Friday, December 30, 2016

Prepare for Winter Storms Now!

The new year is upon us, and with it the forecast of very cold weather, with even some snow and icy conditions possible later in the week. There are a number of things you can do before the storms hit to protect yourself and your family from the effects of this wintry weather.

Create a Home Winter Prep Kit

First things first, you want to have the right supplies on hand.  Create a basic emergency kit that includes a battery-powered radio and at least one week’s worth of food and safety supplies.  Also include:
• Drinking water
• Canned/no-cook food
• Non-electric can opener
• Prescription medicine as needed
• First aid kit
• Bag of cat litter or sand to add traction on walkways
• Battery-powered lamps
• Carbon monoxide and smoke alarms in working order

An Emergency Kit for Your Car

For all of us who can't fix anything with gum wrappers and a Swiss army knife, there's hope! Our claims team, along with the Washington State Department of Transportation, has put together a list of must-haves you'll want to assemble and keep in your car to make sure you're prepared for anything on the roads:
• Crank flashlight (so you'll never have to worry about dead batteries)
• Synthetic blanket (one that sheds water)
• Nonperishable food (energy bars are a good choice)
• Water (replace every six months)
• Gloves (two pairs: disposable latex if you need to render first aid; warm and wooly for putting on tire chains)
• Boots
• Cell phone charger (that plugs into your car's accessories socket)
• Tire chains
• Ice scraper/snowbrush
• Jumper cables
• Flares or warning triangles
• Sand, salt, or non-clumping cat litter to help with traction
• Antifreeze and windshield washer fluid
• Fire extinguisher
• First aid kit (that includes a seatbelt cutter)
• Whistle to signal for help. (A potential lifesaver if your car slides into a ditch and can't be seen from the road.)

Prepare Your Home

In addition to the snow, the New Year’s forecast is expected to include some of the consistently coldest temperatures we’ve seen in the last two years. With that in mind, now is the perfect time to start taking preventive steps so your water pipes don’t freeze.
  • Wrap any exposed pipes with insulated materials
  • Put bibs on all outdoor faucets
  • Leave one inside faucet trickling to keep water moving
  • Have an alternative heat source in case the power goes out
The most important thing you can do? Be prepared! A benefit to winter storms is that you generally have plenty of warning that one is on the way. Don’t wait until the roads are icy and dangerous. Get your supplies packed, your pipes protected, and a backup plan in case of a power outage.

And make sure that you have great homeowners insurance, in case something bad happens!  We can help with that.  Call SAV-ON Insurance at 888-867-2866 or go to for a free quote today.

We hope that taking these small steps now will help save you from big winter problems later.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Protect Your Belongings This Holiday Season

The holidays have officially arrived!  And for many of us that means shopping, gifting, decorating, partying, and traveling.  And a whole lot of it!

We are always on the look-out for things that might put our clients at risk.  That’s why I wanted to share a few quick reminders this month to make sure you avoid any potential claim situations.

1. Be careful if you get a live Christmas tree.  Real trees are beautiful but can be hazardous.  Water your tree daily and turn the lights off at night and when you won’t be home to avoid a house fire. Dry needles can explode in flames and burn quickly!

2. Don’t leave gifts in your car!  A lot of people don’t realize that items in their car are NOT covered by auto insurance.  While property off premises is covered by home and renters insurance, it is typically subject to a much higher deductible.  If you must leave anything in the car, put it in the trunk and lock the doors.

3. Traveling out of town?  Don’t make it too obvious!  Leave lights on in the house, stop your mail, and leave your number with a trustworthy neighbor who will keep an eye on your home.

4. Make sure to keep an updated insurance card in your car when you travel.  Not only is it good to have if you get pulled over, but all the information you need is in one place if you had to make a claim.

5. Received some special jewelry for Christmas?  Make sure to call us!  We’ll review all of your options to make sure it is properly covered and protected. 

And most important?  Have a safe and joy-filled holiday! 

Merry Christmas from all of us at SAV-ON Insurance!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Why It's Important to Schedule an Annual Insurance Review

The start of a New Year is almost here!  And that means it’s time to get organized. You’re probably already planning to clean out your closets and organize the garage…but what about your insurance?

We urge our clients to take a few minutes each year to meet with one of our agents and review their current policies. Why? Because things change! 

Here are a few times when you might need to update your insurance policy:

You Got – or are Getting – Married – A new household means lots of insurance updates!  You probably need to combine your insurance as well as make sure both of you are included on all of the policies.  You may qualify for additional discounts, like multi-policy or multi-car.

You Had a Baby – While a new baby won’t change your basic policies, it probably means it’s time to discuss life insurance.  We can give you a quick quote and look at the right coverage for your growing family – or even just update the beneficiary information on your current policy.

