What Is Full Coverage Car Insurance?

A lot people use the term full coverage when describing the amount of car insurance they desire. I have found that full coverage can mean different things to different people. Let’s review what full coverage car insurance looks like.Quick caveat: Every situation is different and as an insured, you assume some financial risk with the use of deductibles and different policy limits, but with that said, here are the main coverage’s to consider for full coverage:

Car Insurance Claim
Car Insurance Claim

Liability

This is what the State of Washington requires you to have. If you cause an accident and people are hurt, you could be held legally responsible for medical costs for everyone involved. The state minimums are 25,000 per person/$50,000 per occurrence with $10,000 property damage.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist

Washington State requires that drivers have insurance, but not everyone obeys the law. If a driver with minimum or no insurance runs into you, you could be left paying the bill. Uninsured motorist fills in that gap.

Medical Payments/PIP

This coverage can help pay for some of your medical costs or funeral expenses if you or anyone in your vehicle is injured in an accident. This coverage also applies if you are a pedestrian struck by a car.

Collision

Collision coverage pays for damage to your car if you collide with another car or something else such as a tree or building. Typically, a deductible paid by the insured applies. The lower your deductible is, the more expensive your premium, and vice versa.

Comprehensive

Comprehensive coverage generally pays for damage to your car cause by something other than a collision, such as theft, storm damage or a rock chip to a windshield. Hitting an animal like a deer is also covered by Comprehensive.

Rental Car

Rental car coverage is triggered by a collision accident. We often are asked if rental car kicks in when someone’s car breaks down, but unfortunately it is not.

Towing

Towing is an important but often over-looked coverage. It is very inexpensive to add to your policy, and it covers not only towing, but refueling, jump-stars, tire changes and lockouts. So to summarize, it is important to review your car insurance policy at least annually to make sure you have all the coverage’s you thought you had. The last thing you want is to hit a deer and find out that it is not covered because you declined comprehensive.

To learn more about full coverage car insurance or to get a quote please call Matt Elwood at 360-452-9200 or visit his Allstate Agency Website at www.allstate.com/mattelwood

 

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Financial Procrastination

Financial Procrastination
Financial Procrastination

It is human nature to procrastinate. I even procrastinated writing this month’s newsletter! It is so much easier to put off for tomorrow that which needs to be done today. After all, does it really make a difference if I clean my room now or tomorrow? Probably not, but when it comes to financial procrastination putting things off until tomorrow can have a dramatic impact. The problem is that tomorrow never comes. Days turn in to weeks, weeks into months and months into years. Financial speaking, you may miss out on years of compounding interest, pay higher insurance premiums or miss out on years of savings as a result of procrastinating. Whatever your situation may be, here is a list of common items I see clients delaying action on:

Bundling Your Insurance

By bundling your auto, home and life insurance with Allstate, you save more on each policy. Depending on your situation, you could be save 30-40% with multiple policy discounts.

Rolling Over An Old 401K

Have you changed employers in the past 5 years or longer? If so, you may have a 401K sitting at an old employer that is not actively being managed for your benefit. You have the option to roll that 401K into an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), often with lower fees and more investment options.

Buying Life Insurance

A lot of people consider life insurance a luxury. I consider it a necessity, especially if you have people that depend on you financially. Allstate just came out with a new term life insurance policy that requires no exam, ages 18-45. With the convenience of doing the application over the phone and signing via email, now is a great time to get that policy your family needs.

Exploring LTC Insurance

There are over 10,000 people turning age 65 everyday is this country. The cost of health care is constantly increasing. If you have ever had an experience with a loved one that needed Long Term Care, you know that it can cost on average $6,000/mo. For a fraction of that cost you can get an LTC policy that will provide care if needed and protect your retirement nest egg at the same time.

There Is No Time Like The Present

These are just a few of the many financial topics that people tend to put off. Did any of them resonate with you? Did you think of something not mentioned here? If there is something on your financial to-do list that you would like me to help you check off, please reply to this email or give me a call at the agency 360-452-9200.

Want more information? Please visit Matt Elwood - Allstate Insurance to get more information on the Allstate products and services I can offer in Port Angeles, Sequim or anywhere Washington State. 

 

 

Three Great Benefits of Permanent Life Insurance

Permanent Life Insurance
Permanent Life Insurance

Permanent life insurance tends to get some bad press, mainly because it is misunderstood by “experts” who don’t how these policies work. I will be the first to admit that there are some bad performing whole life and universal life policies out there, but the opposite is true as well. That’s the way it is with most products. There are positives and negatives associated with most everything. Since permanent life insurance gets so much negative press, here are three positive features that often get over-looked.

Tax Free Death Benefit

As it stands now, death benefit proceeds payable to beneficiaries are income tax-free. Well, so is term insurance, but only permanent life insurance is guaranteed to be there when you die as long as required premium payments are made. The vast majority of term policies never pay out a death benefit because most people outlive the term. Actuaries know this and so do the insurance companies.

Tax-deferred Growth

The cash value build-up inside a life insurance policy grows on a tax-deferred basis. That means you do not pay taxes each year on the growth of the guaranteed and non-guaranteed cash values.

Living Benefits

A permanent life insurance policy allows you to take out loans or withdrawals from your cash value. Often called Living Benefits, you have easy access to cash which can be used for anything from supplementing retirement income, helping with a down payment for a house or just creating an emergency fund. There are different strategies for accessing the cash value with different implications, but if done correctly, it can be withdrawn tax-free.

