Renters Insurance Coverage Helps Keep Your Apartment Safe!

So you just moved into your brand new apartment in Brooklyn? You have probably spent a couple hundred dollars moving in your expensive televisions, musical instruments, sports equipment, artwork, and much more. In the case of a fire, natural disaster, or theft, you could be out thousands of dollars if you do not have renters insurance coverage! Although your landlord is responsible for any and all damages that may occur to the building, it is your responsibility to keep your personal possessions safe from harm.

Not only will renters insurance protect your personal assets, but many plans will also cover your additional living expenses in the event that your apartment becomes uninhabitable. Furthermore, renters insurance protects you from any injuries that you or your guests may experience while on your property. If you throw a lot of dangerous Brooklyn rooftop parties, renters insurance takes all of the legal responsibility that may occur in the event of an accident or serious injury. Without renters insurance, you’re held financially responsible for the safety of your guests.

Additionally, any damage or injury that occurs from your household pet will easily be covered by renters insurance. If your pitbull acts up around new guests, it’s probably a good idea to get some rental coverage. Not only will it save you money in future, but it will make you feel more comfortable in your new Brooklyn apartment!

Why Is Car Insurance in New York So Important?

If you are one of the many drivers without car insurance in New York, you are taking a large risk by staying financially unprotected. If you were to get in one of the hundreds of accidents that occur on a daily basis, you may find yourself in financial debt if left uncovered, and maybe involved in a lawsuit. Not only is automobile insurance a financial asset, but it is also illegal to operate a vehicle without any coverage in New York City.

Driving without automobile insurance can result in large fines and eventually the loss of your license. If left unprotected, any accident will result in an average cost of over $1,000 for the driver at fault. Rather than having an insurance agency pay off the cost of your accident, this money will come straight out of your pocket. With an average of more than six million car accidents per year in the U.S., these costs can add up and become a financial burden.

We want you to stay protected not only in your automobile, but in your home and business as well. By staying uncovered, you are constantly taking a financial gamble on your assets. Can you afford to take a risk like that? Make the safe bet by getting a free quote on your New York car insurance today!

Was Your Home Loan Sold? Quick, Call Your Insurance Agent!

Do you have a mortgage? Yes? Then at some point in your home-owning life, you have received a letter telling you that your mortgage has been sold to another lender. There’s certainly nothing unusual about it when this happens, as home loans are sold every day in the United States. It is a very common practice. Typically, the letter tells you that nothing will change for you and – "you do not need to do anything."

WRONG!!! – You should contact the insurance agent that handles your home insurance.

Here’s Why: If your home insurance is part of your escrow then your agent needs to know and needs to change the Mortgagee endorsement on your policy.

Every year your insurance company sends a bill to the company that owns your loan. Your lender sends a check from your escrow account to pay for your Homeowner’s insurance for the next year. If your insurance company does not have the correct lender information the bill will be sent to the wrong company and the bill will not be paid. Believe it or not – that is not the big problem.

Here is the BIG PROBLEM. Your new lender wants to know you have insurance that will pay to replace your home in case of a total loss – they want to know they will get their money! If your new lender does not get a bill or see some form of proof that you have insurance – then the lender will put insurance in place for you. And guess what? The insurance the bank puts in place can cost up to THREE TIMES MORE than what you are paying now and that is just for your house and wouldn’t include insurance for all your belongings inside your home.

If this occurs the lender is simply going to pass the high-cost of this other insurance along to the home owner in the form of a much higher mortgage payment on your next statement, which can cause unnecessary panic and confusion.

The lesson – keep your Insurance Agent updated on any change regarding not only your home, but your lender as well. Your agent wants to be up to date and will appreciate the call and it’s a simple change that only requires a few moments to complete.

Insurance Terms 101

new york renters insurance

New York City life is crazy enough as it is, without confusion when it comes to New York renters insurance. The insurance lexicon is vast and can prove overwhelming for those unfamiliar with its various terms, clauses and definitions. That’s why we’ve gathered together all the essential information you need to know in order to make informed decisions when considering policies, premiums and everything in between.

If you’re looking for an introduction to the topic of insurance, make sure you pore over our Insurance FAQ, which provides extensive information on everything from condo insurance to auto insurance. On the other hand, if you’re generally au fait with insurance but searching for an explanation of a particular term, our Insurance and Homebuyers Glossaries are the only resources you’ll need.

