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What is insurance?
Insurance, as a means of protecting a person’s interests against loss or damage has been used for at least 5,000 years — originally by traders seeking to protect their sea-going cargoes — but the first real policies, in the way we think of them today, came into being in the 17th Century.
Inurance is a financial safety net, helping you and your loved ones recover after something bad happens — such as a fire, theft, lawsuit or car accident. When you purchase insurance, you’ll receive an insurance policy, which is a legal contract between you and your insurance provider. And when you suffer a loss that’s covered by your policy and file a claim, insurance pays you or a designated recipient, called a beneficiary, based on the terms of your policy.
The most difficult thing about insurance is that you’re paying for something you hope you never have to use. Nobody wants something bad to happen to them. But suffering a loss without insurance can put you in a difficult financial situation.
Insurance is a way to manage your risk. When you buy insurance, you purchase protection against unexpected financial losses. The insurance company pays you or someone you choose if something bad happens to you. If you have no insurance and an accident happens, you may be responsible for all related costs.
Having the right insurance for the risks you may face can make a big difference in your life. People get insurance not only to help with risks from unexpected events but also to help pay for routine things, such as annual medical checkups and dental visits.
In addition, insurance companies negotiate discounts with health care providers, so their customers pay those discounted rates. An insurance policy is a written contract between the policyholder (the person or company that gets the policy) and the insurer (the insurance company).
The policyholder is not necessarily the insured. An individual or company may get an insurance policy (making them the policyholder) that protects another person or entity (who is the insured). For example, when a company buys life insurance for an employee, the employee is the insured, and the company is the policyholder.
What are the benefits of insurance?
Having Insurance Give You Peace of Mind
Insurance is an important financial tool. It can help you live life with fewer worries knowing you’ll receive financial assistance after a disaster or accident, helping you recover faster. When it comes to life insurance, this could mean your family doesn’t have to move out of the house or that your kids can afford to go to college.
For auto insurance, it could mean you have extra cash in hand to help pay for repairs or a replacement vehicle after an accident.
Insurance can help keep your life on track, as much as possible, after something bad derails it.
When you take out an insurance policy, depending on the risk you are covering, some of the benefits you might gain include:
- You reduce or eliminate the risk of facing sudden, major expense if you, your family or your property suffer a misfortune.
- You have the funds to meet the costs of any liability claims made against you, when you get blamed for someone else’s misfortune.
- You create security for yourself and your family in the event that you lose your earning power through job loss or disability.
- You provide financial security for your family in the event of your death.
- You are covered if someone else who isn’t insured injures you or damages your property.
- You have the best chance of quickly recovering your lifestyle after damage to your property, with someone taking care of you while restoration or replacement is under way.
- You improve your credit-worthiness by being recognized as a responsible citizen, and may even be able to raise funds on the security of a policy.
- If you’re in business, you can insure against risks that otherwise might not allow you to compete against bigger, financially stronger contenders.
- You can protect yourself against the damage caused by some of the modern financial crimes, which are otherwise difficult for you to understand and assess – like identity theft.
Do You Need It and Is It Worth It?
Obviously, in our opinion the answer is undoubtedly “YES”. Here are just a few of the reasons why:
- An average of more than one in every hundred homes suffers serious damage each year mostly caused by fire and weather events.
- Earthquakes have hit 39 states since 1900 and caused damage in all 50 states.
- Almost one half of all people in the second half of their working lives will suffer a disability lasting more than 90 days before reaching retirement age.
- Most people who reach retirement age will need some level of Long Term Care in their later lives – 58% of men and 79% of women.
- More than two million homes are burglarized every year, and more than a million cars are stolen
- The cost of medical care is rising considerably faster than the rate of inflation. Thousands of people die every year because they don’t have insurance cover.
Pricing an insurance policy is very unique and individualized. What this means that your insurance pricing will not be the same as your neighbor’s. Even if you have the same style home and cars, your auto insurance and home insurance pricing can be very different than that of your neighbor.
The same is true for Business Insurance. Two similar businesses can have different insurance pricing.
There can be thousands of rating tiers in today’s insurance company pricing models.
Thre are also external facttors that can affect insurance premiums. These factors can include:
- Increased Wages
- Supply Chain Interruptions or Delays
- Natural Disasters
- Government Regulations
Why Are Insurance Rates Going Up So Much?
Insurance Pricing MUST Be Approved By The Sate’s Insurance Commissioner
Contrary to popular belief, insurance companies cannot just charge whatever they want for their insurance policies.
Insurance companies must file their rates and get approval from the state’s insurance commissioner for their insurance pricing.
Some states require that the rates are fully approved prior to the insurance company using the rates for their insrurance policies.
Other states have a “file and use” regulation. This means the insurance company file their rates with the insurance commissioner and start using their filed rates prior to the actual approval of the rates. If the commissioner approves the rates, they continue.
If the commissioner does not approve the rates or makes the insurance company make rate adjustments, the company must those adjustments for policies in force under the modified rates and for new policies moving forward.
What Can Affect The Cost Of Your Insurance?
Previous Claims – Insurance companies look back 3 to 5 years for claims history. Having previous claims will cause your insurance premiums to be higher.
Location – Where you live can affect your insurance premiums. Companies use claims statistics to determine the insurance pricing for each zip code.
Credit Score – Depending on the state rules, your credit score can make a difference in your insurance pricing. Insurance companies charge more to those with poor credit scores.
Auto Insurance Pricing Factors:
In addition to the above items, the following factors can affect the cost of your auto insurance (See our blog titled – How are Auto Insurance Rates Calculated?)
Gender (in some states)
Type Of Vehicle (Not the color. Don’t believe the myth red cars do not cost more to insure…)
Annual Mileage Driven
There are also discounts that can be available for your auto insurance. Check out our blog titled – Available Discounts Can Reduce Your Auto Insurance Premiums
Home Insurance Pricing Factors:
Here are additional factors that can affect the cost of your homeowners insurance rates:
- Replacement Value Of Home
- Age And Construction Of The Home
- Distance From Fire Department (determines fire protection class)
- Coverage Selections
- Deductible Selections
- Roof Condition
- Systems Updates (electrical, plumbing, etc.)
At Angel Family Insurance we are committed to helping you find the right insurance coverage at the best price. We are an independent insurance broker with options for you.
Our experienced, local insurance agents, take the time to assess your individual needs and develop a policy that fits your budget.
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