The Dog Park and warmer weather

The warmer weather is not just exciting for people; our four legged friends also get excited for more time outside and open windows.  One great activity that you can do with your dog is a trip to the local dog park.  The dog park can be a great place to socialize for you and your dog.  There are a few factors to consider though before you and your faithful companion take a trip to the local park.  The dog park can be a great place, but it is designed for dogs that are well-adjusted to social situations.  A dog park full of over aggressive dogs may not be the best option for you and your dog.  It is also a good idea to find a park or time where dogs are close to the same size as your dog.  Dogs can become injured when playing with dogs too large for them.  Be attentive of your dog, growling, mounting, and other aggressive behavior can be a sign that your dog and another dog might be close to fighting.  If you dog does start fighting with another dog remember to not get between them, instead throw water on the dogs or use a stick or object to separate them.  Finally bring your own water.  The communal bowl that is at the dog park can be full of parasites and other bacteria that can harm your dog. 

 

The dog park can also be a factor for your homeowners or renters insurance. One factor would be what if your dog got hurt and needed to see the vet or get an operation.  Vet bills can add up just like medical bills.  Pet health insurance is a thing, and we can help you out with that.  Safeco insurance does offer Pet Health Insurance and we would be happy to give you a quote.  Another issue would be what if your dog hurt someone else’s dog or someone else.  That could bring into play a potential liability claim.  That claim would go on your homeowners or renters policy.  Making sure you have the correct limits for your homeowners and renters can be the difference of a bad situation becoming worse.  After a day of play at the dog park your buddy could still be wound up and bouncing around in the car.  Be extra careful when backing up and driving and set up a divider from your dog if possible.  These precautions can keep you and your furry friend safe on the ride to and from the park. 

 

Are you looking for more safety articles?  Curious about other insurance topics?  Check out our blog and follow us on our social media sites.  Click the buttons at the top right hand side of the page to be linked to our social sites.  Also check back with our blog for more info.

May is National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month

The month of May is the start of warmer weather in PA, it is also National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.  This month via our social media sites we will be bringing you safety tips for you and your motorcycle.  We will also be bringing you some boat safety tips along with our other mix of safety and awareness.  We ask you to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google+.  Just click on the link at the top right of this page.  Don't forget that we can be your one stop shop for all your insurance needs.  We have carriers that have specialty lines for motorcycles, boats, rv's and all of your other toys.  Many of our carriers offer you solutions ranging from liability only, to actual cash value, to replacement cost.  Let us help you and your friends and family find the right coverage at the right price.  As always stay tuned to this blog and our other sites so that we can keep you informed and help you with all insurance related issues.  

Tax Day and Earth Day

The middle and end of the month of April bring up some important days on the calendar.  This year Tax Day falls on April 17th.  This year as in the past many companies are offering discounts or freebies for goods and services.  We will be here all day on the 17th to help you with your insurance needs of course, but what are some other offers you can take advantage of.  Office Depot and Staples both offer discounts on shredding services with coupon.  This could be very beneficial to you and help to cut down on potential ID theft.  If ID theft is a concern of yours, I would encourage you to reach out to us and discuss your homeowners or renters policy.  Many insurance companies offer some type of ID theft coverage via endorsement to their homeowner’s policy.  Many restaurants get in the act as well offering discounts on everything from food to drinks.  Just remember your limit when you are out enjoying your drinks so that you don’t have to potentially use that umbrella policy you just picked up. 

 

Sunday April 22th is Earth Day.  This year is the 47th anniversary of Earth Day.  Looking for some activities to do to help celebrate Earth Day?  If you live close to work you can walk or bike to work for the week.  You could also look to upgrade your light bulbs and appliances.  Many companies do offer Earth Day sales and giveaways.  Upgrading to Energy star appliances and halogen light bulbs could help you cut down on energy usage and save you money. If you go all out and upgrade to solar panels or buy a hybrid car make sure you let us know so that we can make sure that we have you properly covered.   You can also click the link to check out propertycasualty360.com’s best eco-friendly cars. 

 

https://www.propertycasualty360.com/2017/04/21/best-eco-friendly-cars-for-earth-day-2017/

 

Make sure you click the buttons on this website to follow us on social media as well.  We update our social media regularly with tips on insurance, home, and auto.  This month’s topics have centered a little bit on Spring Cleaning and how you can get your home in tip top shape and help renew it from the hard winter.  What topics would you like to see in our blog? 

