Abatelli Group, Inc.

13
Jan

Homeowners Insurance Coverage for Fire Damage

Homeowners insurance is something every homeowner should have, especially since it helps to provide adequate coverage for your home and belongings in the event of an unfortunate incident such as a fire outbreak.

In order to be more prepared for fire damage to your home or belongings, it is important that you are well-informed about the coverage provided by your insurance policy and how much protection it provides. You should also know that if your policy will help pay for repairs or replacement of your home and its contents in the event of a fire outbreak.

Coverage Limit for Fire Damage

Your coverage limit is simply the maximum amount your insurance policy is liable to pay you after a loss that is qualified for coverage, and it can be based on the worth of your property and its contents. There are a lot of things to consider before choosing a coverage limit offered by your insurance policy, and they are:

  • Personal Property:

    Most times, personal properties are damaged alongside the building during a fire outbreak, so it is important that your policy provides adequate coverage for them by increasing the limits for personal property. For things like pieces of jewelry, expensive arts, etc., you might need to purchase additional coverage for their protection. Also, before making your decision, be sure to inquire if your policy offers actual cash value coverage, which pays for the depreciated value of your damaged items, or replacement cost coverage which pays for the purchase of a new item at the recent price.

  • Dwelling Coverage:

    This is a very important thing to consider when choosing a coverage limit as construction costs and home values are known to vary from time to time, so the cost of rebuilding your home after a fire might not be the same as the price you initially paid for it.

Fire Damage Not Covered by Homeowners Insurance

Although homeowners insurance has coverage for fire damage, there are certain types that it might not provide coverage for. For example, homeowners insurance does not offer coverage for a fire that has been intentionally started in your home for whatsoever reason, which is why you should pay close attention to toddlers if you have any in your home. Also, homeowners insurance will not pay for repairs or replacement of fire-damaged properties in your home if the fire is caused by an act of war.

Safety Measures

Although you might have purchased homeowners insurance coverage for fire damage, there’s no harm in engaging safety measures against a fire outbreak in your home, especially since losing one’s belongings is a sad occurrence. You can also install smoke detectors and place fire extinguishers at strategic places in your home to protect it and its content in the event of a fire. If possible, also educate those who live with you about the proper ways to kill a fire once it starts.

Be sure to contact your insurance agent or company for more knowledge on the risks covered by your insurance policy and those that aren’t. Purchase the right insurance policy with suitable coverage for your situation and needs today. We provide a comprehensive choice of homeowners insurance policies at Abatelli Insurance that will undoubtedly meet your needs. To learn more, please get in touch with us immediately.

23
Dec

4 Effective Tips to Lower Your Home Insurance Costs

Just like for any other type of policy, your homeowners insurance costs can increase over time. However, there are several ways to keep your premiums manageable and still have the level of coverage you need to feel secure and protected. Something as little as improving your credit score can keep your premiums low.

The following tips will not only lower your home insurance premiums but will also give you peace of mind.

  1. Install a Home Security System

Install a home security system with surveillance cameras that gives you the option of having a third-party monitor your home or allows you to monitor it on your own. Many home security systems also have environmental sensors that inform you if temperatures rise or fall unexpectedly in your home. Home automation is also helpful in getting the lights turned on and off on schedule. A quality home security system can be purchased for less than $300.

  1. Increase Your Deductible

Increasing the amount of your deductibles will help lower your premiums and keep them more affordable. The more you are willing to pay out of pocket when you file a claim, the lower your monthly premium will be. You will also be able to save money if you choose to pay your premiums semi-annually or annually. Managing your premiums is much easier when you understand how your deductibles work and the many options you have when it comes to paying them. Moreover, you can adjust your deductibles at any time.

  1. Comparison Shop

Your homeowners insurance is an investment that will protect your financial security. Before purchasing your homeowners insurance policy, make sure to check out several different ones. Talk to different insurance providers to find out what each one has to offer. You may be surprised at what each one has to offer for the same price. Most of them will give you the option of adding specialty policies for events like hurricanes, floods, or earthquakes. When you talk to an insurance provider, make sure to tell them about all of the different coverages you will need as part of your homeowners policy.