The Future

Obviously, everything is subject to change in the tax law, but this is why you should be working with an experienced, licensed agent. If you would like to learn more about the ways permanent life insurance may benefit your financial situation, please give me a call at 360-452-9200.

Want more information? Please visit Matt Elwood - Allstate Insurance to get more information on the Allstate products and services I can offer in Port Angeles, Sequim or anywhere Washington State. 

Six Reasons To Consider Buying Long Term Care Insurance

By now it is no surprise to you that our nation is aging. Baby Boomers are the largest segment of our population. With over 10,000 people currently turning age 65 every day, more and more people need Long-Term Care services. However, given these staggering numbers, Long-Term Care insurance is still a major gap in most people’s financial plans. Here are six reasons why you should consider buying LTC Insurance.

1.      You are in good Health

If you are in good health now in your 50’s or 60’s there is a good chance you will live into your 80’s and 90’s thus increasing the chances of needed Long-Term Care. Take advantage now of the good health discounts available while you still can.

2.       Emotional Toll

If you’ve had a personal experience with someone that needed LTC, you know the emotional toll it can bring. Without insurance, you may have to rely on your children or other family to take care of you. Would you really want to put them through that?

LTC Insurance not included
LTC Insurance not included

3.       The Government will not pay for LTC

Medicare only pays for a short period of time, usually not past 100 days. The government knows they can’t afford to pay for this given the other entitlement programs already in place. That is why they are giving tax advantages to buying long term care.

4.       Rising Costs

If you think it is too expensive then wait until you have to pay for it without Insurance. When it comes to cost of care, Washington State is higher than the national average. In a recent study by Genworth Financial titled “2010 Cost of Care Survey” the median cost for LTC Home care in Washington State is $49,695 versus the national median of $43,472. Care in a nursing home is even higher.

5.       It Won’t Happen To Me

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 7 out of 10 people reaching age 65 will need Long-Term Care services at some point in their lives. That is pretty sobering considering the odds of using your auto and home insurance.

6.       Home is where the heart Is

The thought of going to a nursing home is not a pleasant one. In fact, most people would rather remain in their home. And that is exactly what LTC insurance provides. It allows you the freedom and money to chose where you want to receive care and that includes your home.

If you would like to discuss your own personal situation or would like a Long-Term Care insurance quote, please reply or call me at 360-452-9200

Want more information? Please visit Matt Elwood - Allstate Insurance to get more information on the Allstate products and services I can offer in Port Angeles, Sequim or anywhere Washington State. 

What Is The Best Age To Buy Long-Term Care Insurance?

Couple considering when to buy LTC Insurance
Couple considering when to buy LTC Insurance

By now you understand that having Long-Term Care insurance is a good idea, but when the heck are you suppose to buy it? Boomers get inundated with financial advice everywhere they turn. Depending on what time of the day it is you will get a different answer on the best time to buy LTC insurance.

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey says the best time to buy is after age 60. In Dave’s cost comparison example, he illustrates how it is cheaper to buy LTC at age 50 than it is at age 60. This is of course true. However, his premise that if you wait to buy at age 60 and invest the difference you will come out ahead is not always true. Even if you had the discipline to invest the difference, (which most people don’t) doing so in the stock market gave you a whopping 1.2% average from 2000-2009. I’m not sure where you can get the 5% he talks about these days. Given interest rates and returns of other investment vehicles, you are probably losing money when considering inflation. I do, however, agree with his second point that it is a personal decision and that you should buy it when you can afford it and have peace of mind.

Matt Elwood

I say the best time to buy Long-Term Care insurance is when you can reasonably afford it. There is no magical age when it comes to buying insurance. If you know you need it and you can reasonably afford it, you should buy it. Insurance is meant to provide financial protection from a risk you can’t afford happening without it.

Is It Time For You?

If you would like to have a personal discussion about your Long-Term Care needs, please reach out to me at 360-452-9200

Want more information? Please visit Matt Elwood - Allstate Insurance to get more information on the Allstate products and services I can offer in Port Angeles, Sequim or anywhere Washington State. 

How to Get Insurance When Moving to Port Angeles, Washington

Matt Elwood, Agency Owner

Matt Elwood, Agency Owner

You have finally decided to leave the rat race and move to the beautiful Olympic Peninsula. One of the many things on your to-do list may be to get new home and auto insurance, especially if you are coming from out of state. How do you go about doing that?

When changing insurance agents, there are some important things to remember. These apply if you are moving from a different state, a different insurance company, or you just want to go through a different agent in the company you are currently with. If you follow these tips, it will make the process of changing agents much easier.

First of all, contact your new agent before your current policy expires. A lapse of even one day can drastically impact your new rates and might even prevent you from being able to have a new policy. This is especially true for car insurance.

It is also helpful to have your current insurance in front of you so you know what coverages you have. It makes it easier to get an accurate quote if you know what you want.

Keep in mind that if you’re moving from one state to another, your insurance will probably be different. Even if you stay with the same company. Every state is different regarding premiums and discounts. There are also certain coverages that differ from state to state. And required state minimums also vary.

If you are relocating to the Olympic Peninsula area and need a new insurance agent, please contact Matt Elwood of Elwood Benefits at 360-452-9200.

Knowledge is power

Sign up for Matt's monthly insurance newsletter and he will share with you how to better protect your family, save more money and achieve financial security.