Here are some of the top insurance terms you may have heard, but may not quite fully understand:

Indemnity: Benefits of a predetermined amount paid for a loss.

Consideration Clause: Stipulation that states the basis on which an insurer issues an insurance contract.

Utmost Good Faith: The Insured and the Insurer are bound by a good faith of honesty and fairness; all material facts must be disclosed.

Mitigation: In the case of any loss or casualty, the asset owner must attempt to keep loss to a minimum, as if the asset was not insured.

Co-Op Insurance: What You Need to Know

When buying a co-op apartment there is a lot of information to consider before committing to a decision. As a co-op owner, you share the walls, hallways, basement, roof, elevator and walkways. You may also share common services such as lawn mowing, garbage collection, and snowplowing. What gets tricky, however, is the insurance.

A co-op association will have a master policy for the co-op complex, covering the common areas mentioned earlier. In an earlier post, we provided questions to help determine which master policy your co-op association possesses, and what kind of co-op insurance coverage you will need. Your co-op association will have one of three types of master policies:

  • Bare walls: This policy covers the structure, fixtures, and furnishings shared or common areas within the condominium complex.
  • Single entity: This policy covers everything within the bare walls policy, along with certain fixtures inside condo units (e.g., carpeting, cabinets, appliances).
  • All inclusive: This policy is the most extensive as it covers everything in the condo except for personal property the owner brings into the unit (e.g., clothes, bicycles, artwork).

Knowing the master policy of your co-op association is only the first step in making a fully informed decision about the co-op insurance policy you choose. Luckily we can help you determine what kind of coverage, and how much insurance you will need to feel secure at your co-op. Contact us for more information on all your insurance questions, from co-op insurance to New York renter’s insurance. We got you covered.

How to Make a Claim on your Condo Insurance

condo insuranceMaking a claim on your condo insurance may at first seem a little daunting. What are the specifics of the procedure? What documents are required? Who exactly must be approached? We’ve gathered together some pointers that will hopefully put your mind at ease.

If an accident or some other mishap has occurred in your condo, you should contact your condo insurance provider immediately. Bear in mind that you should know the following before making the call:

  • When the incident occurred
  • What exactly happened
  • The location of the property damage and what was damaged
  • If your home is still livable
  • What repairs, if any, are required
  • If you contacted the police or fire department in response to the situation (and the police report number, if so)
  • Your contact information and the best time to reach you
Where repairs are needed, the insured can either use their preferred contractor or have their insurance provider recommend a contractor capable of making the repairs. The deductible will usually then be paid to the contractor/company who repairs the damage.
Once you have made your claim, the insurance payment will follow. If you have a mortgage on your condo, your insurance company may pay you and your mortgage lender up to the limit of your policy. In such a case as where an advance payment was made, this advance payment will be applied to the total payout. Also, your deductible and any applicable depreciation will be deducted from the final payout.

Three Tips to Save on Homeowners Insurance

new york renters insuranceYour home is undoubtedly the most important of all your possessions, and it should be your priority when contemplating what things to get covered. However, homeowners insurance rarely comes cheap, so we’ve come together to offer you some tips on how to save on your homeowners insurance premium if you are feeling the pinch:

Building Materials: If you’re renovating or building a new home and want to take measures to reduce your premium, consider the building materials available. Depending on the materials you opt for, and the environment in which your home is situated, you could save quite a bit. For example, using brick construction rather than a wooden frame structure could save you money if your property is located in an area where earthquakes and hurricanes often occur.

Location, Location, Location: You could save money depending on the exact location of your property. For example, if the house is situated in a safe, quiet area near to your local fire station, then your premium may be lower.

Reevaluate Your Valuables: If you bought additional insurance coverage for your valuables, be sure to keep track of their value and adjust the coverage amount as appropriate. If you neglect to do this, you may end up over-insuring your items.

Get in touch with us today for more tips on optimizing your policy, from homeowners to condo insurance, New York renters insurance, and car insurance.

Protecting Your Business During the Holidays

As the holidays draw ever closer, your business is most likely frantically trying to satisfy increased demand at this busy time of year. But isn’t it important to feel a sense of security, as well as accomplishment when you finally close up shop? Ensure your business is safe and secure over the holiday period as you enjoy a long-overdue rest at home with family and friends.

