Hurricane Preparedness: Are You Prepared?

Hurricane Preparedness: Are You Prepared?

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With Hurricane Season in full swing we want to make sure everyone is prepared if a hurricane were to make landfall near you.  Below you will find some tips, tricks and suggestions that we have compiled.

  • Are you in an evacuation area?    Know your evacuation route and plan accordingly.  Share your plan with all family members so they know where you are headed.  Follow all evacuation orders as issued by authorities.
  • Have an emergency supply kit that fits the needs of your family.  Some recommendations/suggestions are below:
    • Water – 1 gallon of water per person per day.  Have enough for at least 3 days.  You will need this for drinking as well as sanitation.
    • Food – have at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food and a manual can opener
    • Battery powered/hand crank radio or weather radio
    • Flashlights and extra batteries
    • Notebook and Pencil/Pen
    • First Aid Kit
    • Cell phone and chargers, both car and wall, and a backup battery if available
    • Medications – Prescription and over the counter
    • Emergency Contact information
    • Insurance Company information – either the claim numbers for the carrier or your agent’s contact information
    • Baby items – formula, bottles, diapers, wipes
    • Pet food and extra water for pets.  Also have vaccination records should you need to shelter your pet
    • Cash – if you plan on relying on your debit card notify your bank that you will be travelling so they do not freeze your card for “suspicious” activity
    • Blanket/Pillow for each person
    • Full change of clothes
    • Rain Gear
    • Feminine Supplies
    • Activities for children – games, cards, puzzles or books
    • Camera – in case there is damage to your property
  • Pay attention to the news and weather so you know what is happening in your area and when the storm is expected to get to you
  • Fill all vehicles with gas.
  • Bring in/tie down any items that can be picked up by the wind
  • Close all windows and doors and board up/shutter if necessary
  • Unplug any small appliances

Safety is of the utmost importance.  Follow the news and weather for the most up to date information.  Not all storms will bring the same kind of damage – some will be rain makers and others will be wind makers, both types can be devastating to an area, be aware of what could potentially happen in your area.  Use the above at your discretion and make an appropriate plan that best fits your needs.

 

Source/Reference:  National Hurricane Center, American Red Cross

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Agent Spotlight – Amanda Bunch – Personal Lines

Agent Spotlight – Amanda Bunch – Personal Lines

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Amanda is relatively new to the insurance industry.  She joined Vogedes Insurance in October 2016 and was licensed in February 2017.  She has quickly learned from her class as well as hands on what the insurance industry is all about.  Amanda hopes to start working on her insurance designations, preferably the Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC). She is here to help you with all of your personal insurance including auto, flood, homeowners and wind.

Amanda is from Chowan county and has lived here for 18 years.  She lives with her spouse and her fur babies.  She is a long term Chowan County Native with a wealth of knowledge about the area, especially Downtown Edenton.  Amanda is always willing to help with a bright smile and does not hesitate to go that extra mile!  Amanda is a member of the Friends of Shepard Pruden Library and Barker House Association.

Actual Cash Value vs. Replacement Cost Value

Actual Cash Value vs. Replacement Cost Value

ACV vs RC

Do you know the difference between Actual Cash Value and Replacement Cost Value?  If you don’t, you are not alone in this.  Homeowners policies offer either actual cash value or replacement cost to replace damaged, destroyed or stolen personal property.  Both actual cash value and replacement cost will pay out less your policy deductible if not previously met.  Here is a quick comparison of the two.
Actual Cash Value (ACV) is what the personal property is worth at the time of theft, damage or destruction less depreciation and policy deductible if applicable.
Replacement Cost Value (RCV) is what the personal property would cost today brand new less your policy deductible if applicable.

When looking over your homeowners policy see which coverage is better suited for your needs.  An ACV policy may be a smaller premium but there may be a higher risk when it is time to file a claim.  An RCV policy may have a higher premium but will be able to offer the peace of mind if your home and personal property are completely destroyed and need to be replaced and/or rebuilt.  Below is a claims scenario showing the difference between ACV and RC.

Claims Scenario

When you are reviewing your current policy give us a call and one of our Personal Lines Account Managers will be more than happy to go over your coverage with you.  Stop by one of our offices or give us a call if we can help in any way.

 

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By:  Jen Tighe

General Liability Insurance

General Liability Insurance

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Choosing Liability Coverage For Your Business

No matter what type of business you run, you need to protect your interests with the right insurance policy.  Every company needs a variety of different types of insurance; some of these policies are the same no matter what kind of business you have, while others might be specific to your industry.  One of the coverages that remains the same across the board is general liability coverage.

What General Liability Is For

There are a number of different types of liability policies you can purchase to protect yourself from potential financial responsibility.  General liability is one of the less specific forms of coverage and provides a generalized, overall coverage for liability claims resulting from a wide array of possible incidents.  While it will not protect you from everything, a good general liability policy provides you with a solid foundation.

A general liability policy gives you coverage for defense from lawsuits and to pay out financial claims when negligence on your part can be proven.  It prevents your company from facing potentially serious financial damage due to property damage, injuries, or any other claim that can be proven to be a result of your company’s actions or products.

Choose Your Policy Carefully

When you select a liability policy for your company, you should first make certain that the policy covers you from all angles.  If you have specific risks that are not covered by general liability, you may want to purchase additional policies to provide that coverage.  It is important to understand what is covered by your general liability policy and what is not; waiting until a claim occurs is not the best time to discover the exclusions in your policy!