April is here

The month of April is here.  Warmer weather will allow us to leave our homes and go outside.  What happens though when we get outside and see that winter was a lot harder on our home than we thought?  The winter months can be hard on many things, gutters can clog, driveways and walks can become uneven or cracked and dead tree branches and shrubbery debris can leave your yard a mess.  Spring can be a good time to check and clean the gutters.  Keeping the gutters clear can keep water from backing up and running into your house.  It would also be a good time to examine the windows and doors around your house.  Winter weather can wear out weather stripping and caulking.  Worn out weather stripping and caulking can let moisture enter the house and cause further damage.  Repairs to the driveway and walks can keep your family and guest safe from trip and falls.  Sealing your driveway or leveling uneven payment can be a good way to keep everyone safe.  Also while outside check the lawn mower and lawn care items.  Spring can be a good time to change mower oil and sharpen the blades.  Observe proper safety measures while sharpening the blades if you do that job yourself.  After putting gas in the lawn mower make sure to store excess gas in a well ventilated area so that it is properly stored.  Finally for the outside, when was the last time that you had your air conditioner serviced.  Spring is a good time to have your HVAC professional check your air conditioner so you are ready to make the switch from heat to AC.  These tips can get your outside ready for summer and help keep you and quests safe.  Follow us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter and Instagram for other tips and tools.  You can use the buttons on the page to connect to each of our sites or drop us an email. 

On goings at the agency.

An update on some of the things that we have going on at the Agency.  Remember that we have a quarterly referral program.  Each referral you give to us enters you in a drawing for a gift card.  The drawing is done quarterly with our next drawing being in May.  If your referral has anything to do with the Foundation for Fighting Blindness then we will also make a five dollar donation to the foundation.  Finally we will be giving away a gift certificate for Naturoll in Cranberry Twp.  We have a drawing box at 20550 Route 19 Cranberry Twp PA.  Stop in for some ice cream and a chance to win.

Happy Easter

Our office will be closed this Friday, March 30th so that our employees can spend the holiday with their families.  We will be back on Monday at our normal hours.  You can check out our Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ accounts for tips on how you can keep your family safe this holiday.  To see these pages just click the link at the top right of the page. 

Happy St Patrick's Day

We at Insurance Consultants of Pittsburgh would like to wish everyone a safe and happy St Patrick's Day.  Remember to stay safe.  Plan ahead and make hotel reservations or have a designated driver.  If you are the designated driver, drive slowly and watch for pedestrians.  Uber and Lyft are also alternatives that can get you home safely.  Don't forget to eat and drink water.  Keeping a full belly and drinking water will keep you hydrated and help keep the effects of the day away.  If you are hosting a party at home do a safety check before guests arrive.  This could keep you from having someone get hurt.  Keep an eye out for you guest if they have been drinking.  Someone leaving your party intoxicated could come back on you.  

What if the worst happens?

No one wants to think about the worst case situation.  No one wants to think about causing an accident where someone gets hurt badly or worse.  No one wants to think about being the cause of a complete home loss or slip and fall that drastically alters someone’s life.  These situations though can and do happen.  Insurance whether home or auto is there to help you financially in these situations, your liability limits are what come into play if a worst case scenario happens.  Liability limits are something that a lot of people do not give much thought.  Everyone wants to know what their premium is or how much money is the deductible.  While premiums and deductibles are important and have a financial impact on your life, they do not have the potential impact that too low of liability limits would have in a worst case situation.  Many times the cost of raising your liability limits is very cost effective. 

 

How do you know if your liability limits are too low?  One way is to look at your assets.  If you had a worst case situation and were sued how much would you stand to lose?  Sadly for many people in worst case situations you have the guilt of seriously impacting someone’s life, and then you potentially have to look at the possibility of losing your 401k or your house or everything you have worked for.  The Insurance Services Office estimates that 20 percent of people who purchase auto insurance purchase state minimum coverage.  Are you one of that 20 percent?  You can also contact us at 412-344-2800 to discuss and evaluate your liability needs. 

 

What if you need a higher liability limit than your auto insurance offers?  Is there a cost effective way to cover me for a worst case situation that would cover both my auto and my home?  Yes there is.  An umbrella policy is in many cases a cost effective policy that can give you a million dollars or more of liability coverage that can be excess over your limits of liability on your auto and home.  Most companies offer an umbrella policy that offers excess coverage for your home and auto.  Many of our carriers offer very cost effective umbrellas. 

