What Will Happen if My Home Insurance Lapses?

Buying a home in California is always a big investment. When you decide to purchase a home, you will need to make sure that you have insurance in place to protect it and you. While most people will have protection in place when they buy the home, the policy could lapse if you stop paying. If your home policy does lapse, a few different things could happen to you and your insurance.

Loss of Coverage

If your home insurance policy coverage lapses, the first thing that will likely happen is that you will lose your coverage. Home insurance for people in the Napa, CA area provides a lot of very valuable coverage including property damage coverage, liability protection, and personal asset coverage. If you stop making payments on your home insurance policy or if it matures, you could be found to have no coverage when you need it the most.

Force Pay by Lender

If your home insurance policy lapses, there is a chance that your lender could force pay it for you. In most situations, your lender will require you to escrow your home insurance payments. However, if you fall behind on payments and there is no escrow, the lender will likely pay additional money out of its pocket to make sure your policy stays active as it will protect their collateral. You then will be charged a fee and your loan could be forced into default.

When you have more questions about home insurance, or would like to find a new policy, contacting the Wine Valley Insurance Services company could be beneficial. Wine Valley Insurance Services will be able to help Napa, CA area homeowners find a policy that works for them and also keeps them in full compliance with their loan. We also are happy to serve the insurance needs of those in Nevada, Oregon, Colorado, Arizona, Washington, and Idaho. Reach out to our offices for more information.

Do You Really Need Renters Insurance?

Many renters or tenants do not purchase renters insurance because they assume their property is covered under their landlord’s policy. This can be a costly assumption on the part of the renter because the landlord’s policy only covers the building, not individual renters personal property. If a natural disaster, fire, or other events such as a water leak causes damage to the building, the landlord is covered. However, without renters insurance, any belongings damaged or destroyed by the fire, water, or other disasters are not subject to be replaced.  

It is the responsibility of the renter to have their own policy covering their personal property. These types of policies offer coverage for possessions as well as liability coverage if someone is injured inside your residence. In general, renters insurance will include personal property and liability as well as loss of use. If liability is part of the policy, it will cover medical payments to the party injured at your residence. As well as damage you may cause to another person’s property.

  Every policy is different, but in general, your property is protected if lost or damaged due to:

  • Fire

  • Smoke

  • Lightning

  • Explosion

  • Water

  • Electrical Surges

Depending on the policy, there could be other types of loss or damage covered as well. Wine Valley Insurance Services in Napa, CA can also include living expenses in a policy. This would provide you the means to live somewhere else if your unit is damaged and needs repairs.  

Your policy could also protect your property if you are away from home. Portable property like a laptop could be replaced even if it was stolen from your car, not your dwelling. It is important to catalog all your high-value electronics, furniture, jewelry, and other items by photographing them. Consider a policy that will pay for replacement items instead of actual cash value.

Discuss the need for liability coverage with your Wine Valley Insurance Services agent in Napa, CA to make sure you are protected if someone is injured in your residence or your property is damaged. It is important to let your insurance agent know exactly what you expect the policy to cover so that in the event of an accident or disaster, your possessions are properly protected.

Can I Drive Without Auto Insurance?

In California, motorists are required to carry the state-mandated minimum auto liability coverage to operate their motor vehicles in public spaces. Therefore, driving without auto insurance in The Golden State isn’t allowed, it’s illegal.

What happens if you get behind the wheel without insurance and get caught?

There are many possible consequences of driving without car insurance. For starters, you could go to jail, which is rare for this offense but it’s well within the realm of possibility. Common penalties for driving without car insurance include suspension of your driver’s license, suspension of your car’s registration, being fined or getting a ticket for the insurance violation. Now, Wine Valley Insurance Services wants you to understand the real costs of driving without insurance.

The Real Cost of Driving Uninsured

The fear of getting caught shouldn’t be the only reason for avoiding driving uninsured. In fact, it’s not the worst that could happen. It’s all about being considerate for your own financial well-being and that of other users. Car insurance is supposed to pay for any damages or bodily injuries resulting from an accident. When auto coverage isn’t available, the uninsured driver will have to cover the expense out of pocket.

