Credit History and Car Insurance Rates

Here at Vick Insurance in Camden, TN, one of the top questions we get asked is, “How does my credit score effect my insurance rates?”

You probably know that your credit history has a big impact on your borrowing capabilities and interest rates, but did you know it can also affect how much you pay for car insurance? Find out how credit and insurance are connected and learn what you can do to keep premiums as low as possible.

The Factors at Play

Your three-digit credit score is based on various details of your credit history. While your credit score doesn’t directly determine your insurance rate, insurance providers may review similar information from your financial past to assign you an ” insurance score” that estimates your likelihood of filing a future claim.

How Your Insurance Score Is Calculated 

Insurance companies don’t consider income or job history when calculating your insurance score. Instead, they look at payment history and the amount of debt you carry. Companies will also note how many lines of credit you have in good standing and how long each account has been open.

This is where things become a little confusing: Insurance scores are also configured using data from other policyholders. The types and number of claims from others in your credit range will help determine your score, which is why it can be hard to control or predict how much you’ll pay for auto insurance, homeowners insurance and even life and health insurance.

Keeping Rates Low

Though the calculations may be complicated, there are simple ways to position yourself for lower rates. Start by checking your credit activity regularly and dispute anything that looks suspicious. Make sure you don’t miss any payments or carry excessive debt. Over time, these habits may help keep your credit-based insurance score high and your premiums low.

Please reach out to Vick Insurance Group for all of your business, home, auto and life insurance needs.  Visit us online at www.vickinsurancegroup.com 24/7/365.


4 High-Tech Auto Features to Know

Though fully functioning self-driving cars are still in the works and you may not be seeing them in Camden, TN, driver-assistance technologies are already helping to make roads safer. Some features that were once considered a luxury now come standard in 2018 models, and you’re probably already familiar with some of these modern improvements.

Curious about the tech that keeps us safe on the road? Get to know these four high-tech auto features.

Lane-Keeping Assist 
Forward-facing sensors watch the road even when your attention goes elsewhere. Should you begin to drift, standard lane departure systems will send you an alert, while more advanced versions use driver-override technologies to help you correct your course using automatic steering.

Rearview Cameras
Increasing a driver’s scope of vision is one of the best ways to prevent accidents, which is why backup cameras are now mandatory for all new vehicles. Many manufacturers are also adding cameras to front and sideview mirrors, offering even better visibility.

Blind Spot Detection 
Changes in cars’ body styles have made it harder to see out of some makes and models. Counter this effect with blind spot detection, which works by using a light, sound or steering wheel vibration to alert you of an approaching vehicle outside your line of vision.

Adaptive Cruise Control
Most of us are well-acquainted with cruise control, but newer cars offer a better version of the old standard. Adaptive cruise control adjusts your desired speed to make sure you maintain a safe following distance on the highway and provides some braking capabilities as well.

Someday we may have completely self-driving cars, but in the meantime, safety-oriented technology is here to help keep our vehicles and our families out of harm’s way.

Be sure and check out www.vickinsurancegroup.com for all of your home and auto needs 24/7/365.


Do You Need Umbrella Insurance

Whether you live in Camden, Big Sandy, Holladay, Bruceton or Nashville, TN, we must all realize we live in a litigious society, and for most families it would be financially devastating to experience a lawsuit. Want to protect your assets? An umbrella policy could provide the extra coverage you need.

What does an umbrella policy cover?

An umbrella policy provides additional liability protection. If someone sues you, this policy picks up where your homeowners or car insurance coverage leaves off. Coverage includes everything from legal fees to the settlement amounts associated with a lawsuit.

Umbrella insurance also covers litigation prompted by:

  • Rental property incidents
  • Malicious prosecutions or false arrests
  • Defamation of character
  • Damages for pain and suffering

Who needs extra coverage?