Finding the best business insurance in New York is a top priority for your company during the year, but the holiday season further highlights just how crucial good coverage can be. For those closing their businesses for periods longer than a day or so, a primary concern is the possibility of breaking and entering, as well as theft of stock. Without daily activity and presence of staff, thieves may identify your business as a sitting duck.

If this sounds like something you are worried about and you’re not yet covered, you should be make purchasing adequate coverage a top priority. Get in touch with us at Kenneth Bieber, the foremost providers of business insurance in New York, and we will analyze your business needs, develop a plan that is customized and responsive to your own specific situation, and offer you competitive pricing that is reflective of your exposure and experience.

Safe Driving During Winter Months

As important as home and condo insurance is for New Yorkers during the winter months, another essential is quality New York car insurance. As wintry conditions worsen, road conditions grow increasingly hazardous too, so it is highly recommended you take certain precautions when driving through whatever obstacles the weather throws your way. When driving through snow and ice, consider the following tips:

When handling slippery winter roads, the keys to safety are slower speeds, gentler stops and turns, and increased distances between cars. It is recommended that drivers reduce their speed to half the permitted speed limit or even less under snowy road conditions.

Drivers should never try to stretch more miles out of their tires during the winter months. If your tread depth is getting low, it can have serious effects on dry pavement, with potential adverse effects being multiplied in wet and snowy conditions. Tire pressure usually lowers itself in winter and raises itself during summer months. Under-inflated tires can cause a car to react more slowly to steering, which can prove catastrophic. When at all in doubt, ensure you purchase a new set of tires.

Even when observing these guidelines, accidents can occur. Ensure you are covered. Review our comprehensive New York car insurance plans at

Security For Your Salon or Barbershop

Having read the title of this post you may be left scratching your head, wondering why a hair salon or barbershop would possibly need specialist business insurance in New York. Well, the answer is all down to appearance, image and ego. Cutting and styling hair is a highly specialized business, and involves handling many potentially sensitive situations including disgruntled customers or catastrophes involving tears.

Unlike purchasing clothing, which can simply be removed or returned, one haircut cannot simply be exchanged for another. When having their hair cut or styled, a customer relinquishes control and entrusts their stylist with the task of revitalizing their look. If a customer is dissatisfied with a look a stylist has given them, they could claim your staff are performing their work in a sloppy manner or are entirely negligent. In order to protect yourself from potential lawsuits, as well as property damage, it’s vital to invest in coverage specific to salons and barbershops.kenn

So make sure you’re not a hair’s breadth away from losing your hard-earned business, and check out our secure online quote calculation service today. At Kenneth Bieber Insurance, the premier provider of business insurance in New York, we know just how busy your business keeps you so we have strived to take the hassle out of getting a quote, and getting covered.

Shield Yourself from the Cold with New York Renters and Home Insurance

There is nothing like the harsh winds and plummeting temperatures of winter to make you appreciate the warmth and comfort of your own home. But what would you do if you were left out in the cold, literally? Kenneth Bieber has you covered, offering not only home insurance for homeowners but also New York renters insurance.

If Hurricane Sandy taught us New Yorkers anything, it is not to take the safety of your residence and security of your valuables for granted. Dangers which seem unlikely and distant can all too suddenly become a harsh reality. Ensure you shield yourself from the consequences of future unfortunate weather occurrences with New York renters insurance that covers not only temporary housing and liability protection, but also expenses in the event of damages in need of repair.

Eager to get a quote? Then look no further than our secure online quote calculation service, which offers you the opportunity to get a quote without leaving the comfort of your own home, and sparing you the hassle of phone calls. And did we mention we are based in Manhattan? That means we are always on the lookout for you, your family, and your prized possessions–in contrast to giant firms with a sprawling national scope.

Buying from Kenneth Bieber: Fireman’s Fund!

With a name like Fireman’s Fund, the insurance company looks like it should be as well known as Progressive. Maybe it needs a lovable dalmatian mascot? Regular Joes looking for New York renters insurance will be out of luck because this insurance company only handles high-net-worth clients. That is, the rich.