The situation could get much worse if in the event of an accident involving two — or more — cars you, the uninsured driver, are determined to be at fault. You will face the legal penalties, on top of which you will be required to pay for the damages as well as the medical expenses (if any) out of pocket. Penalties can be more severe if there are any fatalities or serious injuries.

To avoid these unpleasant situations, it’s best that you purchase car insurance. There are many coverage options; you can always choose one that falls within your budget. Wine Valley Insurance Services in Napa, CA can help you with that. We have a wide range of auto insurance coverage options all designed to meet the specific needs of our customers. Contact us via phone to talk to one of our agents for more information on available auto insurance coverage options or visit our offices in Napa, CA. We also write policies for Washington, Nevada, Oregon, Colorado, Arizona, and Idaho.

 

Why Would I Need to Get Umbrella Insurance?

Having adequate insurance coverage is essential for all people. While most people know that they should have a home, auto, life, and medical coverage, there are other types of coverage that are necessary as well. For some people in the Napa, CA area, having umbrella insurance coverage can be very beneficial. There are several reasons why having umbrella coverage could be useful for individuals and business owners.

Additional Insurance On Top of Existing Policies

If you have a home, auto, or commercial insurance, you will already have some type of liability insurance in place on those policies. While this type of liability coverage can provide you with a range of different types of protection, the level of the liability is often not enough to cover the expenses associated with some accidents. In these cases, having an umbrella insurance policy in place will provide you with additional liability coverage on top of your existing policies. 

Coverage for Additional Situations

While your base policies provide you with coverage, they do not provide coverage for all situations that could arise. When you have an umbrella insurance policy in place, you will receive additional liability insurance coverage for all additional types of liability that could occur, including items not contemplated by any existing policy. 

Service and Support

Finally, when you have an umbrella insurance policy in place, you will receive excellent service when you need it the most. If another party is suing you, the insurance company will be able to handle all aspects of the claim. This can include hiring legal representation and handling all settlement negotiations to minimize your time and expense. 

If you are in the Napa, CA area and are considering getting umbrella insurance, speaking with Wine Valley Insurance Services could be very helpful. Wine Valley Insurance Services can provide you with a variety of policies to help you better understand your insurance needs and to help you get a great policy. Reach out to our offices to get a quote.

Does Home Insurance Cover Flooding Caused By Sprinklers?

There are a lot of questions out there about what is and what is not covered by homeowners insurance. At Wine Valley Insurance Services, serving the greater Napa, CA area, we want to answer as many of these questions as we possibly can. Flooding is one of the most misunderstood aspects of home insurance. If your home was flooded with your sprinklers, you might wonder if this type of flooding is covered by your flood insurance or your homeowner’s insurance. Here is the answer. 

Your Home and Floods

Flooding that is caused by things such as pipes in your home and sprinklers outside of your home is typically covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy. As such, if a sprinkler head breaks and water floods into the siding of your house or your sprinklers run too long and flood your basement, homeowners insurance would cover the damage done by the sprinkler.

Flood insurance typically covers flooding that occurs as the result of a storm, such as heavy rains and hurricanes. As such, if a hurricane caused your sprinklers to become damaged, and in turn, that leads to the flooding in your home or the flooding that caused the damage to the exterior of your home, this would be covered by your supplemental flood insurance, rather than homeowners insurance. If you do not have a supplemental flood policy, you would be responsible for the damage to your home. 

When you are looking to purchase homeowners insurance in the greater Napa, CA region, let Wine Valley Insurance Services assist you. We would be happy to answer any questions you may have and work to find you the right insurance policy for your needs. Contact us today to get started.

Renters Insurance Requirements in the State of California

While renters insurance isn’t required by law in the state of California, it can give you an extra layer of protection. Renting a property can be expensive, and disaster can strike at any moment. California has many laws that can protect renters. And while landlords and building owners are required to have insurance on any property that they rent, they may require a tenant to purchase renters insurance before they issue a lease.

Why You Should Get Renters Insurance

There have been numerous reports in the news about people who have lost everything because of a fire or some other natural disaster, and they’re unable to pick up the pieces because they didn’t have renters insurance. While a landlord must have an insurance policy to cover any losses to the property itself, it won’t cover your personal belongings. Renters insurance will fill this gap, and it will include any losses that have occurred because of certain perils. It can also cover any medical payments for the treatment of injuries that have been inflicted on you or other people.

