Will Auto Insurance Cover Pothole Damage to Your Car?

Whenever spring rolls around, the streets begin to be filled with potholes. Caused by the freezing and thawing of water, these potholes are not only annoying, but they can do a significant amount of damage to your vehicle. If you have a flat tire or a broken rim, which are common damage caused by potholes, you may be wondering if your auto insurance policy can help you cover the repair costs. In some cases, this may be an option.

What Your Auto Insurance Covers

Every auto insurance plan is a bit different. It is important to contact your agent at JC Demo Insurance Group to learn more about the specific details of your plan.

If you have collision insurance, it may cover damage caused by striking a pothole. However, some auto insurance plans have specific exclusions to this type of damage. That means the policy does not cover the loss at all. If you do not have collision insurance, you generally will not be able to file a claim for this type of damage. It does not, in most cases, fall under comprehensive coverage.

In some situations, you may be able to file a claim against your city for the damage from a pothole. If you can prove the city knew about the pothole, had time to fix it, and did not do so, you may be able to file a claim there. Many cities have rules and laws that limit this type of legal action, though.

Get the Auto Insurance You Need in Place

To protect yourself, contact JC Demo Insurance Group to request a quote for collision or other coverage. We serve residents in Matthews, NC and the surrounding communities. We’ll help you customize a plan to meet your needs.

 

Don’t Make Costly Home Improvement Mistakes

The purpose of homeowners insurance is to provide financial security in the event of a loss. When disaster or a theft occur, it gives you peace of mind knowing that you have coverage. But in these uncertain economic times, people try to save a few dollars by making their own home improvements. Unfortunately, sometimes saving a few bucks can be a costly mistake and threaten your coverage. At JC Demo Insurance Group, our professionals are committed to helping members of the Matthews, NC community remain properly insured. Please consider these common things that might put you at risk of having a claim denied.

Wood Stoves

Wood burning stoves are and excellent and efficient way to save on energy costs. A few logs and you can heat a home and even prepare a few meals without turning on the oven. While you may have the available space to install one, they need to be done properly. Specific fire code regulations must be followed. To ensure that your insurance policy will cover any loss due to fire, a wood stove must be inspected and approved. You’ll then need to update your homeowners policy to include it.

Activating A Fireplaces

It’s not uncommon for people to buy a home with an inactive fireplace. Just having one in place opens the possibility of warm cozy nights by the fire. But when you purchase a home with a fireplace that doesn’t work, your insurance won’t reflect the risk of open flame. Like wood stoves, it will need to be inspected before used and the homeowners policy updated. Failing to do so could leave you vulnerable to a claim denial. Insurance companies assess the risk of any property when calculating a premium. Incorporating open flame into a home constitutes a change.

It’s imperative to update your policy any time you make a significant home upgrade. At JC Demo Insurance Group, we are available to help members of the Matthews, NC community revise and renew homeowners policies that provide continuous security.

How to Adjust Homeowner’s Policy for Home Improvements

Having a home in Matthews, NC comes with plenty of benefits, but it also binds you with responsibility. One of those responsibilities is homeowners insurance. While you’ll want to enjoy the freedom of homeownership and all of the changes you can make to your house, you should pause to consider how those changes will impact your insurance. The JC Demo Insurance Group has put together this simple guide to help you with expectations.

Changes to Property Value

Typically speaking, major home renovations will increase the value of the property. Not all changes are equal, though. Major floor plan remodels that open space or even create new rooms can add thousands to the value of a home. Big changes to the kitchen or bathrooms also yield hefty value returns, especially if you replace major appliances or fixtures. The bottom line is that these improvements may require a new appraisal to make sure your policy is covering the new value of your home.

Increased Liability

The most fun add-ons to a house are also usually the riskiest. The easiest example is installing a swimming pool. It will certainly add value that should be appraised, but it also puts you at a greater liability risk. On average, new pools can increase your liability risks by a factor of five. This holds true for other fun additions that come with risk.

Premium Savers

Let’s start with a disclaimer: every policy is unique, so the chance for saving on insurance premiums will vary case by case. That said, there are some upgrades that often do lower the price of your insurance. The biggest of them all is getting a new roof. The roof is the part of the house that offers the most protection from weather related damage, and many policies will offer a discount for improvements in this area. Smaller savings can sometimes be found with security improvements and major upgrades that better protect your house from damage.

By all means, make your Matthews, NC, home the place you dream it could be. Just don’t forget about insurance along the way. Talk to your JC Demo Insurance Group agent before you dive into a project, and it can save you headaches and uncertainty in the long run.

 

Misconceptions About Auto Insurance You Need to Forget

Auto insurance is one of those things that people think they know all about. Many of the things that people think are true about auto insurance, however, are myths in disguise. To help you better understand what is true and what is false, JC Demo Insurance Group, serving Matthews, NC, has developed a list of misconceptions you need to know the truth behind. 

