How much damage can a flood possibly cause?

Most of us are covered for what seems to be the necessities of life. We probably have homeowners insurance for our house, car insurance to cover our vehicle, and some sort of a life insurance policy to protect our family and loved ones should something ever happen to us. But what about auxiliary insurance such as flood insurance? You may be like the millions of people in the world who believe that damage from a flood is minimal. Besides, it is only a bit of water, right?

Why is Flood Insurance Important?

Floods can tear apart a home and create an absolute inhospitable living condition. Aside from the initial damage that can be caused by rising waters, such as eroded surroundings, damaged carpeting and flooring, and perhaps anything that was sitting directly on the floor, a flood can cause serious damage after the water has subsided. Often, water that comes into your home or basement is filled with mud and sediment that must be removed. This sediment can contain dangerous bacteria that must be remediated. Plus, waterlogged walls or floors can quickly grow dangerous mold or mildew. It is estimated that just five inches of flood water in your home can easily create $11,000 worth of damage.

Luckily, flood insurance is available to help cover some of these losses. Flood insurance can be added on to your existing package as an auxiliary insurance to protect you. Residents of Ashland, KY are aware that floods can happen anytime and anywhere and can also be dangerous. The people of Ashland, KY have turned to the experts at Sharp Insurance & Financial Services to help them with their insurance needs. The caring professionals at Sharp Insurance & Financial Services are happy to help answer any insurance questions you may have. If you are looking to update an existing policy or looking to start a new policy, call today.

An introduction to renters insurance

If you rent your home or apartment in Ashland, KY, you may not have considered purchasing insurance because you are not the homeowner. Sharp Insurance & Financial Services wants you to understand the value of renters or tenant insurance though. Renters insurance makes a smart financial investment to protect the contents of your home. 

Homeowners Policy vs Renters Policy

The homeowners or landlord insurance your landlord holds does not protect the contents of the dwelling. That means if a fire destroys the apartment complex in which you live, the building owner’s policy covers the structure and the complex owner will receive the repair or rebuilding funds. Your belongings are not covered.

Renters insurance covers only the contents of your apartment. If you have a policy, you can replace your Beanie Babies from grade school and your house guest’s guitar. It also provides liability coverage for your home, so if your guest falls down the steps and injures themselves, the policy will cover their medical care.

You can obtain a renters insurance policy that covers the value of the contents of your home. These aren’t cookie-cutter policies, but the customization does not cost extra.

An Inventory

Make a list of all the items in your home that you would need to replace if lost or destroyed. This includes furniture, professional wardrobes, jewelry, musical instruments, hobby equipment, electronics, computers, and cell phones, etc. List the specific description and what it would cost to replace it, not what you paid for it. Total the replacement cost column. This is the amount of renters insurance you will need.

Currently, less than 25 percent of Kentucky renters carry renters insurance, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Let Sharp Insurance & Financial Services help you obtain adequate coverage for your Ashland, KY home. Our agents will review your inventory list with you, ask questions, and help you choose the right policy coverage. Let us help you protect your assets and answer your questions right away. Reach out to our offices to learn more.

How to Prevent Your Motorcycle from Damage or Theft Threats

Motorcycles are relatively easy to move which means owners always need to be on the lookout for potential criminals. Here’s what to consider if you live in Ashland, KY, and want to keep your bike from harm. 

Consider Anti-Theft Measures 

Sharp Insurance & Financial Services has seen that a little prevention can go a long way when it comes to saving your motorcycle from the worst that can occur. Technology has advanced in such a way that these anti-theft devices are affordable, effective, and can make it far easier for you to get your motorcycle back. There are kill switches that can disengage the motor so that even someone with the keys won’t be able to go far. There are also GPS measures so that you’ll always know where your motorcycle is regardless of who has it. 

Smarter Policies 

When you park in Ashland, KY, you should be able to see your motorcycle from wherever you happen to be. If you can see it, you have a chance to either stop the action or to at least report it as soon as it happens. If you can’t do this though, you should always be parking your motorcycle in extremely bright areas with lots of people. Just the threat of being caught can often stop criminals from doing anything to your bike. Also, try to keep your motorcycle away from trees whose branches might fall onto it, or in extremely crowded parking lots where a car could damage your bike.

You should also have an insurance policy that’s comprehensive enough to help in the case something does happen. By calling Sharp Insurance & Financial Services, we may be able to help! Our staff can direct you to the best policies that keep your motorcycle safe from harm. Reach out to our agents to have your questions answered.

Life Changes Cause the Need for a Life Insurance Review

The good folks at Sharp Insurance & Financial Services in Ashland, KY, want to remind everyone many things happen, which we call “life changes” which provide reasons to check in with your insurance agent for a life insurance review. When life changes come up, it may not cross your mind that what used to be adequate insurance coverage is no longer appropriate when needs change.

In general, it is a smart idea to have an annual life insurance review, and certain things necessitate a life insurance review that may demand immediate attention.

Here are a few good reasons why an insurance review is appropriate.

  • Getting married – Life insurance is needed by both parties in the marriage, not just one side.
  • Having a baby/adopting a child – A child means it is time to think about life insurance protection for them.
  • Getting divorced – Consider changing the beneficiary of your life insurance policy to someone other than your ex-spouse.
  • Changing careers/moving – A career change and moving may expose you to more or less risk than you had in your previous job or where you used to live.
  • Sports Activities – Certain sports, such as skydiving, are not usually covered in a regular life insurance policy and may need additional coverage. Check with your agent to be sure.
  • Joining the military– We applaud military service; however, this changes life insurance coverage needs dramatically. Talk with your agent if you enlist.