If you live in Napa, CA, Wine Valley Insurance Services has agents who can help you find a policy that can meet your needs and fits your budget. You shouldn’t take the risk of losing everything because of an unexpected event. You can prevent this by obtaining a renters insurance policy. If you want to find out how we can help you get the coverage you need, reach out to our offices.

What Can Be Covered in a California Renters Insurance Policy

California renters insurance policies can provide the following coverage:

  • Personal Property – Covers your personal belongings because of a disaster or unexpected event, and it will have a minimum amount that’s set by your insurance company.
  • Loss of Use – Pays for any additional living expenses if you’re unable to use the property because of a loss, which can include the cost of a hotel or any meals.
  • Personal Liability – Covers you for any damages for which you’re held liable, and most landlords will require you to get at least $100,000 of this type of coverage.
  • Medical Payments to Others – Covers medical payments for any injuries that have occurred on the property, and it will usually have a minimum of $1,000.

Be sure to speak to someone at Wine Valley Insurance Services to get a renters insurance policy that you can rely on. We have been serving the people of Napa, CA for a long time, and we can help you get a renters insurance policy that can cover you if you have suffered an unexpected loss. If you want to work with a reliable insurance agency that is trusted in California, Nevada, Oregon, Colorado, Arizona, Washington, and Idaho, then feel free to contact our office. We would be happy to serve you!

An introduction to auto insurance

Driving in Napa, CA provides gorgeous views, but to enjoy the road legally and safely, you must carry auto insurance. Before you choose a minimum coverage policy, learn about the different types of auto insurance coverage and the situations each cover. You may need a custom policy or full coverage. Wine Valley Insurance Services can help you analyze your situation and determine which coverage best suits your situation.

Liability
In the US, most states require auto insurance (liability). If you have an auto accident and you are at fault, this coverage pays for damages to the vehicles of others involved and their medical bills. It also covers other property damage you caused.

Collision
Collision provides coverage to repair your vehicle even if you were at fault for the accident. If the accident totals your vehicle, this coverage pays its current value.

Comprehensive
Comprehensive covers all other damages like weather, animal collision, theft, or even your car getting keyed at the mall.

Uninsured Motorist
This coverage pays if the other vehicle’s driver caused the accident, but carried no insurance or too little.

Medical / PersonalInjury
Regardless of fault, medical/personal injury coverage pays your medical bills and your passengers’. 

Guaranteed Auto Protection
GAP coverage pays off your remaining car payments if an accident totals your vehicle. Some lenders require GAP insurance.

Rental Reimbursement
This coverage provides a rental car while your vehicle gets repaired.

Emergency Roadside Assistance
This coverage provides a tow truck or emergency repair assistance. It also covers lockouts. 

Mechanical Breakdown
Think of mechanical breakdown insurance as a warranty extension. It covers repair costs to mechanical systems and parts.

Non-Owner Car Insurance
This provides liability coverage for people who don’t own a car. Courts may require someone with a suspended driver’s license to purchase this as a condition of reinstatement.

Let Wine Valley Insurance Services of Napa, CA make choosing the right auto insurance easy. Come discuss your needs and options with us. Try our online rating tool to get a quote on your car!

Who needs an umbrella insurance coverage?

Umbrella insurance will protect your assets if you are sued for causing an accident or something catastrophic happens your property. The policy will cover the expenses which go beyond the limits of your primary coverage. Notably, in case you are admitted to a hospital, it is very easy for the medical bills to accumulate to figures higher than your coverage limits especially if the injury or condition is serious. As such, it is advisable to look for a supplemental insurance policy to help you cover the extra charges. According to Wine Valley Insurance Services in Napa, CA, this is why you need umbrella insurance.

Why you need the policy

If you have accumulated personal wealth such as investments, home, or property, you will benefit from the umbrella insurance policy. Notably, the more property you own, the more you will have to lose in case of liabilities. An umbrella insurance policy will protect you if you become a target for expensive lawsuits. You can be a target in case:

  • You have swimming pools
  • You own large-breed dogs
  • You participate in activities which can cause unintentional harm to others such as racing or hunting.

