FAQ

Have questions about your insurance?
Wyatt Dowling Insurance Brokers are always ready to answer.

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A person who represents a variety of insurance companies and who will assess your needs and develop an insurance plan tailored to meet your needs.

Broad is All Risks on Buildings subject to policy exclusions, limitations and conditions and Named Perils on Contents.

Named Perils are: Fire & Lightning, Explosion, Smoke, Falling Object, Impact by Aircraft or Land Vehicle, Riot, Vandalism, Limited Water Damage, Windstorm or Hail,Transportation, Theft, Escape of fuel oil and Damage from artificially generated electrical current.

Comprehensive is All Risks on both Buildings and Contents subject to policy exclusions, limitations and conditions.

Do you have anything of value which is subject to a special limit or you feel should be specifically mentioned?

Property floaters are available for an additional premium to properly insure your valuables.

These include extra coverages for jewelry and watches, furs, cameras, musical instruments, firearms, silverware, stamp, sports cards and coin collections, hearing aids, bicycles and accessories, cellular phones, C.B.‘s/pagers, portable radios, horses, garden tractors, wheelchairs, golf carts, satellite dishes, watercraft, sailboats, fine arts, tools, sports equipment, electronic data processing equipment, property pertaining to a business occupation and trade, dogs, eye glasses, contact lenses, food spoilage in a freezer, contents in a holiday camper or trailer.

You should be sure that the limit of your insurance coverage is sufficient to cover the amount to re-build your home. Some insurance companies even offer Guaranteed Replacement Cost coverage. The cost to re-build (including the ever increasing price of materials and labour) will no doubt exceed the actual market value of your home. Call us at Wyatt Dowling… we’ll help you to be sure you can re-build your dreams.

Your home policy may not cover damage due to sewer back-up. Plus, the area you live in could determine the premium cost or whether you qualify for any coverage at all. There are restrictions and conditions relative to damage caused by water.

To be sure you’re covered call Wyatt Dowling… we’ll be your port, in all kinds of storms.

Causes of losses are known as perils. Your policy will list perils you are covered for – such as fire.

Insurance policies do not cover everything. We can explain situations which would not be covered by your insurance.

The amount you agree to pay per claim or accident toward the total cost of your insured loss.

You may have valuables which require extra coverages. We can amend your policy to suit your individual needs.

Whether you hit a dock, a rock or another boat, your boat would not be covered unless you had additional watercraft insurance. Your homeowner’s policy would only provide you with limited coverage. Additional coverage is available at a cost dependent on the age and the size of your boat and the power and type of motor.

Don’t miss the boat… ask us about additional watercraft coverage.

No! Even the most extensive type of homeowners policy lists more than 30 exclusions (perils that are not covered). So don’t be fooled by the term “all risk,” which is often used by insurance providers to describe the broader form of coverage. It’s anything but!

While there are some variations depending on the type of policy you purchase, generally, no policy covers the following perils:

* Damage caused by wear and tear, rust, corrosion, or gradual deterioration, like a leaking roof or a rusty oil tank that springs a leak because it hasn’t been properly maintained. * Damage caused by vermin, rodents, and insects. * Damage caused by flood. * Damage from volcanic eruption. * Damage caused by earth movement, including earthquakes, landslide, and mud flow (earthquake coverage is available, but it doesn’t come cheap). * Damage caused by water seepage, through the foundation or an open window, for example. * Water damage caused by pipes freezing if you are away for more than four consecutive days (unless you have someone checking your house on a daily basis, or the water system has been shut off and completely drained). * Loss or damage occurring after your dwelling has been vacant for more than 30 days (not just because you’re on vacation, but because you have moved and do not intend to return). * Intentional loss by, or at the direction of, an insured; in other words, fraudulent claims. * Damage caused by Grow Operations which are illegal cultivation activities usually involving marijuana or other controlled drugs/substances. * Damage caused by mould or contanimation.

Your business property may be covered by your home insurance subject to policy limits, but only while the property is on your premises. Your homeowner’s liability will not cover your business operations. Make sure that you’re covered. Talk to Wyatt Dowling about your business insurance needs.

They calculate the price according to a number of “risk factors” – - the criteria by which insurance companies rate your property. Risk factors may include: construction materials (brick and stone houses are usually cheaper to insure than frame houses because of the greater risk of fire damage to frame houses); whether the owner lives in the house (owner-occupied houses are considered a better risk); and the location of the house (whether it’s within 1,000 feet of a fire hydrant; rural homes more than five miles from a fire hall may be very expensive to insure, because the longer it takes firefighters to reach your house, the greater the potential for loss).

