Insurance for a Teen Driver

Curb the Cost of Insuring Your Teen Driver

Teen Driver 3

Teen Drivers Greatly Affect Your Rates

If your teenager is preparing to get behind the wheel, you may want to consider your options as to the best way to insure them. The statistics show that teen drivers aged 16-19 have a much higher likelihood to be involved in a car accident than other age groups. In turn, it can be quite pricey to insure your teen driver. Here are some helpful hints and tips to keep your premium low and protect your teen from unsafe driving practices.

Policy Options

There are some options when it comes to insuring your teen driver. However, rather than creating a separate policy (which tends to be the more expensive option) consider adding your teen driver as an additional driver to your existing auto policy. Not only will this option keep your teen safe, but it will also save you money.

Another way to keep costs down is by assigning which vehicle your teen will drive. It is important to keep in mind that the newer the car, the more expensive the coverage will be. Talk to your agent about which vehicle will be the cheapest vehicle on your policy to assign your teen driver to.

Deductible Considerations

Auto deductibles will typically range from $250 to $1,000. By increasing your deductible, you’ll only be using your insurance policy for larger repairs and paying out of pocket for smaller dings and chips. However, the increased deductibles can mean big savings.  Keep in mind, if you lease or finance your car, the leasing company may insist on having a deductible of $500.

Ask for the Student Discount

Good grades don’t just get you into college; they can also qualify your student for a rate discount. If your teen driver maintains a 3.0 GPA, they will typically qualify for the discount! In order to help motivate your teen driver, make driving a privilege that’s dependent on good grades.

Teen Driver 2Weigh Your Buying Decision

Purchasing a new car for your teen driver with the latest in safety is understandable. However it may be better to purchase a safe, used car for your premiums sake. Prior to purchasing an auto, Midwest Insurance Group is happy to give you an insurance quote to better help you with your buying decision.

 

Set Your Expectation for Safety

In order to keep your teen driver’s insurance premium constant, it’s best that he or she maintain a clean driving record. To help reduce accidents consider these tips:

Teen Driver 1

  • Restrict nighttime driving
  • Limit the number of passengers in the vehicle
  • Ban cell phone use regardless if your state’s laws are more lenient
  • Establish driving-area limits
  • Set a curfew
  • Talk to your teen driver about drinking and driving
  • Insist on seat belt use for everyone in the vehicle
  • Ride with your teen driver to make sure they are still using the safety habits learned in driver’s education
  • Set a good example for your teen driver by being a responsible driver yourself!

Minimize Distracted Driving

You may not be able to change son or daughter’s status as a teen driver; there are many ways in which they can maintain their good driver standing. In order to minimize their risk, teen drivers need to minimize their distractions. Some ways to do that is by:

  • Only driving with one person in the car for their first year
  • Ban the use of electronics, texts and phone calls can wait!

The use of cell phones while driving is extremely dangerous, and recently it has been put into law. In 28 states, and the District of Columbia, teen drivers are prohibited from using their cell phones while driving. Also many states have laws designating the number of passengers young drivers are allowed to have. Before getting behind the wheel, make sure you and your teen driver are aware and understand the regulations in your state, county and city.

 

 

 

Insuring a College Student

Insuring a college student: Finding the right coverage for a college student can be a challenge. 

StudentWhat every parent should know: Hauling your child off to college is a landmark in your child’s future. The collegiate stepping stone is momentous and sets precedence for years to come. Unfortunately, most parents and children are unaware of their updated or new insurance needs during this chaotic time.

 

Protecting Your Student’s Belongings:

Dorm rooms are a new and exciting place for your son or daughter. However it’s imperative that you speak with your agent regarding the rules and various limitations your coverage may have concerning the valuables your child will be housing in their dorm room. Generally, homeowner’s policies will consider a dorm room an extension of your home. However, when insuring a college student who has a vast amount of electronics, furniture or various other high valued items – you may want to consider purchasing additional coverage. Although your daughter’s or son’s belongings may be covered while living in a dorm room, if your child lives in an apartment or off campus, your homeowners insurance will not cover their possessions. Purchasing renters insurance is a simple but valuable asset when it comes to added protection, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, prices range from only $15 to $30 per month. In addition to covering possessions, renters insurance will provide liability coverage, just in case anyone is injured in the residence.

Changing Auto Coverage:

Having your son or daughter keep their vehicle at home may not only be safer, but it could save money. If your child moves more than 100 miles away from home, your car insurance premiums could decrease by as much as 30 percent. Contact Midwest Insurance Group to learn more and save money while continuing to preserve your child’s coverage.

Keeping Your Child Healthy While On Campus:

If your child plans on being a full time student, taking 12 hours or more per semester, they likely can stay on your health plan during college. Although these rules and regulations can vary significantly by state, and the coverage could become complicated if your child attends school out-of-state. For instance, you may have a managed care plan, in which the plan can contain geographical parameters. These parameters may hinder your child’s ability to access an in-network health care provider close by. If your child participates in intercollegiate athletics, injuries are a real possibility and your child may not be covered. Before you send your child off to college, be sure to check your policy and the schools policy for athletes. There are a few options if you find your child not having adequate coverage under your plan for any reason. Many universities offer their own health plans, although some have considerably high deductibles and low coverage maximums, while other universities will not offer coverage for any condition present prior to attending school. Otherwise, an individual policy can always be considered. It’s important to know and understand your options prior to an injury occurring, learn more today.