  1. Bundle Your Policies

Bundling your home, auto, boat, or other policies together not only minimizes the amount of administrative work but also helps manage multiple policies in one place. Talk to your insurer to learn which policies can be bundled, the premium to be paid, etc.

Lowering your homeowners insurance costs is easy if you know where your risks are and how you can best prevent them. Contact us at Abatelli Insurance to set up a review of your existing policy or to get a quote for a new one. Each of our agents has special training to help you find the right home insurance policy to meet all of your needs at an affordable price.

9
Dec

4 Practical Tips to Lower Your Car Insurance Costs

Car insurance can be quite expensive, especially if you have a certain type of vehicle. However, there are ways to lower your car insurance costs which can save you hundreds of dollars in the long run. Here are a few of them to help you get started.

  1. Keep Your Car in the Garage

Whenever you can, park your car in the garage. If you don’t have a garage or carport, try to park your car as close to your house as possible. Make sure it is in an area that is well-lit and in plain sight of surveillance cameras. If you can, put a car cover over your vehicle to protect its paint from external elements and prevent people from seeing inside. It will also give you an additional layer of security if someone tries to break into or steal your vehicle.

  1. Choose the Right Type of Coverage

If you need to lower your car insurance costs, you may want to rethink your coverage. The only time you really need comprehensive insurance is if you have a loan on your vehicle. This is normally required by the lender who holds the title. Once the car is paid off, you can drop your coverage down to collision coverage or PL/PD coverage if your vehicle doesn’t have much value. If you prefer to keep the more expensive types of coverage, you can offset the cost by readjusting your deductible amount.

  1. Raise Your Deductible

One of the easiest ways to lower your premiums is to raise your deductible. However, raising your deductible increases the amount of out-of-pocket costs you will have to pay if you ever file a claim. If you are paying higher premiums with a lower deductible, call your insurance agent and see if you can reverse that and pay more on your deductible and less on your premiums.

  1. Enroll in a Safe Driving Program

Many car insurance carriers are offering a safe driving program. This involves installing a small beacon in your vehicle that monitors your driving habits. The better your driving score, the lower your premiums will be. You can also boost your scores by taking a defensive driving course and turning in your certificate of completion to your insurance agent.

You are required to carry a state minimum amount of car insurance on your vehicle in every state. However, you can lower your premiums by reducing your risk of damage or theft. If you have more questions about how to lower your car insurance costs, contact us at Abatelli Insurance today!

25
Nov

Will My Homeowners Insurance Cover Any Fire Damage?

Fire damage makes up a huge portion of homeowners insurance claims every year. Having a fire disaster is bad enough on its own, not to mention not having the right coverage for it. As a homeowner, you may wonder if your homeowners insurance will cover any fire damage. First, you need to understand the different types of coverage available, what they cover, and which one you should buy.

A standard homeowners insurance policy offers five different kinds of coverage, namely:

  • Home structure coverage
  • Personal property coverage
  • Medical expenses, if someone gets injured at your home
  • Liability coverage
  • Additional living expense

Types of Homeowners Insurance Policy & What They Cover

HO-1 policy

The HO-1 policy is the most basic type of homeowners policy, and it offers limited coverage. It covers your home and belongings at actual cash value against named perils, such as

  • lightning
  • fire
  • windstorm
  • hailstorm
  • explosion
  • riot or war
  • aircraft damage
  • vandalism or theft
  • falling objects

HO-2 policy

The HO-2 policy is also known as the broad form policy because of the additional perils covered by it.  It covers the home structure at replacement cost and the personal belongings at actual cash value. A few additional perils covered by it include:

  • weight of snow or ice
  • volcanic eruption
  • freezing
  • accidental damage from electric current

HO-3 policy

The HO-3 policy is also known as the special form policy. It is the most common policy among policyholders. It covers all risks for the home and property and is therefore known as open coverage. It protects against the risks specified in both HO-1 and HO-2 policies unless otherwise stated. Some commonly excluded perils are government actions and intentional damage.

