Blog

Sharing our knowledge about the things that matter the most to you.

Apr
13

Steps to Preventing Wind Damage to Your Home

Storm season is upon us and that means high winds. You can’t make your home high wind-proof, but you can take steps that improve the odds to surviving the high winds without having to file a claim.

  • Start at the top – Your roof. Fix any areas that need repaired. If you are planning to replace your roof, select materials that are designed to withstand high wind speeds.
  • If you are planning to replace your windows, select impact-resistant window systems. These have a much better chance of surviving a major windstorm.
  • Anchor door frames securely to wall framing. Make certain your doors have at least three hinges and a deadbolt security lock with the bolt being at least one inch long.

Following these steps will help your home survive a heavy wind storm. However, if you do incur a claim, make sure you contact your claims service number as soon as possible after the storm.


Feb
01

What Is Uninsured Motorist Coverage & Why Do You Need It?

Uninsured motorist coverage protects you should you be hit by a driver who does not carry insurance. In many states, uninsured motorist coverage is not required. In Illinois it is automatically written in to policies, even ones that are liability only.  They are written in at the legal minimum requirement, so make sure to check your limits.

Think about this – You get in a car accident and the person who hit you does not have auto insurance. You now have medical bills caused by someone else who has no insurance to pay for them. What do you do? Well if you have uninsured motorist coverage, your insurance will kick in and take care of it. It will cover you and your passenger’s medical expenses, pain and suffering and even lost wages if necessary.

Uninsured motorist coverage is a very good thing to have included in your insurance policy. Statistic show that 1 driver out of every 7 in the United States are currently uninsured.


Jan
18

Do You Really Need To Purchase Rental Car Insurance?

Renting a car? We’ll give you the inside scoop that will be able to save you money on your next car rental. 

Due to the high risk that driving a car that isn’t yours might bring, some of us may automatically sign up for the car insurance that the car rental company will offer. Some car rental companies may try to convince you to buy their insurance to avoid the liability claims if something were to happen while you are driving the rental car. But, what if we told you that you don’t need their insurance? 

The truth is that if you have auto liability insurance, that coverage extends to any vehicle that you drive – including rental cars. If someone who already has auto insurance purchases insurance from a rental company, they are double covering themselves unnecessarily. The fact of the matter is, if you have auto liability insurance, always say “no” to the insurance offered to you at a rental car dealership.

 


Jan
18

Why Do You Need Life Insurance?

If something happened to you tomorrow, would your spouse and/or children be taken care of? Would they be left drowning in debt? Would they be able to pay for your funeral expenses? This isn’t a subject anyone wants to discuss, but the truth is it happens and you should be prepared.

Most people don’t think about Life Insurance, because you don’t think about the idea that you could get in a car accident and leave your loved ones in a financial hardship.

Here are a few tips on life insurance. The purpose of life insurance is to provide financial support for your dependents; dependents could mean your spouse, your children or someone you do or feel the need to financially support once you are no longer here to do so.

People often wonder how much your life insurance policy needs to be. That varies for people, some want to make sure their loved ones can pay off vehicles and houses, others just want to make sure their expenses are covered. If you have children, you need to think about how long they need to be supported before they become financially independent. The amount that an individual’s life insurance policy needs to be varies depending on each person’s situation.


Jan
08

Reasons to Get a Quote Once a Year

Here at ISS Insurance Group, we suggest that you evaluate your insurance policies every year.

1. Compare your rates – for free!

The number one reason that you should compare rates is that you are not charged, it doesn’t hurt your credit, and you under no obligation to purchase the issued quotes.   We happily will research your insurance needs and we will make sure that this process entails very little of your time. Once we have a limited amount of information, one of our independent agents can provide you with several different policy options. The benefit from having an independent agent run your quote would simply be the varying insurance companies. For example, one company might give a larger discount for your occupation and another would put more emphasis on your credit score. Our independent agents are knowledgeable of the many differing factors that will contribute to offering each individual the most efficient policy.

2. Stay up to date.

Another reason to receive routine quotes is that the insurance business is very competitive and is reinventing itself all the time. Insurance companies are continually introducing new plans or discount options that could save you money. Having your insurance evaluated can not only save you hundreds of dollars a year, but it also makes sure that you are completely covered. There are certain variables that dictate the amount of coverage you need. The changes in your own life affect you insurance needs. They could be changes in income, address, or to your home or vehicle. In any instance, our independent agents are knowledgeable regarding these new changes and can determine the adequacy of your coverage. The only way to make sure that you are getting the best possible insurance policy is to be given regular quotes.


Dec
04

5 Tips When Buying Home Owners Insurance

We understand that it can be a bit overwhelming when your making a decision on which home owner’s insurance to buy, along with choosing which benefits to add. Therefore, we’ve compiled a list of 5 things you should keep in mind when buying home owners insurance, including some tips to save you money.