  • Older drivers pay more in insurance. You may think that declining sight and poorer reaction times would result in higher insurance rated but the opposite is true. Older drivers are seen as more mature drivers to insurance companies so they end up paying less for their premiums. Younger drivers actually end up paying more. In fact, there are even some additional discounts for drivers over the age of 55.
  • Red cars cost more to insure. While this is a common myth, it could not be further from the truth. The color of the car is never even taken into consideration. Instead, companies look at the age of the vehicle, the make, the model, and the body style. They also look at the driving history, age, and credit score of the driver. Since the color of the vehicle is not even taken into consideration, you should never limit yourself or stop yourself from purchasing a vehicle in the color that you want. 

Whether or not you already have an auto insurance policy, it is worth it to reach out to JC Demo Insurance Group, serving Matthews, NC. They can run you a quote for auto insurance that will meet your budget needs as well as the minimum required in the state. If you do have a policy, they can take a look at your current one to ensure there are no gaps in coverage. 

Car Emergency Kit Must Haves

You should be prepared for anything whenever you are operating a vehicle. Your car could break down, or you could suddenly have a flat tire, and you are in an area without cell phone reception. JC Demo Insurance Group has independent agents in Matthews, NC wants to let you know everything you need to have in your emergency car kit.

Homemade or Prepacked Kits

Kits that have everything already packaged together is a great place to start, but you may want to tailor your kit to suit your family and travel needs.

  • Weather – in North Carolina, the temperatures could drop drastically, and you may need a small shovel or window scraper.
  • Family Needs – include extra diapers, baby wipes, hand sanitizer, feminine protection, and pet food.
  • Food and Clothing – add an extra supply of non-perishable food, water, zip lock bags, trash bags, and clothing.

Things You Will Need

Whether you are going to buy a prepacked emergency kit or create one of your own, you will need to have the following items included in your pack:

  • First-aid kit
  • Gloves
  • Screwdrivers
  • Pliers
  • Flashlight
  • Emergency triangle or cones
  • Jumper cables
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Scissors or box cutter
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Paracord or a tow rope
  • Blanket
  • Rain poncho
  • Extra cell phone battery

Useful Tips in an Emergency

Keep an empty gas canister in your trunk. If you ever run out of gas, you won’t have to wait for a tow. You can walk to the nearest filling station and back.

Having an automatic battery charger could come in handy if your battery doesn’t start. It is a small device that you can use as a temporary measure instead of calling a tow truck.

Keeping up your vehicle’s maintenance is the best way to preserve your vehicle and keep you safe. The JC Demo Insurance Group in Matthews, NC has auto insurance options that will also help keep you safe on the road.

6 Parts of Home Insurance You Need to Know About

Did you know that home insurance in North Carolina is a multi-peril policy? This special type of policy can cover you for different events at the same time, such as property damage, medical payments, and more. Our team at JC Demo Insurance Group in Matthews, NC will show you the six types of coverage your home insurance includes below.

A. Dwelling – This covers you for major damage to the house and any structural parts attached to it. The amount is often determined by the home’s market value.

B. Other Structures – Similar to dwelling, this part protects any structures on the property that are separate from the house, such as tool sheds and barns.

C. Personal Property – While A and B protect your home’s exterior, C protects the contents inside that you or your family who reside with you own. It may not cover everything inside though, so you’ll want to purchase additional riders for complete protection.

D. Loss of Use – If the home becomes uninhabitable after a natural disaster, this part of coverage will help you pay for additional meals and lodging expenses.

E. Personal Liability – This section will help pay for any accidental injuries at your home that you or a member of your household may be responsible for.

F. Medical Payments to Others – If any visitors get hurt at your home, this part takes care of paying for some of the medical expenses. 

While this summary gives you the big picture,  there are also many other details in a Matthews, NC home insurance policy. Wondering if your insurance covers a specific scenario? Give us a call! Our team at JC Demo Insurance Group is happy to answer any questions you may have.

Auto Insurance North Carolina

North Carolina is a hurricane state. When a hurricane is on the radar, drivers in the state are warned of peril in road travel ahead. Not surprisingly, auto insurance coverage is a must for drivers in North Carolina. Mandated auto liability coverage is often supplemented by comprehensive collision and damage insurance, as well as coverage for uninsured motorist risk in case of accident with a driver without adequate auto insurance. Protect your property from natural disaster.

Auto Insurance in North Carolina

North Carolina State’s Motor Vehicle Law mandates Automobile Liability coverage be continuously maintained by a driver. Minimum auto insurance coverage requirements for a single policy holder, are $30,000 for bodily Injury for one person, $60,000 bodily Injury for multiple persons injured in an accident, and a minimum of $25,000 for property damage to an insured’s vehicle.

When shopping for auto insurance, look for a policy that covers compensation for a range of damages and injuries that may be sustained as result of hospitalization, medical care, vehicle repair and replacement after an accident. Some policies provide coverage for lost wages for time spent off work injured, regardless of fault in a collision. The rules to auto insurance agreements in North Carolina, also cover terms and conditions to liability and damages for road accidents caused by natural disaster.

Hurricane Disaster, Salvage Vehicle

In North Carolina when there is a hurricane, insurance companies often declare an insured’s property a “salvage vehicle”. The classification of salvage vehicle is applied to autos with irreparable damage or natural disaster related accident wreckage from a hurricane. The definition of salvage vehicle is applied if repairs cost more than 75 percent of the fair market value of the vehicle. This makes auto liability and collision coverage supplements for vehicle damage especially attractive to North Carolina drivers. 