You Have a Teen Driver – If you know that you’ll have a son or daughter learning to drive this year, now is a great time to review your policy and discuss ways to keep it affordable.  We can help you plan for what it will cost to add your teen, as well as discuss options for best rates on new vehicles. If they take and pass a certified driver training course, they can save money on their insurance costs. In addition, impress upon them that if they can maintain good grades in school, this can save even more money on the cost of their auto insurance.

Your Net Worth Has Increased – As your income and net worth increases, you may need to purchase additional liability coverage in order to protect your assets.  Reviewing this information each year can protect your personal and business finances.

You can schedule a time to come in the office by visiting, or simply to meet by phone.  We’ll take a look at your policies, discuss your coverage, and check for discounts or gaps in your coverage.   

Call SAV-ON today at 888-867-2866 to schedule your annual review!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

What is Mortgage Protection Insurance?

Have you ever heard of mortgage protection insurance and wondered what it was?  Well today we’ll tell you all about it!

Mortgage Protection is a type of life insurance policy designed to pay off the mortgage in the event of the breadwinner’s death.

For many people, a mortgage is their single largest debt and it can be stressful to think about that expense if something were to happen to their spouse. 

When we quote life insurance protection for a mortgage, we look at how much you owe on the mortgage and how many years remain on the debt.  For example, if you had a 30-year mortgage for $250,000, then you’d want a policy that paid that amount out for 30 years.

If you or your spouse were to die (or it can be placed on only one person if you have a single income home), then you would receive a check for $250,000 and could use it to pay off the mortgage immediately.  If you had paid down the balance over the years, then any extra remaining could be used however you like.

There are some specific mortgage protection policies that go down in value over time as the mortgage balance decreases and that could be an option as well.

The key is to work closely with your agent who can explain the key differences and find the product that best protects YOUR family.  We can help!  Give us a call today to discuss life insurance for your mortgage and family today. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Fall Home Maintenance - Things to Do Before the Weather Turns Bad

As the warm summer days begin to give way to the chllly, wet fall weather, it’s time to think about home maintenance again!  Keeping your home and vehicles in great shape makes them last longer, look great, and can prevent accidents and claims in the future.

Here are a few things you can do this fall to keep everything in tip-top shape! 

- Gather firewood – If you plan to build fires in the winter, then now is the time to start gathering up that firewood.  You’ll be glad you did when you’re nice and warm in front of the fireplace! 

- Close or install storm windows. Make sure they are sealed well to keep the cold from seeping in (and the heat from escaping).

- Store outdoor furniture and cushions.  They’ll last longer if you protect them during seasons they aren’t being used.  Plus, it will keep pesky squirrels and birds out of your outdoor cushions! 

- Have furnace professionally inspected now! The furnace has been idle most of the summer, so when it has to start working frequently now that it's getting cold, that's when the trouble could start.

- Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors when you set clocks back in the fall!  Change the batteries, too.

- Clean gutters and downspouts.  This can protect the exterior of your home as well as your roof! Leaves and needles may have accumulated during the summer, and when the rains hit, it can cause downspouts to backup and spill water down your siding and weaken your home's foundation.
- Rake leaves and shred to use as mulch. Wet leaves on sidewalks and driveways can cause falls.

- Check windows and doors for weather-tightness and install weather stripping where needed.

- Clean the oven & stove drip pans.

- Have problem trees trimmed. Winter can bring cold windstorms or even ice storms. A old or overgrown tree can be a danger to fall in this inclement weather and cause extensive property damage!

- Winterize outside faucets, put away hoses and store indoors, coiled and flat. Also, wrap your outside spigots with insulation to keep them from freezing and snapping in cold weather.

Regular maintenance of your home (and vehicles) helps prevent BIG issues later!  What other items do you like to take care of in the fall?  Leave a comment and let us know. 

Thursday, September 8, 2016

What's the Difference Between Home and Fire Insurance?

Many times, someone will decide to purchase a new home, but keep the old home as an investment property and rent it out.  This can be a great investment strategy but there are a few things you need to know about your insurance before you make the change.

A Fire or Landlord Policy

First things first: You’ll need to update to a new insurance policy.  Your homeowners policy only covers a property that is owner occupied.  These policies are designed to package several different coverages together, including the structure itself, the contents inside the home, and provide liability coverage to the homeowner.

If the property is going to be vacant or occupied by a renter, then a different policy is needed. These are sometimes called Fire policies or Landlord policies. These policies cover the house only and do not provide coverage for the contents inside. You’ll need to discuss with one of our agents what kind of liability coverage is included and if you’ll need to purchase additional liability coverage to protect your assets.

Be aware that If you rent out your home and neglect to switch your coverage to the correct policy, any claims could be denied!  It’s very important that the property be insured correctly and you’ll want to start by meeting with your SAV-ON Insurance agent to review the different options.

Renters Insurance

The next thing to consider is renters Insurance.  Many landlords require their tenants to purchase renter’s coverage. This is a very good idea. Renters Insurance covers ONLY the contents inside the home, which is great for the renters.  However, it also provides liability coverage for the renters.  How does this help you? 