If you’re worried about keeping your existing net worth and future earnings secure, it might be worth looking into an umbrella policy. People with substantial assets often set up umbrella liability insurance to insulate themselves in the event of a lawsuit, but wealthy policyholders aren’t the only ones at risk. If you don’t have significant assets, the court can target your future earnings to pay off damages.

How much coverage do you need?

Umbrella policy premiums are relatively inexpensive compared to what it would cost to have your assets drained. But the more you have to safeguard, the larger the policy you may need.

To figure out how much coverage you need, first evaluate all savings, retirement accounts and physical property. Next, calculate what the potential loss of your future income would be. Finally, add these figures together to form an idea of your potential coverage amount.

No matter how much you have or don’t have, here at Vick Insurance Group, we feel that an umbrella policy can help you preserve your current and future wealth. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

 

From <http://stephen.vickinsurancegroup.myhomehq.biz/why-an-umbrella-policy-might-be-the-right-choice-for-you>


What to do After a Car Accident

Unfortunately, most of us will probably be involved in a car accident at some point. Though you may not be able to guess exactly how you’ll react to a crash, knowing what to expect can make this unpleasant experience less overwhelming.

What to Do Immediately After the Wreck

Take a few deep breaths to process what’s happened. Once you’re ready, take the following steps:

  • Check to see if anyone is hurt. This includes yourself, your passengers and anyone in the other vehicle. If anyone has been seriously injured, call 911.
  • Stay on the scene. Take note of the other vehicle’s make and model, and record the license plate number if you can.
  • Keep yourself safe. If your car is stopping traffic or is otherwise in a dangerous place, pull to the nearest parking lot or roadside. Turn off your engine and turn on your hazards.
  • Document the accident. Exchange insurance information and take a picture of any damage if possible. Later, make sure to file an accident report with the authorities.
  • Go home and rest. Then, as soon as you’re able, call your insurance company to notify them of the accident.

Post-Accident Self-Care

Coping with an accident isn’t just about nursing physical injuries. Your mental health is equally important. Once your doctor clears you for normal activity, check in with yourself.

You may feel a mix of emotions, from shock and disbelief to anger or guilt. Don’t hesitate to share the experience with loved ones or a professional counselor. If you’re still having trouble feeling comfortable behind the wheel after a few weeks, consider taking a defensive driving course.

Even minor accidents can have serious effects, so give yourself time to recover and ask for help when needed.

Be sure and check out Vick Insurance in Camden, TN for our video library and by-monthly blog.


Do You Need Umbrella Insurance?

 

We live in a litigious society, and for most families it would be financially devastating to experience a lawsuit. Want to protect your assets? An umbrella policy could provide the extra coverage you need.

What does an umbrella policy cover?

An umbrella policy provides additional liability protection. If someone sues you, this policy picks up where your homeowners or car insurance coverage leaves off. Coverage includes everything from legal fees to the settlement amounts associated with a lawsuit.

Umbrella insurance also covers litigation prompted by:

  • Rental property incidents
  • Malicious prosecutions or false arrests
  • Defamation of character
  • Damages for pain and suffering

Who needs extra coverage?

If you’re worried about keeping your existing net worth and future earnings secure, it might be worth looking into an umbrella policy. People with substantial assets often set up umbrella liability insurance to insulate themselves in the event of a lawsuit, but wealthy policyholders aren’t the only ones at risk. If you don’t have significant assets, the court can target your future earnings to pay off damages.

How much coverage do you need?

Umbrella policy premiums are relatively inexpensive compared to what it would cost to have your assets drained. But the more you have to safeguard, the larger the policy you may need.

To figure out how much coverage you need, first evaluate all savings, retirement accounts and physical property. Next, calculate what the potential loss of your future income would be. Finally, add these figures together to form an idea of your potential coverage amount.

No matter how much you have or don’t have, an umbrella policy can help you preserve your current and future wealth. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions!

At Vick Insurance, no matter what insurance need you have, we strive to be the insurance company of choice for all your insurance needs for Business, Home, Auto and Life for Camden, Big Sandy, Bruceton, Holladay, Paris and the surrounding counties.