Well hold on there! Just because Fireman’s Fund insures big, does not mean it is a 1% service. Fireman’s Fund started life as a way to keep firemen’s widows protected and it still funds fire houses all across the country through its Heritage Program, paying for equipment, training, and educational programs. At its lowest echelons, the company insures things like yachts, high art, and rare automobiles. Expensive condo insurance, co-op insurance, and business insurance, New York can get plenty of, but the Fund also handles the big social cheeses, like the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco or Charles Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis, the first plane to fly from New York to Paris non-stop. For a town as gilt as New York, the Fund is also the biggest underwriter and insurer of Hollywood movies, making sure every injured stuntman gets his fair recompense. In fact, the company is a large part of the 20th largest corporation in the world, Allianz SE, and has top rankings from Moody’s, Standard and Poor’s, and A.M. Best Company.

Home Inspections Before Winter Weather Comes

This time of year can be just great here in New York. However, you won’t get much fireside snuggling done if your chimney clogs or your roof springs a leak. And while prepping your home for winter weather isn’t much fun, once you do it, your peace of mind can last all season long.

Here’s a handy checklist to make sure the weather stays outside where it ought to be.

Furnace Follies
If you have a forced-air furnace, visually inspect the outside of your system, the ducts, and other points attached to the unit. Repairing potential air leaks is easy to do with a little duct tape. It’s also a great time to clean or replace the filter according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If you can reach them, vacuum off the blower blades while you’re in there.

Winter Weather Stripping
A common source of heat loss and drafty spaces is faulty door or window weather-stripping. Check for drafts by holding a lit candle a couple of inches from the seam. If the flame moves (and you’re sure it’s not the dog breathing over your shoulder) you could have a leak. Typically these are easier to replace entirely than “spot repairing” and kits for doing so may be found at any hardware store.

Chim Chim Cher-ee
Creosote is the black, scaly deposit left behind in wood-burning chimneys. It slows airflow and is an enormous fire hazard. While the chimney is cool, take a flashlight and look for build-up past the damper (at the mouth of the flue near the base of the chimney). If you burn a lot of wood during the season–or very resinous wood like pine–cleaning the chimney is an annual must-do. This is one repair where hiring qualified professionals is best because they have the proper tools and experience to make sure it’s done right.

Stormin’ the Doors
Operational storm doors and windows prevent additional drafts and save energy costs. Make sure the hinges are lubricated and adjusted so they close properly. If you have interchangeable glass panels, make sure to install them instead of leaving the screens over winter.

Rain Gutter Braining
Clean gutters help prevent many cold weather problems from arising, such as basement flooding, siding damage, and door and window leaks. Clean gutters also help keep your foundation dry and repair-free. Plus, if your gutters are holding too much water they can pull free of eaves and fall off at any time, posing a hazard to your noggin.

Show Your Best Siding
In some cases you’ll need to hire a professional to make siding (or paint) repairs, but you can easily inspect for cracks and separations, peeling paint, or other damage that’s not difficult to repair yourself. Usually, a little caulk and some paint do the trick. But don’t leave it to chance–or leave it too long–because when water gets behind siding it’s expensive to repair as well as a health hazard.

Put a Lid On It
If possible, check your roof close up. You can use binoculars to inspect safely from the ground. Look for missing tiles, cracked shingles, and “bald spots”. If you have a composition roof past its warranty, make sure to check for brittleness, a sure sign it needs replacing. Also, if you notice lots of asphalt granules in your newly spotless rain gutters, it’s a sign your roof is eroding and needs replacing soon. Lastly, make sure to check the flashing around the edges of the roof for damage.

Taking just a few minutes this time of year to inspect your home for these common cold weather entry points and it will prevent more costly repairs, reward you with a lower energy bill, and help you have a relaxing holiday season.

Buying from Kenneth Bieber: Progressive!

As an insurance brokerage, Kenneth Bieber works with names both big and small–including one very familiar, Progressive Corporation. We operate as the middle man for New York car insurance buyers as an independent agent to get the most bang for your insurance budget. Even with the friendly Flo explaining Progressive’s many smart plans, it can get a little hairy understanding which policy is the best for which driver.

Let us take a look at the newest Progressive product, the Snapshot. Not just another of Flo’s props, the little silver device actually exists, plugs into a car, and tracks the driver’s habits for 30-day periods to give discounts for safer driving. It cannot increase an insurance premium through gathering data, which sounds almost too good to be true–what is the catch?

