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B.I.G. Blog

What, Not My Home Jan 31, 2018

Buying Seattle Homeowner’s Insurance

With all the options you have these days buying the right kind of homeowner’s insurance can be confusing. Some advertisements want us to believe that purchasing homeowner’s insurance should only take 7 minutes! Making purchases too quickly can cause mistakes.  Taking time to consider your options can save you money and future headaches. We found at least four mistakes people sometimes make when purchasing homeowners insurance.

  • Not having the right value for your personal property. Most people under value their personal belongings. We recommend you complete a home inventory to make sure you have the correct value on all your property. Remember, the insurance covers what it costs to replace the item not what you paid for it.
  • Improper value on jewelry and other high value items. Most homeowner’s insurance policies have limitations on jewelry, guns and other collectibles. Make sure you identify these if they are over $1,500, (this varies so call us for a review).
  • Not fully understanding your policy exclusions. Every homeowner’s policy has exclusions. Flood and earthquake are not included in a standard homeowner’s policy. Wear and tear is also excluded.
  • Using the wrong deductible. Increasing your deductible will lower your homeowner’s insurance premium; however, make sure you have the resources to pay the deductible in the event of a loss. If you increase your deductible to $2,500, do you have the $2,500 to pay the deductible? We can help you understand how deductibles work and set the right one for your individual situation.

As insurance professionals we will guide you through the purchasing process and keep you informed of how these issues will impact your personal insurance program. 

Founded in the Belltown neighborhood of Seattle in 2004, we now service the entire west coast, including Washington, Oregon and California, with office locations in Seattle and San DIego. At Belltown Insurance Group, each one of our clients are given a dedicated team of experts that work together to proficiently address all your concerns.

We offer all types of Personal Insurance coverages to our clients including Auto, Homeowners, Motorcycle, Boat, Car, Renters and Umbrella. Our benefits department can also assist you in protecting you and your family with Life, Insurance. 

Trends In Commercial Insurance Jan 25, 2018

Business Insurance and Risk Management Trends

Every business faces risks of various kinds. If you have employees you have the risk of employee injury. You most likely buy workers’ compensation to protect yourself from this risk. No owner or manager wants to believe that their business is exposed to great risks; however, many situations may expose your company to lawsuits, liability and substantial expenses. An unfortunate number of these situations go unnoticed by many business owners until it is too late.

Comprehensive risk management is important to the overall success of your business. Unaddressed risks may result in uninsured losses that could potentially cost your business thousands of dollars.

A good risk management plan starts with reviewing your potential risks then developing a plan to treat or manage these risks. Commercial insurance is a good tool that can address many of your business risks. However, many business owners often don’t consider the following risks.

Some Important Business Risks to Consider

The risk of being sued by employees - There are many state and federal laws that protect worker’s rights. These include harassment, discrimination, retaliation, and civil rights. We can provide you with a quote for employment practices liability insurance that will address many of your employment risks.

The risk of lost income - If you have a loss or damage to your building you may not be able to resume operations for a period of time. Your business is at risk for lost revenues. Business income insurance can offer protection.

Cyber liability risk -  If your business accepts electronic payments, handles sensitive customer information or stores key information on the internet, you are at risk. Cyber liability insurance protects against these risks, and is an important coverage option to explore for many businesses.

We Offer a Fresh Perspective to Your Business Risks

As part of our service we can review and examine your business operations and help you identify the important business risks. Then we will design a risk and insurance program tailored to meet your needs. The goal of risk management is to protect your business from being vulnerable. Many business risk management and insurance programs focus on keeping the company viable and reducing financial risks.

Choosing the right business or commercial insurance plan for your business can be very confusing, so we have developed many different options and programs to meet the needs of our commercial insurance clients in Seattle area and throughout the state of Washington.

Whats Up With Your Business Insurance? Jan 10, 2018

We live in a changing world, and your business insurance needs to be changing as well. In order to keep your commercial insurance up to date you need to have the ability to change and update your insurance program on a regular basis.  The industry has developed a number of innovative insurance products that your business may just need.

  • Business Interruption Insurance covers the loss of income that a business suffers after a covered loss (fire, windstorm, etc.), while its facility is shut down or in the process of being rebuilt.
  • Tenant's Insurance is needed if a commercial lease requires a tenants to carry a certain amount of insurance. A renter's commercial policy covers damages to improvements you make to your rental space and damages to the building caused by the negligence of your employees.
  • Directors and Officers Insurance is needed even if you are a privately held business.  Directors and officer’s liability Insurance protects your business, owners, executives, and managers if individuals, competitors, third parties, or government regulators make claim for damages.
  • Cyber Liability is a risk that every business has. According to the Insurance Information Institute, businesses have a greater chance of having a cyber breach than they do of having a fire.  Most businesses should consider cyber liability insurance, which is designed to cover the costs of investigations, notification, and credit monitoring for affected individuals, regulatory compliance, defending lawsuits, and payment of any resulting judgments or settlements.
  • Faulty Workmanship is a new and unique endorsement that provides a specific limit to protect against claims arising out of faulty workmanship, materials or products. These claims would otherwise be excluded by the “business risk” exclusions found in every standard ISO Commercial General Liability policy.
  • Equipment Breakdown coverage offers extra protection for electrical, mechanical, or digital equipment used by your business, including heating, cooling, and refrigeration systems; computers and communication equipment; and more. It can pay for the cost to repair or replace the damaged equipment in the case that there is physical damage, as well as cover the cost of service interruption.
  • Debris Removal Insurance covers the cost of removing debris after a fire, flood, windstorm, etc. For example, a fire burns your building to the ground. Before you can start rebuilding, the remains of the old building have to be removed. Your property insurance will cover the costs of rebuilding, but not of removing the debris.