If an auto is declared “totaled” compensation for market value is covered under North Carolina rules to salvage vehicles. An insured can either retain the vehicle, or sign the title over to the insurance company. Insurance companies auction or junk salvage vehicle assignments for cash. Insurers or dealers selling salvaged vehicles have a duty to disclose the status of the property to the purchaser in writing. Sellers concealing damage to vehicle are commissioning a misdemeanor punishable by fines in North Carolina.

For auto insurance coverage in North Carolina, contact a licensed auto insurance broker with JC Demo Insurance Group in Matthews, NC.

NC Home Insurance and Theft

When people buy home insurance, they usually do so with the thought of protecting themselves from natural disasters. Here in Matthews, NC, we have seen our neighbors lose it all in hurricanes, floods, and fires. It is a reality that we all hope never to have to face. Burying our heads in the sand does no good. For this reason, wise consumers purchase comprehensive home insurance. When the worst happens to them, they have money to rebuild, repair and relocate, depending on the damage.

Do Not Forget In-Home Property Coverage

There is something that most homeowners forget to consider. What will they do if their home gets robbed? Perhaps they come home one day to find the place ransacked and important items missing. Does home insurance cover the stolen property? Well, that all depends on what was stolen and how much. It is always best to speak with an experienced NC home insurance agent about just what is covered in a particular policy.

In general, Matthews, NC, insurers can make special dispensations when needed for such valuables as computers, home entertainment centers, jcand pianos. These items are likely candidates for theft.

Just ask an agent about available policy rates.

Secure Your Property Today

There is no need to wait. Get started securing in-home property today. Crime rates are unfortunately rising everywhere. If hit by a thief, comprehensive home insurance can help to provide the necessary financial backing to replace stolen items.

The best way to save is to use the convenient online rating tool that provides current pricing on home insurance. Then contact an agent at JC Demo Insurance Group to make the purchase.

 

 

The Importance of Maintaining Homeowners Insurance

Your home is most likely the biggest thing you own and the most expensive. You’ve put a lot of money into it. You made repairs to the roof, updated the fixtures, and installed new flooring. This has become a huge investment. Why not protect it? Homeowners insurance is the only way to make sure that your home is safeguarded from disasters.

Why You Need Homeowners Insurance

The #1 reason to have homeowners insurance is protection. Coverage usually applies to the buildings’ structure and its contents. Depending on your policy, you can get protection for everything inside of your home. Talk with your independent insurance agents in Matthews, NC at JC Demo Insurance Group, so they can help you tailor your coverage to include:

  • The House – repairing or rebuilding the homes’ structure.
  • Personal Belongings – could include furniture, electronics, appliances, clothing, and other valuables.
  • You, Your Family, and Guests – accidental injuries can be added to your policy to cover medical bills, hospital stays, and therapeutic costs.
  • Additional Costs – if you have to stay at a hotel for a few days while your home is being repaired because of fire or water damage.

What Happens If Your Homeowners Insurance Lapses

Homeowners policies were meant to pay for damages to your home if there is a disaster such as a fire, vandalism, lightning, earthquake, hurricane, or other catastrophes. If you allow your policy to lapse, you would not only have to pay for damages that arise, but your mortgage could go into default. At the time of closing, most lending companies agree to the loan if you acquire and maintain insurance coverage. When there is a lapse, the lending company may put your home in default.

Get in touch with JC Demo Insurance Group in Matthews, NC. Their independent agents can discuss with you the details of maintaining your homeowners insurance policy.

Why Teens Have Higher Insurance Rates

If you’re a teen driver or a parent of a teen driver you may already be aware that the insurance rates for these youngest of drivers are quite high. If you live in the Matthews, NC area, you may be wondering why adding your teen to your insurance costs so much.

Why the rates are higher

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the accident rate for drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 is higher than in any other age group. Driving is a complicated skill that takes time to develop. The problem is that the only way to get experience driving is to do it, and driving itself can sometimes be dangerous. Insurance companies know that teen drivers are at a higher risk for a claim, not because they’re necessarily more reckless, but because they don’t have the experience and mature judgment that older drivers have developed over time. Insurance companies aren’t "out to get" teen drivers. However, all drivers in higher risk categories, such as those with several tickets or accidents and, yes, teen drivers too, will pay higher insurance premiums.

What teens can do to keep rates as low as possible

While teens can’t do anything about their ages, they can keep their insurance rates as low as possible by doing a few things. First, teens should drive safely to keep a clean driving record. Things like traffic tickets and accidents can make insurance rates go even higher. Second, teens can ask the insurance agents at JC Demo Insurance Group about discounts for things like good grades or taking drivers’ education classes at school. Third, teens should consider carefully which cars are driven. Different cars have different insurance costs, so it may pay to shop around.

If you have questions about teen automobile insurance or any other insurance questions, contact the folks at JC Demo Insurance Group, serving the Matthews, NC area.