Ho-4 policy

This is a content broad form or a renters insurance policy. It only covers the policyholder’s belongings, additional living expense, and liability.

HO-5 policy

The HO-5 policy is the comprehensive form. It provides coverage for both belongings and home structure at replacement cost. It also provides open risk coverage but at a very high price. It is suitable for expensive structures and belongings.

HO-8 policy

It is a modified policy for homes that do not meet the conventional requirement for insurance. It covers old houses with outdated structures that are almost falling apart. It provides coverage from named perils at actual cash value.

Thus, most homeowners insurance policies will provide coverage from fire damage, but not all fire incidences will be covered. Some policies may cover damage resulting from arson, accidental fire, explosion, and lightning. However, they may not cover fire damage due to war or intentional acts.

As a homeowner, you need the right home insurance policy with adequate coverage to ensure your home is entirely covered in case of an unfortunate event. At Abatelli Insurance, we have a wide range of homeowners policies that will surely cater to your needs. Contact us today to learn more.

11
Nov

Some Interesting Facts That You Should Know about Thanksgiving Day

Thanksgiving is one of the national holidays observed in the U.S., where families and friends sit around the table to celebrate blessings and events that they are grateful for. The traditional holiday is believed to have started during the American civil war in 1863 when President Abraham Lincoln declared the 26th of November as Thanksgiving Day. However, interestingly, Thanksgiving did not start originally in 1863.

How Did It All Start?

The first Thanksgiving was held in the Plymouth colony in November 1621 to mark the success of the Pilgrims’ first corn harvest. The occasion was celebrated for three days by each state and colony, until 1863 when a unique day was chosen for it. Thanksgiving Day became a national holiday in 1941.

Interesting Facts about Thanksgiving Day

  1. Each year a turkey is pardoned

    Every Thanksgiving Day, the President is presented with a ceremonial turkey from the National Turkey Foundation. Each year, the ceremonial turkey has been pardoned, except for the one presented to President Harry Truman. He pardoned the turkey but ended up eating it for dinner.

  2. The first Thanksgiving parade featured real animals

    Thanksgiving parade or Macy’s parade was first held in 1924 to kickstart the Christmas holiday. It was known back then as Macy’s Christmas parade. It featured real animals from the central park instead of balloon characters.

  3. The writer of “Mary had a little lamb” is the mother of Thanksgiving

    Sarah Joseph Hale, the author of “Mary had a little lamb,” is known as the mother of Thanksgiving, thanks to the relentless letters she wrote to the then U.S. President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, persuading him to declare Thanksgiving Day as a national holiday.

  4. Americans consume more calories on Thanksgiving Day

    According to statistics, Americans eat about 45 million turkeys every Thanksgiving. Each turkey contains 300-4600 calories more than the daily intake.

  5. Watching football on Thanksgiving is a tradition too

    Watching football on Thanksgiving is another tradition that has been adopted over the years, just like eating turkey. It started from the match between Yale and Princeton held on 1876 Thanksgiving. Since then, it has become a tradition.

  6. Thanksgiving is the peak day for fire accidents

    Thanksgiving Day has the highest number of residential fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association. With the festival in full mode, it is easy to get distracted and leave food unattended. Therefore not only is the turkey at risk of getting burnt but so is your house and belongings. To prevent accidental fires, make sure to take the necessary safety measures such as keeping a fire extinguisher handy, ensuring that the stove or oven is never left unattended, setting timers to remind yourself of the food being cooked, etc.

These are some fun facts about Thanksgiving Day that you should be aware of. Our team at Abatelli Insurance wishes you a very Happy Thanksgiving! Stay safe and have a great holiday!

21
Oct

How to Find out a Car’s History Before Buying It

The thrill of owning a car and visiting a used car lot to purchase one for yourself can be overwhelming. At that moment, it is understandable if you are not thinking about long-term life goals and how this purchase will affect them. However, there is one important factor that must not be ignored during a car’s purchase – the car’s history.