At Belltown Insurance Group, we can design a specialized package according to your property, liability, and casualty needs. We are also proactive in identifying any factors that may increase your premiums or change your risk, and provide consulting and risk management options to protect your business.

Whether you are a retailer, wholesaler, contractor, or electrician, we can tailor a package to meet your specific needs and requirements. So give us a call today or fill out one of our free online quote forms.

How Contractors Can Limit Theft Dec 28, 2017
Equipment theft on the job site is a common issue for most contractors. According to figures from the National Association of Home Builders and the LoJack Corporation, construction theft accounts for as much as $1 billion dollars’ worth of losses each year. 

Contractors and developers have a lot to worry about including cost overruns, subcontractor issues, state and local regulations and much more. Construction sites are frequently vandalized by the theft of machinery, equipment, tools and materials.

Having the right commercial insurance can be a good first step in helping the contractor recover form theft and vandalism on the construction site.

According to LoJack's 14th annual Construction Equipment Theft Study, construction sites can be easy targets because:

Most job sites have poor security

Open cabs are easy to access

One key can fit all pieces of equipment

Jobsites are often left unsecured at night or over the weekend

There is a general lack of product identification numbers/records in the industry
 
The following are a series of loss prevention recommendations designed to minimize or reduce the theft of property from the construction job site.

Encourage all employees to be security conscious when on the worksite.

Complete background checks of all employees.

Contact neighbors to advise what is happening and what you are doing to minimize impact on them.

The control of keys is essential on a site. Keys should be issued to as few people as possible. Managers should keep a log of who has keys.

Keep all equipment locked. Storage sheds or fenced areas should be provided on the job site for the secure storage of tools and equipment.

Lock all vehicles at night.

Place a fence around the construction site.

Hav site well posted; no trespassing.

Construction equipment should be engraved or marked in at least two obvious and one hidden location.

Stamp ID numbers conspicuously on all large equipment and keep records of the ID numbers.

Lighting can be an effective deterrent to theft and vandalism on the site. It is particularly effective in deterring the casual or impulsive offender.

Make sure all incidents of theft or vandalism are reported promptly by workers and reported to police.
Give one of our agents a call to save money on your Business Insurance. Some of our Commercial insurance coverages include Commercial Auto, Work Comp, Business Owners Packages, and General Liability.

Let us help you cut your insurance cost! Just give us a quick call today at (888) 443-7744 or Submit one of our quick online quote forms - with the help of our dedicated business partners; we conveniently offer an entire solution for all your insurance and business needs.
Does Santa Claus Need Insurance? Dec 12, 2017
Imagine that your entire business was focused on just one day out of the whole year?  You have to spend 364 days preparing for one single product distribution.  Do you think there might be just a little bit of stress—say around December 20?  If we attempted to present Santa with a business insurance proposal, he might say, “Who would sue Santa?”  If Santa were concerned about being sued, he might stop delivering gifts to attorney’s homes!

You might get that special gift this year, it could be a new car, art, jewelry, or even an ATV. If so, Santa suggests you call us to make sure it gets insured. Your homeowner’s insurance can be updated to reflects any new purchases.

Santa might be advised to consider an accident policy and a good health plan. Here are some interesting facts about Christmas that you may not have known.

All letters addressed to Santa in the United States go to Santa Claus, Indiana.

It is estimated that the song "White Christmas" by Irving Berlin is the bestselling single in history with over 100 million copies sold.

Each year more than 3 billion Christmas cards are sent in the U.S. alone.

$447 billion and 12.9 billion hours…Money and Time Americans are expected to spend shopping, wrapping and returning gifts.

During the Christmas season, nearly 28 sets of LEGO are sold every second.

All the gifts in the Twelve Days of Christmas would equal 364 gifts.

Christmas trees have been sold in the U.S. since the year 1850.

There are approximately 21,000 Christmas tree farms in the United States.
Welcome to Belltown Insurance Group. We are an Independent Insurance Agency, which means we have made available some of our best companies for your online quick quotes. 

Founded in the Belltown neighborhood of Seattle in 2004, we now service the entire west coast, including Washington, Oregon and California, with office locations in Seattle and San DIego. At Belltown Insurance Group, each one of our clients are given a dedicated team of experts that work together to proficiently address all your concerns.

We offer all types of Personal Insurance coverages to our clients including Auto, Homeowners, Motorcycle, Boat, Car, Renters and Umbrella. Our benefits department can also assist you in protecting you and your family with Life, Insurance. 
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2133 3rd Ave #106 Seattle, WA 98121 | Phone: (888) 443-7744 | Fax: (206) 443-8335 | Toll Free: (888) 443-7744 | Email Us | Get Map
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