If you’re like most people, taking care of your home and family is your number one priority. You work hard to provide for your loved ones, and you do everything you can to keep them safe and secure. But no matter how hard you try, you can’t protect them from every risk. That’s why the Personal Insurance Plans offered by The Carmoon Group are so important: They help you prepare for the unexpected, so you’re ready when it occurs.
At the Carmoon Group, we put you and your family first. We are a full-service, independent insurance broker, which means we work for you, not an insurance company. We offer you a wide array of options from a network of affiliates, so we can tailor your coverage to fit your needs.
Do you own a car?
When you or someone in your family is involved in a car wreck, it’s good to know that a strong partner has your back. We at the Carmoon Group are family auto insurance experts. With our help, you’ll be able to meet any challenge that comes your way.
Do you own your home?
Your home is more than just your biggest investment, it is the foundation on which your family’s lives are built. With a homeowner’s policy from the Carmoon Group, you will be able to rebuild that foundation quickly in the event of a fire, windstorm or other weather-related event.
Do you rent an apartment or a private home?
Even though you don’t own your home, you undoubtedly own many items that would be costly to replace if it were burglarized or caught on fire. Get coverage for your furniture, bedding, electronics clothing and more with a renter’s policy from the Carmoon Group.
Do you own a condominium or town home?
If you live in a managed community, the homeowner’s association typically provides insurance for the common areas and buildings, but protecting your personal possessions is up to you. With condominium insurance, you can protect your interior furnishings, appliances and personal possessions under one comprehensive policy.
Do your assets exceed your liability coverage?
You’ve worked long and hard to build a nest egg for your family, and it’s important to protect your hard-won assets from liability claims. Umbrella insurance provides excess liability coverage for both your home and your automobiles, so you won’t be caught off-guard if you are hit with a lawsuit.
Getting in a car wreck is every driver’s worst nightmare. Even minor fender benders are annoying and time consuming, and a serious crash can lead to thousands of dollars in car repairs, medical bills, and, in some cases, even a lawsuit.
Every driver in the United States is required to have car insurance, but that doesn’t mean all car insurance is alike. At The Carmoon Group, we design auto insurance coverage that’s uniquely suited to your situation, so that you get the best coverage for you and your family at the best possible rates.
Here’s an overview of the types of coverages we offer, and when you might — and might not — need each one.
Liability coverage provides protection for damages or injuries to others or their property caused by an accident for which you are at fault. It includes coverage for both bodily injury and property damage; minimum coverage limits are mandated by state law.
Liability limits are typically stated as three numbers: for example, 25/50/15. The first of these numbers is the amount of coverage the insurance provides for each person who is injured in an accident that was your fault (in this case $25,000). The second number indicates the total amount the insurance will pay for all injuries sustained in an accident that was your fault (in this case $50,000.) The last number is what the insurance will pay for property damage per accident. As in this case, where the limit is $15,000, it is usually the lowest of the three numbers shown on the policy.
Choosing adequate liability coverage is very important. While lower limits are usually associated with lower premiums, they can be woefully inadequate if you are at fault in a serious accident in which several people are injured or killed. Imagine if you or someone in your family fell asleep at the wheel while driving on a busy freeway and veered off into another lane, causing several cars to crash. It’s highly doubtful that a 25/50/15 policy (the legal minimum in many states) would be adequate to cover all the damage to the other cars and the injured party’s medical bills. And once your liability limits are exhausted, the responsibility for paying for any damages or medical care falls on you.
If you are considering new auto insurance, don’t go with the state mandatory minimum until you speak with your Carmoon Group agent. He can help you to determine the optimal amount of coverage for your specific needs.
Tip: Property damage coverage usually applies to damage to another person’s vehicle. But it will also cover damage to other types of property, such as a mailbox, fence or a tree in someone’s yard. It does not, however, cover damage to your car.
Personal injury protection, or PIP, is available or required in states where no-fault insurance is mandated by law. Although coverage amounts vary widely, PIP typically pays medical and rehabilitation expenses for you and any passengers in your vehicle who are injured in an accident, regardless of fault.
If you took out a loan to buy your automobile or leased it from a dealer, your lien holder (the company that holds the title to the car) will require you to buy comprehensive and collision coverage to protect its investment. The most exhaustive coverage available on a standard car insurance policy, comprehensive and collision coverage will pay if the car is:
Even if you don’t have a loan on your vehicle, comprehensive and collision coverage may be a good idea — especially if you can’t afford to repair or replace your vehicle if it’s stolen or involved in a wreck. Even minor repairs can be incredibly costly — more so if you drive a high-end vehicle such as a BMW or Mercedes. On the other hand, if you drive an old Honda with 150,000 miles on the engine, and you’re thinking of buying a new car soon, skipping (or dropping) comprehensive coverage may not be a bad idea.