Why Do You Need the Car’s History?

You should determine the car history to make the right purchase. You do not want to purchase a stolen car or one with a title that has not been revoked. You will only find out about such information by getting a detailed car history.

Also, the kind and quality of insurance you can get on the car depends on how safe it is for use. Insurance companies will usually only provide coverage for vehicles that meet certain standards. While they may insure vehicles with past accident records, they are not likely to provide coverage for those that have not been cleared for road use. 

How Can You Evaluate a Car’s History?

1. Free Check

The VINCheck website allows you to check a car’s history quickly and for free. The only requirement is the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) which can be found on the official documents or on the car’s windshield. The VIN system was introduced in 1954 and standardized in 1981 as a method for tracking vehicle history. You can use the VINCheck easily while you are in the car lot. However, it is not very thorough given that it is a free evaluation that does not provide information about accidents.

2. Paid Checks

You can do a more thorough background check using AutoCheck and Carfax, which require you to pay a fee. For example, the single report plan from AutoCheck comes for $24.99, and it is the cheapest. These reports provide extra information such as ownership and usage history, service history, questionable title brands (salvage, flood, fire, or hail). Though this is a more thorough report, it will not account for accidents that were not reported.

3. Independent Inspection

It is helpful to go along with a trusted mechanic on your purchase trip. If you do not have a personal mechanic, have your friends or colleagues refer you to one. The mechanic will perform a thorough inspection of the vehicle’s parts, identifying which parts have been replaced and whether it is a good buy. However, note that their verdict is not to be relied on solely as a go-ahead for the purchase.

Don’t forget to get car insurance for your new purchase. Contact us today at Abatelli Insurance to get started.

7
Oct

What You Need to Know about the Different Types of Home Insurance

The importance of purchasing a homeowners insurance policy becomes obvious when you consider the magnitude of the financial burden you would have to bear if a tragedy occurs. There are different plans available on the market which can offer partial to full coverage for specific situations. A basic understanding of the major types will help you find a perfect

fit for you.

Types of Homeowners Insurance

They are usually designated with the code HO-X, where X is their allocated number as in the list. They include:

  1. Basic Form – HO-1
  2. Broad Form – HO-2
  3. Special Form – HO-3
  4. Contents Broad Form – HO-4
  5. Comprehensive Form – HO-5
  6. Unit-owners form – HO-6
  7. Mobile Home Form – HO-7
  8. Modified Coverage Form – HO-8

What Are the Features of a Standard Homeowners Insurance Policy?

Here are a few features that characterize the various kinds of homeowners insurance available.

Coverage

This shows what part(s) of the home is covered in the policy, and the extent of coverage varies with the type. Common kinds of coverages to expect include:

  • Dwelling Coverage protects the home structure, including everything attached to the building; for example, HO-5 protects only single-family homes, and it is one of the most commonly used policies. On the other hand, HO-6 is for those who live in a condo or co-op.
  • Contents Coverage protects the belongings in your home; For example, HO-3 covers personal belongings like furniture and appliances.
  • Personal Liability covers for injuries to self or guests.

Named Peril

This refers to the list of casualties that are covered by the policy. They are specifically named in the agreement, and while some policies cover more than others, there are those that cover all. HO-1 covers ten events, including damage caused by:

  • Theft
  • Smoke
  • Vehicles
  • Fire/Lightning
  • Explosion
  • Volcanic Eruptions
  • Aircraft
  • Riot/Civil commotion
  • Windstorm/Hail
  • Vandalism and Mischief

Any damage caused by a factor that is not on the list will not be covered for this kind of policy. The special form (HO-3) usually lists perils that are not covered, which may include:

  • Neglect
  • Sinkhole
  • Act of War or Government Action
  • Nuclear Accident
  • Flood
  • Earthquake

Applicable Reimbursement

The terms of the policy agreement state the quality of the reimbursement, whether your home or belongings are covered at actual money value or replacement cost. Replacement cost is higher than actual cash value. It covers claims of damages at current prices. For example, while your personal belongings are covered at the actual value under an HO-3 policy, HO-5 policies cover them at replacement value.

