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Surety Bond vs. Insurance in Salem OH: What’s the Difference?

Surety Bond vs. Insurance in Salem OH: What’s the Difference?

Surety bonds are an important risk mitigation instrument, but it’s important to know that surety bonds and insurance in Salem OH are two different types of tools. The terms “surety bond” and “surety insurance” are often used interchangeably, causing some confusion. It’s important to note that surety bonds are not insurance and today we’re discussing the differences.

Comparing Surety Bonds vs. Insurance in Salem OH

Surety Bonds:

  • Include the person or entity requiring the bond, the principal needing the bond and the surety company that supplies the bond;
  • A commitment by the principal is guaranteed;
  • The party the principal is doing business with or providing services for is protected;
  • The principal must cover any losses as a result of a claim.

Insurance:

  • The consumer and the insurance company are involved;
  • Coverage of losses is guaranteed;
  • The consumer buying the insurance is protected;
  • The insurance company is responsible for claims.

 There’s an important distinction to make between surety bonds and insurance in Salem OH, though it can be confusing. Surety bonds are actually a form of credit. They’re often mistaken for insurance because they sometimes involve payment when things don’t go as planned. But with surety bonds, the risk is always with the principal (the person purchasing the bond), not with an insurance company.

With most insurance policies, the risk is typically distributed among a group of similar clients. Policyholders contribute to premiums that are put in place to help cover losses. Surety bonds are three-way agreements where no loss is anticipated, and premiums generally pay for pre-qualification services and the cost of underwriting. Think of it as paying interest on a bank loan, where the interest is a fee for borrowing money and not a means of covering losses on loan defaults.

Surety Bonds vs. Insurance in Salem OH: Who’s Protected?

For example, most municipalities and governmental agencies require construction bonds on public works projects. A contractor must obtain a payment bond that guarantees subcontractors and other workers will be paid in the unlikely event the contractor defaults.

The surety bond protects the city from financial harm, but it is not insurance. If a subcontract issues a claim against the payment promise, the surety company makes sure the maligned party is compensated by the contractor who obtained the bond.

The surety bond provides protection for the project owner, but they’re not obligated financially for any premium costs or potential losses. Typically, the principal, or entity whose obligations are guaranteed by a bond, will sign an indemnity agreement that specifies he or she will repay the surety bond company if it pays out a claim.

If the principal can’t cover the payment, compensation falls to the surety company that issued the original bond. That’s a relatively rare occurrence, though, as surety companies rely on strict underwriting guidelines to identify and avoid unreliable businesses.

Surety bonds and insurance in Salem OH are two quite different risk-management tools. If you are looking for a surety bond, call our office today to speak with one of our specialists who will help you navigate the process.

8 Things You Should Know About Renters Insurance in Salem OH

8 Things You Should Know About Renters Insurance in Salem OH

Do you like your clothes, furniture, electronics, and the rest of your belongings? How about your money? If you do, and if you rent your home, you need renters insurance in Salem OH. Without it, all those nice things you bought with your hard-earned cash could disappear from a burglary or fire/water damage.

Many renters think their personal possessions will be automatically covered by the landlord’s insurance policy-NOT TRUE!

Need further convincing? Following are eight things you might not know about renting and renters insurance.

1. Renters insurance can cover your belongings outside your home. If you’re familiar with renters insurance, you probably already know that even the most basic plans cover most of your personal property (limitations may apply). But did you know that in some cases renters insurance also protects your belongings when you take them out of your home? If your laptop is stolen from your hotel room or your bicycle is stolen from the bike rack, they may still be covered since renters insurance covers theft.

2. Renters insurance in Salem OH can protect items in your car. While your renter’s insurance won’t cover the cost of any damage done to the car itself, personal belongings (see your policy for specifics) kept in your car are usually covered.

3. It’s a good idea to catalog your belongings in case of emergency. Should you be the victim of a break-in or fire, you’ll want to have an inventory of your personal belongings. There are apps that allow renters to take and store photos of all your items so you’ll know exactly what needs to be replaced. Another good idea is to keep the original receipts with serial numbers of high ticket items off-site to prove ownership. This will go a long way at claims time.

4. You can purchase additional insurance coverage for your valuables. For high-value items, such as an engagement ring or other jewelry, art, musical instruments, or cameras, you might want to consider purchasing additional coverage for those items easily lost or stolen.  This will not only give you peace of mind within your home but may cover you in the event that you lose or misplace the item.

5. Your renter’s insurance can protect you from a lawsuit. Renters insurance in Salem OH doesn’t just cover your stuff, it also protects you (up to the coverage limits) if a guest is accidentally injured in your home or if you happen to burn down the entire apartment building due to your negligence.