In pricing your policy, insurers will also consider the presence of any safety features, like burglar alarms, smoke detectors, and fire extinguishers. Most companies will offer a discount to homeowners who have installed this equipment.

Although they likely won’t discuss it, insurers also take into account the “loss experience” for your particular area. If you live in an area that has been hit with many losses — more theft claims, more fires, more hail damage, or a combination of factors — you will probably pay more for your i nsurance than someone in a comparable house in a “safer” location.

In fact, an insurer might refuse to sell you home insurance if your house is not a good risk; for example, it’s too old, not well enough maintained, or has an inadequate wiring or heating system. In that case, you would have to upgrade certain features in order to obtain insurance. Some insurance companies require an inspection before they will agree to insure your home.

Safety issues prove to be a major concern for heating systems involving wood. Strict regulations are enforced regarding use and installation of wood stoves. All units must have a CSA, ULC or Warnock Hersey label to be approved. The installation must be in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications.

Strict compliance is required with the installation of heat shields and clearances from combustibles. Insurers insist that a questionnaire be completed and photographs provided. If the information does not meet their criteria, they will either not accept the risk or demand that the unit be disconnected and removed entirely.

The price of your insurance will also reflect the type of insurance policy you choose. The broader the coverage, the more you will pay for it.

Finally, insurance prices are up considerably across the board this year, due to a number of factors that have impacted insurers, including: the rising cost of claims, the high incidence of insurance fraud, declining returns on insurers’ investments, and the high cost/lack of availability of reinsurance (insurance purchased by insurers to protect them against large losses on cases they have already insured) because of losses incurred on 9/11.

Yes, you will be penalized. Your premiums will rise considerably, and, if you had several claims, the insurance company may well choose not to renew your coverage when it comes due.

That’s why it’s not a good idea to claim for minor damage on your property policy. Since you have to pay the deductible (the portion of the claim that you agree to pay), it probably isn’t worth it to make a small claim anyway. Save your claim for a major loss that you cannot afford to pay out of pocket.

Why, you ask, should I pay for a loss myself when I buy insurance for that very reason? That’s a good question. But don’t think of insurance as a cumulative payment that adds up over the years; think of it as buying protection for a one-year period against a large loss. If you ever experience a devastating loss, that is when insurance really pays its way.

The concept of insurance is to respond to the financial hardship created by major claims.

Yes, it is allowed, under certain conditions. But first, note that there is a difference between canceling your policy part-way through its term, and simply choosing not to renew it when it comes due. If you have too many claims and at least by the insurance company’s standards they may decide not to renew your policy.

Cancellation of your policy before its expiration date is another story. Although the insurer is not required to give any reason, it would likely cancel a policy for either of two reasons: you have not paid your premium; or you have withheld information from the insurance company about the property it was insuring.

If the insurer cancels your policy, it is legally required to give written notice, either delivered in person to your last-known address, or sent by registered mail to the post office nearest you. If the notice is personally served, the cancellation takes effect five days after it has been delivered to you. If it is sent by registered mail, as most insurers choose to do, the cancellation becomes effective 15 days after the day it is delivered to your post office. If you don’t pick it up from the post office, the cancellation will still take effect. The insurer must also refund your money on a pro rata basis for the amount of time remaining on your policy (as long as you paid your premium in the first place). In other words, if you paid for your policy for one year, and had six months remaining when your policy was cancelled, the insurer must refund you one half of your annual premium.

If your policy has been cancelled for non-payment, but you have a reasonable explanation for the mishap (maybe you thought your payment had been made but there was a mixup ) you can ask the insurer to resume your coverage. The insurer might be willing to do so if it believes you made an honest attempt to pay the premium.

Whatever the reason for it, a cancellation is not to be taken lightly; more than likely, the company that cancelled you will submit that information to a database used to track property claims history, so it will follow you to the next insurance company you apply to. If that company is willing to insure you (and there’s a good chance it won’t) it will likely be at a much higher rate. You may even have to turn to one of the so-called “non-standard” or “high-risk” insurers to obtain coverage, at an increase in premium of two to three times what you paid in the past.

Check with your insurance provider. Usually the companies limit two unrelated persons to be covered under one policy. However, individual policies protect you only and you alone are in control of submitting claims. A policy in two names would have a negative effect on both parties with respect to claims experience even if the property claimed for belonged to only one of the named parties. Remember, if only one of you purchases the policy in his or her own name, the other two will not be covered.

 
 

If you question has not be answered or you need more information please contact us.
Wyatt Dowling Insurance Brokers are always ready to answer.

Leave your worries at our door.