Molly’s Musings

She's not Dear Abby, but she does get a lot of interesting questions from folks just like you!  

Frequently Asked Questions | Home, Auto, Health, Life, Commercial - Huggins Insurance

Frequently asked questions...

You asked. We answered.

Filter by Category

Auto

Does my personal auto policy cover a rental car?

Yes & no. Your personal auto policy will provide liability coverage and physical damage coverage equal to the coverage you have on your own cars, for the car you rent. However, many rental car contracts have language in them that requires you to replace the car with a brand new version while your insurance policy will pay to replace the car with like kind and quality.

If my personal auto policy cancels for non-pay in the first six months of the policy period will Huggins help me get my policy reinstated?

No. We want to be your insurance adviser for a long time. Our goal is to partner with you to get the best possible price for the most complete coverage. If your auto policy cancels in the first 6 months for non-payment- reinstatement will come with a higher premium and takes us away from our goal.

Should I purchase the insurance coverage that is offered by the rental car carrier?

This is a good opportunity to ask questions. Ask what their contract stipulates in the event the car is totaled. Ask if they offer just physical damage coverage instead of full coverage. If you have the choice to just buy physical damage coverage and there is real savings between that and full coverage then go with the physical damage coverage.

Will Huggins Insurance sell a personal auto policy with the minimum liability limits required by the State of Oregon?

No. The minimum limits give you enough coverage to legally drive, but it’s not a limit that we feel comfortable releasing our clients with. Often to double the coverage the price increase is barely noticeable.

Credit score

Can I get an idea of what my credit score is before I call you?

We recommend that you go to www.myfico.com. While they will charge you for the report, they will also give you recommendations on what you can do to improve your score.

I don’t want my credit score to be ordered as part of the quote process- is this possible?

Yes. Companies will assume the worst about your credit though and the price will be the highest possible.

If I buy insurance from you and raise my score will my premium go down?

Potentially. This is something to talk directly to your agent about. Different companies have different requirements.

If you order my credit score won’t those inquiries lower my score?

No. Credit inquiries could lower your score as they are an indication that you are considering a new line of credit and/or debt. The inquiry pulls a great deal of info that includes your current loans, your history of paying bills, and what your amount of revolving debt is. Obtaining a credit score is just a snapshot.

Why do insurance companies use my credit score to determine my premium?

Everything in insurance is based on statistics. Several years ago, two insurance companies scored their book and looked at the claims experience based on the credit score. The results indicated a strong correlation between your score and your likelihood of having a claim. People with high scores had fewer and smaller claims. People with lower scores had more frequent and larger claims.

Health

How do I get a quote for my business?

You will need to complete a census form which essentially tells us how many employees you have, who will & won’t be enrolling, and how they will be enrolling.

How do I get a quote for myself or my family?

Simply follow this link: http://www.huggins.com/health-insurance

If I apply for an individual plan and I get turned down what do I do next?

The Oregon Medical Pool offer guaranteed issue medical plans that provide good coverage at rates that are higher than what you originally applied for, but not unreasonably so. Our agency will guide you through that process.

What is a Health Savings Account?

A Health Savings Account is essentially and IRA that you can set up and contribute to when you have a high deductible health plan that meets certain Federal benchmarks.

What is the advantage of a Health Savings Account?

By signing up for a high deductible health plan you will get a better price than if you signed up for a plan that provided more coverage. The savings in premium that you recognize could be deposited into a health savings account to pay for future medical needs. The money you deposit into your health savings account may be written off on your taxes.

Where can I learn more about Health Savings Accounts?

We recommend that you go to www.hsabank.com . This bank has been a partner with our agency and they have a number of tools on their website to tell you more.

Why are individual plans so much cheaper than group plans.

There are two main reasons: First, individual health plans do not contain as many mandated coverages as a group plan. Second, the individuals plans are more closely underwritten and coverage can be denied for even the most minor of medical conditions.

Home

What deductible option is the best to select?

Home insurance is designed and priced to protect against a catastrophe. The more times you turn in small claims the greater the chance your insurance company will non-renew your policy. When you combine that with the fact that the greater the deductible you select the bigger the credit against your premium- there is an incentive to pick the highest deductible that you feel comfortable with.

What happens if the replacement value is off a little?

Insurance companies recognize how hard it would be to arrive at the exact amount so they provide typically provide what the home is insured for and at least an additional 25%.

Will my homeowner’s policy cover my collectibles, my one rare antique, and my wife’s wedding ring?

Despite the fact that your homeowner’s policy provides coverage for your personal possessions every company has limitations on specific items. Your agent will talk with you about these types of items and they can be covered by scheduling them in addition to your contents.

How come what my home is insured for doesn’t match what my home is worth?

What your home is worth is it’s market value. What your home could be replaced for is it’s replacement value. When we insure your home we base it on what it would take to replace your home.

How do you arrive at the replacement value?

We plug in many details about your home into a program that stays up to date with local costs for labor and materials. This program then produces the replacement value.

Life

How do I determine how much of a death benefit I need?

As a general rule of thumb we use the DIME method. Click on our calculator to figure out what amount would be right for you. The goal is to find an amount that will allow your loved ones to mourn and heal without worrying about finances. This amount should equal the sum total of all the various life insurance policies that you have in force.

How do I determine the right death benefit for a child?

If you are purchasing a universal life policy on a child somewhere between $25,000 & $100,000 is a good place to start. Once the child becomes a young adult and leaves the home the policy can go with them and they can decide if they want to increase the death benefit or buy an additional term life policy.

How do I determine the right length of time for a term life policy?

Part of this is determined by your budget and part of this is determined by how close you are to retiring. If you can afford it and you have longer than 20 years to retirement you should purchase a 20 year (or longer) term. The goal is to have a term policy to take you through to retirement when you can convert to a universal life policy.

How do I use universal life to protect to total of my estate?

By working with your accountant you can determine what your estate taxes will be and that is the amount that we’ll use to establish your death benefit.

What is the difference between term life insurance & universal life insurance?

Term life insurance lasts for the term you purchase- typically 5, 10, 15 or 20 years provided you pay the premiums. If you die during the term your beneficiaries will get the amount you purchased in the beginning. Universal life insurance can last as long as you do provided the premiums are paid. In addition to the life insurance there is a cash value account that a portion of your premium goes into.

Which is a better purchase term or universal?

It really depends on your stage of life. Universal life is a great product to buy on kids because they get a great rate and you can build the cash value account while they’re young. Universal Life is also a good purchase for someone who is retiring and wants to insure their nest egg for the next generation. Term life makes sense for everyone in between. When you’re in your 20’s & 30’s your debt will be high, but term life insurance is based in part on your age so it’s less expensive to buy a higher benefit.