Comprehensive Insurance Survey
Buying insurance is often a complex and confusing transaction for the consumer. Laws and regulations pertaining to contracts of insurance are constantly changing, so it is no surprise that consumers are at a disadvantage when it comes to buying appropriate protection for their assets. A survey conducted by the O’Meara-Sumnar Insurance Agency should provide you an opportunity to review your entire insurance portfolio at one time and address any problem areas that may exist.
Whether purchasing personal or business insurance, it is best to invite independent insurance agent to conduct an “insurance survey.”
An “insurance survey” includes these considerations:
1) A thorough examination of insurable hazards
2) An analysis of contractual requirements for insurance contained in leases, mortgages, performance contracts, rental agreements, loan agreements and contracts of sale. Too often the consumer is found to be in breach of these contracts because of failure to comply with insurance provisions. Equally important are the “matter of indemnity” or “hold harmless” clauses often embedded in these types of contracts. Liability insurance may be available to protect consumers who are faced with these and similar legal obligations.
3) A written presentation of the findings and recommendations that identifies potential gaps in coverage, and which includes solutions and options.
Surveys should also include an examination of all existing insurance policies to ensure that they provide the broadest possible coverage at competitive premiums. There may be products available that will consolidate existing coverage or eliminate unnecessary coverage, thereby reducing premiums. These options may have economic and contractual impact; therefore decisions should be made with the assistance of an insurance professional. One of the most important elements of an insurance survey is a review of current property vales. Property values must be updated frequently to ensure that they are accurate. Many property policies are written on the basis of co-insurance. This means the consumer, in exchange for a premium reduction, agrees to carry limits sufficient to cover property values. If a loss occurs and it is determined that sufficient limits are not carried at the time of the loss, severe penalties are applied to the loss payment. These penalties could result in larger out-of-pocket expenses for a consumer. A survey is essential in the design and maintenance of an effective insurance program and the results are often surprising. Take the case of the Detroit shop owner who was paying a costly property premium because his shop was next door to a dry cleaner that used flammable materials. The show owner continued to pay the high premium until a survey revealed that the dry cleaner had been gone for nine years!
Many people cannot afford to buy all the protection they would like to have. Thus it is important that a client be informed of his or her options and make educated choices about the types of protection most needed and/or desired.