The catch is not really a catch, but a smart way of doing insurance business. Progressive appeals to customers by showing them information, quotes from other insurance companies, for example, so they make a better choice. They specialize in global auto insurance, eschewing other lines such as condo insurance and co-op insurance. By using Snapshot’s incentive of discounts, Progressive encourages safer driving on one hand and gathers useful data on the other. Result: fewer accidents, fewer payouts for Progressive, and the same protection for every safe driver.

Buying from Kenneth Bieber: Travelers! customer might come to the Kenneth Bieber website and be a little bewildered by the range of our products–we offer co-op insurance, renters insurance, and New York car insurance, just to name a few. Kenneth Bieber will not only be the go-between for our customers and the insurance provider, we offer many useful online tools and convenient information that can help a customer make the best choice of insurance. The reason why we are able to offer these products at a suitable rate and arrangement for our customers is simple: we work with some of the best insurance providers in the country, like The Travelers Companies.

Travelers was founded in 1864 in Hartford Connecticut. Like the name says, the company was initially formed to provide travel insurance. Over its long history, Travelers created many industry firsts, such as the first automobile insurance, the first airline policy, and the first space travel insurance. Today, Travelers is an international company with headquarters right here in New York City, covering personal, business and financial sectors handily under its umbrella logo.

In addition to providing peace of mind through many insurance products, Travelers also maintains a philanthropic arm, the Travelers Foundation, mainly in support of developing public education reform, promoting academic success, and representing underrepresented youths in its hometown of Hartford, Connecticut.

NYC Flood Claimant Information

In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, many private citizens are laying claim to their condo insurance or co-op insurance to try to recoup their loss. It may take some time for insurance representatives to get to a flooded location, but do not fret! Now is the time to bone up on the documents you need to claim what is rightfully yours. Even New York renters insurance policy holders need to take these steps to protect their possessions.

Step One: Make sure you have the name of your insurance company, a policy number, and a reliable phone number where you can be reached at all times.

Step Two: Document what you would like to claim, separating the damaged and undamaged property. Take a picture of anything thrown away. Compile a list of everything you need replaced.

Step Three: Fill out a Proof of Loss form from your adjuster, which will be needed for both your insurance company and governmental agencies who may or may not recompense you for the damages.

After these steps are complete, negotiations are opened up between you and your insurance providers. Take care to note: not all items can be replaced and the amount of recompense is limited by the policy purchased.

How to File a Renter’s Insurance Claim

If you live in an apartment, especially in an old east coast city like New York, renter’s insurance is a must. The old housing stock here, and in many other cities, increases the chances of fire, water damage and a myriad of other potential problems. If you do not have renter’s insurance, all of your possessions are essentially uncovered in the case of damage, regardless of how the damage was caused. In some cases, the landlord’s insurance will cover damage to your items, but that is unlikely and often the tenant is responsible for their own possessions.

Hopefully you will never have to use your renter’s insurance, but if you do, the best way to ensure your claim is handled swiftly and efficiently is to file it correctly. A poorly filed claim is your greatest enemy when it comes time for compensation.

  • First, contact the insurance company and request a claim form. Try to get a timetable and any other information about the process. Be sure to contact the police in the case of theft or vandalism.
  • Next, fill out the claim form and make as much documentary evidence for your claim as possible. Photos and video are acceptable. Include a police report if you have one.
  • Include an inventory of everything damaged and receipts for those items, if you have them.
  • If you are forced out of your home, save and send receipts for all lodging.
  • The claim, if filed correctly, should be processed quickly.

Who Pays Insurance During Forclosure?

Foreclosure is not something most home owners want to think about. It means the worst: your home is being taken away from you and your entire life is about to be uprooted. Thankfully, now that the housing crisis is being pushed to the past, fewer Americans are facing the prospect of foreclosure. But what happens to insurance on a foreclosed home?

Perhaps the most obscure aspect of home insurance, insuring an uninhabited, foreclosed upon home, is something that both the lender and the borrower should be versed in. Depending on the situation, the home could sit vacant for years and during that time all types of damage could happen. Generally in these situations, the lender will take out a minimal insurance policy on the lapsed property, though the borrower will have the option of continuing the upkeep on a current policy. The lender will usually bill the borrower for the cost of that policy.

