Blog

Does Your Business Have Flood Insurance?

Does Your Business Have Flood Insurance?

Your business insurance isn’t your flood insurance coverage.

When it rains, it pours. When it pours over your building and business, it can be hard, or even impossible, to recover. Flood damage will affect your business as well as the premises, threatening the survival of your shop, warehouse, restaurant, office, or other commercial business. Dealing with the effects of flooding means more than just clearing up the flood damage, you also need to get the business operating as quickly as possible. When time is money, you have no spare minutes to waste.

Many small business owners are under the mistaken impression that their business insurance policies cover them for damages arising from floods. While your policy may cover water damage, flood coverage is entirely different. Just like homeowners flood insurance, commercial flood coverage must be purchased separately in a dedicated policy.

Most flood insurance is sold through the National Flood Insurance Program, which has a standard set of coverage available. Commercial customers in low or moderate risk areas can choose building and contents coverage or a contents only policy. Those in higher risk areas naturally pay more, and may not have the option to cover contents only.

Generally, the NFIP covers:

  • Damage to the building and foundation
  • Plumbing and electrical system damage
  • HVAC, water heater, and furnace damage
  • Built-in appliances such as dishwashers and fridges
  • Permanently installed carpeting
  • Permanently installed paneling
  • Window blinds
  • Inventory/merchandise
  • Computers
  • Machinery
  • Business interruption
  • Cash, currency, and stock certificates
  • Most automobiles

Does your business have the right protection in place? Stay safe throughout the storms by securing your commercial flood insurance policy today. Visit Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to get started!

How Dangerous is Distracted Driving?

How Dangerous is Distracted Driving?

Don’t be tempted to skip a song, reply to a text, or browse social media behind the wheel. 

The dangers of distracted driving are well-known at this point. Anything from texting on cell phones to futzing with the radio to applying your make-up can shift your focus from the road.

Unfortunately, newspapers, magazines, and the Internet report daily accounts of car accidents that have resulted from distracted driving. The numbers are ever-increasing with drivers using smartphones, and the invention of smart watches that make accessing technology a whole lot easier.

Distracted driving results from:

  • Eyes off the road – From staring at billboards to gawking at crash scenes, distractions divert your eyes from the road and what is happening in front of you. If the car in front stops suddenly, you could end up in a rear-end collision.
  • Daydreaming – If your mind is taken away from driving to focus on what your passengers are saying, your reaction times will only slow.
  • Hands off the wheel – Eating, drinking, using a cell phone, or reaching for fallen objects – refrain from doing any of these, as once your hands are off the wheel, you’re asking for trouble.

To distract yourself from the distractions, use these tips and be a safer driver:

  • Turn off your phone. Try putting your phone out of reach or shutting it down before you start driving. Out of sight, out of mind, right? Any text or call you receive while driving isn’t important enough to put your life, and other drivers’ lives, on the line.
  • Be organized. Whether you need to get out your parking pass, set your GPS, or apply a touch of lipstick, do it before turning on your car. That way, you’ll be better prepared, and you won’t need to take your eyes, hands, or mind off the road.
  • Find Zen. We all need a little peace and quiet in our lives. Make your driving time quiet time to concentrate and be calm!

To better protect your drive, vehicle, and finances, secure yourself a quality auto insurance policy. For the best coverage at the best rate for you, contact Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers.

Easy Time Management Hacks to Adopt

Streamline your busy schedule with these time management tips. 

Do you ever feel as if there aren’t enough hours in the day? Whether you have a list of things to do or simply keep facing hurdle after hurdle, you may struggle to feel like you’re being productive. Entrepreneurs lead a busy and overwhelming life, whether you’re just starting out or already leading a company. With a lot on your plate, time can fly by and leave you stretched for time.

Instead of spending the evening at your desk, choose to gain more control of your day. Get started on time management success with these tips:

Track your time – The more you know where your time goes, the more you’ll be able to hold yourself accountable and see what tasks are slowing you down or where you’re wasting time.