Let’s say that your renter leaves the stove on and burns down the house.  You could receive compensation for their negligence through the liability portion of their renters Insurance.  It’s also a good protection if you allow pets.  If the tenant’s dog bites a visitor, their coverage would kick in to cover it, avoiding potential liability issues for you.

Personal Liability Coverage

The last thing you’ll want to look at is your own personal liability coverage.  You’ll want to make sure that you are carrying the maximum amount of liability coverage on your auto and home insurance, since your risk for being sued increases.  You may also need to look at an umbrella liability policy for additional coverage.

This may sound complicated, but we can make it very quick and easy!  Schedule an appointment with SAV-ON Insurance Agencies today and we’ll look at all of your needs as a new landlord. Call us at 888-867-2866.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Back to School Tips

It’s August and back to school season is just around the corner.  Are you prepared?  Here are a few tips to get you and your family ready “insurance” wise!

Talk About Safety! 

Do you have young children who will be walking or riding their bike to school?  Take time to talk about safety and do a “dry run” of the school route. 

Have your children practice following the sidewalks, understanding the traffic lights, stranger safety, and what to do in case of an emergency. 

Don’t forget to buy new helmets or other safety gear so that it’s the right fit for the new school year.  There are some great video resources on bike safety for a variety of ages available here:

Cell Phone Safety

If your children are a little older, then you have another safety discussion!  Talk about the rules for using cell phones while driving, especially in regards to texting.  In 2012, driver distraction was the cause of 18% of fatal accidents.  Some studies have shown that texting increases the risk of a crash 23 times over driving while not distracted! 

Set up clear consequences for distracted driving and be clear with your teens about the dangers.  If you need ideas, here is a sample contract to create between you and your teen driver that you can adjust as needed - 

Get Good Grades

Depending on your policy, you may be eligible for discounts when your teenage driver has good grades!  Encourage them to keep their grades high for many reasons, with better insurance rates being one of them.  This is especially motivating for teens that have to pay for their own insurance!

There are also some discounts available for drivers ed and additional drivers training courses.  Give us a call to discuss what is available on your particular policy.   

College Kids Count, Too!

While you’ll want to remind your college age kids about not driving distracted, there are a few other things to consider for them, too.

Depending on your homeowners insurance, you may or may not need additional coverage for your college student’s belongings while away at school.

Those laptops, textbooks, clothes, and electronics can add up fast!  While Homeowners insurance does provide coverage for property off premises, it may not be enough (or may have a high deductible). 

We can review your current policy and look at options for covering your student’s belongings through your homeowners or a new renters insurance policy.

If you have questions about your college student's or teen driver’s insurance, give us a call at 888-867-2866.  And enjoy going back to school!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

What Factors Can Cause Rate Increases?

Worried about your insurance rates going up?  Here are some things you can do to prevent a rate increase! 

There are a lot of factors that go into determining your insurance rate.  And, at times, your rate may go up (or down!)

Let’s look at what can cause changes:

You buy a new vehicle.  If you purchase a new vehicle, there is a good chance your insurance rates will change somewhat.  If the vehicle is newer, more expensive, or if you have a lienholder and require full coverage, your rate may increase.

Why do some vehicles have higher rates than others?  Simply because some cost more to fix.  If a vehicle has expensive tires or other fancy upgrades, it's more expensive to replace these items. All of these things play into the rate on that particular car.

You change your household.  Any household changes may change your rate.  Getting married might lower your rate, but adding a teenage driver will probably increase it!  Rates are determined by the age and driving history of each person in the household.  That doesn’t mean you’ll see huge swings in price, but just keep it in mind when making changes.

You move.  Rates are also calculated based on the zip code where you drive the most.  If you move from a high-traffic city, where there tend to be more collisions, to a much less populated rural area, your rate will go down (and vice versa).

You get a ticket.  Unfortunately, getting a moving violation ticket can raise your rates.  Whether it's speeding, negligent or reckless driving, or other dangerous practices, it shows that you’re at a higher risk of having an accident and causing a claim. Obeying all traffic laws and keeping your driving history clean will save you money! 

You lose a discount.  Most policies have several discounts included and if those discounts expire, your rate may increase.  If you’re receiving a discount for being accident-free for several years and then have an accident, the loss of the discount will increase your rate.

If you have your auto and home insurance with the same carrier for a multi-policy discount, then move one to another insurance company, your rates will go up.

Maybe you were receiving a discount for having your policy on monthly draft and then decided to just send in a check.  You might see a slight increase here too. 

The best way to keep your rate low?  Work with us!  As a local insurance agency, we’ll review your coverage, discuss your discounts, look at potential risks for rate increases, and help keep you protected.  Call SAV-ON today at 888-867-2866 for a quote!  

Friday, July 8, 2016

Liability Insurance: How Much is Enough?