In addition to standard protections, many insurers offer additional coverages for an additional premium. These include:
Another factor in the car insurance equation is the amount of your deductible — that is, the amount of money you will have to pay up front if you’re car is damaged in an accident, stolen or vandalized. Usually somewhere between $250 and $1000, your deductible is typically inversely proportional to your car insurance rates. That is, the higher the deductible, the lower your premiums will be (because you are assuming a larger amount of risk.)
Typically, your deductible is only your responsibility if your car is damaged in an accident that was your fault. In other words, if your vehicle is T-boned by someone who runs a red light, the other driver’s insurance would be responsible for paying whatever deductible you owe. However, this kind of settlement can take a while to negotiate. If you want to get your car fixed quickly, it’s sometimes wise to pay the deductible yourself and then wait for the other driver’s insurance to pay you back.
Tip: In some cases, you can purchase a collision deductible waiver so you don’t have to pay your deductible if your car is damaged by an uninsured motorist.
If you’re like most homeowners, your home is your pride and joy. It is the place where you raise your family and live the best part of your life, and it reflects to the rest of world who you are. It is also your biggest single financial investment, so it’s important to protect it as best you can.
Homeowner’s insurance is mandatory if you have a mortgage on your home, but even if you own your home free and clear, it is the single most important coverage you can buy. Without it, just one devastating fire or natural disaster can wipe out everything you’ve worked for your whole life, leaving you with no way to rebuild.
Homeowner’s insurance is comprehensive coverage that protects you in the event your home is damaged in a fire or weather related disaster, or is burglarized or vandalized. It also provides liability coverage in the event someone is injured on your property or you are sued for “personal injury” such as libel or slander.
Specifically, homeowner’s insurance will pay to repair or rebuild your home and other non-attached structures if they are damaged or destroyed by a “covered peril.” Covered perils typically include fire, wind, hail, and lightning, as well as vandalism and theft. Earthquakes and floods are typically excluded, but you can often purchase this coverage for an additional cost.
Homeowners insurance also covers your personal possessions, whether they are located in your home or elsewhere (for instance, in your car.) It will pay to replace or repair items that are damaged or stolen, such as:
Most homeowner’s insurance policies cover the actual cash value of an item that is damaged or stolen — that is, the purchase price minus depreciation over a period of time. This means that the gaming computer you spent $3,000 on a year ago might be reimbursed at $1,500 today. However, for an additional premium you can usually purchase replacement value coverage, which will reimburse you the full amount of money it will cost you to replace what you’ve lost. Talk to your Carmoon Group agent about which coverage is right for you.
If your home is severely damaged in a fire or natural disaster, it will not be restored overnight. In fact, it often takes many, many months to rebuild a home that has been significantly damaged, even when the insurance company responds as quickly as it can. That’s where loss of use coverage comes in. It will pay your living expenses, including rent or hotel accommodations, until your home is habitable again.
Liability coverage protects your assets in the event you are responsible for injuries or damage to the property of someone who is visiting in your home. Say, for example, you invite your friend for an overnight stay and he falls through a damaged step on your back porch, breaking his foot. Because the accident happened on your property, your homeowner’s insurance would pick up the tab for his medical care and rehabilitation costs. It would also pay your defense costs and the amount of any monetary award if your friend decided to sue for pain and suffering or lost wages in court.
Liability coverage also covers personal property that belongs to someone who is visiting your home. So, for example, if your friend was carrying his laptop when he fell through the porch step, and it broke, your insurance would reimburse him for the laptop too.
In addition to the standard coverages included with your policy, extra coverage may be available for an additional premium. Some of these include:
Although homeowner’s insurance provides valuable protection for your home and personal possessions, it does not cover you for every possible loss. In addition to the aforementioned exclusions for earthquakes and floods, most homeowner’s policies also exclude the losses associated with the following events:
Your policy may exclude other breeds as well. Talk to your Carmoon Group agent to determine if you have adequate coverage in place.
If you’re like a lot of people who rent their homes, you may be under the impression that your landlord’s insurance will cover your losses if your property is damaged in a disaster of some kind. But as many tenants have learned too late, that’s almost never the case. Your landlord’s insurance policy typically covers only his property — the physical structure and any furnishings that are a permanent part of the home. Your possessions will not be covered unless you purchase a separate Renter’s Insurance policy of your own.
As the name suggests, Renter’s Insurance is an insurance policy specifically designed for people who lease the premises where they live. Unlike homeowner’s insurance, it does not cover physical structures — the apartment building or house you rent. What it does cover is your personal possessions, including items such as:
Renter’s Insurance will pay to replace or repair your property if it is damaged in what’s called a “covered event.” Typically, this includes fires and weather-related events, such as wind, hail, or lightning. Your policy may even provide coverage for things like a roof collapsing due to the weight of snow or ice.
