New Traditions, Same Insurance Needs

If your significant other pops the question this Valentine’s Day, congratulations! Your life together is taking a whole new and wonderful direction.
You’ll be joining the more than 2 million people who will get married this year, many of whom will make plans to start their own little family.
Some of the traditional aspects of marriage have been rapidly changing over the last few years, such as a growing number of men wearing “man-gagement” (male engagement) rings, black or champagne tones for wedding gowns, barefoot beach destination weddings, and a more recent new trend — men taking their wife’s last name or hyphenating it with their own. Couples who have done the name swap say it’s for the same reasons they got married: kids and career.
You should consider these same reasons when discussing your insurance needs.
Your Daytona Beach insurance agency is here to help you with your new family’s insurance needs, including home, auto, boat, motorcycle, life and retirement planning as well as other important financial matters as they arise.
While many matrimonial traditions evolve, we take comfort in knowing there are aspects such as the treasured “something old, new, borrowed and blue,” that remain constant and time honored.
Adequate insurance for peace of mind from an agency you trust is another.
Serving Ormond Beach, Daytona Beach, Port Orange and all of Volusia County and Flagler County, O’Quinn Insurance Agency has more than 40 years of experience in the Florida insurance industry. As one of the top family run agencies, we can help you secure the best coverage for all your insurance needs.

Before You Buy That Boat

Across the country it’s boat show season as manufacturers roll out their new models and folks get out of the cold and dream of spring on the water.

Of course, here in East Central Florida where your Ormond Beach insurance agency is located, we’re still boating everyday. But if you’re thinking of buying your first boat or upgrading to a new boat, a boat show is a great place to find all the latest stuff the manufacturers are offering.

Before you buy that boat, your Ormond Beach insurance agency wants to remind you to think about boat insurance, too. Here are some tips to think about when buying a boat.

Cost of the Boat: It’s just simple math. The more expensive the boat, the more it will cost to insure it. So talk to your Ormond Beach insurance agency first and you can better understand what you can afford.

Know Your Policy: You are insuring a boat, not a car or house, so the policy coverage is going to be different. Make sure you understand what you are getting.

Salvaging: One part of boat coverage is the cost to salvage your boat and get it to a repair shop. Think of it as the towing part of the policy and make sure you’ve got enough coverage for it.

Agreed Value and Actual Cash Value: The agreed value is what your insurer agrees to pay for your boat if it is stolen or totally destroyed. The actual cash value is a cheaper policy but only pays for what your boat is worth at the time it is stolen or destroyed.

Buy From Someone Who Knows Boats: Your Ormond Beach insurance agency specializes in boat insurance and knows it well. Some agencies will just tack on a rider to your homeowner’s policy that doesn’t give you the coverage you need.

Boating is one of the greatest pleasures in the world. It provides you and your family a lifetime of wonderful experiences. But you have to protect your boat just like you do your car or house.

Your Ormond Beach insurance agency, the O’Quinn Agency also can help you with insurance for your auto, home, motorcycle and life.

No Need for Speed

In the Daytona Beach area, everyone is well aware that another Speed Weeks is upon us. For more than a month, hundreds of thousands of race fans will stream through our area to see some of the best auto racing in the world.

With the 50th Anniversary of the Rolex 24 at Daytona firing up Saturday (Jan. 28, 2012), we also are reminded of one life’s conundrums. Why does your speedometer go up to 140 mph when the only way you could ever go that fast is if you talked the folks at Daytona International Speedway into letting you take a spin around the track?

In the United States, or at least East Central Florida, the highest speed limit you’ll find is 70 mph on the interstate highways. Many of us are usually driving where the highest speed limit is more like 45 mph. So, with all that power to spare, your Daytona Beach insurance agency understands how you could get in trouble really fast (pardon the pun).

Speeding tickets are one of the quickest ways (sorry, we can’t help ourselves) of getting in trouble with your auto insurance. Allstate is a very forgiving company, but after two or three speeding tickets, you will be really trying their patience.

One of the easiest ways to keep your auto insurance costs in check is to maintain a clean driving record. Armed with that, your Daytona Beach insurance agency will do everything it can to help you keep your premiums as inexpensive as possible.

For the impact speeding tickets can have on your insurance, here are the cold, hard facts from WikiAnswers.

  • If you get one speeding ticket and you are over 25, you may not see any increase in your insurance premiums.
  • If you get a second ticket, that’s when the trouble begins and you will definitely see an increase in your premiums.
  • If you drive a company vehicle or have a commercial driver’s license, the first ticket will get you in trouble because your records are checked on a regular basis.
  • For each four-point ticket, you can expect your premiums will go up at least 50 percent for each of the following three years. A four-point ticket is what you get if you are stopped for driving 16 mph over the posted limit.
  • There are too many variables, such as how many cars you have, the number of drivers in your household and the number of miles you drive, to determine exactly how much your premiums could go up, but one thing is for sure. If you get too many speeding tickets, you could lose your driving privileges and your insurance could get cancelled.

A clean driving record is one way to save on auto insurance costs, talk to your Daytona Beach insurance agency about others.

The O’Quinn Agency also can help provide you with insurance for your boat, home, motorcycle and life.

Saving on Auto Insurance Costs

The trend seers are saying auto insurance rates are going up in 2012, making it more important than ever to work with your Palm Coast auto insurance agency to keep your costs down.

While accidents and highway fatalities have been declining, auto insurance rates are going up because of rampant fraud, especially in South Florida. The Florida Legislature is working to resolve some of the problems with auto insurance fraud and hopefully will be successful.

