anybody's safety.
Unexpected weather is the final risk factor of summer driving that we will mention. In some areas of the country, Colorado especially, summer is the season for intense hailstorms. These storms can cause severe damage to vehicles and make driving very dangerous. If caught in a bad hailstorm, drivers should pull over and wait for the worst of the storm to pass before continuing their journey.
Rain showers that occur during the summer after a long dry spell can often create difficult driving conditions. When water mixes with the build-up of grease and dirt, a slippery layer is created on the road, making it very easy for vehicles traveling at high speeds to lose traction and hydroplane. Drivers should look out for changing weather conditions and react appropriately by reducing their speed.
Returning to the original question, is summer driving more dangerous than winter driving? We can categorically state that yes, when measured by road fatalities, driving in the summer is more dangerous than driving during any other season. It is up to drivers to be aware of the particular hazards presented by summer driving and to take the correct precautions. Keeping your car well maintained, looking out for pedestrians, cyclists, and new drivers and having patience will certainly help! Also, be sure to review your insurance policy as well to make sure you’re properly covered for whatever the summer brings.
Now that you know the answer to is summer driving more dangerous than winter driving, get in touch with Affordable Insurance in Aurora. For over 20 years we have been helping drivers to carefully analyze their habits, vehicle type, and driving record to determine the most suitable insurance plan for them. When it comes time to renew your auto insurance policy, allow us to create a personalized insurance package that works for you and keeps you covered all year long.