The borrower, even though faced with debt and the costs of relocating to another home, should at this point take out another small insurance policy on the home. While the structure is being taken care of by the bank, any possessions or other goods can be covered by a small third party home insurance policy on the home.

Commercial Tenant Insurance

If you are a small business owner, especially one that is just starting out, you will definitely want to read this one.  Many small business owners may not realize it, but when you rent a commercial space you need to be able to provide some type of basic business insurance on the premises. Yes, your landlord should already have a policy on the building, but as the renter and as a business, you will need to be able to provide some type of insurance. In some places, this arrangement is law, or at least its legal for the landlord to require you have it.

The main reason for tenant insurance is two fold. The first is to cover the landlord. Because the space is not a dwelling and presumably work and business will be taking place in the space, the landlord can not allow him or herself to be held liable for everything that happens there. Tenant insurance makes sure that due responsibility is placed upon the tenant as well. The second reason is for the general coverage required to run a business. It will offer liability coverage as well as bodily injury coverage for the policy holder.

For an extra level of business insurance coverage the landlord can be added to the policy.

Product Liability Insurance

Creation is the backbone of capitalism, companies have to create and innovate in order to grow and prosper. However there is an ideal counter to this, that consumers ought to have protection from poor products or products that could directly endanger their health or well being. Understandably so.

Depending on what a firm creates or sells, having some kind of liability insurance on a product is a good idea. Litigation against faulty products and goods takes up substantial legal resources and in the event of a large or class action lawsuit would be costly and ruinous for a company. Low risk product insurance though is easy to get and often isn’t very expensive. Expect to pay between $2,500 -$5,000 dollars a year from a business insurance agent for a low risk product.

High risk products, especially for companies just starting out, can be very expensive if not impossible to insure. High risk products include automotive and other vehicle parts, firearms parts athletic and protective equipment and other devices whose failure could cause catastrophic damage.

Companies seeking product liability business insurance should also be aware of another form of lawsuit. One that consists or litigation against products that perform as expected but have political and social pressure put on them for moral and ethical reasons. Cigarettes and other smoking products are an example of this.

Car Insurance in New York

If you’re going to drive in New York City, get ready to fork over the big bucks. There’s no way around it. Unless you register the car in another state, you’ll be paying higher premiums than almost anywhere else in the country. And from the insurance companies’ stance there is good reason for that. New York’s chaotic streets lead to lots of accidents. But despite the deterrents, for getting around the boroughs, many people will be best served by a car.  Here are a few things you need to know before hitting the road in NYC.

  • Everyone has to carry liability insurance. The amount that must be carried is substantial. Check with your insurance provider about minimum coverage and rates.
  • Pickup trucks and some other work vehicles can’t be registered at cheaper car rates. Because so many people use pickups and vans for work in the city, they are more susceptible to damage than a normal private vehicle.
  • New York car insurance must be provided by an in state company or an out of state company with a license to offer insurance in New York. This goes for the entire state and can’t really be worked around.
So now that you know the basics, its time to get out there in your subcompact and enjoy the gridlock!

High Value Insurance

Many people with wealth and money have built or purchased homes that reflect their stature.  Even people with lesser or normal incomes try to buy or build the best and most expensive home they can afford. In this process though, many people in North America are chronically under-insured. By shopping around for the best home insurance deals, owners of high value homes may be selling themselevs short. A normal home ownership plan is fine for the quaint 3- bedroom, but won’t be enough for an expensive, mansion. High value plans work much like normal plans, but offer more complete coverage.

  • Higher and fewer limits on personal possessions. High value insurance doesn’t just cover expensive homes but also takes care of the goods and equipment that these homes are likely to contain. Unlike most home insurance policies that set a limit for personal possessions, high value policies usually set a minimum and work up from there.
  • Many policies will also include higher and more complete dwelling rebuild costs. Meaning they aim to completely replace and rebuild a client’s dwelling. Rather than just pay out a set amount of money for the rebuild.
  • Cash payout options. Some high value plans will have an option for a cash payout included in the policy. The insured party will be able to choose between a lump sum, or equity against a rebuild.


Buy Home Insurance From Fireman’s Fund

Kenneth Bieber is an insurance broker, and our job is to get you the best deal possible from insurance companies. We deal with a multitude of insurance providers and have been for years. Our industry connections and working relationships ensure that our customers will get exceptional prices when it comes to buying home or renter’s insurance.

