Tuesday, July 28, 2015

9 Ways To Save On Your Car Insurance

Looking for ways to keep your auto insurance premiums manageable?  Here are 9 ways you can save on your insurance (without sacrificing coverage.)

1. Driving Record
Your driving record plays a big role in how much you pay for insurance. By keeping a clean record for 3-5 years, you can save hundreds of dollars! Be a cautious driver, don’t speed, and you'll lower your premiums.
2. Driving Course
Defensive driving courses are an easy way to achieve an extra discount. They can also help keep a ticket from showing up and messing up your clean driving record. Make sure to call us before taking the class if you're using it for a discount so we can verify that your policy qualifies.
3. Anti-Theft Devices
Installing an alarm or other anti-theft device can lower premiums on your vehicle. Make sure to discuss all features with us, sometimes even power locks and a remote can count!
4. Your Credit Score
While insurance uses a different formula then the credit bureaus, your credit still affects the rate you pay. Good credit can save you hundreds (even thousands) on your premiums! Make sure to review your report on a regular basis and have any mistakes corrected.
5. Where You Live
Rural areas pay less for insurance than the big cities do. It's all about risk and with a large population, there is more chance for an accident. Therefore, where you choose to live can impact your rates. Consider visiting with us before purchasing a home if you’re concerned about the costs (it is based on the zip code).
6. Your Vehicle
The vehicle you choose to purchase also makes a difference! Some vehicles cost a lot more to repair than others, which drives up their rates. Easy way to avoid buying a money-sucker? Call us first and let us quote the vehicle before you sign on the dotted line.
7. How Often You Drive
If you take public transportation and only drive on the weekend, you'll pay less than someone with a long commute. Make sure to review your annual mileage and daily commutes with us (especially if they change) so that you can receive the extra savings.
8. Raise Your Deductible
A higher deductible (your out of pocket cost in a claim) means a lower monthly rate. If you have $1000 in savings and could afford to use it if you had an accident, then you’ll save on your insurance cost by having a $1000 deductible instead of a $250. We can help you review the costs and benefits in your specific situation.
9. Your Agent
And the best way to save? Work with a local agent! You'll get the coverage you need plus you'll have an advocate working on your behalf to find the best rate, all the discounts, and an easy explanation of any gaps in your coverage. It's the #1 way to control your risk, maximize your savings, and protect your family.
We want to be your agent!  Call us to discuss your policy today and let us see how we can save you money on your car insurance! At Bryan Insurance we have over 10 different car insurance carriers that specialize in giving you the best coverage at the best price in New Windsor, Long Island and the surrounding New York area. Call us at 888.565.2212 or visit us online.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

You had a claim. Now what?

It happened. You had a claim. This one was not fixable on your own and you had to call your agent or company to put the claim in. Now what?

Claims can be a stressful process.  I've worked with my clients after car accidents, home fires, storm damage, and even a death in the family.  Insurance claims are often tied to the most stressful events in our lives.

That's why it's extremely important that you work with an agent and a company that you trust and who you know will be able to walk you through the process.

After an insurance claim, you will be assigned to an adjuster who will evaluate your loss.  Most times, they will come out to take a look at what happened and speak to you. The adjuster will determine the settlement amount based on what is fair to put you back to where you were before the claim and also answer any questions you may have.  

So what happens if things don't go smoothly at first?  Maybe you don't agree on the amount or can't get the right documentation?

That's where I come in.

My job, as your agent, is to also be your advocate.  My office goes to work to help you communicate with your adjuster if there is a problem.  That means that when you need help, we're there.

Yes, sometimes you can get cheaper rates with unknown companies.  And you might love being able to buy online without talking to an agent. Sometimes you also get what you pay for. Cheaper doesn’t always mean better especially when you are up to your eyeballs in paperwork from a claim and you feel like no one is listening to you.

But when it comes down to those stressful moments, it's great to have someone you know on your side. Someone who can explain the process or just to listen if you need to talk.  Call my office today and let us protect your family from the next claim.  

At the Bryan Agency, we are your claim advocates. We have over 20 years of industry experience and 15+ in working in and helping people with claims. We are experts at claims in New Windsor, Long Island and the surrounding New York areas. Have a claims question? Call us at 888.565.2212 or visit us online today!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

3 Easy Home Maintenance Tasks for July

Regular home maintenance is important and frequently overlooked, especially in the summer. Lets face it, the summer goes by so fast, who has time to worry about all the inner workings of the house? We tend to forget about our air conditioning system. That is, until it quits working on the hottest day of the summer!  That's why, we're providing a few simple tasks and reminders you can do each month to keep your home in tip top shape all year long.

Heres some quick Home Maintenance To-Dos that take less than 30 minutes each!

1.)  Do an energy audit.  Hot weather is a great time to find all the spots in your home where air may be sneaking in.  Plugging those leaks can save as much as 20% on your heating and cooling bills!  

Look at every door and window area for places where you can see daylight through a crack or feel a draft.  Don't forget the mail slot and fireplace too!  If you'd rather use a professional, contact your utility company for a recommendation on a home energy auditor.

2.)  Protect your patio furniture.  You probably have all of your nice outdoor furniture in use right now.  Make sure to take a few minutes to clean it each week (and protect it during storms) and it will last for many years.  

Check the tags on pillows and cushions for specific cleaning instructions and regularly hose down the furniture itself. Remember, patio cushions are a favorite place for busy squirrels so try to keep them protected!  

3.)  Save on Home Insurance.  If we don't currently insure your home, call us for a quote today.  We'll look for every possible discount without sacrificing important coverage.  Great insurance coverage is the best protection you can have!

At the Bryan Insurance Agency, we are the experts at keeping you safe this summer and saving you money. We can help you with your insurance wherever you whether it be New Windsor, Long Island, the Hudson Valley or any area in New York. Call us or visit us online today for a quote on your home insurance. 888.565.2212.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

What To Do When Your Home Is Vacant

Selling your home can be a stressful process, especially when it doesn't move quickly.  With a new job looming or the purchase of a new house, you may have no choice but to leave the home vacant for a short time until it sells.  

The problem?  Vacant homes fall under different insurance rules and can leave you at risk.  Homes are typically considered vacant when the utilities are shut off and/or furniture has been removed.  If you forget to tell your agent that your home is vacant, you might not be covered in the event of a loss

Insurance companies view a vacant home as a higher risk.  There are more opportunities for vandalism and no one living there to protect the home from fire or storm damage. 

So what should you do when moving?

First you need to talk to your insurance agent and get the details on your policy.  Since policies vary by state and insurance company, there is no single right answer.  Sometimes an insurance company can make an exception to your current homeowners policy if you give them a heads up ahead of time.

If you do have to purchase a separate policy to cover your home as a vacant home, many carriers allow you to do this for a shorter period of time such as 3, 6 or 9 month increments.

Explain the situation to your agent.  Ask what coverage is included and what is excluded (specifically for vandalism).  Also, you want to find out what changes can be made to protect your home. For example, investing in an inexpensive alarm or camera system might help not only in the insurance cost but also in your peace of mind. You can also look into having your real estate agent or a property manager periodically check in on the property every few days to be sure that the house is okay.

Selling a home doesn't always follow a quick timeline.  If you're facing the possibility of leaving your home vacant, contact us first and find out how to best protect yourself and your property.  

At the Bryan Insurance Agency, we are the leading agent for vacant homes and homes under construction in the Hudson Valley and Long Island. Contact us for a quick tips sheet on how to keep your home safe. You can reach us at 888-565-2212 or online at