10 Smart Tips to Save Money on Auto Insurance Premiums

At LG Insurance Group, we understand that everyone wants to get the best value for their hard-earned money, and that includes your auto insurance premiums. Whether you’re a resident of Georgia or Tennessee, we’re here to help you save money while ensuring you have the coverage you need. In this blog post, we’ll share 10 smart tips to help you reduce your auto insurance premiums without compromising on protection.

  1. Shop Around: Just like any other purchase, it’s essential to compare auto insurance quotes from multiple providers. As an independent insurance agency, we can do the legwork for you, searching for the best deals and coverage options available in your area.
  2. Bundle Your Policies: Consider bundling your auto insurance with other insurance policies, such as home or renters insurance. Many insurers offer discounts for bundling, which can lead to significant savings.
  3. Maintain a Good Driving Record: Safe driving pays off. Avoid accidents and traffic violations, as a clean driving record often results in lower premiums.
  4. Choose a Higher Deductible: Opting for a higher deductible can lower your premium costs. Just make sure you have the funds available to cover the deductible in case of an accident.
  5. Drive Less: If you have the option to reduce your mileage, do so. Insurance companies often offer discounts for low-mileage drivers, as they pose a lower risk.
  6. Drive a Safe Vehicle: Safety features, such as airbags, anti-lock brakes, and anti-theft systems, can lead to insurance discounts. Consider choosing a car with these features when making your next purchase.
  7. Maintain Good Credit: In some states, insurers use credit scores to determine premiums. Maintaining good credit can help lower your insurance costs.
  8. Ask About Discounts: Insurance providers offer various discounts, such as safe driver discounts, good student discounts, and discounts for taking defensive driving courses. Don’t forget to inquire about these opportunities.
  9. Review and Update Your Policy Annually: Life changes, and so do your insurance needs. Review your policy annually with your independent agent to ensure it still meets your requirements and offers the best rates.
  10. Consider Usage-Based Insurance: Some insurers offer usage-based insurance, where your premium is based on your driving habits. If you’re a safe driver, this could lead to significant savings.

At LG Insurance Group, we’re committed to helping you save money on your auto insurance premiums while providing you with top-notch coverage. These 10 tips can go a long way in reducing your costs without sacrificing the protection you need. Remember, we’re here to assist you in finding the best insurance solutions tailored to your specific needs. Feel free to reach out to us for personalized assistance and quotes. Safe driving and smart insurance choices go hand in hand for a brighter, more secure future.

Why home and auto insurance rates are continuing to rise in 2023 

Thanks to an unusual convergence of market trends, ushered in by the pandemic and followed by other disruptive events, you may see a bigger change to the cost of your home and auto insurance than usual when it comes time to renew your policies this year. Insurance rates are based on what an insurer thinks it will cost to make you whole in the event of a loss – whether it’s roof damage during a windstorm or a vehicle totaled during a traffic accident. As you’ve likely noticed, pretty much everything costs more than it did even a few years ago.  

What’s driving higher home insurance costs 
If you’ve shopped at Home Depot or Lowe’s lately, you’ve certainly seen that the price tags on building materials have gotten pretty expensive. Last year, the cost of building materials rose 4.7%, reflecting a particularly strong uptick in prices on things like asphalt shingles (16.2%), concrete blocks (18.5%) and drywall (20.4%). 

To make matters worse, the home-building industry is facing a shortfall of more than 300,000 skilled laborers, which is driving up construction-related labor costs. Combined with the high cost of construction materials and historically low housing inventory, this has been making home claims much more expensive for insurance companies.  

What’s driving higher auto insurance costs 
Ongoing supply chain issues are driving a shortage of car parts and equipment, which were 22.3% more expensive at the end of 2022 than they were two years earlier. The overall cost of maintaining and repairing vehicles increased 18.4 % over the same timeframe – exacerbated by a growing shortage of car repair technicians. 

The same issues depleted the supply of new and used cars during the COVID-19 pandemic, and inventories have not yet recovered. As a result, the average price of new cars has risen 20% since 2020, while used car prices have skyrocketed 37%.  

