Auto Insurance Flashback

We published the following article on April 21, 2008 and find it worth a re-print.

Geico entered the Massachusetts auto insurance market in May of 2009. They spent over a billion dollars on advertising in 2015 and they are a marketing force.

However, almost seven years after their Massachusetts auto insurance market launch, this independent insurance agent’s fear of the little green lizard is gone.

We compete against them and we’ve taken business from them.

Six year after the article, our belief still rings true:

“For now, it is up to the Independent Insurance Agent, to get the best rates for our clients, to package policies and to round accounts. It is time to save our clients money. It is time to advise and to advocate. It is time to demonstrate our value.”

MA-Auto-Insurance-Flashback

Ma Auto Insurance & the little, green lizard

Boston, MA – 4/21/2008

Never in the history of the Massachusetts Professional, Independent Insurance Agent community, have five letters been so feared.

Not, “t-h-e-f-t.”

Not, “f-r-a-u-d.”

And no, not, “c-l-a-i-m.”

I am talking about “G-E-I-C-O.”

Not since my childhood Godzilla days, have I been so scared of a lizard.

For years they have advertised in our proud, Commonwealth and for years I have smugly told customers, “GEICO? They don’t even write insurance in Massachusetts!”

Nationally they don’t use Independent Agents, either.

They use call centers and service centers and they don’t write home insurance.

When you work with an Independent, Professional Insurance Agent you are working with someone who who has your best interest in mind. You are working with someone who will shop your insurance with many different companies to get you the best rate. You are working with someone who is your advocate at claim time. Who, at GEICO, works as your advocate? Who, at GEICO, sells multi-lines of insurance and shops your insurances with many different companies?

Like the chilly winds of our Massachusetts’ autums, it seems inevitable that GEICO is coming. When? I don’t know. 2009? 2010 at the latest, is my guess.

For now, it is up to the Independent Insurance Agent, to get the best rates for our clients, to package policies and to round accounts. It is time to save our clients money. It is time to advise and to advocate. It is time to demonstrate our value.

Home heating tips to save money:

With oil and natural gas prices heating up, we offer some tips to save you money …

Home heating tips

With oil and natural gas prices heating up, we offer the following tips to save you money.

Maximize Efficiency:
Check your heating system before you turn it on for the winter. Keeping your furnace clean, lubricated, and properly adjusted can save about 5 percent on your heating bill.

Consider replacing an old furnace. Today’s furnaces are about 25 percent more efficient than they were in the 1980s.

Minimize Heat Loss:
Seal up the leaks. Sealing and insulating duct systems can cut heating costs by as much as 40 percent.

Add insulation to your home’s attic. Even if your attic floor already has a couple of inches of insulation, another six inches can help.

Wrap an insulation blanket around your hot water pipes and tank. This is especially valuable for older water heaters and can save up to 10 percent on water-heating costs.

Don’t use an open-hearth fireplace for heat. The heated air that’s drawn from your home and up the chimney offsets almost all the warmth that a fire provides.

Keep your fireplace damper closed when you don’t have a fire burning. This will prevent up to 8 percent of your furnace-heated air from going up the chimney home for free.

Conserve Heat:
Turn down the thermostat a little. For every two degrees you lower the thermostat, you’ll save about 4 percent on heating bills. Consider a programmable thermostat. One of these can help you cut heating costs as much as 20%.

Reduce hot water temperature. Save 7 to 11 percent of water-heating costs by keeping your water heater at the “normal” setting or 120º.

Shorten showers. Showers account for two-thirds of your water-heating costs, so even shaving off a few minutes can help.

Disappearing Deductible and Accident Forgiveness

If you have Accident Forgiveness, your insurance premium won’t increase because of an at-fault accident. This will save you thousands of dollars over the term of the surcharge …

Johnson & Rohan Insurance

There are two terrific endorsements that some insurance companies in Massachusetts offer: Disappearing Deductible and Accident Forgiveness.

Safety Insurance, for example, offers a nifty endorsement called the “Shield Plus” endorsement.

It’s only available if you’re a “99” or “98” driver (violation and accident free for at least 5 years) and costs $35 annually, per vehicle.

The endorsement includes:

  • -$500 Disappearing Collision Deductible Credit
  • Accident Forgiveness (If in an accident during the policy term, Safety Insurance will not apply additional accident surcharge points to your driving record!)
  • Air Bag Coverage
  • Personal Effects Coverage
  • Rental vehicle Loss of Income
  • Emergency Road Travel Expenses
  • Supplemental Towing & Labor
  • Extended Substitute Transportation
  • Seat Belt Coverage
  • Pet Coverage
  • Extended Substitute Transportation

Often we recommend this endorsement. If you presently carry a $500 Collision deductible, you can typically save between $100 – $400 annually by carrying a $1,000 Collision deductible.

The Safety Shield Plus endorsement, with it’s -$500 disappearing deductible feature, lowers the $1,000 deductible to $500.

Even better than the deductible is Accident Forgiveness.

If you have Accident Forgiveness, your insurance premium won’t increase because of an at-fault accident. This will save you thousands of dollars over the term of the surcharge.

Give us a call or click to find out more.

Thank you for insuring with Johnson & Rohan Insurance.

Home Insurance Savings Tips

Following please find some measures that can be taken to lessen the possibility of home insurance losses which will ensure greater insurability and more affordable premiums down the road …

Following please find some measures that can be taken to lessen the possibility of home insurance losses which will ensure greater insurability and more affordable premiums down the road.

Some ideas to help reduce losses and save premium dollars:

  • Replace washing machine hoses when they show signs of deterioration. Consider replaceing them with stainless steel hoses. Hoses should not rub against the wall. In addition, turn off the washing machine water faucet when the appliance is not in use to help prevent leaks.
  • If you suffer a water leak, make sure it is properly repaired and promptly remediated. This will reduce the possibility of hazardous and expensive mold losses down the road. Mold or rot is typically excluded, or extremely limited on the standard home insurance policy.
  • Consider installing an automatic water shut-off system for your home. These systems have sensors that detect water leaks. Sensors send a wireless signal that interacets with the shut-off valve to turn off the water to the home.
  • Maintain your roof. A qualifty roof inspection on a periodic basis can identify sections that need repair or replacement which help prevent water losses.