Additionally, most renter’s insurance policies cover theft and vandalism, even if the incident occurs in a place other than your home. So if you leave your brand new leather coat in your car, and a thief snatches it, your insurance will pay to have it replaced.
Like homeowner’s insurance, renters insurance almost never covers damage due to floods or earthquakes. In some areas, these coverages may be available at additional cost.
Not surprisingly, most people underestimate the value of their personal belongings. Young people who are just starting out, in particular, often think that because their possessions aren’t new or expensive, they are not worth insuring at all. But just think about how much it would cost to replace everything you own if it was destroyed in a fire.
To determine how much renters insurance you need, do a thorough inventory of all of your belongings, and write everything down. Don’t just list the big-ticket items like furniture and electronics: Include everything you would have to replace if it were lost, such as clothing, bed linens, towels, dishes, and pots and pans. Then make a rough estimate of how much it would cost to replace it all, or better yet, use this handy online calculator from Allstate.You’ll probably be very surprised at the number you get. According to several sources, the average one-bedroom apartment contains between $20,000 and $30,000 worth of “stuff.”
Now that you’ve got your inventory, go one step further and take photos or a video of everything on your list, and store it someplace other than in your home (or upload it to the cloud.)This will provide your insurer with very clear evidence of what you owned and the condition it was in at the time of a loss in the event you need to make a claim.
Keep in mind, too, that most renters insurance policies place reimbursement limits (usually $2,500 to $5,000) on certain items, such as jewelry, furs and works of art. So, even if you have $30,000 in total coverage, you may only be reimbursed $5,000 if your $15,000 engagement ring is stolen from your home. However, most insurance companies will let you purchase a separate rider to cover these kinds of items. Ask your Carmoon Group agent about the coverage that’s right for you.
Once you make the decision to buy renter’s insurance, you will need to decide what type of coverage to choose — a policy that reimburses the actual cash value of your property or one that pays you the amount it would cost to replace. This is a very important distinction, and one which you should consider carefully before you decide.
An actual-cash-value policy will reimburse the amount your property is actually worth — the replacement cost minus depreciation. Sometimes referred to as “market value,” this amount usually correlates with the amount you could get for the item if you sold it on the open market (for example, on Craigslist.)
If you lose an item due to fire or theft, your Insurance company will decide its actual cash value based on a number of factors, including a formula that takes into account the kind of property involved and its age at the time of the loss. In some cases, the insurance adjuster will also consider the condition of the item, which is why photos are a good idea. Nonetheless, many times the actual cash value of an item will be far less than it will cost to replace.
A replacement-value policy, on the other hand, will pay you the amount it will cost you to replace any items that you lost. So, if your 3-year-old iPad is irreparably damaged in a fire, you will be reimbursed the amount a new iPad costs today.
Suppose a friend is visiting your apartment, trips on an electrical cord and falls down, breaking his wrist. He suffers nerve damage as a result of the accident and can no longer work as a carpenter, which is his only trade. He has thousands of dollars in medical bills and physical therapy costs, and he’s got no income coming in. Desperate, he sues you for damages.
If you have renter’s insurance, it includes liability coverage for just these kinds of events. The insurance will pay your court costs and legal fees, as well as any monetary damages awarded by the court. The typical liability limit on a renter’s insurance policy is $100,000; if for some reason the cost of the lawsuit is more than this amount, the remainder of the cost would fall on you.
Renters insurance is surprisingly affordable. Although your rates will depend on where you live and the amount of coverage you choose, most policies cost between $15 and $30 per month. You will typically pay more for a replacement-value policy, because the insurer is taking on more risk.
If you own a condo or townhome, you’re probably part of a Homeowner’s Association, which, in exchange for your paying monthly dues, manages the expenses associated with maintaining the property, such as landscaping and water, routine maintenance and insurance costs. In fact, this may be one reason that you bought a condo — to transfer some of the responsibility of owning a home to an entity other than yourself. With an HOA in charge, there’s no mowing the lawn, no shoveling snow, and no worrying about how much your homeowner’s insurance costs.
Unfortunately, what many condo and townhome owners don’t realize is that their HOA dues don’t always cover all of their insurance costs. Depending on the terms of your contract with the HOA (which is outlined in the Covenants, Contracts and Restrictions, or CC&Rs) the community’s insurance may cover all, some, or none of your personal property. For that, you need a separate Condo Insurance policy.