What is liability insurance? Liability insurance is what protects you when you cause damage to another person.  If you hit someone else’s car, your liability insurance pays to fix it.  If someone is injured in an accident that you caused, then liability insurance pays for their medical bills.

But how do you know the amount of coverage you need?  And what happens if you don’t have enough?  Here’s what you need to know:

There is a minimal amount of liability coverage that is required by the state in order to drive a vehicle.  But here’s the thing to keep in mind:  If you cause damage that exceeds that amount of liability coverage you have, then you’ll be responsible for the difference.   And if you can’t pay it, there could be a lawsuit in your future.

If you own your home or have additional assets, then you need more than the minimum amount of liability coverage. 

Here are some other risk factors:

Rental Property: If you own rental property, you need extra liability coverage.  If someone is injured on your property, then you could be held responsible.  Even a small dog bite could cause a problem if you’re not insured properly.

Teen or College Drivers:  If you have young drivers, you’ll want to have additional liability coverage, even if they are not on your auto policy right now.  Your college student may have their own coverage and live away from home, but if you’re still responsible for them and financially support them, you could be responsible for accidents that they cause.

Watercraft:  If you own a boat, jet ski, or other watercraft, then you’ll want more liability coverage.  Boat expenses and injuries can add up quickly and you’ll want to have plenty of protection in place.  

Umbrella Insurance: Additional coverage when needed

Another way to help ensure that you are covered, no matter what befalls you, is to purchase umbrella insurance. This is in addition to your other policies, and will cover you and your assets if your other coverages aren't adequate enough for the damages that were caused. These policies are relatively inexpensive, but can keep you from real financial hardship.

If, for example, you were liable for injuries to someone in an auto accident, and your liability coverage was not enough to cover the repairs and hospitalization costs, your umbrella insurance would kick in and cover you up to the maximum amount on that policy, above and beyond the limits of your auto insurance policy.

Likewise, if someone injured themselves on your property, and your homeowners limits were inadequate to cover the costs, that same umbrella policy would cover the damages that exceeded the homeowners policy, up to the limits of your umbrella coverage.

The best way to determine the amount of liability coverage you need?  Work with one of our local agents, who can identify all of your risk factors and explain each coverage fully.  You can’t get that from an automated call or form!  Call SAV-ON today at 888-867-2866 to review your policy and get a quote. 

Monday, June 20, 2016

What College Graduates Need To Know About Auto Insurance

You’ve proudly watched your child graduate from college (and celebrated the last of the tuition bills!)  Now they’re searching for their first “real” job and ready for a new phase of life.  

This is what you and your new graduate need to know about their insurance.

First, in most situations, they can remain on your auto insurance policy as long as they are living in your household.  If they’ve moved back home while job hunting, you can keep them on your policy.

But once they decide to move out, it’s time to look at other options.  Some of this will depend on who is the owner of the car and if you’re living in the same state.  The best option is to talk to one of our helpful agents to discuss your particular situation in detail.

Remember, regular on-time insurance payments can help your son or daughter establish credit history and even serve as a reference when renting an apartment.

If your graduate is moving out on their own, you’ll also want to get some information on renters insurance.  It will protect their belongings and protect you from any liability for damage they might cause to a residence (even if it’s just an accident, like a small kitchen fire.)  In most cases, a parent is a co-signer for a lease and needs to make sure this protection is in place. Until your child is totally on their own, you can face potentially expensive claims or lawsuits.

The end of college marks some big transitions into adulthood.  Help your new graduate  make smart financial decisions and establish a great start.  We can help!  Schedule a personal review and quote today with SAV-ON Insurance. Call 888-867-2866 or get a quick quote at

Friday, June 10, 2016

Boating Season is Here...Is Your Insurance Enough to Keep You Afloat?

Summer vacation and boating season are just around the corner.  That means it’s time to pull the boat out of storage and get ready to hit the water with friends or family.  But don’t head out until you know that your boat is properly insured!

Here’s what you need to know about boat insurance:

Your auto policy won’t cover your boat (unless you’re driving with it on the trailer.) And just like when you drive a car, you can be held responsible for damage you cause while driving your boat!  That’s why it’s important to have liability coverage.  Imagine causing damage to another boat or a dock and not having any insurance!  It would be a very stressful -- and potentially costly -- situation. 

Beyond liability and bodily injury coverage, boat policies have many great additional coverages that can be added to your policy.  Do you have a fish finder or other special gear?  Even your fancy cooler and fishing equipment could be covered with the right policy.  Your boat insurance can even cover the cost of towing your boat if it breaks down while out on the water.  Just talk to us about how you use your boat and what you typically carry, and we can look for the right options.

You’ve invested a lot of money into your boat or personal watercraft, and you don’t want to put them at risk by not keeping it covered.  Boat insurance is very inexpensive, and will give you peace of mind when you're cruising around.