Rising medical costs are another key factor. While the number of injuries and fatalities from car accidents has somewhat declined from its peak in 2021, the rising cost of medical care continues to drive higher claims costs. Between 2020 and 2022, the overall cost of medical care in the U.S. increased 6.8% 

Focus on value as you explore ways to save 
Keep in mind that savings come in many forms. The value of the coverage you choose today may save you more in the long run than the lowest possible premium.  

Contact LG Insurance Group to review your current coverage. We’ll help you explore opportunities for discounts that could offset higher rates when it comes time to renew. 

Sources: Safeco Insurance, National Association of Realtors, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Home Builders Institute, CoreLogic, Consumer Price Index, TechForce Foundation 

Lesser Known Ways to Prepare Your Car for a Road Trip

Before heading out on a lengthy road trip, it is recommended that you get an oil change, have your fluids checked, inspect your tires, and have your belts and hoses inspected. This can help minimize your chances of being in an accident or encountering car problems. Here at LG Insurance Group, serving the greater Marietta, GA area, we want to help keep you safe when traveling this summer. Here are a few lesser-known ways to prepare your car for a road trip. 

Have Your Battery Tested

Before hitting the road, always have your battery tested. This helps to ensure that your battery has a reasonable charging capacity and is in good shape. If your battery indicates it has a low charging capacity, you should replace it before your road trip. 

Check Your Lights and Signals

Another thing that you should do before a road trip is to check your lights and signals. You want to ensure all of your lights and signals work, and if they don’t, you want to replace the bulbs so they function correctly. 

Ensure Your Spare Tire Is In Good Shape

Lastly, you should always check the condition of your spare tire before going on a lengthy road trip. You want to ensure the spare tire is properly inflated and in good, usable condition. 

If you are planning on going on a road trip this summer, you are not alone. Millions of people are expected to travel via automobile during the summer months. Preparing your car is one of the things you can do, as is ensuring you have automobile coverage that protects you and your vehicle. Here at LG Insurance Group, serving the Marietta, GA area, we can help you with all your auto insurance needs. Call or email us to learn more. 

Understanding Insurance Loss Valuation Options

Insurance can be a confusing topic, especially when it comes to understanding the different types of coverage and their associated terms. One area that often causes confusion is the difference between actual cash value, replacement cost, stated value, and agreed value. In this blog post, we’ll break down each term to help you better understand your insurance coverage.

Actual Cash Value

Actual cash value (ACV) is the fair market value of an item at the time of loss. It takes into account the item’s age, condition, and depreciation. In the event of a covered loss, the insurance company will typically pay out the actual cash value of the item, which means you may not receive enough money to replace the item with a new one. For example, if you have a 10-year-old TV that is damaged in a covered loss, the insurance company will pay out the current market value of a 10-year-old TV, not the cost to replace it with a new one.

Replacement Cost

Replacement cost is the amount of money it would take to replace an item with a new one of like kind and quality. Unlike actual cash value, replacement cost does not take into account depreciation. In the event of a covered loss, the insurance company will typically pay out the replacement cost of the item, which means you will receive enough money to replace the item with a new one. For example, if you have a 10-year-old TV that is damaged in a covered loss and you have replacement cost coverage, the insurance company will pay out the cost to replace the TV with a new one of like kind and quality.

Stated Value

Stated value is a term used in insurance policies for items that have an agreed-upon value between the policyholder and the insurance company. For example, if you have a classic car that is worth $50,000, you and your insurance company may agree on a stated value of $50,000 for the car. In the event of a covered loss, the insurance company will pay out the stated value of the car, regardless of its actual cash value or replacement cost.

Agreed Value

Agreed value is similar to stated value in that it is an agreed-upon value between the policyholder and the insurance company. However, with agreed value coverage, the value is typically determined at the time the policy is written, and it cannot be changed during the policy term. This means that if the item’s value increases or decreases, the agreed value will not change. Agreed value coverage is often used for items that are difficult to value, such as antiques or art.