New Ways to Organize Your Kitchen

With the holidays quickly approaching, the amount of time you spend in the kitchen is likely to increase. Whether you’ll be hosting family gatherings or cooking your favorite holiday dishes, make things easier on yourself by getting organized now.

Categorize Kitchenware

Looking for a good place to start? Try arranging your kitchenware items based on how often you use them. For instance, everyday dishes should be stored in an easy-to-access place, while your professional grade mixer can be kept tucked away in a cupboard. Keep all bakeware together, and store other items close to where you use them. For example, place pans and skillets near the stove.

Lock Down Lids

If you feel like the lids to your pots and Tupperware are like socks — always missing from their mate — it’s time to build a better system. Depending on how much space you have, try using a rack to file lids in a row or add a tiered pullout insert to cabinets or drawers.

Make a Food Filing System

Start by organizing your pantry shelves into grocery store categories. Put dry goods such as rice and beans on one shelf, and keep cans and sauces on another. You can also use see-through containers like wire baskets to organize snacks. If you need to save space, use an over-the-door organizer to sort and display food, spices and more.

Consolidate Cleaning Products

What about cleaning products and other odds and ends? The storage area beneath your sink has more potential than you may realize. Stackable shelves or even pullout drawers can help you bring some order to this often overlooked space.

Vick Insurance Group here in Camden, TN is reachable 24/7/365.  Visit us at www.vickinsurancegroup.com for all your Business, Home, Auto and Life Insurance needs.

“Merry Christmas”


WAYS TO PREPARE YOUR HOME FOR WINTER

Depending on where you live especially here in Camden or Big Sandy, TN, the weather may still feel more like spring than winter. But make no mistake, cooler temperatures are on their way. Now’s the time to winterize your home. Here’s how to get prepped from the outside in.

Outside the Home

  • Plant protection — Starting at about 36 degrees Fahrenheit, outdoor plants become susceptible to damage. If you want your plants to survive the winter, adding extra mulch, watering them regularly and covering them with sheets can help.
  • Winter weatherstripping — Tiny cracks in your home’s exterior can lead to big utility bills as the temperature drops. Fortunately, these small leaks are typically easy and inexpensive to fix. Focus on sealing up any area connected directly to the outside. Cold air is most likely to leak in via windowpanes and sills, siding or brick and baseboard cracks.
  • Faucet fortification — Exterior faucets are notoriously vulnerable to freezes, making them prime winterization targets. All you need to do to protect your pipes is unscrew and drain the hose, and then add styrofoam or polyethylene insulators to the faucet.

Inside the Home

  • Ceiling fan direction — In school most of us learned that warm air rises. Switching your ceiling fan so that it rotates clockwise in the winter can help pull down and evenly distribute rising heat throughout a room.
  • Filters and furnace — A little routine filter and furnace maintenance goes a long way. Service your heating units at least once a year to help prolong their lives. Remaining diligent about replacing the filter every one to three months can also save you money on heating costs.
  • Chimney check-in — There’s nothing like a roaring fire to stave off a winter chill. But first, conduct a bit of fireplace upkeep. Getting the chimney and flume cleaned, or at least inspected, could save your home and your life.


HELPFUL CYBERSECURITY AWARENESS TIPS

Here in Camden, TN, whether it’s to pay bills, order food or connect with friends, many of us rely on the internet daily. Since October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, keep reading for tips to make your online transactions more secure.

Why Online Security Is Important The Pew Research Center reports that 64 percent of Americans have experienced some kind of data breach. Be it credit card fraud and compromised accounts or social media and email hacks, the majority of us are no strangers to the need for cybersecurity.