Call SAV-ON today at 888-867-2866 to get a quote before putting your boat in the water. Then go out and enjoy the water!

Monday, May 23, 2016

Do You Need Full Replacement Cost Coverage for Your Home?

When you purchased your home, you bought insurance to protect it.  Your Homeowners insurance is there to rebuild your property if you were to suffer a fire, severe weather, or many other losses.

However some people make the mistake of buying the cheapest insurance, thinking that it’s just like every other Homeowners policy.  That’s not true! 

When you look at the details of your home policy, you’ll see that you are either covered for “full replacement cost” or for “actual cash value.”  These are important differences

Big difference between 'Full Replacement' and 'Actual Cash Value'

Full replacement cost means that the insurance company will pay whatever the cost is to get your home back to the state it was in before the claim.  It’s why your home is usually insured for a lot more than you actually paid for it.  Building costs and materials are always increasing, and it may cost much more to rebuild your home then it originally did.

Actual cash value on the other hand, only pays what your home was worth at the time of the loss, minus any depreciation.

Here’s an example:  Let’s say that your couch was burned in a covered fire claim.  Full replacement insurance would buy you a new couch in the same style and value as the original was when you bought it.  You get a brand new identical couch.

Actual cash value would only pay what your couch was worth at the time of the fire.  The “market value” of your couch is more likely what you could have sold it for on Craigslist. You’re not going to get a new couch from the claim, but you could go buy a used one similar to the condition of yours right now.

Now imagine what a difference that makes if you were to suffer a major loss on your home! 

We believe that full replacement cost is what everyone needs!  So if you’re shopping for home insurance and notice that one price is substantially less than the others this could be why.  Always check to see what kind of coverage you’re purchasing. 

And give SAV-ON a call at 888-867-2866 to learn more and get a quote for your home. 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Spring Home Maintenance Checklist

Spring is in full swing!  And that means it’s time for warm weather, spring flowers, outdoor activities, and storms. 

Now that the temperatures are warmer, the days stay light longer, and the rain has mostly gone away, there are a few things you can do to make sure that your home stays in great shape! 

Your spring home maintenance checklist:

• Test smoke & carbon monoxide detectors and change their batteries.

• Check garage door, replace batteries in your remote.

• Check outside of house for tree limbs touching roof. Trim them back so a falling limb won't damage your roof in a windstorm.

• Clean siding and check for peeling paint. Now's a great time for a new coat of paint!

• Weed your garden and plant some fresh flowers.

• Inspect roof and chimney for cracks and damage.

• Wash all windows - inside & out.

• Service your lawn mower.

• Dust blinds and vacuum curtains.

• Insure your boat before summer!  (Call us today for a quote.)

• Install screens on windows and doors to keep bugs out and let fresh air in.

• Clean outdoor furniture.

• Clean kitchen and bathroom cabinets and throw away outdated food, medicine, and cosmetics.

And if we don’t currently insure your home and autos, give SAV-ON Insurance a call at 888-867-2866 today for a free quote and review!  We’ll make sure that your family is protected all year long, and save you money in the process, too!

Friday, April 1, 2016

Protect Your Family During Severe Weather

While we watch the news and see death and destruction from tornadoes in the southern states recently while we're basking in beautiful spring weather, we are well aware that it has a nasty way of changing fast at this time of year. April can bring with it lots of stormy, windy weather with rain, hail and -- yes -- even an occasional twister.

Is your family prepared if the weather turns ugly? Now is the time to think about protecting your home and family. 

A Safe Place to Go

First things first, make sure you have designated a safe place to go to if the weather gets severe.  It could be a basement, closet, or room with no windows or outside walls. Make sure this space is cleared out enough that you could easily get your family (and pets) inside if needed.  (You don’t want to be frantically clearing out the closet if there is a tornado!)

An Emergency Kit

Next, put together a small emergency kit.  What would you need if the power was out?  Consider putting in flashlights, extra batteries, canned food, a weather radio and plenty of water. (Don’t forget supplies for your pets too!)

Emergency Phone Numbers

Keep emergency phone numbers in your cell phone contacts, including the phone number for our office in case you need to make a claim.  You could even save a note in your phone with your policy numbers too.

If you do suffer damage, give us a call to report a claim once the danger has passed.  We’ll do everything we can to make the claim process simple and quick! 

While we can’t prevent bad weather, it’s always great to be as prepared as possible. Take care of your family first and know that SAV-ON will be there to protect your belongings.

Make sure your homeowners insurance is adequate for your home BEFORE the storm hits! Call us at 888-867-2866 for a free analysis.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Are You Prepared for a Flood?

March is the time of year when we talk about severe weather.  That can mean hail, tornadoes, and even floods. This has been an especially wet winter in the Northwest, so the danger of flooding is still high.