If you prefer, customers will also have a choice of whom to buy their insurance from. Different companies offer different packages and opportunities and it’s important to be educated about who can offer what. For instance, the Fireman’s Fund is a long-standing heritage company with a serious philanthropic cause behind their work.

The Fireman’s Fund offers renter and home insurance at competitive rates, and with comprehensive policies. A substantial portion of the proceeds from the Fireman’s Fund are designated to grants for fire stations and burn organizations around the country. The fund was started in the 1860s when the country’s fire fighting apparatus was in sore shape and needed centralization and funding.

Fire departments are allowed to apply for equipment grants to cover gear that they otherwise would not be able to afford. Think of buying home insurance through the Fireman’s Fund as an investment in public safety.

Commercial Vehicle Coverage for Businesses

Even small businesses have to operate vehicles. A business doesn’t need to have a fleet of trucks, vans, and sedans in order to qualify for commercial auto insurance. All that is needed is the regular use of a conventional vehicle for business purposes.  Commercial auto insurance is often bundled with other business insurance, and if you operate a commercial vehicle in New York City, having it fully insured is a good idea. Commercial auto insurance covers several items that personal coverage will not.

It’s best to think of commercial auto coverage as two different services. One is a complete coverage system. With it you will receive coverage for bodily injury, property damage, liability coverage, no-fault medical coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, comprehensive coverage against theft and vandalism, and collision coverage.  It is essentially an ironclad insurance policy that covers any type of mishap your working vehicle might encounter on the road,  which leads us to the second implicit purpose of business coverage.

Commercial auto insurance is also legally defensible, meaning it can cover your business in the case of any negligence or liability lawsuits that may be lodged against you or your company. Acquiring this type of legal defense is most often the greatest benefit of commercial auto insurance.

Liability and Business Insurance

Business Insurance

A small businesses can’t afford not  to have liability business insurance. Whether you provide a service, serve food, or  have customers coming on to the premises of your operation, liability insurance can protect you in a variety of ways. Liability is a lot more than simply protecting the premises of your business. It can extend to the services you provide and the lasting implications of any mistakes you or your personnel may have made on the job.

Liability Business Insurance can be broken down in to three main types:

  • General Liability Coverage: protects you from not only on-premises mishaps but against any potential purposeful action or negligence on behalf of your employees. Run a cab service and a uniformed driver crashes into somebody? You’re covered.
  • Professional Liability Coverage: Covers businesses that provide public services. This can include damaged caused by faulty work as well as negligence or malpractice on behalf of you or your employees.
  • Product Protection Liability: This covers a businesses from potential damage or problems caused by their products malfunctioning. It also covers a business that may install, use or vend a faulty product made by another manufacturer.
Owning a small business means investing personally in a venture. If you’re the key person or the sole owner , then its a good idea to carry at least some form of business insurance.

5 Things you Should Know About Condo Insurance

Condo insurance can be tricky to navigate. the nature of insuring a box within a box can be difficult and legally fraught.  Here are some things to check and keep in mind as you navigate the NY condo insurance world.

  • Check your master policy: Obviously you don’t own the entire complex, but its important to know what you do own. You may own your unit, is it an “all four walls” type of policy? Also, how is the rest of the condo insured. The condo association ought to have some type of commercial coverage on the shared space. If your unit is covered merely “all four walls” then you may need more coverage. If you’re covered “all in” by your condo’s master plans, then you’re in less need of coverage.
  • The association deductible: This is the deductible you will have to pay on your condo if there are damages. It is built into the condo’s master policy.
  • Cash value or replacement coverage: There are two types of coverage for compensation. One being replacement in full and the other providing a cash value sum for your condo. Cash value leaves you with less overall coverage but lower premiums.
  • What are you insuring: You want to insure both the contents of the home and the internal structure, such as the flooring and cabinets.  Try to do both.
  • Flood and Storm: These are two incidents not often covered by insurance. See if you need this type of coverage in your area.

