Need Insurance in Chesapeake, VA?
Moving to a new home? Searching for better policies on home, life, or automobile insurance? Concerned about risks facing your family, loss of property, or damage to your belongings? Or maybe you just want rate comparison information on your existing coverage? Whatever you need, we’re here to help.
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If you’re a new resident in Chesapeake, Virginia, take the time to set up your new insurance policies. Insurance laws, policy options, and minimum coverage requirements might be different in Chesapeake than what you’re used to, and you don’t want your coverage to lapse. Our agents are standing by to help you find the best way to keep yourself and your family protected during your transition to a new home.
Below, you’ll find a collection of important information about Chesapeake as well as a tips on how to make sure you get the greatest value from your new insurance policies.
Home Insurance in Chesapeake
If need a new homeowners insurance policy but you need to keep your insurance premiums as low as possible, you should know that our agency proudly offers the most affordable rates in Chesapeake and throughout the nearby zip codes of 23709, 23702, 23701, 23707, 23523, and 23464.
Do I really need a homeowners policy?
The short answer is yes, you do. Homeowners insurance is a package policy that protects against financial loss if your house suffers damage, whether that damage is due to natural disasters, negligence, or criminal intent. If you own a home and want to protect your investment, homeowners insurance can shield you from having to pay costs associated with damage from fires, hurricanes, automobile accidents, theft, and much more.
While a homeowners policy may be more expensive than condo or renter’s insurance coverage, homeowners insurance is an absolute must for anyone who wants to fully protect his or her home.
What is a standard homeowners policy? What does it cover?
A traditional homeowners policy will cover you against most types of damage to your home and its contents. Generally, homeowners insurance covers the following perils:
- Fire or lightning
- Damage resulting from smoke (but not loss of use)
- Windstorm or hail
- Aircraft or vehicles (such as an auto collision with your house)
- Riot or civil commotion
- Vandalism or malicious mischief
- Theft, including theft of appliances, flat-screen TVs, and other window coverings
- Damage from produced water or oil from a drilling operation on your property
- Sudden and accidental damage from artificially generated electricity (such as voltage surges)
- Weight of ice, snow, or sleet that causes a home to collapse
- Theft by a person legally on your property if the house or certain valuable items are left unattended
- Loss of glass from wind, hail, and other natural forces
Is there anything this policy doesn’t cover?
Homeowners should be aware that a standard, out-of-the-box policy will not likely cover floods or earthquakes, but there are many different ways to attach this coverage to a new or existing policy.
Is there anything else I should know about homeowners insurance?
Think of your homeowners insurance contract as a legal agreement with the insurer, which means both sides should fully understand what exactly is spelled out in the agreement that’s being signed. Homeowners insurance is not one-size-fits all, and policies vary widely from company to company. It’s important that you do some comparison shopping before settling on a policy and that you find an agent you trust to help you parse the details of your policy.
It’s also important to remember that you’re not limited to choosing just one insurance company when it comes time to purchase a homeowners policy. You can talk with several different companies in order to get the best rate possible for your coverage, or to compare rates and see who can give you the best deal.
But remember: Once you’ve chosen an insurer, you usually have to stick with it for the life of your policy. It’s crucial that you understand the terms of your insurance contract and ask questions if anything is unclear.
Our agents take your needs seriously, and we want to make sure you understand all the details of your homeowners insurance before you sign on the dotted line. Talk to us now to find out how to get the best rates on homeowners insurance.
For more information about Virginia insurance visit: https://scc.virginia.gov/pages/insurance.
Business Insurance (Commercial Insurance) in Chesapeake
Why do I need business insurance for my company?
If you own a business, there are many potential hazards that can leave your business with serious legal and financial problems. These issues most often stem from the safety of your company’s employees, its customers, property, equipment or other assets.
As a business owner, it’s important to understand the various insurances you may need and why.
Business insurance protects your employees, property and finances if something unexpected happens on or off your premises. It is usually not optional – most states require at least some types of business coverage for all businesses operating within their borders.
At minimum, you will likely be required to have workers’ compensation insurance. At a maximum, you may need multiple policies from several different carriers to adequately protect your entire enterprise and all of your assets.
What does business insurance cover?
