Car Insurance in Renton, WAWe’re flooded daily with insurance commercials claiming that shopping with them will get you the lowest insurance premiums of any company out there. Saving money on your insurance is important, but the lowest insurance premiums are usually accompanied by the lowest insurance coverage.

Determining what insurance coverages you need is something that only a qualified local insurance agent can help you decide. We care more about you being covered adequately than simply giving you the cheapest premiums.

Do you need the auto insurance coverages below? Discuss with us & we’ll help determine what makes the most sense for your personal needs.

Collision Coverage: protection for your car from damage whether at-fault or not. Premiums weigh heavily on the value of your vehicle.

Comprehensive Coverage: pays for damage to your vehicle from things such as contact with an animal, fire, theft or vandalism.

Medical Payments: Commonly known as MedPay or PIP, this covers medical bills as a direct results of an accident regardless of fault.

Uninsured Motorist: Coverage for being involved with an uninsured driver. Both physical damage (your car) and bodily injury are offered.

Underinsured Motorist: Coverage to help cover a gap from a motorist who has insurance, but not enough to cover the loss.

When deciding on what coverage options to have, take these situations into account:

Scenario 1: You purchase a low cost, low coverage liability policy with only $25,000 in Property Damage. You rear-end a new, two week old Toyota Camry totaling the vehicle. The Camry’s replacement cost is $35,000. You have to pay $10,000 out of pocket.

Scenario 2: You are t-boned by an uninsured motorist and have extensive medical bills in excess of $50,000. You do not have uninsured motorist coverage or personal health insurance and your auto medical payments only cover the first $10,000. You have to take the uninsured driver to court to pay your $40,000 in medical bills, in the meantime, you’re responsible for the $40,000 in bills.

Regardless of whether you’re shopping for a new home, auto, boat or motorcycle insurance policy if you want the lowest insurance premiums you should be aware that you’re usually lowering the amount of insurance coverage you have. Depending on your situation, this may not be a wise decision because it puts your financial future at risk by carrying low limits. As always, reach out to our insurance agency with any questions.

Why you should keep your insurance year round for your RV, Motorcycle or boat in Renton, WAIt’s now time to enjoy some amazing fall camping excursions, calm boating on the lake or a motorcycle road trip. Each year we’re asked by many of our customers about the possibility to cancel your insurance policies on your summer toys like motorcycles, RVs, boats and ATVs. While you may not be using these alternative vehicles during the fall and winter months, your vehicles may be damaged and insurance claim would need to be opened. If you cancelled your insurance policy, you may be forced to pay for repairs or replacements out-of-pocket. During the cooler months while your toys are parked events can occur that could get expensive without a valid insurance policy.

Types of claims that could occur during the off-season:

Comprehensive insurance claims: Even though your vehicles are secured, theft or vandalism can still occur at any time. Having to pay out-of-pocket to repaint, repair or replace your toy could put a serious strain on your finances. Catastrophic events like floods or fires can occur during the off-season. If your comprehensive insurance policy is not in effect, you may be responsible to pay to replace your toys without assistance from your insurance carrier.

Liability insurance claims: Accidents can happen at any time, even if your toy is secure. During a party at your home someone thinks it would be great to take a picture on your Harley. They hop on and fall over damaging both your bike and themselves. Even if you did not give them permission to do so, you may be legally responsible for their injuries. Without a liability insurance policy in effect, you may be responsible to pay for the injured party’s medical bills and recovery costs.

Additional claims scenarios:

  1. A blustery storm knocks over a tree and it falls on your parked camper. (Comprehensive claim)
  2. A hail storm damages your vehicle (Comprehensive claim)
  3. Your garage catches on fire and burns your motorcycle, boat, or ATV inside (Not home insurance, Comprehensive claim for the vehicle)
  4. Your RV or Boat is parked in an off-season boat/rv storage facility and is damaged when an unknown party backs their vehicle into it. They don’t leave their information.
  5. A thief vandalizes your vehicle looking for valuable items

These are just a few of the many claims that can occur in the off-season. Some carriers understand that these vehicles are not used year-round and the premiums reflect the high and the low season.

Keeping your motorcycle insurance, RV insurance, ATV insurance or boat insurance in effect during the off-season may not only save your from a costly out-of-pocket repairs or medical payments, keeping a year-round policy may also save you money on your policy premium. Ask your insurance agent today about the benefits of keeping a comprehensive and liability insurance policy on your toys all year!

If you have questions about your home, auto or renters insurance, call the insurance agents at Eastside Insurance Services in Renton, WA. They have years of insurance experience and can help you insure everything from your home to your auto or motorcycle. They live where you do and are an independent insurance agent, so they can help you find the right company to fit your needs. You can also check out their website, 24/7.

Switching your insurance policy can save you hundreds of dollars a year. But, make sure you consider these things before you make the switch.

5 things to consider before switching insurance in Renton, WATip #1: Compare Apples to Apples

You’ve seen the commercials – “average savings of $500 a year for those who switched…” Absolutely you can save money. However, be sure that your new quote compares your current policy to the new policy – all coverages, driving records and vehicles the same. Any one thing can make a big difference. Many companies will try to lure you with great savings, but a CLUE report (comprehensive loss underwriting exchange – also known as your claims history) is not completed until after the application is submitted. Online companies are notorious for doing this.

Tip #2: Status Changed

If you’ve recently received a ticket or an accident, moved or purchased a new vehicle, have your current policy changes made prior to shopping. It is entirely possible that your new ride may get you some savings, or result in a price increase. In addition to this, if you’ve recently had a ticket fall off of your driving record, it would be worth calling the company to see if they can remove it now and save you some money for the remainder of your policy term. Regardless, if something changes, be sure to revert to tip #1.

Tip #3: Work with an Independent Insurance Agent

Independent insurance agents are discount detectives and have access to multiple companies. Even better, they know your current situation, history and can give you recommendations across many of their companies. They can compare rates between each of their carriers and let you know the benefits of each company.

Tip #4: Multi-Policy Discounts

When you’re looking for a new policy, be sure to take all things into consideration. You may be focused on your auto insurance, but if you have a package policy (multiple policies with the same carrier) you are likely getting discounts. If you move your auto insurance policy to another carrier, your home insurance may increase as much as 20% eliminating any saving you received. Take all of your policies into consideration. One additional item to consider here is if you have an umbrella policy, this is typically required to follow your home insurance policy. Some carrier require the home and auto to write the umbrella, so talk to you agent about your specific situation.

Tip #5: Your Relationship with your Agent

Knowing your insurance agent and having a business relationship with them is important. They are the ones who will go to bat for you in the event you have a claim or accident. Often times they can help you file that claim or give you recommendation on local companies to help fix your issue. If you have your insurance directly with the company handling your loss, you don’t get this representation. Having a local independent insurance agent is the way to go.

If you have questions about your home, auto or renters insurance, call the insurance agents at Eastside Insurance Services in Renton, WA. They have years of insurance experience and can help you insure everything from your home to your auto or motorcycle. They live where you do and are an independent insurance agent, so they can help you find the right company to fit your needs. You can also check out their website, 24/7.