Condo insurance is coverage that protects your personal possessions and any structures, additions or furnishings that are
not covered by the insurance provided by your HOA. Associations differ in the amount of coverage they provide, so it’s important to know which type of coverage you have. Most HOAs have one of three types of policies:
Read your CC&Rs carefully to determine what parts of your unit are covered and what are not. You can then purchase condo insurance that is tailored specifically to your needs.
Standard condo insurance policies cover losses associated with most common perils, such as fire, windstorms, lightning and hail. Most policies also cover water damage caused by burst pipes and losses associated with theft or vandalism.
Depending on your policy, condo insurance will pay to replace or repair your personal property, including any furnishings that are not covered by the HOA. This may include:
If an item is stolen from a location other than your home, (for example, your car) most policies will reimburse you for that loss as well.
As with most insurance policies, condo insurance can be written to cover the replacement cost of your items or their actual cash value. Also known as market value, actual cash value is the price of replacing an item minus depreciation, or the amount you would get if you sold it today. For example, 3-year-old couch that would cost $5,000 to replace might be valued at $1,000 on the open market, so that’s how much an actual-cash-value policy will reimburse you for your loss.
Replacement value policies are more expensive, but they will reimburse you the amount it will cost you to replace your items today. So, if your $5,000 couch is destroyed in a fire, your insurance will pay you $5,000 buy a new one of the same quality.
If your condo or townhome is seriously damaged in a fire or windstorm, it may take many months to have the property rebuilt. Loss-of-use coverage will help pay the cost of relocating and living at another location until repairs are complete. Depending on your policy, reimbursement may be for a set amount per day or the actual cost for lodging and food for a designated period of time. Speak with your Carmoon Group agent about choosing the best coverage for your needs.
In addition to covering your personal belongings and the contents of your home, Condo Insurance provides liability coverage as well. This coverage protects your assets in the event you or someone in your family is responsible for injury to a third party or damage to a third party’s property. For example, suppose your child and a buddy are playing on a swingset in your backyard, and the swing breaks, sending the visitor tumbling to the ground. The child suffers serious head injuries and her parents sue you for her medical expenses and pain and suffering. How would you pay your defense costs and any judgement awarded by the court?
Personal liability coverage is designed specifically for unfortunate incidents such as this. It will pay for the injured child’s medical expenses and rehabilitation costs, and will assume your court costs and attorney’s fees and the amount of any settlement or court-ordered award up to the limits of your policy.
Personal liability coverage also covers you if someone’s personal property is damaged while they are in your home. If your friend is sitting in your living room and you trip and spill a glass of red wine on his brand new $5,000 suit, your insurance will pay to have the suit cleaned, repaired or replaced. Liability coverage also applies to personal injury claims, such as defamation, slander or libel.
Assessments are a risk uniquely associated with condominium and townhome ownership. They can occur any time the community as a whole suffers a financial loss that is not covered by insurance, in which case each homeowner is forced to assume a portion of the loss. Assessments can be levied in a number of circumstances involving liability or property damage claims. For example:
In either of these cases, each homeowner would be forced to assume a portion of the association’s cost. With loss assessment coverage, however, your portion of the assessment would be paid by your insurance company, not you.
Depending on your insurance carrier and the coverage you choose, you may want to purchase additional coverage for specific expenses and events. These may include:
Are you a high-net-worth individual with many assets to protect? If so, you may not have enough liability coverage to protect you financially if you or a member of your family is liable for a third party’s injuries or is sued. That’s why Personal Umbrella Insurance may be a good idea.
Also known as excess liability coverage, Personal Umbrella Insurance is added protection for you and your family in the event you are liable in a bodily injury, property damage or personal injury claim. It adds additional coverage in $1 million increments to your existing homeowners, condo, auto and/or boat insurance policies for one reasonable rate.
Umbrella insurance can protect you in a variety of circumstances in which your standard liability coverage may be inadequate to cover a claim. For example:
In all of these instances, once the liability limits on your existing policies were exhausted, you would be personally responsible for all subsequent medical payments, property damage, attorney’s fees and court costs as well as any damages awarded by the court.
To determine how much umbrella insurance you need, calculate your net worth. If you’re not sure how to do this, ask an attorney or financial planner for advice. Your umbrella coverage should be sufficient to protect all of your assets and a significant portion of your future income, because that’s how much you stand to lose.
In view of the amount of protection it offers, Personal Umbrella insurance is very reasonable: Premiums are usually several hundred dollars per year for each $1 million in coverage you add. However, because umbrella insurance protects everyone in your family and includes excess liability coverage on your home, auto and boats, your cost may vary depending on a number of factors. These include:
So how much will an umbrella policy cost you? Here’s a rough estimate of average costs across the U.S. based on a 2012 report from ACE Private Risk Services:
These rates may have increased or decreased over the past several years, so ask your Carmoon Group agent for a quote based on your risk profile and your needs.