These are just a few examples. If we did not mention your particular circumstances, just reach out to us with your questions. Whether you are just starting out and getting insurance for the first time or you are already an existing client, you can rest assured that the agents at Sharp Insurance & Financial Services in Ashland, KY, are always ready to help make sure you have adequate insurance coverage for all of your needs.

Car Collision Coverage in Kentucky

A typical car collision policy will go beyond your vehicle to include temporary vehicles that you own, cars not in use, and newly-acquired cars. The collision coverage is reasonably limited to the actual cash value of your car and will require a deductible to be paid before receiving your benefits. In instances where higher deductibles are required, your premium will be lowered, but the amount paid out of your pocket increases in case of a liability.

What will not be covered by Collision Policy?

Damages resulting from the following sources will not be covered by collision insurance: Vandalism, storms, natural disasters, being hit by animals, fire, hail, flood, falling objects, and theft. Such dangers can be insured by purchasing the comprehensive coverage.

Why you need Collision Coverage

Before purchasing collision coverage, you should figure out why you need it in the first place. Also, you should use available online resources such as Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book to estimate the value of your car to know the extra amount you will pay for collision coverage. After approximating the car’s value, you can easily make an informed decision in regards to whether you need collision coverage and how much you should pay for it. As per Sharp Insurance & Financial Services, which is based in Ashland, KY, it is wise to cover new and expensive cars, but as they get old, you can drop the coverage since the car’s value will have decreased significantly. 

Collision coverage is an important policy, especially if you are dealing with newly-acquired or vintage vehicles. With this policy, you will receive financial compensation if your vehicle is involved in a collision thus easing your financial burden. However, to ensure that this policy works in your favor, you should visit Sharp Insurance & Financial Services which is based in Ashland, KY. They will help you approximate your car’s worth and whether you need collision coverage. 

Sharp Insurance & Financial Services Provides Commercial Auto Coverage for Ashland KY

Commercial Auto Insurance in Ashland, KY

Commercial Auto Insurance in Ashland, KY covers motor vehicles and trailers used for commerce and that travel on public roadways. Generally speaking, all vehicles leased or purchased by an entity (business, organization, LLC) other than a private individual are considered commercial vehicles.

Further, pickups and vans that you use for business purposes of any kind in Ashland, KY, except for farm and ranch exceptions, are rated by the state as commercial vehicles that must have commercial auto coverage.

However, some companies may list larger SUV’s and pickups (250’s) on personal auto coverage policies if the vehicle is owned by an individual and used for personal purposes. It is important to understand the difference between commercial and personal auto insurance to ensure your company vehicles are covered by the mandatory insurance coverage.

If you have questions regarding how you use your vehicle and whether personal or commercial coverage is required, contact Sharp Insurance & Financial Services, serving Ashland, KY, for clarification of your questions.

Required Commercial Auto Coverage

Commercially owned vehicles require bodily injury and property damage liability. They also must contain basic repair coverage (PIP or No Fault) for at least $25,000/$50,000 for bodily injury plus $10,000 for property damage, or $60,000 CSL (BI/PD) plus $10,000 in PIP benefits. Coverage must include all users with a reasonable claim to the benefits. Uninsured motorist coverage of $25,000/$50,000 is also required. These numbers may seem intimidating but speaking with an agent can put your mind at ease to know that these are standard.

Knowing the mandatory minimums is just the beginning. Your required commercial auto coverage is dependent on the type of business you have and how you use the vehicle.

If you have any questions on your commercial auto insurance or the requirements in Ashland, KY, please contact Sharp Insurance & Financial Services. We can also answer your questions on personal auto coverage and provide advice on personal financial services.



A Beginner’s Guide to Home Insurance

Purchasing a new home insurance policy can be overwhelming, but there are a few simple things to keep in mind when getting your home insurance from Sharp Insurance & Financial Services.

Doing some research on insurance terms will help. For example:

  • Actual cash value is the cost to replace or repair your property.
  • The deductible will be your out-of-pocket expenses before the company pays.
  • Floater is coverage that is added to your policy for things like antiques or jewelry.

Some things may affect your rate that you can’t control, so it’s helpful to find out how much insurance will cost before you buy a home. You need to consider your home’s electrical system, plumbing, and overall structure. For fires, the Insurance Service Office (ISO) sets your insurance premiums based on its fire protection class of your town or city on a scale of 1-10. This scale is determined based on the city’s water supply and the number of fire stations.

Not everything will be covered by a basic insurance policy so always know what is covered and what isn’t. Keep documentation of the value of important items in a safe place.

In Ashland, KY, you can participate in the National Flood Insurance Program for additional flood insurance. If you work in the mines, the Kentucky Mine Subsidence Insurance Fund offers reinsurance against the collapse of an underground coal mine.

Beware of your backyard as well. Swimming pools, decks, and trampolines can also increase your liability and insurance premiums. Your dog could also affect rates; certain breeds like German Shepherd may lead to higher premiums, and you could be liable in case your dog bites someone.

Remember to review your policy on a yearly basis. To save money, consider raising your deductible or ask about any discounts.

For more information about a specific policy for your home, contact Sharp Insurance & Financial Services, serving Ashland, KY, at (606) 324-0696.