Set realistic time goals – Now that you know how long an individual task takes, you can stop guessing that it’ll take ten minutes when it takes an hour. Set aside a realistic time frame so that you’re not setting yourself up for disappointment.

Plan ahead – Stay one step ahead by planning what you’ll do tomorrow, next week, or next month. With a schedule or calendar in hand, you’re able to stay on task.

Batch related tasks together – Divide your tasks into categories so that you’re not jumping around. This will ultimately save time because you’re not stopping and starting as often.

Schedule time for interruptions – As much as we’d like life to be streamlined all day long, interruptions and setbacks happen. Don’t be disheartened by this, allow time for interrupted workflow.

Make use of prep time – Make an agenda for every meeting or phone call that is scheduled. This way, you’re able to hit all the talking points and organize the meeting.

Take breaks – Everyone needs time away from work! This increases productivity as you return to your desk refreshed and in a better mindset. Whether you step outside for a few minutes or take a day off to relax, you’ll ultimately benefit.

By using your time productively and making the most out of your efforts, you’ll be able to do more without burning out.

Get set up with a streamlined business insurance policy that matches your company’s needs and budget. Visit Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers today.

How to Get Involved This World Alzheimer’s Month

How to Get Involved This World Alzheimer’s Month

September 2017 is the sixth global World Alzheimer’s Month and September 21st is World Alzheimer’s Action Day.

This month and day are dedicated, worldwide, to raising awareness about Alzheimer’s disease and challenging the stigma that comes along with it.

The disease was discovered in 1906 by Dr. Alois Alzheimer. The doctor found noticeable differences and changes in brain tissue of women who had died from an unusual mental illness. His foundings are still used today to help to identify Alzheimer’s disease.

In the U.S. alone, Alzheimer’s disease is currently ranked as the sixth leading cause of death, and it is the most common cause of dementia among older adults.

This year’s theme for World Alzheimer’s Month is “Remember Me”, a theme that encourages people around the world to learn more about detecting the signs of dementia. You can get involved on social media by sharing your favorite memories, or memories of a loved one throughout the month of September with the hashtag #RememberMe and #WAM2017.

While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, early detection means that the necessary support can be put in place immediately. Early symptoms include:

  • Memory loss – Declining memory, especially short-term memory.
  • Difficulty performing familiar tasks – People with dementia find it hard to complete everyday tasks.
  • Problems with language – Those with dementia may forget simple words or talking.
  • Changes in mood or behavior – Rapid mood swings may happen for no apparent reason.
  • Personality changes – A person may seem different from his or her usual self in ways that are difficult to pinpoint.

If you or a loved one are experiencing any of these symptoms or are concerned about a friend or relative, visit your doctor to discuss your concerns. Contact the professionals at Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers today to learn how you can safeguard your life and finances with the right insurance policies.

Going Back to College? Don’t Forget Your Renter’s Insurance

Going Back to College? Don’t Forget Your Renter’s Insurance

Your child is all packed up and ready to head off to college. Do they have the right insurance for the semester ahead?

College season is upon us, and many young adults across the nation are moving out on their own. Whether choosing the dorm life or living off campus with friends, it’s the first time that students start to acquire their own possessions. These include stereos, laptops, printers, tablets, phones, flat screen TVs, and those all-expensive textbooks. In turn, college students should be aware of the assets that they take with them.

Chances are, if a student’s laptop gets stolen, it’ll cost at least $1,000 or more. Typical college students don’t have that kind of cash lying around.

Fortunately, renter’s insurance will step in to cover the costs. Most standard renter’s insurance policies provide three types of coverage:

  • Personal property – A typical policy covers your belongings if they are damaged due to fire, theft, vandalism, smoke, lightning, windstorm, and discharge of water.
  • Liability – This is coverage that insures you if you’re sued. If someone slips and falls on the property, and he/she sues for the cost of medical bills, your liability coverage will help you to pay for this expense.
  • Loss of use – This coverage helps you to pay for another apartment or hotel should you be unable to use your rented property for any reason.

Depending on your situation, you’ll need additional insurance to cover hurricane damage, flood damage, and identity theft protection. Every parent wants to set their child up for success by sending them off to college, protected.

