Tag Archives: Comprehensive Coverage

Insurance Explained: Types of Auto Coverage


The Insurance Information Institute created a great infographic to help you understand which auto insurance coverage you are required to have, which coverage is optional, and it also explains each coverage in words that you will understand.


III_infographic_auto coverage explained


Buying A Used Car?

Tips on Identifying a Flood-Damaged Vehicle


If you are in the market for a used vehicle, you know that it is important to inspect the vehicle to make sure it is in working order. But did you know that it is equally important to make sure the vehicle hasn’t experienced any water damage?


Following Superstorm Sandy, which hit October 28, 2012, insurance companies processed more than 250,000 claims for damaged vehicles. Damage can range from scratches and minor dents to vehicles being crushed or flooded.

photo: NICB

photo: NICB

“Rising water can cause major damage to the vehicle,” said Bob Passmore, Property Casualty Insurers Association of America’s senior director of personal lines. “Water damage to a vehicle is typically covered under an auto policy’s comprehensive insurance coverage.”

Consumers and adjusters should be wary of vehicles that are exposed to flood waters. Unfortunately, there are many instances of flood damaged vehicles being resold to uninformed buyers. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), dishonest car dealers can purchase flooded cars, clean them up and sell them with hidden damage. They then can transport the damaged cars to states that were unaffected by the storm, and then sell them without disclosing the vehicles true history.

What to look for in a washed up vehicle

The NICB outlines specific things to be on the look out for:

• Inspect the vehicle for water stains, mildew, sand, or silt under the carpets, floor mats, headliner cloth and behind the dashboard.

• Check for recently shampooed carpet.

• Inspect the interior upholstery and door panels for fading.

• Check for rust on screws in the console or areas where water normally doesn’t reach.

• Check for mud or grit in the spare tire compartment, alternator crevices, behind wiring harnesses, around the small recesses of starter motors, power steering pumps and relays.

• Check inside the seatbelt retractors by pulling the seatbelt all the way out and inspect for moisture, mildew or grime.

• Check door speakers as they will often be damaged due to flooding.

• Ask about the vehicle’s history. Ask whether it was in any accidents or floods.

• Inspect the title and ownership papers for any potential or questionable salvage fraud.

• Conduct a title search of the vehicle.

• Look under the hood for signs of oxidation. Pull back rubber boots around electrical and mechanical connections for these indicators: Ferrous materials will show signs of rust Copper will show a green patina.

• Aluminum and alloys will have a white powder and pitting.


Article adapted from http://www.claimsjournal.com/news/national/2013/10/01/237718.htm


Drive With Caution, It’s Deer Season

Opening day of firearm season in Michigan is quickly approaching, beginning November 15th. Hunters are making final preparations by purchasing and gathering their gear, and selecting the best location in the woods to set them up for success.

Photo courtesy of Michigan Department of Natural Resourses website

For many, this date signals the beginning of a season where heightened alertness while driving is necessary. Tens of thousands of drivers each year fall victim to deer-car accidents, and as we’ve recently seen this week along US-131, some are fatal. Unfortunately, this woman was not killed as a result of hitting the deer, but from another driver failing to react in time as she tried to avoid the deer.

So what does this cautionary tale mean for you?

  • Be alert! Don’t drive intoxicated or under the influence. If you are feeling sleepy, call someone to drive you to where you need to go. Minimize all distractions including the radio, cell phones, and too many passengers. You not only need to watch out for deer, but also for other drivers around you. If your reaction time is jeopardized, it could cost you your life or another.
  • Deer are most active at dawn and dusk. Keep a watchful eye for what is happening around you especially during these times.
  • Deer are almost always found in herds. If you see one deer, chances are more are following.
  • If a crash is unavoidable, don’t swerve! Brake firmly and hold on to the steering wheel to bring your vehicle to a controlled stop. Pull off to the side of the road and turn your emergency flashers on to alert other drivers. Report the accident to the police and also to your insurance agent.

Question: Is there a specific coverage I should have in my auto insurance policy to protect me in a deer-car accident?

Answer: YES! It is called Comprehensive Coverage, (also known as “Other Than Collision Coverage”).

Comprehensive coverage protects you from having to pay the full repair bill in the event that your vehicle hits an animal while driving, an object falls onto your vehicle, your vehicle is stolen or vandalized, and in most cases, auto glass damage. Similar to Collision coverage, you select a deductible. This is the amount of the claim that is your responsibility to pay for, such as $100. The insurance company would then pay everything above and beyond this once coverage is determined. Call us today at 269.792.2232 to make sure this valuable coverage is on your policy, or if you have additional questions.

Now, one question I have for you: If you are in a fatal car-deer accident (or any car accident for that matter), how would that situation look for your family?

Answer: __________?_____________

Life Insurance can help when your loved ones pass away, and while you are living. Call or email me today at 269.792.2232 or mike@renoagency.com so we can talk about your family’s life insurance needs so you can make sure you are able to fill in the blank.