Miscellaneous

Retiree Life Insurance Considerations

There are many things that you no longer have to worry about when retired, but insurance considerations is not one of them. In order to get the most out of your retirement and your retirement savings, having a well-designed insurance portfolio is vital. Here are some of the coverages you should be considering before, and after, retirement:

  • Home Insurance: One of the goals of many retirees is to have a paid off home by the time they reach retirement. Many may have the misconception that once your home is paid off your need for home insurance changes. Home insurance isn’t a product that’s meant to protect a mortgager though, it’s meant to protect you. If something should happen to your home or your belongings, without insurance you would be forced to sell assets or dip into your retirement savings to repair or replace your home and possessions.
  • Auto Insurance: Once your automobile is paid for, many think keeping the state required minimum is enough. What if your car should be stolen, vandalized or totaled in a collision? Without the proper insurance you’ll have to use retirement funds to repair or replace it. You may also find that state required minimums for liability and bodily injury may prove so limited that you will be forced to pay out-of-pocket for the damages that exceed your limits.
  • Life Insurance: Life insurance is generally thought of as a policy that helps survivors, but with cash value growth available for tax-free loans it can also help pad your retirement spending. In addition, if one spouse should pass away, leaving the other alone, the life insurance policy proceeds can supplement the surviving spouse’s retirement budget. For those concerned with leaving a legacy to their heirs, a life insurance policy ensures that you can do so without having to put a cap on your retirement spending.
  • Long-term Care Insurance: Not every retiree has the health and mobility to independently complete all activities of daily living such as showering and dressing. When you begin to need assistance with daily activities, moving into an assisted living facility or hiring an in-home nurse may be necessary. Medicare and Social Security will only pay for certain long-term care expenses. Designing a supplemental long-term care policy, with an acceptable waiting period and daily benefit, is vital if you want to avoid using retirement funds for your long-term care needs.

Retirement assets create a limited pool of funds that need to be available for an unknown period of time. Life Insurance policies retirees preserve those funds and keep enjoying your retirement the way you want to. Give us a call at 305-270-2100 and we can discuss the many ways that insurance is there to make your retirement more financially secure.

At Filer Insurance, Inc., we have been providing Home, Auto and Business Insurance in Miami and South Florida since 1919.  We would very much like to have you as one of our customers.  Please give us call or come by our office for a free quote on your insurance.

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Hurricane Preparedness: What To Do

Summer is here and we would like to remind homeowners to continue to take precautions for the safety of their family so that at-home accidents can be avoided.  Keeping family safe is always a priority but on top of that, not having any claims might help in keeping your Miami home insurance premium as low as possible.

Some aspects of summer to keep in mind are hurricane preparedness, pool safety (if you have, or will have, one) and your lawnmower.

Hurricane Preparedness
A hurricane is never a welcome event but here are some precautions you can take to be prepare you and your home for one.

1. Make a family plan.  Find the safest places inside your house and then talk with your kids to make sure that each family member is aware of them.  You can also place emergency numbers where they can be easily accessed by kids.

2. Stock up on supplies.  In the event that you are without power for a long time make sure to have pillows, toiletry items, clothing, blankets, food, first aid, flashlights, batteries, and plenty of water.  It may also be good to have spare keys, important papers, cash, and credit cards ready if needed.

3. Have a planned evacuation location.  If you and your family need to leave your home, look into staying with family or friends that live far enough inland that will not be required to evacuate.  If that is not an option, find out where the nearest local shelters are.

4. Secure your home.  Do what you can to protect/reinforce your shutters, roof, stairways, and all doors.  You could also get in touch with a building code official to learn about any home improvement projects that can help give your home extra protection against hurricanes.  And remember, you need a flood insurance policy in place to be covered for any possible flood damage.

5. Take care of your pets.  Have a recent photo of your pet and their collar with ID in case they run off.  If you use a pet shelter for your four-legged family member, they will need to be up to date on their vaccinations.

As mentioned earlier, keeping your family safe is always a priority.  Unfortunate events may still have the potential to occur, due to unforeseen circumstances that are out of your control, but doing everything that you can to keep your family safe in any situation is always a good move.

At Filer Insurance, Inc., we have been providing Home, Auto and Business Insurance in Miami and South Florida since 1919.  We would very much like to have you as one of our customers.  Please give us call or come by our office for a free quote on your insurance.

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The Proper Amount of Home Insurance

It is estimated that around 60% of American homes are under-insured by an average of 22% and don’t carry the proper amount of insurance that is needed.  Your home is most likely your single largest investment, so insuring it sufficiently is a vital piece of maintaining your financial independence. 