Be certain that a few basics are being covered by your general liability policy.  You want to be sure that you have good public liability coverage—meaning that members of the general public who might sustain injury or loss as a result of negligence on your company’s part can be compensated.  You also need to be sure that you have enough coverage to protect yourself properly.

Your general liability policy is one of the most important you will select as a business owner; it takes only a quick look at the news to see the array of claims consumers have made against companies in recent years.  Many of these lawsuits ended in favor of the claimant.  Without good liability coverage, your company could wind up paying these claims out of pocket.  Take the time to make sure you have selected liability coverage that meets all of your needs and potential risks.

Give one of our offices a call to discuss all your Business Insurance needs!

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Vogedes Insurance Agency, Inc – A Trusted Choice Agency

Vogedes Insurance Agency, Inc – A Trusted Choice Agency

Trusted Choice agencies are insurance and financial services firms whose access to multiple companies and commitment to quality service enable us to offer our clients competitive pricing, a broad choice of products and unparalleled advocacy.

As a Trusted Choice agency, we are dedicated to you and are committed to treating you as a person, not a policy. This commitment means we shall:

  • Work with you to identify the insurance and financial services that are right for you, your family or your business, and use our access to multiple companies to deliver those products.
  • Guide you through the claims process for a prompt and fair resolution of your claim.
  • Help solve problems related to your coverage or account.
  • Explain the coverages and options available to you through our agency, at your request.
  • Return your phone calls and emails promptly and respond to your requests in a timely manner.
  • Provide 24/7 services for our customers, offering any or all of the following: emergency phone numbers, Internet account access, e-mail and call center services.
  • Use our experience and multiple company relationships to customize your coverage as needed.
  • Commit our staff to continuing education so they may be more knowledgeable in serving you.
  • Treat you with respect and courtesy.
  • Conduct our business in an ethical manner.

Call us or stop by one of our offices – Edenton or Kitty Hawk.  We are here to help you with all of your insurance needs!

 

Auto Claims: A Step By Step Process

Auto Claims: A Step By Step Process

Driver Making Phone Call After Traffic AccidentWhen you have been in an accident or your car has been stolen or vandalized, you may not know where to start or what to expect.  The call to your insurance agency or claims department to open a claim starts a process that can be confusing.  While the details of the claims process may differ from company to company and depending on the type of claim, the basic process is similar for every claim.  This step-by-step guide will get you through the claims maze.

The First Step: Filing A Claim

When you call your insurance agency to file a claim you may be understandably upset, and it can be easy to forget some of the details.  Before calling, sit down and write out the details of what happened as best you can recall.  If you were able to take photos of the damage to your vehicle, have them on hand to use as a reference.  Your call to submit a claim might take a while, so be prepared to be on the phone with no distractions, and ready to answer all the necessary questions.

The Second Step: Meeting The Adjuster

Depending on the type of claim and how your insurance company handles claims, you may need to meet with the assigned adjuster to view the damage to your car.  There may be more questions at this time regarding the incident, so keep your notes and photographs handy.  If there was a police report filed on the incident, the adjuster may wish to go over the details of the report with you.  In the case of a theft, you might also be asked for a list of what was taken from or off the vehicle.

The Third Step: Determining Fault And Value

After the adjuster has seen the damage, spoken with all parties, and reviewed the police report, a decision will be made as to who was at fault in the incident.  If it was not an accident, but a theft or vandalism, obviously no fault will be assigned.  At this point in an accident scenario, your adjuster will also be working with the adjuster from the other company on behalf of the driver of the other vehicle.  If they agree on fault, the claim goes forward.  If not, mediation may occur.

Finally, a value will be assigned to the damage done to your vehicle, deciding how much it will cost to repair and how much the insurance company will pay.  If the cost to repair the car exceeds the value of the car, then a total loss may be declared.

Final Steps: Closing The Claim

In a straightforward claim, payment will be made, the car repaired, and the claim will be closed.  More complicated claims involving bodily injury or multiple drivers may take longer.  In most cases, however, the claims process is completed relatively swiftly.

Condo Insurance

Condo Insurance

Condo Coverage

As a homeowner, obtaining a good home insurance policy that protects your home and family is one of the essential costs related to purchasing a home.  But if you own a condo there may be some additional considerations in selecting a home insurance policy that is right for you.  Here is a breakdown of the kind of coverage you need as a condo owner, and some tips on finding the right policy.

Ownership Issues

Since the actual property ownership of condos includes both private and shared property, condo insurance must cover both.  In the case of shared property, the major concern is liability insurance that will cover any damage that may be caused by your negligence or an accident that would damage shared property or the property of another condo owner.

Condo Association Coverage

Another issue to consider is whether your Condo Association has blanket coverage that will protect you from damages that may be caused by other condo owners who do not have liability insurance, or have limited coverage.  Since condo owners pay fees that include a number of shared costs, such as property maintenance and some utilities, insurance should be offered by your Condo Association to protect you in these cases.  If yours does not, you may want to check out ways to include it.  In most cases this type of shared coverage will cost each owner less than individual liability insurance and will keep all condo owners protected.

Content Coverage

Living in a gated community or secured building, as most condo complexes are, may give you a false sense of security.  If your condo insurance does not cover your unit’s contents from theft and other damage you could be leaving a huge gap in your coverage.  Also, if you own valuable items such as jewelry or antiques your content coverage may not protect the full value of these items and a rider may be necessary.

A qualified insurance agent can give you all the information you’ll need to keep your condo protected, and keep you protected from liability.