The bottom line is that you need renter’s insurance to safeguard belongings and finances. Contact Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to get started on the right coverage.

How Do I Choose the Right Home Insurance Deductible?

How Do I Choose the Right Home Insurance Deductible?

Get the most out of your home insurance with a deductible to suit your needs.

Choosing the right deductible is vital to protecting your home and finances. Every policy has a deductible so every person buying homeowners insurance will have to make this decision (no, there’s no avoiding it!).

Selecting a deductible limit that suits your needs and budget enables your home to stay protected, your money to stay in your pocket, and your belongings to stay safe. In short, what more could you want?

What is a deductible?

A deductible is a total amount that you have to pay out-of-pocket before insurance kicks in. If you have a $1,000 deductible on your home insurance, in the event of an accident or damage from a listed peril, you are responsible for the first $1,000 of accident-related payments, and then the insurance company will handle the rest (up to the policy limit).

There are generally two types of deductibles: a dollar-amount and a percentage based. The difference between them is how your deductible is calculated, and there are a couple of factors depending on how much your home is valued at. Once calculated, the amount a homeowner pays if he or she files a claim is fixed for the length of that policy.

How to Choose:

When selecting a deductible, you’re really balancing the short-term cost that you can afford (your deductible) and the long-term cost of your policy (your premiums). A higher deductible means lower monthly premiums. But before selecting a high deductible right off the bat, consider if you can afford this high out-of-pocket cost in the event of an accident.

There are other reasons it makes sense to raise your deductible. Every insurance company is different but typically, if you file a claim, the cost of your premium will rise because, in essence, you’ve become a riskier and costlier homeowner to insure. And the more claims you file, the higher your premium will be!

For help securing the right deductible for your needs, visit Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers today!

Home Maintenance Tips to Complete Before Fall

Fall Home Maintenance Tips

Homeowners, prepare your home for the upcoming autumn season.

While the thought of fall may bring a chill to homeowners, ensuring your property is kept clear of damage in autumn weather is a task to take on now!

As we may well be about to face inclement and adverse weather, spare a thought for your home’s health, and add these tasks to your To Do checklist!

Exterior Maintenance 

  • Drain sprinkler systems so that the water does not freeze and burst the pipe.
  • Prune shrubs and trees.
  • Remove debris and leaves from gutters and downspouts to prevent ice damage.
  • Inspect the roof for damage or missing slates.
  • Hire a professional to examine and clean the chimney.

Interior Maintenance

  • Tune up the boiler or furnace before turning it on.
  • Caulk doors and windows that are drafty.
  • Test the batteries in your smoke and carbon dioxide alarms.
  • Hire a professional to check your heating system. These systems will use fuel more efficiently, last longer, and have fewer problems if properly serviced.
  • Change the direction of your ceiling fan to create an upward draft that redistributes warm air from the ceiling.
  • Review your homeowners’ insurance.

As you drain your faucets, don’t drain your wallet. Autumn can bring destruction on a home which can take huge expenses to repair and rebuilding. Homeowners insurance is designed to financially aid home repairs after a named peril, such as fire, theft, vandalism, hail, or a natural disaster.

So that your home is protected throughout the fall and year-round contact Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers today! Our insurance services can protect your home from the autumn weather approaching in California.

Is Your Small Business Ready for the Grand Opening?

Small Business Grand Opening

Here’s how to get your small business ready for opening. 

From the concept to the business plans to installing the computers, you’ve nursed your business along the whole way. Now that it’s time for opening, you’ll want to be sure that you’ve done enough to set your business up for success. The cost of putting up a brick-and-mortar business is huge, and you’ll need to get your small business ready for opening – before you open the doors!

Get your website together. 

Plenty of businesses, even today, have sloppy or unprofessional websites or lack a social media presence. Technology is incredibly important in today’s society, and it’s a sure way to get your business out there. Take advantage of easy advertising on social media and capturing a large audience with a website by updating your pages today!

Get promoting. 