While there is no single standard business package, it is possible that you’ll need some combination of the following types of coverage:
- Property Insurance – Covers damages or losses in your office space
- General Liability Insurance – Protects against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage
- Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) – A combination of property and liability insurance
- Professional Liability Insurance – Also known as errors and omissions, this type of coverage protects you against claims that you have made mistakes or failed to fulfill your obligations
- Umbrella Insurance
- Employment Practices Liability Insurance
- Commercial Auto Insurance – Covers the vehicles your company uses to do business, including company cars and small delivery trucks
- Workers’ Compensation Insurance – Provides benefits for employees injured on the job in exchange for mandatory employee injury reporting requirements
- Directors and Officers Liability Insurance (D&O)
- Business Interruption Insurance
- Key-Man Insurance – Life insurance for business partners or key employees that names the company as beneficiary
- Cyber Liability Insurance
- Directors and Officers (D&O) insurance
- Employment Practices Liability (EPL) insurance, also known as an errors and omissions policy
What else do I need to know about business insurance?
In addition to understanding the different types of coverage, it’s important for business owners to be aware that some insurers may require a waiting period before you can start a claim. This is a standard industry term that means that your policy won’t pay any claims during the first year, even if the damage was covered by your plan.
Don’t assume that one insurance will cover all of your potential losses – be sure to ask about the exclusions, conditions and limitations that apply before you buy. Some business owners are under the misconception that they can just file a claim through their home insurance if their business is unprotected, but this doesn’t work in most cases. As always, read any contracts or policy documentation carefully before you sign on the dotted line.
What’s the next step?
Establishing a comprehensive set of policies to protect your business from the unknown is a complex and sometimes frustrating task. That’s where Garlow Insurance Agency comes in. Our agents excel at assisting business owners in determining the ideal amount of coverage while keeping premiums as low as possible.
To start the process of fully protecting your business, contact us today for a free consultation. You’ll be glad you did.
Chesapeake Auto Insurance
Why do I need auto insurance?
There are a number of reasons why most drivers choose to have car insurance. Statistically, your most likely exposure to risk is through your vehicle, whether you’re a driver or a passenger. In the United States in 2012 alone, there were over 5 million accidents nationwide, with 2.3 deaths per every 100 accidents — and the cost of damage was estimated at over $700 billion, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Personal liability protection is a must as well. If you’re held liable for damage or injury caused by an accident and don’t have sufficient insurance coverage, you could be bankrupted by your legal expenses alone — court costs are just the beginning. With personal liability protection, your insurer will pay legal expenses on your behalf.
What are the different types of car insurance available?
There are three main types of auto insurance that you can choose. The most common is liability coverage, which covers damages to other people or their property in an accident caused by you. Personal injury protection, often called “medpay” for short, also comes as part of some liability coverage packages. Personal injury covers medical expenses incurred by you or your passengers, no matter who was at fault in the accident. The third type, collision coverage, is only available on newer models and covers damage to your car caused by an accident.
I’m a safe driver. Do I really need to buy collision and comprehensive coverage?
No one can predict the future, and accidents do happen — even to the safest drivers. Collision coverage protects you against theft or vandalism as well as an accident. Comprehensive covers damage caused by non-collision events such as weather, fire, and theft.
Does insurance cover vehicle damage even if I haven’t paid off my loan?
Yes, all banks and lending institutions require the insured (you) to maintain full coverage on a financed car or lose their lien. This means that you can get your car repaired before paying off the loan and still be covered by the lender.
Does an older car need to be insured?
The short answer is yes. Older cars may not be as expensive, but the law requires all drivers to maintain liability coverage for any vehicle they drive with four or more wheels. The minimums are set by state law; however, most insurance companies recommend higher limits of protection (and will often offer a discount for drivers who carry them). So if you have an older car with low value, it’s a handy way to get higher limits of liability at a lower price.
Does my state require me to have insurance?
Yes, all states and the District of Columbia require car insurance before you can register your vehicle. Some states have financial responsibility laws, which require drivers to prove they have the financial resources to pay for damages up to a certain amount in case of an accident.
Virginia drivers must have liability insurance that meets the minimum limits (you can purchase more coverage if you choose) required by law to drive on our state’s public roads and highways. The minimum limits of liability insurance required under Virginia law are:
- Bodily Injury Liability – $30,000 per person and $60,000 per incident
- Property Damage Liability – $20,000 per incident
What happens if I don’t carry insurance?