  1. Maintain A Security System. Installing a security system that is monitored by a central station or tied to the local police station could get you up to 5% or more of a discount.
  2. Install Additional Smoke Alarms. Installing additional smoke alarms could save you up to 10% or more with some insurance companies.
  3. Raise Your Deductible. Raising the deductible will bring the premium down. If you have a small claim it may be better to absorb the cost yourself rather than submit to you insurance company. Small claims can impact your premium for years. I you can afford to fix it yourself, do so.
  4. Review Your Policy. You should review your policy once a year and compare it with rates of other companies. Note any changes that may have happened such as adding smoke alarms, security alarm, sprinklers. If you had a trampoline and took it down, that would lower your rate or open you up to different companies that may not have accepted your risk with it on your property. Changes in you neighborhood such as a new fire hydrant within 100 feet of your home could affect your rates as well.
  5. Guaranteed Replacement Value Insurance. You should always have your home insured for replacement coast. In the event your home is destroyed in a disaster. Your home will be rebuilt no matter the coast. Coast of building a new home has a tendency to go up over the years. It will cost more to rebuild your home than it did when it was originally built.

Have any questions? Ready to buy your insurance? Contact us!

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Nov
25

Save Money with Paperless Billing

Every month you get all your bills in the mail and they just create clutter on your kitchen table. They just lay around, or even worse – You lose them. Then when it comes time to pay them, you can’t seem to remember where you placed them, which results in you end up frantically searching to make sure everything gets paid on time!

Guess what? There is a solution to that and you can save money at the same time! That’s right, SAVE MONEY.  Who doesn’t love saving money?  If you enroll with online banking, most carriers will provide you with a discount. On top of that, you no longer have to watch your mailbox like a hawk for certain bills.  They will come straight to your e-mail inbox instead! You won’t get a paper statement that you will end up misplacing if you don’t look at right away either. Rather, you’ll be able to view it at your convenience in your inbox, where it is being kept all nice and neat. How easy is that?

If you haven’t done so already, talk to your insurance agent about paperless billing. It could save you some money on your monthly premiums and save you time searching for that misplaced paper bill!

 

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Nov
19

6 Things That Will Affect Your Homeowners Insurance

Are you thinking about building a new home or buying one soon?

There are plenty of factors that play a role in the cost of your Homeowner’s insurance. Here are a few to keep in mind as you search for your new home or meet with a professional to build your dream home.

  1. Swimming pools are considered a risk in the insurance business and could possibly increase the amount you pay for insurance
  2. Everyone loves trampolines, I know. But it is a huge risk factor because people can get hurt easily on them. Some insurance companies may not even insure your home if you have one on the property.
  3. Some families have pets in their homes as well. Depending on the breed of dog you have could affect the price you pay.
  4. Exotic animals or hoofed animals can also increase your rate or cause you to be declined by some carriers.
  5. Gable roofs are the best way to go! You could run into problems getting insurance if you have a flat roof or other type of roof.
  6. Not all insurance companies offer insurance policies for log homes or unconventional construction type homes.

These are just some things to keep in mind on your hunt for a home for you and your family.

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Open Enrollment, Mattoon Illinois
Nov
19

2 Things You Should Know About Open Enrollment

It’s that time of year, your health insurance is up for renewal or you might be in the market for the first time.

The big question here is: Are you covered for your medical expenses? In central Illinois, the days are starting to get shorter and the weather is starting to get colder. The changing weather brings about flu and other types of seasonal sickness. This is the perfect time of year to diagnose your health insurance needs and understand the guidelines for enrolling into a health insurance policy.

So what are some things you need to know?

  • Timing is everything. If you enroll anytime before the 15th of each month, you will be covered the following month. So let’s say you enroll November 14th 2015, your policy will become effective December 1st, 2015.   Open enrollment will end February 28th, which means that if you wait until the last day to enroll into a health insurance, your policy will become effective April 1st, 2016.
  • Penalties. As of 2015, the penalty for not having health insurance is $325 for a single adult or 2% of your annual income, whichever is higher. As of 2016, the penalty is becoming steeper. The new penalty is $695 or 2.5% of your annual income, whichever is higher. However, this is not a fine and can only be taken from an individual’s tax return.

When it comes to insurance, many of us are guilty of procrastinating and waiting for the last minute. That’s why we have made it very easy for you to renew your plan or get enrolled!

How? We will help you enroll/renew, guide you through your options, and help you with any questions you may have –  FOR FREE! As always, you can stop by our Mattoon, IL office or give us a call at 217-235-2555 with any questions you may have.


Nov
05

The One Thing Your Car Needs This Winter

With bad weather approaching, the chances of becoming stranded roadside become greater each day. Intense cold leads to a higher risk of engine trouble and breakdowns. Snow and icy conditions lead to an increased rate of accidents.

 

It goes without saying that winter months are much more dangerous to be stranded roadside. Many auto insurance policies carry with them Roadside Assistance coverage, to get help to you in these situations. Before extreme weather hits, make sure your Roadside Assistance number is accessible to you while you are driving, whether kept in your wallet, in the glove compartment, or stuck to the windshield. Taking this action can keep the ill effects of being stranded roadside to a minimum.


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