When should you Get Umbrella Insurance?

As you build more wealth and assets, umbrella insurance becomes more and more critical. However, if you don’t have much wealth or investments, you don’t have to worry about acquiring an umbrella policy since your initial policy will cover your potential liabilities. Notably, if you work for an employer and don’t have any assets outside your residence, an umbrella insurance is not a necessity.

However, as you get additional responsibilities in life such as marriage and children, the variety of your insurance needs will widen, and the amount of potential liability will rise significantly. Considering that your primary insurance policies will have to cover your entire family, it is easy for a claim to go overboard leading to a financial crisis. As such, you should consider visiting Wine Valley Insurance Services in Napa, CA to learn more about umbrella insurance.

Currently residing outside of California? Wine Valley Insurance Services extends their policies to residents in Nevada, Oregon, Colorado, Arizona, Washington, and Idaho as well.

Buying Home Insurance

In today’s real estate market, homes located in the beautiful Napa, CA area in need of insurance can contact Wine Valley Insurance Services for policy advice, premium quotes, and seasoned guidance.

Home Insurance covers private residences by combining certain personal protections like:

  • Losses to one’s home and contents
  • Loss of use
  • Loss of personal items
  • Liability insurance for accidents that may happen in your Napa, CA neighborhood

One’s residence is typically one of the most valuable financial assets one will ever own. Yet, owning a home includes risk. A homeowner must contend with the possibility of loss. The loss could be minor, such as a broken window, or perhaps something more serious, like an entire loss of the home due to fire. The reason to carry home insurance is to protect against such potential financial losses.

Although homeowner‘s Insurance is not typically mandated by law, if one has a mortgage, a lender will frequently require the buyer to purchase homeowner’s insurance. The home itself is referred to as the "dwelling" for insurance purposes.

Homeowner’s Insurance covers damages; home warranties cover mechanical breakdowns. Most consumers would never anticipate that a standard homeowner’s insurance policy would cover the basement’s wine cooler, should it ever stop working. However, many homeowners mistakenly assume that the large, vital systems in the home will be covered by a homeowner’s insurance policy. Unfortunately, that is simply untrue. Home insurance does not cover mechanical breakdowns.

Wine Valley Insurance Services can help you find the home insurance policy to meet your needs and to provide a combination of custom-made coverage, quality service, and fair pricing. Contact us today.

Important Issues to Remember When Purchasing Renter’s Insurance

If you currently rent a property, Wine Valley Insurance Services in Napa, CA wants you to consider carrying renter’s insurance. There are a variety of issues to be cognizant of should you purchase renter’s insurance.

Wine Valley Insurance Services’ Things to Remember while Purchasing Renter’s Insurance

In and around multiple states, you will find that renter’s insurance:

Places Liability on a 3rd Party

When entertaining in your home, there is an unrelenting chance that someone might be injured.

Pays for Housing When your Property is Unlivable

Depending on your policy, if your home is unlivable, your renter’s insurance may pay for another rental for a specified period of time. 

Is Often Discounted

If you choose to buy renter’s insurance from the same company who carries your auto policy, they may offer you a discount or bundle.

Has Limitations

Renter’s insurance policies often limit coverage for jewelry, fine art, or antiques. It is important to discuss with your agent what valuables are covered.

Is More Difficult to Obtain if you Have a Dog

Ownership of aggressive dog breeds is typically considered a risk beyond the scope of renter’s insurance. This is not always the case though.

The Take-Away

Statistics offered by the Insurance Information Institute reveals that approximately 30 percent of renters choose to buy renter’s insurance. Apparently, this statistic is headed in an upwards direction. The National Multi Housing Council reports that in 2012, nearly 85 percent of landlords required tenants to acquire renters to buy insurance, up from only 25 percent three years earlier. Renter’s Insurance offered by Wine Valley Insurance Services helps protect your belongings from theft, and from potential liability concerns.

Wine Valley Insurance Services in Napa, CA has provided elite customer service with custom-designed insurance policies for more than nine years. We are an independent agency with flexibility to represent many multiple states. Our mission: Helping the customer find the insurance they need!