6. Your renter’s insurance can cover injuries inflicted by your pet. The liability coverage of many renters insurance policies also extends to injuries inflicted by your pet. Of course, there are exceptions to this coverage, including dog breeds that are considered to be high-risk, and every policy is different, so check the details of your policy.

7. It can be an antidote for your accident-prone child. With many renters insurance policies, liability coverage extends to damage caused by you and any other insured persons in your household. If your child throws a baseball through the neighbor’s window, for instance, or your bathtub leaks into the downstairs apartment, your insurance policy can help cover the cost of the repairs.

8. Your policy may help you through a tough time. Should your home be rendered unlivable due to fire, smoke, or water damage (this will vary by policy), your renter’s insurance policy will help cover some reasonable living expenses you incur by moving into temporary housing. This can include hotel bills and potentially increased food costs—if, for instance, your hotel room has no kitchen and you’re forced to order takeout instead.

Having certain insurance coverages in place may not only help protect you and your belongings – renters insurance in Salem OH is a must have and will give you the peace of mind that comes with knowing you have a safety net in place – just in case.

If you would like more information or a quote, call us at 330-337-9557 Today!

9 Tips to Save Money on Motorcycle Insurance in Salem OH

9 Tips to Save Money on Motorcycle Insurance in Salem OH

According to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, there are approximately 8.4 million motorcycles on the road in the U.S. And in 2011, about 81,000 motorcycle riders and passengers suffered injuries. With statistics like that, it’s clear how important it is to have proper motorcycle insurance coverage in Salem OH.

Fortunately, insuring your motorcycle doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg.

Let’s look at some of the most effective ways to get inexpensive motorcycle insurance:

1. Enroll in a training course. You may be able to get a discount on your motorcycle insurance by completing training courses aimed at helping you become a safer rider. Motorcycle training courses are an especially good choice for riders who’ve had an accident or who are new to riding.

2. Become a “preferred customer.” Preferred customers are motorcycle riders with clean driving records. A clean driving record is one with no or very few accidents, tickets, or other violations going back at least 5 years. The definition of clean driving record may vary by insurance company. Make sure you know what’s on your driving record and ask your provider if you qualify. Most insurance companies offer significant benefits and discounts for those who qualify for a preferred motorcycle policy.

3. Tailor the coverage provided by your motorcycle insurance in Salem OH.

Make sure you buy motorcycle insurance that reflects the ways you actually use your bike. For example, if you only take your bike out on occasional sunny weekends, your motorcycle insurance should be different than it would be for someone who rides many miles to work every day. Be sure your agent knows about your riding habits so they can get the right coverage for you.

If you store your bike during the winter, ask about a “lay-up period” that remove most coverages but keeps basic comprehensive coverage during the months you won’t be riding.

4. Tap into your network. If you belong to any motorcycle associations or organizations, you could score a discount of 10% or more on some motorcycle insurance costs.

5. Ask about age-related discounts. Many companies that sell motorcycle insurance in Alliance offer lower rates for more mature riders, especially when those riders have a history of safe riding. Some discounts can kick in when riders are relatively young (late 20s), while others won’t kick in until around middle age.

6. Adjust your deductible. Higher deductibles mean the insurance company assumes less risk, which allows you to lower the premium on your motorcycle insurance policy. If you can afford it, consider a higher deductible, but make sure you have funds put away to cover your costs in the event of an accident.

7. Choose the right bike. Some motorcycles are perceived as being “riskier” when it comes time to write an insurance policy. Unless your heart is set on one of those models, choose a cruising bike or other style that insurance companies favor.

8. Shop around. It used to be that only a few major insurance carriers offered motorcycle insurance in Alliance, but today, it’s a buyer’s market. If you haven’t comparison-shopped, now is the time to do it.  Just be sure you’re comparing similar products when looking at cost differences.

9. Check your credit score. Bad credit doesn’t just affect your ability to get a loan; it can also have an impact on your insurance premiums. If you find your credit score is low, work to raise it and monitor your status regularly. As your score rises, you may find your premiums lower.

Opportunities to lower the cost of your motorcycle insurance in Alliance are all around you. Taking just a little time now to research the cost-cutting options that are available can yield big savings down the road.

Call us today at 330-337-9557 for a quote!

5 Common Business Risks and How to Minimize Them with Business Insurance in Canfield

5 Common Business Risks and How to Minimize Them with Business Insurance in Canfield

The rewards of small business ownership come with their share of risks. Natural disasters, accidents, and theft can lead to lost revenue, legal liabilities and big headaches. Fortunately, you can help protect your company by identifying those risks and taking steps to mitigate them with business insurance in Canfield.

Let’s take a look at five business risks and how you can help keep your headaches to a minimum.

Risk #1: Interruption of business: Fires and other unforeseen events can force vulnerable businesses to relocate or close.