You should have a proper amount of home insurance, that of which is adequate enough, to cover the cost of rebuilding your home in the event it is completely ruined by a fire, tornado, hurricane, or other insured disaster.  If you’re unsure how much home insurance is the proper amount of coverage, that depends upon what it would take to restore your home based on current construction costs.  Please refrain, though, from including the land value and considering the price you paid for your home or its appraised value; they do not affect anything.

There are other considerations to take into account when determining the amount to insure your home for, such as:

  • Fees for an architect or other design expert to approximate costs and create plans to be followed by the contractor
  • Rapid inflation in the cost of building materials and labor following a major catastrophe that affects a number of homes in the same region
  • Local building codes that require replacement with additional features or more expensive materials
  • If you are given an amount of what it would take to restore your home, in the end it could end up higher than originally predicted. If possible, it might help to take that into consideration.

There are a number of methods used to estimate the replacement cost of a home.  Some of the factors insurance companies use are:

  • Construction materials
  • Type of foundation
  • Attached or detached garages
  • Square footage
  • Location of the home
  • Fireplace
  • Upgrades
  • Number of rooms and baths

In the end it is your responsibility to establish the value of your property and choose the amount of insurance for your policy.  We can assist with that decision and make it clear what you can do to avoid an unpleasant shock after a loss. Call us today at 305-270-2100 to see if your home insurance policy is up to par.

At Filer Insurance, Inc., we have been providing Home, Auto and Business Insurance in Miami and South Florida since 1919.  We would very much like to have you as one of our customers.  Please give us call or come by our office for a free quote on your insurance.

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Home Repairs Insurers Will Love

Your home insurance policy may not provide benefits for repairs you do around the home, but that doesn’t mean these repairs don’t help keep your home insurance premium low. This is because some home repairs and renovations can proactively lower your premium, while others lessen your risk of claims exposure and reduce potential damages which can result in fewer premium hikes.

Fix That Swimming Pool Fence
If you have a pool, your home insurance policy likely requires that you have a latching safety fence around it. But if your fence has openings or a broken latch, it is not providing the protection that you need. Fix the fence and you’ll reduce the likelihood of a child getting in the pool unsupervised.

Repair That Roof
A leaking roof may not, in itself, be an insurable incident covered by your policy, but it could indicate that you have an older roof built to weaker code standards than those that are currently required. Getting your leak fixed will help keep your roof, ceiling and support beams strong and able to withstand more damage from inclement weather. It can also point out any big weaknesses in your roof construction which can subsequently be fixed and brought to current code.

Even if your roof isn’t yet leaking, it could still be in need of repair. Check for loose or broken shingles and flashing that could become a projectile during a violent storm, and make the appropriate repairs.

Get Those Stones Secured
Loose and uneven pavers and stones outside your home can be a tripping hazard to visitors. Fixing your pavers and other walkway stones will reduce the risk of accidents and subsequent liabilities.

Upgrade Your Appliances
From furnaces to stoves, water heaters to refrigerators, washers to dryers, your appliances are relied on daily by your family. Older appliances are not only at risk for total breakdown when you need them most, but they may also be fire hazards and energy guzzlers. Replacing your older appliances reduces your risk of fire and gives you an opportunity to upgrade to models that use less electricity.

Supplement Fire Safety With a Sprinkler System
Renovating your home so that it has a sprinkler system will not only keep your family safer in the event of a fire, but it can lower your insurance premiums and reduce the risk of losing precious, irreplaceable family heirlooms and pictures.

Activate the Security System
If you have a non-operational security system, you are missing out on a new and easy way to decrease the likelihood of theft or vandalism when you are away from home. Fix your security system or install a new one in order to protect your home and immediately reduce your insurance premiums.

Replace Old Windows
Older windows may not be tough enough to withstand hurricane force or other high winds. By replacing your windows, you can make your home more energy efficient and reduce the likelihood of insurance claims after a storm.

Sort Out Storm Shutters
Shutters and awnings are designed to add an extra layer of protection to your home in the event of a weather-related disaster. If you have broken or weak shutters or awnings, replace them and you’ll have fewer claims to show for it.

Restore Your Electrical System
If your electrical system and wiring are as old as the hills it’s a good time for an update. Not only will you reduce your risk of an electrical problem that results in a fire, but the introduction of ground wires in your outlets will lessen the risk of damage to your electronics.

If you want to find out how your planned repairs and renovations will affect your home insurance premiums before you get them done, give us a call at 305-270-2100. We can even discuss other ways that you can help control your home insurance premiums.

At Filer Insurance, Inc., we have been providing Home, Auto and Business Insurance in Miami and South Florida since 1919.  We would very much like to have you as one of our customers.  Please give us call or come by our office for a free quote on your insurance.

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