How to Protect Your Assets In our hyperconnected society, your personal information is under constant threat. To insulate yourself from major financial headaches or the need for cumbersome legal restitution, safeguard your accounts in the following ways:

  • Be cautious when connecting to public Wi-Fi networks. These hot spots may be convenient, but they can also make you a target. Make sure to log in to sensitive accounts like your financial institutions at home or using a personal hot spot to keep your information safe.
  • Keep up with security software updates. Defending against malware and viruses is a huge part of avoiding a breach. Your mobile phone, web browsers and even apps are susceptible to foul play without up-to-date anti-virus and anti-spyware software, so keep them current.
  • Create secure passwords. Each account should have a different password that is a unique combination of numbers and letters. Passwords should also be at least eight characters long without repeating.
  • Watch out for phishing attempts. Phony emails or calls that appear as though they’re from your bank are sneaky ways crooks attempt to solicit personal information. Always carefully assess communications to ensure you don’t unwittingly give your account numbers to a thief.

A few simple precautionary steps can help keep your information secure while giving you greater peace of mind.  Call us here at Vick Insurance Group in Camden, TN for more information.


MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR TAILGAITING PARTY

A successful tailgate party is just as much about bonding with your fellow football fan as it is about the game itself. But to get the most out of your experience, you’re going to need certain game-day essentials. The following suggestions can help whether you live in Camden, TN or next to a large stadium.

Tailgating Equipment Hanging outdoors with other sports enthusiasts means braving the elements, so you’ll want to prepare accordingly. In addition to folding tables and chairs, be sure to pack a canopy, sunscreen, bug spray, rain gear, trash bags, a first-aid kit and a heater or fan, depending on the temperature. Review your tailgating checklistbefore you leave the house to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything critical.

Food and Beverages No tailgate party is complete without sufficient snacks. Whether you provide a full-on meal or just snacks, bring enough to feed your entire crew with leftovers to spare. Hamburgers, hot dogs and any vegetables you can throw on a grill are always crowd pleasers, as are chips and dip. Remember to bring the utensils.

Pro tip: Keep frozen water bottles in the cooler. They’ll ice down your provisions while in transit and can keep your tailgating team hydrated once the water thaws out. If you choose to have alcoholic beverages like beer and wine, drink responsibly, and don’t forget the bottle opener.

Pregame Entertainment Since you’ll be sitting for a while, lawn games are a great way to get your blood pumping before your team hits the field. Throwing a Frisbee or football can help pass the time, or you can go for something more structured, such as cornhole or ring toss.

In the end, tailgating is about having fun with your friends, family and fellow football fans. Just remember to plan ahead, and you can ensure that a great time will be had by one and all.

Visit Vick Insurance Group in Camden, TN for all your Business, Home, Auto and Life needs.


6 Insurance Tips for Home Updates

Home renovations can be costly, but insufficient insurance coverage can make the process exponentially more expensive. Below are some do’s and don’ts that can help keep you protected during a home improvement project.

  1. Double-check your contractor’s insurance coverage.Workers’ compensation and liability insurance are musts. Ask to see the necessary certificates and confirm sufficient coverage before you sign a contract.
  2. Don’t assume subcontractors are covered.If your general contractor is subcontracting work to a plumber, electrician or another professional, make sure those companies carry insurance. The general contractor’s policy may not cover them.
  3. Increase your replacement value.Improvements made during a renovation enhance the value of your home. Expanding your insurance coverage ensures your policy fully covers the cost of rebuilding your home as is.
  4. Don’t forget to include new items.Add updated appliances and furniture purchases to avoid potential gaps in coverage.
  5. Raise the liability coverage limit.Making this change can help protect a homeowner in the event of an injury while the property is under construction.
  6. Don’t neglect an attractive nuisance.Are you adding a swimming pool, trampoline or other feature to your home that might attract and pose a risk to children? Should an accident involving an attractive nuisance happen, you’d be liable — whether or not you gave permission to use it. Additional liability protection can help ease that burden.

Insurance plays an important role when you embark on a home improvement project. The right type and amount of coverage can help you avoid pitfalls on the road to owning your dream home.