In conclusion, understanding insurance terms such as actual cash value, replacement cost, stated value, and agreed value can help you make informed decisions about your insurance coverage. It’s important to review your policy and speak with your insurance agent to ensure you have the appropriate coverage for your needs. Contact LG Insurance Group if you need assistance understanding your coverages or other available options.

Protect Your Vacation Fun with RV Insurance

Do you own an RV? Are your summer months filled with good times traveling around? Is it insured? Contact the LG Insurance Group, serving the area in and around Marietta, GA, to get the protection you need for your RV.

RV insurance is protection if you cause damage or injuries to others. It will also cover the repair cost of your vehicle if a covered incident happens. Various coverage will differ based on how you use your RV – as a full-time residence or for recreation.

Coverage will also vary based on how the RV is operated. If driving a motor home, you will need separate liability to remain on the road. If you are pulling a travel trailer, you do not need separate liability insurance because it is covered by your auto insurance policy while towing it.

So, what insurance should you have on your RV? You are only required to have standard liability insurance for the protection of others, in addition to personal injury protection, or PIP, if you live in a no-fault state.

Your homeowner’s insurance policy may cover the personal property stored inside your RV, such as clothing, kitchen supplies, jewelry, or firearms. But it will not cover loss or damage to the RV itself. On the other hand, car insurance policies will cover the trailer, not personal property.

RV insurance will cover theft, depending on the type of coverage you have. If you have comprehensive coverage, theft of the RV and all internal components that were initially part of the RV at purchase, such as folding beds and cabinets, will be covered.

Don’t allow your summer fun to be compromised. Purchase RV insurance to have peace of mind knowing you are protected. Contact the LG Insurance Group today for a free, no-obligation quote.

Is Basic Auto Insurance Sufficient?

Most motorists know that car insurance is a worthy investment that can save you when things get tricky. However, most are likely to stick to the state-required car insurance to save money. While this might look like a well-thought-out saving plan, you will regret it when faced with a significant accident.

So, should I stick to basic auto insurance? LG Insurance Group of Marietta, GA explains why it’s risky to go this path.

Why minimum auto insurance is never enough

To expound on why basic car insurance is never enough, let’s look at the auto insurance requirements for Georgia. Motorists are required to have a car insurance policy that satisfies the following requirements:

  • Bodily injury liability of at least $25,000/$50,000
  • Property damage liability with a minimum of $25,000
  • Uninsured motorist property damage of at least $25,000 with certain deductibles

When you look at these insurance limits, you might think they are enough, but you will find they are inadequate when faced with a significant auto accident. For instance, assume you are responsible for an accident that causes property damage of $20,000 and bodily injury of $100,000 to multiple persons. Your state-required liability insurance will cover these liability claims up to $75,000. As for the balance of $45,000, you will cover it from your pocket unless you have enough liability coverage to foot the entire third-party bill. See why basic insurance is never a good idea? It can easily land you in a financial mess.

What we tell our clients

Since basic insurance is never enough, we usually advise our clients to increase the coverage limits. For motorists who want super-high liability coverage, we recommend considering umbrella insurance.

Secondly, we advise our clients to consider other insurance policies. Examples include:

  • Collision coverage
  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Personal injury protection (PIP)
  • Roadside assistance, and so on

Want a sound car insurance policy in Marietta, GA? Please get in touch with LG Insurance Group for a quote.

Why home and auto insurance rates are rising in 2022

Rising Insurance Costs

Thanks to an unusual convergence of market trends, ushered in by the pandemic and other disruptive events, you may see a bigger change to the cost of your home and auto insurance than usual when it comes time to renew your policies this year.

Insurance rates are based on what an insurer thinks it will cost to make you whole in the event of a loss – whether it’s roof damage during a windstorm or a vehicle totaled during a traffic accident. As you’ve likely noticed, pretty much everything costs more than it did even a few years ago.

What’s driving higher home insurance costs

If you’ve shopped at Home Depot or Lowe’s lately, you’ve certainly seen that the price tags on building materials have risen dramatically. Last year alone, the cost of building materials rose 14.1%, with lumber playing an outsized role in that trend, more than tripling in price since March 2020.