Business Insurance: Liquor Liability Insurance

If you own a restaurant or bar, or otherwise host events where alcohol is served, then you should invest in this coverage. Business insurance costs can add up, but so can lawsuits, and nothing leads to a lawsuit faster than drinking. Be it negligence or assault, the shrewd business owner needs to know how to protect themselves from one of the most predictable and frivolous lawsuits around; an adult suing you because he got drunk and did something stupid. Liquor liability is varied, and some people don’t even bother with it because there are so many exceptions. But a good provider should be able to give you quality coverage. Including:

  • Assault and battery coverage
  • Legal defense costs
  • Cover employees, who will drink
  • Includes mental damages
  • Training to reduce business insurance premiums.
These are just a few things to expect from liquor liability business insurance. The most important thing to remember about liquor related suits is that many are frivolous.  Some plans go so far as to deduct any policy value related to “defense costs” related to liquor, in this case the business owner holding the policy would be left without recourse in the event of a lawsuit, even if it were frivolous.

New York Small Business Owners Can Benefit From Key Person Business Insurance


Business Insurance

Now is a great time to be a small business in New York. While there might be a recession on in the rest of the country, New York is experiencing steady growth, and is one of the only cities in the country where jobs are plentiful. Of course opening a business here is a smart move. That said, there are many hurdles to starting a small business in New york. High overhead and long hours are just a couple of the inherent problems for a small business owner. Another important thing to consider is that many small businesses are held together through the ideas and toil of one person. The potential for their loss is something that business insurance ought to be purchased against.

Key person insurance is a form of business insurance that protects exactly against this particular problem. If for the example the chef for a small but successful restuarant dies or is otherwise unable to work, key person insurance could cover expenses related to this person’s absence. Some policies would cover healthcare and living expense, others would cover the projected business losses related to this key person being unable to work. This sort of business insurance is very situation specific and is best discussed with your insurance agent.

New York Renters Insurance: People Need to Know

Millions of people rent homes and apartments in New York, and most of those people do not have New York renters insurance. In fact, it’s safe to say that a great number of people are not even aware that tenants insurance exists, that tenants have the option to get protection for their belongings.  And those who are aware of this choice often think they are protected under the wing of a mythical insurance extension provided by their landlord, provisions which they have often never seen, asked about or read, and the details of which they cannot list or enumerate. When it comes to the safety and well being of those things that define our lives, the spoils of life and work, it does not bode well to be murky on the details or to put a vague and unconsidered faith in a hazy sense of security.

Rather, New York renters insurance is a safe and affordable way to add a level of comfort and protection to the life of a renter. Though the dangers often seem unlikely and distant (they always happen to someone else…), when they strike they do so without regard for personal finance, employment status or other responsibilities. Property destroying events do not wait for renters to be financially solvent, nor do they wait for bills to be payed. Though apartment living can feel transient and fleeting, our belongings are precious and come with us during each move. Protecting them shouldn’t wait until you buy a home; the dangers are the same, for the elements do not know who owns and who does not. New York renters insurance can really make a difference right when you need it most.

New York Auto Insurance: Tips for Motorcyclists



New York auto insurance is known as some of the most expensive in the country. And with good reason: the city is chaotic, dense and definitely accident prone. One can easily pay more for auto insurance in New York City than the entire payment on the car. For motorcycles however the same isn’t quite true. There are many sides to insuring a motorcycle in New York, the inexperienced motorcyclist may find the process confusing. For example, liability insurance for a motorcycle is much lower than for a car, mainly because the person most likely to get hurt in a motorcycle crash is the rider.  At the very least, there are a few constants in the world of NYC motorcycling.

  • Before you can even ride a bike, you’ll need to get a motorcycle license. This requires that you own a bike and show up for a test at your local DMV. Upon completion you’ll get an M stamp on your regular license.
  • The risk of theft and accidental damage is high. Because most people in New York don’t have access to indoor parking, motorcycle owners are forced to leave their bikes on the street. Parking a motorbike on the sidewalk is an accepted practice, though technically illegal, it is sporadically enforced. Coverage for theft or paying for secure parking might be worthwhile or at least comparable to the cost of paying for comprehensive insurance.
  • Because of the unpredictability of New York’s streets, rates vary dramatically. Many providers don’t even offer motorcycle coverage in the city. The best way of keeping your rates down, other than avoiding accidents and riding responsibly, is to ride a small-engined bike and take a motorcycle safety course. Still, even a new rider can expect rates to be much lower than for automobiles.