A little flooding in a home can cause thousands of dollars in damage. The majority of flood insurance claims come from areas that are considered to be low to moderate risk. Whether you live in a low-risk flood zone as determined by the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) and the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), or if you are in a high-risk area and coverage is being required by your mortgage lender, having a flood insurance policy is prudent for anyone that occupies a residence.

Also, it's important to keep in mind that you'll face a delay between getting flood insurance and when it becomes effective! FEMA and NFIP require a 30-day waiting period before coverage becomes effective, but we can provide coverage that becomes effective in only 15 days. That still means there is a delay before your policy is in effect, so don't wait too long!

Flood safety is extremely important. That’s why it’s a good idea to review these basic flood safety tips, provided by, with your children every year. 

If a flood is likely in your area, you should:

• Listen to the radio or television for regular updates and information.

• Be aware that flash flooding can occur. If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.

• Be aware of stream, drainage channels, canyons and other areas known to flood suddenly.

• Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain clouds or heavy rain.

If you need to evacuate: 

Turn off utilities at the main switches or valves if instructed to do so. Disconnect electrical appliances. Do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.

If you have to leave your home, remember these evacuation tips:
  • Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.
  • Do not drive into flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to higher ground, when water is not moivng or not more than a few inches deep. You and the vehicle can be swept away quickly.  If your vehicle is trapped in rapidly moving water, stay in the vehicle. If the water is rising inside the vehicle, seek refuge on the roof.
  • Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams, rivers or creeks, particularly during threatening conditions.
With a little bit of preparation, you can keep your family safe!  Review these tips for flood safety and contact SAV-ON Insurance at 888-867-2866 if you have questions about flood insurance coverage, but don't wait until the last minute. Then it will be too late!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Time to 'Spring Clean' Your Insurance!

The arrival of spring means it’s time for spring cleaning!  So why you're cleaning up around the house, why not clean up your insurance policies and look for extra savings? Discounts are the best way to save on your insurance premium each and every month. But a lot of people are missing out on them!  With a little documentation, you could see great savings.

Here are some of the ways you can save:

Security Discounts - Does your home have a security system or fire protection system?  Some of these devices will help you save big on your home or renters insurance.  If you have a certificate of installation (and even if you don’t), let us know and we’ll see if you qualify.

Driver Training and Defensive Driving - Did your child take a certified Driver’s Education course?  Did you take a defensive driving course?  These classes will typically qualify you or your child for discounts!  Just bring in a copy of your completion certificate and we’ll get it added to your policy.

Teenage Drivers With Good Grades - Good grades will help you save!  Some of our policies offer a discount for students who maintain a high GPA.  Give us a call to see the requirements for your policy. 

Payment Discounts - There are many different options when it comes to paying your premiums.  Some policies offer discounts for paying in full or a reduced installment fee if you put the payment on auto-draft.  We can advise you of all the payment options so you pay as little as possible.

Multi-Policy Discounts - When you have all of your insurance in one place, you save more!  If your auto and home insurance is spread out between multiple companies or agencies, let us help you consolidate.  You’ll be better protected (with less gaps in coverage) and save money, too!

The key?  Talk to your agent!  When we schedule regular annual reviews, we can review your policy discounts and make sure you are receiving the best coverage at the best price.  Call SAV-ON today at 888-867-2866 to schedule an appointment.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Home Fire Prevention and Creating a Family Fire Escape Plan

While many are concerned with the wildfires of summer, winter is the season with the highest danger for house fires. Cold weather means wood-burning stoves and space heaters are in use regularly. Fireplaces crackle with burning wood and electric blankets are put to use to keep warm at night.

But, heating elements and flames can also spell danger. Fires can start and quickly grow into a huge blaze. It only takes a few minutes for an electrical short or a ember from a fireplace to become a devastating blaze, causing a great deal of damage or even death. As your insurance agency, this is an issue that is very important to us! Unfortunately, we've seen clients suffer from home fires, and we want to share some things you can do to prevent a disaster.

Basic Fire Prevention

Practice basic fire prevention, like checking electrical cords and not leaving a pot unattended on the stove. If you're a smoker, make sure to light up outside, and make sure your cigarette is out before discarding it. It's best to wet it down before putting it in the trash, as the hot ash could ignite paper or other combustible material.

Natural Gas Leaks

If you have a gas appliance, make sure to follow all the manufacturer's instructions for its use, and if you smell gas immediately shut it off. Wait five minutes and make sure you don't smell any gas, then carefully follow the proper procedure for relighting it. If you still smell gas, turn the gas off, go outside and call your gas company. Don't call from inside the house, as a spark from the phone could ignite the gas. Stay outside until the gas technician tells you it's safe to go back in.

Have a Family Fire Escape Plan

Create a plan and discuss it with your children. When children know what to expect, they can remain calm, even during an emergency. Help your child understand exactly what to do if a fire occurs.

Stress the importance of getting out of the house and to your family meeting spot.  Choose an area a safe distance from the house where children should go if making a fire escape. It could be a street light, mailbox, or even a neighbor's tree, but it should be fairly close, so smaller children won't get lost or disoriented, especially if it's dark.