If you’re stopped by the police and don’t have insurance on your vehicle, or can’t show proof that you do, don’t be surprised if you’re arrested or ticketed. If you’re caught driving without insurance after an accident, your driver’s license could be confiscated and/or you could face jail time.
Find the right auto insurance policy doesn’t have to be a hassle. Contact our team today to find out how easy and affordable it is to keep yourself protected on the road.
Chesapeake Boat Insurance
Why should I get boat insurance?
Boat insurance is a way to protect your investment against financial loss. While boat insurance cannot prevent damage due to theft, fire, vandalism or collisions with other vessels, it can help defray the cost of repairs and replacement up to the limits of your coverage. It also provides liability protection in case you cause injury or property damage while using your vessel.
Owners of boats with large engines (over 10 horsepower) are required to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance. Some states also require liability coverage that can be provided through an optional “boater’s policy.”
What types of boat insurance are available?
There are three main types of policies: comprehensive, collision and liability. A comprehensive policy covers all types of loss except those which are excluded specifically in the policy. A collision policy covers damage to your boat resulting from collision with another vessel or object. A liability policy can provide protection against personal injury and property damage claims made by others as well as the cost of legal defense if you are sued.
How much boat insurance do I need?
Like any investment, it is important to consider your needs and the financial value of the property. Your boat is a capital asset that can be an expensive pleasure or work tool, so just like your home and car, you should insure it against all potential risks.
What should I consider before buying boat insurance?
Here are some facts to consider:
- The appropriate type of coverage depends on factors such as the size, age and value of your boat
- Most experts recommend replacing a boat every five to 10 years because the value declines over time
- Older boats are less likely to be protected against all types of loss
- Boats stored ashore (rather than on a boat lift or in a marina) may require different coverage
- Your insurance company should detail what is and isn’t covered, including specific information about your boat.
What should I watch out for when buying boat insurance?
Beware of agents or companies that ignore state-mandated boater coverage requirements. Other things to watch out for include:
- Agents who use high pressure sales tactics
- Insurers with limited experience in insuring boats, particularly older models
- Agents who promise coverage for items that are excluded from most boat policies
- Insurers whose rating plans make it difficult to compare premiums from different companies.
Is there anything else I should know about boat insurance?
When you buy a boat, make sure you receive a copy of your policy and keep it onboard. To avoid having your insurance coverage canceled for non-payment, promptly pay any renewal invoices or bills you receive from your insurer.
On the whole, boat insurance is a good value compared to the costs of replacing a vessel. It can also add protection against loss of use and legal liability in case your boat causes damage to other vessels or injury to people.
Determining the proper amount of coverage and the best policy options for your particular craft can be difficult, so let us help. The Garlow Insurance Agency team is here to help you get the best rates and best coverage possible. Contact us today for a free consultation and hit the water with peace of mind.
Top 5 things most people don’t know about Chesapeake, Virginia
- Chesapeake is the second most populated city in the state of Virginia and the tenth largest city in the Mid-Atlantic region.
- In 2011, Bloomberg Businessweek ranked Chesapeake as the 21st best city to live in America.
- Chesapeake was named a new Independent City in 1963, making it one of the youngest large cities in America.
- Chesapeake is comprised of 8 locally recognized regions: Deep Creek, Grassfield, Great Bridge, Greenbrier, Hickory, Indian River, South Norfolk, and Western Branch.
- The city of Chesapeake was the location of the initial trial for the now-infamous Beltway sniper Lee Boyd Malvo for the crimes he committed in 2002.
Get to Know the Chesapeake Neighborhood
- Central Chesapeake contains two huge parks: the Chesapeake City Park and the Oak Grove Lake Park.
- In the south of the city, the Great Bridge community is home to the Chesapeake city hall as well as the Chesapeake Public Library.
- On the western side of Chesapeake, the Western Branch is a large residential area that contains the Chesapeake Square Mall and provides quick access across the north harbor to the Virginia Peninsula.
- North of Chesapeake, across the Elizabeth River from Norfolk, the Portsmouth community offers a scenic and historic sampling of the region, including the Olde Towne Historic District.