Endorsements

The basic policies listed above will only cover specific structures and items as listed in the agreement. However, you may need to extend coverage to an ancillary structure, for example. You will need to add more coverage in the form of riders to cover specific events.

At Abatelli Insurance, we have a wide range of homeowners policies that will surely cater to your needs. Contact us today to learn more.

23
Sep

Can I Pursue Another Career While Receiving Workers’ Comp Benefits?

Sometimes, employees sustain injuries while working at their workstations. Depending on the severity of these injuries, some end up being unable to work temporarily or permanently. In such cases, the employer is obligated to pay the victims what is known as workers’ compensation benefits. Sometimes, the injured employees might desire to work again, even if it is in a lower-risk capacity. At other times, they may consider changing their career, especially if their injuries impede them from working in the same capacity they used to.

In this guide, we will discuss what would happen to your compensation benefits if you decide to pursue another career.

Will My Benefits Continue After I Change Jobs?

You can change jobs when you want, even while you receive compensation benefits from a former employer. However, doing this will likely affect your benefits regardless of whether the new job is full-time or part-time. If you are considering working in a different industry or capacity, you need to understand the following:

  • First, your benefits can’t be canceled just because you switched employment
  • Secondly, your benefits can’t be canceled if the new job involves less risk and pays less
  • Finally, your benefits can’t be canceled if the new job is different from your current one and pays less

While changing jobs won’t necessarily stop your benefits, it will impact the amount you will receive. That is, your pay rate will reduce, and you will be paid less than you ordinarily would. Further, if the new job pays as much as your current job, the benefits will be stopped altogether.

What If the New Job Is a Part-time Job?

Understandably, you may need to take new jobs to account for the financial gap the compensation benefits are unable to fill. However, regardless of the reason behind your decision, your benefit payment will reduce.

To prevent this from happening, you can decide not to report any income you receive. However, this will make you guilty of insurance fraud, which is punishable by law.

Why Injured Workers May Change Their Jobs

Injured workers still receiving compensation benefits usually consider a job or career change for several reasons. These include:

  • They found a less risk taking job that pays the same and meets the doctor’s recommended physical restrictions
  • They found a job that meets the doctor’s recommended physical restrictions and enables them to progress even though it pays less

If your reason is any of the above, you might remain eligible to receive partial compensation benefits.

Factors to Consider Before Starting a New Job

Several injured workers often find new jobs appealing for different reasons, both financial and personal. However, starting a new job comes with many risks and disadvantages. These include:

  • Returning to work before you fully recover makes you prone to a reoccurrence of your injury
  • Returning to work early could impact your recovery progress or even prevent your full recovery

Keep in mind that your employer is not legally mandated to save your job for you in these instances. Consequently, your position may already be taken over by the time you make a full recovery. Additionally, your employer is not legally required to offer you an alternative position. So, ensure you heal entirely before starting a new job, or you will lose on both ends.

If you are currently facing such a scenario, we can help. At Abatelli Insurance, we are always available to talk more about your options. Contact us today to learn more!

9
Sep

3 Common Questions Related to Homeowners Insurance

Every homeowner needs homeowners insurance. The reason for this is that it guarantees the financial protection of their home and personal belongings.

In this article, we will discuss the basics of the standard homeowners insurance policy and what it covers.

1. What Is Homeowners Insurance?

Homeowners insurance is a policy that protects your home and belongings from damages or losses caused by covered perils, including theft and fire. It may also cover the costs you incur if a guest sustains an injury at your home or you accidentally cause damage to another person’s property.

2. How Much Does Homeowners Insurance Cost?

A standard homeowners insurance policy does not have a specific cost. Instead, you can determine how much coverage you want to purchase and at what price. The cost of coverage will depend on several factors, including the features of your home and the value of your personal belongings. You also have to consider the type of insurance coverage you want.