 

No one wants to be involved in a worst case situation accident.  No one wants to be involved in that kind of situation and lose everything they have worked hard to achieve.  Consider adding an umbrella policy to your insurance portfolio.  You can contact us via the contact page on this website or call us at 412-344-2800.  You can also reach out to us via social media accessed through the buttons on this webpage. 

Valentine's Day and February

February brings Valentine’s Day.  This February lifehappens.org brings you Insure Your Love.  Erie Insurance is one company that is helping to celebrate this month long event.  According to lifehappens.org the #1 reason people buy life insurance is because they love someone and want to make sure they’d be protected financially if something happened to them.  Despite this reason also according to lifehappens.org, only 55% of American families have life insurance. 

 

What are some reasons that someone would purchase life insurance?  For one it will help your loved ones to cover funeral and final expenses.  Another reason is to help replace the income lost by the passing of a loved one.  Life insurance can help pay for school, pay off a car, or pay off a mortgage.  Do you have a co-signer on a college loan or any financial obligations?   If you or a loved one where to pass would that passing create a large financial burden.

 

There are many times in life when someone would think about purchasing or increasing life insurance.  Life changing events like getting married or having a baby could change a need for life insurance.  Co-signing on a loan, buying a car or a house could generate an increased need for life insurance.  During the month of February think about your loved ones and how your passing would change their lives.  We would like to extend the offer to talk about life insurance to you.  Call us or reach out to us via email or social media.  See how cost effective life insurance can be, and how it could lower your home and auto insurance as well. 

Foundation for Fighting Blindness

Do you have an involvement with the Foundation for Fighting Blindness?  Are you not currently one of our customers?  For PA residents who are not currently our customers we will be running a program with the Foundation for Fighting Blindness.  We will be donating $5 for each quote that we do for people mentioning that they were referred from the Foundation For Fighting Blindness that are not current customers and PA residents.  We look forward to helping out the Foundation for Fighting Blindness.  Message us for more details or reach out via Facebook or reach out to us via this webpage.

Three Rivers Boat Show and Pittsburgh Outdoor Expo

A reminder that we will be at the Three Rivers Boat Show this weekend January 26th, 27th, and 28th.  The Three Rivers Boat Show is part of the Pittsburgh Outdoor Expo at the David L Lawrence Convention Center.  Stop by and see us and talk Boat Insurance or insurance for your other toys.  While there register to win a JBL Flip 4 water proof Bluetooth ready speaker.  

Three Rivers Boat Show and Boat Insurance

Tired of winter weather bringing freezing temperatures and icy driving conditions?  Spring my not be right around the corner but we can act like it is.  This January 26th, 27th, and 28th we will be at the Three Rivers Boat Show.  The boat show will be at the David L Lawrence Convention Center.  This show will be part of the bigger Pittsburgh Outdoor Expo.  Boat Insurance can be a little bit tricky.  Most companies will insure a boat, however, some companies may be a better fit than others based on where you plan to use the boat and what coverage’s you need for your boat.  Do you take your boat into ocean waters?  Does your boat go to Canada?  These are factors that could determine where you want to place your boat insurance.  Another major factor that could influence your decision on where to insure your boat would be the valuation of the boat after a claim.  There are two main ways that a boat is valued when it comes to insurance, actual cash value and agreed value.  Actual Cash Value would take deprecation into account.  Insuring your boat for actual cash value can save you a little bit of money, but in the event of a claim you would be subject to having your boat depreciated in value and then have the deductible as well.  Agreed value is just like it sounds, you and the insurance company agree on a value of the boat, the boat is then insured for that value minus the deductible. 

 

Do you have electronics such as depth finders, GPS equipment, Sonar equipment, or just things like an upgraded radio?  These are typically items to are included on a boat policy, but at a low amount.  Increases and upgrades to these items could leave you with a coverage gap.  If you use the boat for fishing, fishing equipment you keep on the boat could be listed as well.  Many companies now write boat insurance similar to car insurance with coverage for uninsured boaters, towing, and emergency services.  Boat insurance can be what you want out of it.

 

Have a boat or know someone who does?  We would be happy to help with a boat insurance quote and/or asses boat insurance needs.  We encourage you to come to the Pittsburgh Boat Show and discuss your boat or any other insurance concerns you have.    

Welcome to 2018!