To make matters worse, the home-building industry is facing a shortfall of at least 200,000 skilled laborers, which is driving up construction-related labor costs. Combined with the high cost of construction materials and historically low housing inventory, this has been making home claims much more expensive for insurance companies.

What’s driving higher auto insurance costs

An ongoing shortage of microchips and other critical parts like wiring harnesses, plastics and glass is making it more costly to repair or replace a vehicle after an accident.

Supply chain issues are rapidly depleting inventories of new and used cars. Inventories have reached a critical low-point, falling 87% between 2020 and 2022. As a result, the average price of new cars has risen 14% over the same period, while used car prices have skyrocketed 55%.

At the same time, accidents have become more frequent and severe, increasing the number and cost of auto claims. In the first six months of 2021, nearly 2.5 million people sustained injuries requiring consultation with a medical professional. Accident fatalities in Jan. 2022 were 14% higher than in Jan. 2020.

Focus on value as you explore ways to save

Keep in mind that savings comes in many forms. The value of the coverage you choose today may save you more in the long run than the lowest possible premium. Contact us to review your current coverage. Click here to get an online quote, Compare Quotes | LG Insurance Group (lg-ig.com). We will help you explore opportunities for discounts that could offset higher rates when it comes time to renew your coverage.

Side Hustles & Entrepreneurism Risks: Are You Covered?

After businesses shuttered and U.S. workers were sent home at the height of the pandemic in 2020, a report from Dollar Sprout revealed that more that 27% of those with a side hustle rely on that income to pay their bills. They might be doing anything from tutoring, freelance writing, offering professional consulting services, walking dogs or delivering groceries, to name a few.

The Dollar Sprout report also revealed that:
• Of those with a side hustle, 18% expect to turn it into a full-time source of income.
• Although 23% lost side-hustle income because of COVID-19, 42% remain hopeful about their prospects.

While the pandemic reshaped the workplace, the prevalence of home-based businesses had already given rise to ETSY, the fourth largest U.S. ecommerce site by monthly visits, where people sell everything from crafts and antiques to handmade toys and items for weddings, among other things.

The community of freelancers is increasing steadily. The Freelancers Union, established in 1995, says:
• There were 57 million U.S. freelancers in 2020.
• Americans rack up more than 1 billion freelance hours each week.
• Freelancers contribute more than $1 trillion annually to the U.S. economy.

New models of work create different insurance requirements. As individuals take on side hustles to generate more income or out of a desire to operate their own businesses, they also take on risks. If you have a side hustle, you need to insure yourself accordingly.

Liability insurance tops the list. Your Trusted Choice Independent Insurance Agent® can help you evaluate your side business, assess your existing coverages, and determine if you need a professional or business liability policy in addition to personal insurance. As a highly trained professional, your Trusted Choice agent can advise you of the specific or often overlooked coverages you should consider, and then assemble competitive product choices for you from the insurance marketplace.

Why is this so important? Even the most benign gig could destroy an individual financially in the absence of appropriate insurance coverage. Imagine a child takes a nasty tumble in your home while there for a piano lesson or a client accuses you of plagiarism: You will be liable. Or consider the costs you would be responsible for if the dog you’re walking breaks loose and attacks a pedestrian. The right policy can protect you.

Cyber insurance is also a growing consideration. If you set up an online store to sell crafts or homemade baked goods and a hacker steals your customers’ credit card data, what would be the cost to you? Would you be able to recoup your losses? Cyber insurance can protect you in the event of a breech whether your computer is hacked or your phone containing private information is stolen.

Auto insurance. Some automotive policies are for personal use only. Others may cover a business-related accident, but with limited coverage. If your side hustle involves driving and you get into an accident, do you know whether your insurance will cover you? If not, check with your Trusted Choice agent before an accident occurs.

Even if you are employed as a delivery driver, you need to know whether the company’s insurance covers you and what the limits are for collision, liability and medical. Talk with your independent agent, so you’ll know if you need a commercial policy for adequate protection.