Plan Ahead:

Although no one wants to think of the worse, it is important to find out if your child would be able to finish his or her college degree if something were to happen to you. Another way of insuring a college student is by buying life insurance not only replaces the income you would have been earning, but it would also ensure your child’s ability to complete his or her college education.

Insurance Questions to Ask When You Have College-Aged Children:

  • Will my child’s belongings be covered if his/her dorm is subject to theft, fire or other disasters?
  • Will my child’s belongings be covered if he/she lives in off-campus housing?
  • What happens if he/she gets seriously injured while at school?
  • Can I get a discount on my auto policy if my young driver is away at school and rarely uses the family car?
  • Do I have to change my auto policy if my son or daughter brings the car to school?
  • Will my intercollegiate athlete be covered under my family health plan if he or she is injured during practice or a game?
  • Does my child need to be a full-time student to be covered under my health plan?

Count on Us:

If your child is going off to college, or you’re just curious what coverage you do have, contact us at (262) 646-5777 to learn more. You could save money while maintaining protection for your child while he or she is away from home.

If a Tree Falls, Who Pays?

Tree WindEvery year, storms are responsible for felling countless trees and limbs. Unfortunately, some of those fallen trees damage homes and other property.

Cleaning up the damage from a storm can be a difficult task, both physically and emotionally, and things can become especially tense when you discover that it’s your neighbor’s tree that damaged your house.

To make matters worse, many homeowners are surprised to discover that if a neighbor’s tree falls on their house, it’s usually their own homeowners policy—not their neighbor’s—that will cover the cost of the damages. What follows are general guidelines for who pays what in various situations, but you should also check your homeowners policy for coverages and exclusions.

Your Property, Your Policy

Generally speaking, if your property is damaged, you are responsible for the damages. It doesn’t matter if the tree or limb came from your property, your neighbor’s property or even municipal property.

Keep in mind that a windstorm isn’t anyone’s fault; it’s an act of nature. If a tree does damage your property during a windstorm, your policy will cover the damages. After all, that’s why you purchased a homeowners policy—to protect yourself against unforeseen losses like a tree damaging your house.

Their Property, Their Policy

It might seem unfair that if it’s your neighbor’s tree that damages your home, you should have to pay. Fortunately for you, that standard applies both ways. If a storm rolls through and your tree falls and damages your neighbor’s house, his or her insurance is going to cover the damages.

Negligence and Liability

So far, these scenarios have been fairly straightforward, but what happens when it wasn’t a storm that fell the tree?

Instead, your neighbor’s tree was hollowed out from years of disease, and he’d neglected to do anything about it. In fact, it was so diseased that you expressed your concern to your neighbor that it might topple over and damage your property. Unfortunately, one day, that’s exactly what happens. What then?

Your insurance carrier is still going to be the one paying your claim. However, if you can prove your neighbor knew that the tree was diseased and that he or she neglected to fix it, your insurance carrier would probably attempt to collect from your neighbor’s insurance. If your carrier is successful, you could be reimbursed for your deductible.

Remember, though, this rule also applies the other way. If you have diseased or damaged trees on your property and they damage your neighbor’s house, he or she can try to prove your negligence. Your property is your responsibility, so it’s best to inspect your trees every year for signs of disease or damage. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, consider having a professional arborist examine your trees.

Other Structures

If the tree doesn’t damage your house but instead damages your fence, are you still covered? Generally, you are.

Most homeowners policies distinguish between two different kinds of structures on your property. The “dwelling” refers to your house and any attached structures (like an attached garage), as well as any fixtures attached to the house. “Other structures,” including detached garages, sheds, fences or gazebos, are also insured, but typically only for 10 percent of the coverage on your dwelling.

Vehicles

If, in the aftermath of a storm, you discover that a tree has fallen on your car, your homeowners policy doesn’t apply. Instead, you’ll be looking at your auto policy.

If you have comprehensive coverage on your vehicle, your auto insurance carrier will pay for the damages, after you pay your deductible. The same rule would apply to a guest’s car. Hopefully, he or she took out comprehensive coverage, too.

Removal and Cleanup

What if the tree fell but didn’t hit anything? Would you be covered for removal costs?

If the fallen tree blocks a path to your front door or driveway, then many homeowners policies would pay for removal. Generally, the maximum coverage is around $500.

If the tree simply falls in the middle of your yard, your policy likely wouldn’t cover it. Unless the fallen tree damaged insured property, there is no loss to file a claim for.

Replacement

Replacing the trees themselves can be more complicated. Trees that have fallen due to wind damage may or may not be covered, so it’s best to check with your broker.

Most policies offer limited coverage for trees that have fallen due to fire, lightning, explosion, theft, vandalism, malicious mischief or aircraft. Amounts and exclusions will vary, so it’s important to read your policy and check with your broker if you have any questions.

Making Sure You’re Covered

Hopefully, your trees grow and endure. In the event that they fall, it’s important to know that you’re covered. Contact Midwest Insurance Group, LLC today to make sure that you have sufficient coverage for whatever might blow your way.