Now that your website and social media have stepped into the 21st century, it’s time to get the word out about the opening of your business. Small businesses must work hard to tell the general public of their services and product, and invite them into the office for the grand opening. Welcoming potential clients face to face is much more successful than writing ‘We’re open!’ on Facebook.

Get the equipment together. 

Do your employees have everything they need to make the business run smoothly? When it comes to opening day, you don’t want to be lacking paper bags, pens, or an Internet connection. Check and then double-check that you have everything in place before opening the doors. To protect all of your financial investments, secure the right business insurance for your company!

Don’t waste valuable time searching for the right insurance coverage. Contact Chambers & Company, your independent insurance agency, to learn how you can safeguard your hard work with business insurance for your small business.

Items Around The House You Should Recycle

Items You Should Recycle

Recycling is easier than ever – check out top household items to always recycle.

The average person in the United States generates around 4.5 pounds of waste every single day! Times that by 300 million and you can see why litter has become a serious problem in this country. Recycling saves valuable space in landfills as well as supplying resources to be used again. While every business and individual should be playing their part to go greener, homeowners should take note that these top household items to always recycle are often overlooked.

  1. Junk mail – You can recycle most of the mail that comes into your home. Make it easier by placing a recycling bin next to where you store the incoming post. Even better, get your bills and account updates sent to via email.
  2. Books – Donate or sell old books that you no longer read. You can also recycle books that have been destroyed.
  3. Ink cartridges – Most printer ink cartridges contain toxic materials that do not belong in the trash. Instead of throwing them out, take them to your nearest Staples or Best Buy, where they will take your old ink cartridge for recycling.
  4. Disposable plates and cups – Avoid these wasteful party supplies if you can. If you cannot, always recycle them! You can also shred them and put them underneath your mulch to provide nutrients for your plants.
  5. Household batteries – The toxic material in batteries greatly contribute to pollution, especially when they break down in landfill sites. Many libraries and post offices now collect household batteries for recycling.
  6. Old TVs – If you’ve recently updated your smaller TV to a shiny, new model, the old TV may be sitting in the garage, lifeless. Instead of dumping it in the bin, take it to your nearest e-waste center.
  7. The basics: bottles, cans, paper, plastic, cardboard! Always!

So that you have the necessary coverage for your home, contact Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers to learn about suitable insurance for your needs!

Tips for Buying Auto Insurance for Your Teen Driver

Keep your children safe on the road by enforcing good driving habits and reliable protection.

The time has come for your teenager to take the wheel. Before you let them into the driver’s seat, it’s important to ensure that your child is ready to stay safe on the roads. It’s no secret that teenagers cost more to insure on any auto insurance policy. Their inexperience on the roads can result in accidents, as well as their daredevil need for speed.  Any parent can add their qualified teenager to their car insurance policy to receive reliable protection.

Passing the keys to your teenage driver is a monumental moment for yourself and your child. Doing this results in the addition of your child to the family car, or their own car’s, auto insurance policy.

Here’s what you need to know about the process:

When: Most insurance companies must be informed when your teen is driving your car with a permit. Once your teen passes the test and has a license in hand, you must add them to the policy.

What: Note that a car of less value, or one with numerous safety features, will be cheaper to insure than a flashy, expensive car. A teen’s first car is going to get dinged and dented quickly, more often than not, so start them out on a safe second-hand car.

Behaviors: Encourage your child to remember the rules of the road and safe driving practices even after they have passed their test. A successful way to do this is to set a passenger limit, never let them use a phone while driving, and regularly drive with them to watch for bad habits developing.

Feedback: To keep an eye on your teen’s driving behavior, you can add a monitoring system to your teen’s car. This tracks certain aspects of driving such as speeding, seat belt usage, hard breaking, and arrival and departure time. This feature could reduce your auto insurance premium.

Savings: While your auto insurance rate will increase when adding your teen, you can control how much it goes up. Look for savings with Good Student Discounts!

Find out how much you can save when adding your teen to your auto insurance policy with Chambers & Company Insurance Brokers. Contact us for all of your insurance needs so that you, as a parent, can feel rest assured that protection is in place.