If you have pets, tell your kids that your pets will find their own way out safely and that they should never go back to rescue the pet on their own.

As a family, go through each room of the house and discuss TWO different ways to get out if a fire occurs. Let children practice opening a latch and unlocking doors too.

Now host a fire drill! Make the practice drills fun and informative. Create sample
scenarios and build up your kid's confidence. They'll be better prepared for a fire and you will too!

Get Out Quickly!

When it comes to any sort of emergency situation, people are what matter most.
Don't stop to gather photos, paintings or your favorite coat; it might prove fatal. Fires can spread very quickly, and smoke inhalation kills more people than the actual flames do. Grab your cellphone, escape the house as fast as you can, and make sure your children get out with you! Then call 9-1-1 once you're safely out of the house.

Take precautions to protect your loved ones and let your professional insurance agents at SAV-ON take care of protecting your home and belongings! Call SAV-ON Insurance Agencies at 888-867-2866 for a free quote on your Homeowner's Insurance today!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Valentine's Day is a Popular Day for Proposals and Weddings...Make Sure Your Insurance Feels the Love!

February is one of the busiest times of the year for engagements and weddings.  And if you’re planning to tie the knot soon - congratulations! 

Now it’s time to think about what this means for your insurance!  When you get married and combine two households, there are some important insurance things to think about.  Let’s go over some of the most common (and often overlooked).

Auto Insurance

Once you’re married, you’ll want to combine your vehicles onto one auto insurance policy. Bonus?  Many times you’ll get a discount when you have multiple vehicles on one policy!  If you only own one vehicle, just make sure to add your spouse to the policy.

Renter's or Homeowner's Insurance

Next you’ll want to make sure that you have renters or homeowners insurance in place for your new household.  If you’re keeping your current residence, just have us add your spouse to the policy.  If you’re renting and don’t have coverage, have us quote a renters insurance policy!  You’ll save on your auto insurance PLUS protect all of those fancy wedding gifts!

Life Insurance

And finally, have a conversation about Life insurance.  No one wants to think about this important coverage but if you’re planning to start a family or if your spouse depends on your income, then now is the time to get it started.  We can quote an affordable life insurance policy to protect your new family.

None of this is time consuming or difficult!  In fact, it can usually be done in one short phone conversation.  Call us today at 888-867-2866 to discuss your policy!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Essential Winter Driving Tips

Now that we're in the grips of a particularly wet, cold winter, it's important to remember that it poses many driving challenges. Western Washington has lots of hills and steep grades, which cause treacherous driving conditions when combined with cold temperatures. Please slow down in these conditions!

Water from our frequent rains can turn to ice, and a thin layer on the roadway that can't be seen -- aptly named 'black ice' -- can, without warning, cause your vehicle to slide out of control. Since drivers don't see the danger, they're usually driving faster than the conditions allow.

Then, when we get even a thin layer of snow, roads quickly turn hazardous! Combining hilly roads with a lack of snow-removal equipment, snow gets packed down and becomes icy. Since drivers in Western Washington don't get much practice at driving in the snow and ice, you end up with a serious traffic problem!

But, you can make it through unscathed by adhering to a few important winter driving tips!

Top 10 Driving Tips:

1. Winterize your vehicle - Check your battery, front and rear defrosters, fill up the washer fluid and antifreeze, inflate your tires to the correct pressure, and keep your gas tank at least half full to avoid frozen fuel lines.

2. Clear your windshield - Never pour hot water over the windows to melt the ice and snow. This will typically shatter the windshield. Use a plastic scraper to avoid scratching the glass and use the front and rear defrosters to melt the ice. Avoid using your windshield wipers until after all the ice and snow have been removed.

3. Don't just clear your windshield - Don't forget to clear all of the other windows, as well as the roof, hood, mirrors, headlights and tail lights, license plates and the exhaust pipe. This will prevent accumulated ice and snow from becoming an airborne hazard for other drivers.

4. Keep a survival kit in the car - Blankets, water-proof boots and gloves, hats, and any necessary medications should be carried in the car. Keep a small shovel, jumper cables, and something that could be used for traction (e.g. cat litter, sand, etc.) in the car as well.

5. Test your limits in a safe environment - Take your car to a familiar, empty parking lot near your home after a rain, snow or ice storm. Practice emergency stops and turning at a safe speed. Be sure and watch out for light posts, curbs and parking barriers to avoid any damage to your vehicle.

6. Warm up the car the right way - To avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, never attempt to warm up your car in an enclosed area. Even when outside, be sure to clear your exhaust pipe before running your car.

7. Pump your brakes at the right time - If your vehicle is equipped with an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), you should depress the brake pedal completely and keep it depressed. The ABS will rapidly pump the brakes for you in most situations if at least one wheel is still turning. If all four wheels have stopped turning and the vehicle is still sliding on ice, you should pump your brakes as the ABS has failed.