It is a brand new year.  A new year brings excitement and reflection.  Many people make New Year's Resolutions and set goals of things they want to accomplish throughout the year.  The New Year can be a good time of year to self audit yourself and your household.  This can apply to your insurance.  You could start with the biggest aspect of your insurance and evaluate your coverage.  Did anything change in the past year that would make you have an increased need for insurance?  Did you have a child, move into a new house, get engaged or buy a new car?  These life changes along with many others can change your insurance needs.  Another helpful thing you can do for the New Year is to complete an inventory of your personal property.  If you were to have a catastrophic loss would you know all of the things you lost?  Doing an inventory is a great way to remember what you have, just remember to store the list in a fire proof container or store it off the premise.  Taking precautions to avoid a catastrophic accident is something you can look at in the New Year.  Is your smoke detector working properly?  Are all of your electrical and plumbing fixtures working properly or are they in need of repair?  How is your roof holding up in the snow and cold?  All of these checks can help you possibly avoid a catastrophic accident.   

You can also look at your auto in the New Year as well.  Again one thing you can do is evaluate your coverage.  While evaluating your coverage, ask yourself is my car old enough that it is no longer worth keeping comprehensive and collision coverage on it?  Is full tort or limited tort right for me?  Do I need to call my agent for an explanation of coverage?  A second car related thing you can look at is whether you car battery is in good working order.  Colder temperatures can kill older batteries.  Checking the tread life of your tires can help you avoid an accident.  

These are a few tips to help 2018 be a safe year for you.  Follow us on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as well for more tips on insurance and safety as well as updates on the agency and staff.  You can click on the icons on the top right hand side of the page to go to each social media site.

Happy New Year

We hope that everyone has a safe and happy New Years.  In 2018 we will continue to be here for you in an increased capacity.  Emails from the agency, renewal review calls, and postings on our social media sites will help keep you informed and up to date on your insurance policies, the on goings of the agency and insurance related topics.  If you are not on our current email list feel free to send us a message and get added to our list.  2018 will also see the continuation of our referral program where we give a gift card every quarter to a winner drawn from our referral pool.  Our goal for 2018 is for more interaction with our clients, feel free to review us or leave us a message on one of our social media sites.  The links to those sites are at the top right hand side of the screen.  We would again like to thank all of you for a great 2017 and look forward to an even better 2018.

Happy Holidays

Insurance Consultants of Pittsburgh would like to wish You and Your Family a Happy Holidays.  We would like to thank everyone for a great year in 2017, and we are excited to be here for you as your agent in 2018.  As a reminder we will be closed on December 25th so that our employees can spend time with their families.  

What if a fired employee sues me for wrongful termination?

Are you a small business with employees?  If so you have had to hire an employee and possibly fire an employee.  What if that hiring or firing went bad?  What if someone who didn’t get the job felt like you discriminated against him or her or you fired an employee that felt wronged and that person sued you?  While this can be a large corporation issue, a lot of times this issue is a small business issue.  This can be a small business issue because small businesses usually do not have the time, budget, or legal advice to formulate an employee handbook or have a large HR department.  Not having the correct procedures for hiring, disciplining, and firing can open you up to a lawsuit from a disgruntled former employee. 

 

Employment Practices Liability coverage can help protect you from the above situations.  Employment Practices Liability or EPLI is coverage to protect you from claims that employees make against you in regards to discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment and other employment related issues including failure to promote.  EPLI coverage can be written as a stand-alone policy in some cases or added as an endorsement to a Business Owners Policy, Commercial Package, or General Liability policy.  EPLI coverage is typically written on a claim made basis.  This means the claim would have to happen during the coverage period, because of this tail coverage is recommended.  Tail coverage extends coverage beyond the end of the policy period. 

 

EPLI coverage is just one of the coverages that are becoming more and more necessary in our ever changing world.  If you are interested in EPLI coverage or seeing what other coverages could be beneficial to your small business feel free to reach out to us via the phone at 412-344-2800 or via the contact page on this website.  You can also contact us via any of our social media sites-Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Google+.  Stop by and tell us if this post was helpful and ask us any questions you have.

Where you can find us on social media.

We would like to connect with our clients, friends, family and others via our social media.  We think it is important to keep you up to date on the happenings of the agency as well as with articles and information that will keep you safe and sound.  This is your invitation to connect with us on all of our forms of social media.  We look forward to connecting, informing, and hopefully having positive dialogue with all of you. 

On twitter we are at: @InsrnceConPitt

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ICPitt/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/b/116078129427799936219/+IcpittPA

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/insuranceconsultantsofpitts/

Follow us, stop by and leave us a message, and/or give us a review.  We appreciate the interaction and we appreciate you as our clients.