Solution: Create a disaster recovery plan that includes data backup and recovery strategies, as well as plans on how to set up a remote location and alert employees to what’s going on. Consider investing in business interruption insurance, which helps cover your operating costs and loss of income so you can help maintain payroll while you replace equipment and repair damage. This coverage typically provides reimbursement for up to a year or more of lost revenue.

Risk #2: Loss of Business Property: Your business property needs protection from the unexpected, just as your home does, with business insurance in Canfield.

Solution: Audit your physical locations and business processes to identify and address areas of vulnerability. Consider investing in a business owners’ policy to help cover damage to company assets that results from fire, storms and other disasters. These policies are available whether you rent or own the building you work in.

Risk #3: Injuries in the workplace: Workplace injuries can result in medical treatment costs and lost productivity. They can also inflate business insurance premiums.

Solution:  Educate your employees about workplace safety and ensure that you have proper workers’ compensation insurance in place. This insurance provides wage replacement and medical benefits to staff members who are injured on the job. It also protects businesses from legal complications relating to workplace accidents. All states require companies to carry workers’ compensation coverage if they have employees who receive W-2 forms.

Risk #4: Liability: Companies are at risk of lawsuits for accidental injury, libel or slander and other unanticipated events of day-to-day business.

Solution:  Carefully designed business practices can help alleviate risks, but it can be difficult to guard against unknown future events. General, product and professional liability policies offer coverage for businesses that are exposed to specific threats. This business insurance in Canfield offers protection against third-party insurance claims. Talk to your insurance agent to see what kind of liability coverage your company may need.

Risk #5: Breach of security: In today’s digital world, businesses can be instantly crippled by a loss of data or data theft.

Solution: Create a strategy to help protect your company data both on-site and remotely. If it would be difficult for your business to recover from a data loss, consider investing in data compromise and identity recovery insurance. This can help to protect against loss or damage to computer equipment, data storage devices, electronic information, software and expenses related to data recovery. Your insurance agent can help you find the right policy and determine appropriate coverage levels.

Is your business sufficiently protected against these risks?  If not, call our office today at 330-337-9557 to schedule a consultation so we can get you covered with business insurance in Canfield.

What You Need to Know Before Buying Business Insurance Policies in Canfield?

What You Need to Know Before Buying Business Insurance Policies in Canfield?

Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t quite know what they’re getting themselves into when they’re starting a business. Their startup venture may be headed for a crash and burn if they don’t spend enough time addressing certain details. In particular, startup founders who fail to recognize and acknowledge their business liabilities are more likely to fail. You can avoid this scenario by knowing what type of business insurance policies in Canfield is available.

Why Businesses Skip Insurance – And Why You Shouldn’t

Businesses may choose sub-par insurance for any number of reasons. For some, it’s a simple matter of oversight, not knowing what their true liabilities are, or how to address them. In other cases, it’s a matter of cost-cutting.

This is never a good approach because a failure to patent your idea or recognize inherent dangers around that could send your dream off the rails, or worse yet, straight into a lawsuit. On the other hand, business owners who ensure their businesses may escape potential legal quagmires.

Types of Business Insurance Policies in Canfield

There are several types of insurance entrepreneurs may want to consider before opening their doors for the first time.

  • General liability insurance is a must-have for all businesses and covers legal liabilities resulting from accidents, injuries, or other claims of negligence.
  • Product liability insurance specifically covers companies that may distribute, manufacture, or sell products as part of their business operations. Your insurance premiums are commensurate with your degree of risk.
  • Errors and omissions insurance covers businesses that provide services instead of sell products. Some states require proof of errors and omission insurance before the start of business.
  • Commercial property insurance covers your equipment and buildings as a result of vandalism, theft, or natural disaster. Business insurance policies in Canfield can cover business interruption and lost income, among other damages.

Other Forms of Protection for Your Business

Entrepreneurs can elect to purchase as much or as little coverage as they deem necessary, but consider protecting your intellectual property with a patent. A patent doesn’t protect the physical aspects of your business, but the idea of it.

When you’ve issued a patent, competitors are excluded from making or selling the product in the United States. Keep in mind there are two different types of patents – utility patents protect processes and machines, while design patents cover the ornamental design of your product.

Entrepreneurs also have the option of copyrighting, trademarking, or creating a registered trademark for their brand. The most legally rigorous of the three is the registered trademark, which requires you to file an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Upon approval, you’ll be issued a federal registration certificate.

Copyrights and Trademarks don’t require any notification or paperwork. When you create intellectual property, you assume copyright under the law. The problem with copyright is it can become a “he said/she said” legal battle in the event of copyright infringement.

All companies must take a realistic inventory of their assets and liabilities before opening for business. The risks are too great to ignore, so make sure you’re protected with business insurance policies in Canfield.

Call our office today at 330-337-9557 to schedule a consultation to discuss your goals and options.

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