3. What Does Homeowners Insurance Cover?

A typical homeowners insurance covers the following:

  • Your home’s structure
  • Your personal belongings
  • Other structures on your property
  • Liabilities arising from injuries to guests or damages to someone else’s property

A typical homeowners insurance covers a wide range of perils such as fire, theft, lightning strikes, hails, windstorm, etc. However, it does not cover floods and earthquakes. Consequently, you need to purchase special insurance policies to protect your home from these disasters.

  • Your home’s structure

This is one of the most important coverages offered by a typical homeowners insurance policy. It covers the repair or replacement of the damages to your housing structure due to some of the aforementioned perils.

  • Your personal belongings

Apart from damages to the structures on your property, the typical homeowners insurance also covers all the personal belongings within your home. These include your clothing, jewelry, and electronics. In short, homeowners insurance offers protection from thefts or damages to your personal items upto a certain limit. You can also buy extended coverage for items such as jewelry, fur, and watches with values above your personal property coverage limits.

  • Other structures on your property

Homeowners insurance also covers damages to other structures on your property not attached to your house. For example, a detached garage, fence, and tool shed.

  • Liability coverage

Finally, a homeowners insurance policy covers you when a guest is injured on your property and sues you for their injuries. It covers your legal expenses as well as the related medical bills of the guest if you are found guilty.

In conclusion, homeowners insurance is an effective safety net for the unexpected perils your home and personal belongings may face. Therefore, purchase one today if you don’t already have it. At Abatelli Insurance, we can provide you with customized coverage for your homeowners insurance needs. Contact us today to get started!

26
Aug

5 Tips to Prepare Your Teenager to be a Safe Driver

Teaching your teenager to drive can be both exciting and terrifying at the same time. While driving is another step in their journey towards independence, putting them in charge of your much-prized possession can be quite risky. Regardless of your feelings, you have to teach your teenager how to drive safely.

In this article, we will discuss some of the safe driving tips that will help them be more responsible drivers and might even do the same for you.

1. Buckle your seatbelts

Always make sure that your children buckle their seatbelts immediately after they enter the car. Do this every time they enter your car until they imbibe the habit and you no longer have to remind them.

2. Avoid using the cruise control when it’s raining

Cruise control is an incredible feature that enables your car to maintain its speed while driving on a highway. However, it is not a smart option for driving in the rain. This is because rain makes the roads wet and slippery, and with the cruise control on, the chances of the car wheels slipping and the driver losing control of the car increases. Therefore, educate your children on the dangers of using cruise control when it’s raining.

3. Avoid speeding

It is a known fact that speeding is a common cause of accidents. Depending on the extent of the accident, the victims might get off unscathed or with a few scrapes. On the other hand, they might also end up losing their lives. Therefore, remind your teenager that being a few minutes late is better than speeding.

4. Make use of the side and rear-view mirrors

The side and rear-view mirrors of a car are vital for safe driving as they enable drivers to see clearly behind and on either side of the vehicle. For this reason, your teen must always have optimum access to these mirrors. That is, they should ensure the mirrors are always adjusted to their height and size preferences.

5. Avoid using your smartphone while driving

Despite their many benefits, smartphones have become a huge distraction for drivers, especially teen drivers, who are more inclined to use these devices while driving. Many teen drivers believe that they can multitask – that is, drive and use their cell phones simultaneously. However, driving requires the driver’s total attention, and taking your eyes off the road even for a few seconds can result in a fatal accident. Teach your teens never to use their phones while they drive.

Finally, let your teenager know that they can’t always be in charge. There may be times when they get involved in accidents that aren’t their fault. Having the right auto insurance policy in place will protect your teens in the event of an unfortunate accident. If you want to know more about auto insurance, contact us at Abatelli Insurance. We are here to assist you with all your insurance needs today!

COVID-19 Update

Our office remains open and our staff is working remotely to continue to service our clients. You can reach us at (718) 352-6000 Letter to Policyholders