Fire insurance. You probably have a homeowners or renters policy that provides coverage for losses incurred in a fire. But what happens if you operate a home business and spent thousands of dollars on office equipment? Will the insurance extend beyond your personal belongings to cover that equipment? Or, for that matter, will it cover the materials you purchased to make the items that you sell, or the business inventory you store at home?

Find answers before you need to make a claim, and avoid potentially devastating surprises. Your Trusted Choice agent can explain where your personal coverage ends, and where the gaps are in your business coverage.

As your business grows, be sure to inform your Trusted Choice agent so they can work with you to adjust your coverages and ensure the policies keep pace with your needs — especially if you hire workers or engage a contractor. Your agent can advise you about workers’ compensation insurance and employment practices liability insurance. Your agent also can review your contractor’s proof of insurance to determine if it meets your business’s needs.

Think of your Trusted Choice agent as a business partner who has your interests at heart. Your agent will work with you every step of the way as you grow your side hustle and reap the fruits of your efforts. Contact LG Insurance Group today if you have any questions regarding your insurance needs.

Summer Driving Tips

A family road trip in Marietta, GA can be the perfect summer activity but you need to make sure your car is up for the task.

What to Do Before You Go

Before you hit the road, get your car serviced. This includes an oil change, tire rotation, battery check, and tune-up. If you have stuck to a service schedule then your vehicle should be ready to go. Regardless of when you got your car serviced last, you want to double-check some basic safety equipment, such as tires, lights, the cooling system, fluid levels, wiper blades, and air conditioning. Check to make sure your insurance is up to date by speaking with an agent at LG Insurance Group. 

Pack an Emergency Roadside Kit

It’s still possible for a well-maintained car to break down so you should have some supplies with you. While a cell phone tops the list, other things you should have to include a flashlight, jumper cables, work gloves, basic repair tools, a first aid kit, and non-perishable food and drinking water.

Safety First

Protecting your family should be on top of the list in Marietta, GA. Be sure that every passenger is wearing his or her seatbelt at all times. If you are traveling with children, make sure they are in an appropriate car seat and that it is installed correctly. Don’t leave children unattended in the vehicle and remember to lock the car when exiting so children don’t get trapped inside.

Stay Alert

A long trip can be taxing so be sure to plan time to stop and get in a stretch. You may even want to consider switching drivers.

Avoid Risky Driving Behaviors

The focus of the driver should be driving and there shouldn’t be any distractions, including cell phone usage, drinking, eating, or using in-vehicle technologies. Obey the posted speed limit and be sure to share the road with other motorists out for their summer fun.

Contact LG Insurance Group to get a quote on auto insurance.

How to Keep Your Vehicle Clean for the Summer

Keeping your vehicle clean throughout the summer can be difficult to do. In Marietta, GA, the independent insurance agents at the LG Insurance Group are available to help you with your auto insurance policy. They can also find ways to help you keep your vehicle clean throughout the summer months.

Stop the Sunlight

The sun can be just as damaging as rain to a vehicle. If your vehicle sits outside most of the day, you should consider moving it under a shady area while you’re at work. If you can, think about buying a car cover. If you’re going to leave your car for an extended period outside without shelter, a car cover would protect against fading.

Battery Maintenance

Most people might think that car batteries are more troublesome in the winter, but during the summer there are some issues that could cause your battery to fail. Temperatures can soar over 90 degrees and heat can quickly lead to battery fluid evaporation. If you see corrosion coming from the battery you can use baking soda and water to remove the corrosion.

Tire Pressure in the Summer

Check your tire pressure at least once a month during the summer. When the weather is hot, your tires can blow out if they are under inflated. Use the tire pressure label located on the inside of your car door panel to know how much air you should put in your tires. You can also check your vehicle owner’s manual for the correct amount.

Take a ride over to LG Insurance Group in Marietta, GA to talk about getting coverage for your vehicle. You’ll also be glad to know that their independent agents will also be able to assist you with homeowners, life, and commercial insurance when you’re ready.