8. Drive in the existing tracks - To help traction, try to stay within the pathway already dug by other vehicles' wheels. If you end up stuck, remember to keep your wheels as straight as possible and don't just continue spinning your tires. Spread sand or cat litter around your tires and along the path you plan on taking. In a pinch, you can also use your floor mats for traction.

9. Don't turn while braking or accelerating - In rain, snow and ice, attempt to slow down before a turn and accelerate slowly after the wheel has already turned.

10. Catch a skid - If you do start skidding, stay calm! Don't slam on the brakes, don't hit the gas pedal. Turn your wheel smoothly in the direction that you intend to travel. You should be able to regain control of the vehicle once it has slowed enough to regain traction. Don't turn the wheel too much, a little goes a long way and you don't want to be pointed in a dangerous direction if traction returns suddenly.

Whatever your predicament, SAV-ON Insurance Agencies is there to help. We'll work with your insurance company to make sure you get back on the road again as soon as possible! Call for a free rate quote today at 888-867-2866.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

It's Easy! Earn Rewards for Referring Your Friends and Family to SAV-ON Insurance!

Oksana Tserger of Everett (far right) was our 2015 Grand Prize winner of a 32" HD TV!
We want more great clients like YOU! That's why we have our Referral Rewards program at SAV-ON. There are three ways to win, and you qualify simply by referring someone to us for a free rate quote!

Here's how it works...

Every time you send a friend or family member to our agency for a rate quote on any type of insurance, we give you two lottery tickets, whether they end up getting a policy or not.

In addition, your name is entered for our monthly drawing of a $50 gift certificate at a local restaurant. At the end of each month, one name is drawn and the winner is notified.

Finally, all entries from the previous 12 months are entered into our Grand Prize drawing for a 32" HD TV. At the end of November, a winner is drawn from the entries and is notified to come to our nearest office and pick up their new TV just in time for Christmas!

There is no purchase required, and you need not be present to win.

It's a simple as that! We can't wait to send you a reward! Refer someone today and get qualified for all the prizes! Call us at 888-867-2866 or go to the SAV-ON website for details.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

The 5 Biggest Mistakes When Buying Insurance

Insurance can be a tricky purchase.  Auto lienholder happy?  Check.  Mortgage lender happy?  Check. Life insurance policy in force? Check.

But this simply isn't enough!  Some things on your insurance policy deserve a little more attention.  As an insurance agency,  here are some of the BIGGEST coverage mistakes we’ve seen.

Mistake #1:  Buying Only The Required State Minimum Liability Insurance

Every state has a minimum amount of liability insurance that is required in order to drive.  But it’s typically nowhere near enough coverage!  Choosing only the minimum liability insurance could leave you open to a lawsuit, garnished wages, or potentially losing an asset, like your home.

Discuss different liability amounts with your SAV-ON agent to see what is necessary based on your income, net worth, and liabilities.  (Thankfully, it won’t near as much as you might think!) 

Mistake #2: Not Insuring Your Home For Replacement Cost

Many people think they only need enough coverage to insure their home for the amount they paid for it.  Not true!  You need to be insured for the amount of money it would cost to REPLACE your home.

If a fire or tornado destroyed the house, you would need insurance to replace it.  The total cost could be tens of thousands more than the house would have sold for on the housing market.  If you’re currently only insured for the cash value of your home, you could be at risk! 

Mistake #3: Buying Life Insurance Through Work

Most people tell us that they have life insurance through work and aren’t interested in purchasing their own coverage.  This is also a mistake.

The problem?  The majority of us don’t stay at jobs for 30 years anymore.  And if you develop health issues and leave your current employer… you might not be able to get coverage again, or at a much higher premium!

When you purchase your own life insurance (which is extremely affordable), you are covered no matter where you work or what health problems you might develop in the future.  It’s the smarter choice!

Mistake #4: Buying The Cheapest Policy

It’s tempting to shop for insurance and just pick whatever is the cheapest, but it’s usually not the best idea.

First you want to make sure that you’re buying from a reputable company.  You want a solid insurance carrier that you can trust to pay your claims. 

And you want to make sure you’re comparing apples to apples.  Does the cheaper policy only insure your home for cash value instead of replacement cost (like mistake #2)? Does one company exclude water leaks but another cover them?  Big details can be hidden in the small print!

Mistake #5: Not Using An Agent

Best way to avoid ALL of these mistakes?  Work with an insurance agent! 

We know all about insurance and can find the right coverage for your specific situation.  We’ll make sure your liability limits are high enough, that your home will be replaced after a loss, that you won’t lose your life insurance when you change jobs, and that you aren’t buying an inadequate policy that doesn’t protect you.

Call SAV-ON today at 888-867-2866 for a quote, and get peace of mind knowing you've got the right coverage at the best price!