Still, there are some steps you can take in 2012 to help reduce your auto insurance premiums. Here are some tips:

  • Set your deductible at a level you can afford. If you can afford to pay $1,000 towards an auto repair, then you should set the deductible at that amount, not lower.
  • Keep your auto in good working order so your need for towing insurance is lower. In the case of an accident, towing costs usually are covered by your collision coverage.
  • If you’re buying a car in 2012, talk to your Palm Coast auto insurance agency first and it could help you decide which vehicle you want to buy.
  • Bundling your auto insurance with other policies with your Palm Coast auto insurance agency could provide you with a substantial discount.
  • Look back at the past two years and determine how many miles you put on your auto. If you add a small number of miles each year, you could qualify for a low-mileage break on your insurance.
  • Check to see if you can get a discount for taking a safe driving class.
  • Determine a payment plan with your agent that provides the lowest overall cost. If you can pay for an entire six-month policy at once, you could save money.

For more tips on saving on your auto insurance, talk to your Palm Coast auto insurance agency. The O’Quinn Agency also can help you with insurance for your boat, home, motorcycle and life.

Burst Pipes Don’t Have to Bust Your Budget

During the winter, a common homeowner concern is water pipes freezing and bursting, leaving a huge mess in their home.

While your Daytona Beach homeowners insurance won’t help you with the mess, it could help you pay for it.

A common misconception when it comes to flooding problems is that you have to have coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program to pay for damages. Actually that’s only if the flooding is part of a natural occurrence — heavy rain or snow melt — or unnatural one – a dam cracking open.

If the flooding problem comes from a burst pipe, either in the walls of your home or in the ground outside your home, your Daytona Beach homeowners insurance should cover the cost of any damages or repairs.

Of course, with frozen pipes you have to show you took the usual precautions, such as wrapping outside faucets and keeping your home heated. Also, if the pipes are old and corroded, your insurer may not cover the cost of replacing the pipe. That falls under home maintenance. It should cover any damages, though.

So far, the area your Daytona Beach homeowners insurance serves hasn’t seen extremely frigid temperatures for winter 2011-12, but it’s not over yet. It’s a good idea to check with your agent to make sure your homeowners insurance covers burst water pipes.

The O’Quinn Agency, which serves the East Central Florida area, also can help you with insurance for your auto, boat, motorcycle and life.

Costly Year Worldwide

It’s difficult to believe that 2011 was the costliest year ever for the insurance industry as far as natural disaster losses.

Usually that means there were some bad hurricanes hitting Florida, but your Ormond Beach insurance agency notes there were few bad windstorm incidents in the state in 2011. There were, however, devastating earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand, including a tsunami that wiped out much of Northern Japan.

Munich RE reported that insured losses in 2011 were $105 billion, surpassing the record of $101 billion set in 2005, the year of Katrina.

Of course, that was just the insured losses. The company put total worldwide economic costs from natural disasters at $380 billion, far above the $220 billion in 2005. The earthquake and tsunami in Japan resulted in insured losses of $40 billion while the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, cost the industry $13 billion.

The huge cost of natural disasters will continue to put pressure on the industry, probably making reinsurance costs higher in 2012. Also, while there were no damaging hurricanes in the Sunshine State, problems lingered from sinkholes, auto fraud and others.

Still, your Ormond Beach insurance agency remains committed to giving you the best and most affordable property and casualty coverage possible in 2012 and for years to come. The O’Quinn Agency also can help you with insurance for your auto, boat, motorcycle and life.

Relief for Volatile Financial Plans

Don’t be confused about all the information out there about how to use annuities to soothe the volatile financial beast.

Your Daytona Beach insurance agency can guide you through the fog caused by all the many messages you are hearing on annuities and other investment tools. As the market jumps up and down like a kid’s new yo-yo, you’ll appreciate the helping hand.

Here are some basics that your Daytona Beach insurance agency will help you understand as you consider how annuities fit into your retirement planning.

  • The core value the solutions can bring.
  • The basics of how all of the features work so you can get the most out of these solutions as they continue to evolve.
  • Help you compare the costs of annuities with their benefits.
  • Find out if you are someone who will benefit the most from the guaranteed solution annuities provide.
  • Most importantly, you’ll find out how your investment in annuities works and how your investment will grow over time to make sure you can maintain the lifestyle you want through retirement.

Your Daytona Beach insurance agency is here to help you with your retirement planning as well as other important financial matters in your life. The O’Quinn Agency also helps provide insurance for autos, boats, homes and motorcycles throughout East Central Florida.

Safe Vehicles Easier to Find

Finding a safe vehicle has become easier than ever as manufacturers have pushed to make their products better and safer, your Palm Coast auto insurance agency notes.

There were 115 vehicles rated as Top Safety Picks for 2012 by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a new record. You can find a top safety rated vehicle in every category now from small cars to large SUVs.

The selection is for vehicles that best protect passengers in front, side and rear crashes, and rollovers, based on evaluations by the institute.

Now that all vehicles must have electronic stability control, in accordance with federal law, they all can qualify as top safety picks. Still, institute officials commended manufacturers for continuing to improve the safety of their product.

Toyota had the most winners for its Toyota, Lexus and Scion models followed by Chevrolet with 14. Honda showed the most improvement with 10 new additions to the list.

Besides stability control, much of the improvement by the manufacturers was in better roof design, resulting in higher scores for rollovers.

For all of the models picked as Top Safety Picks, go to the institute’s website.

The safety rating of a vehicle is important in determining how much you pay for insurance premiums. To learn more about how a vehicle’s safety rating affects the cost of your insurance, talk to your Palm Coast auto insurance agency today!

At the O’Quinn Agency we also can help you with insurance for your boat, home, motorcycle and life.

Insurance Resolutions

While you are thinking up what resolutions you should make for 2012, you should also think about what insurance changes you need to make for the New Year.

As you look back on 2011, you need to think about what changes occurred in your life that could impact your insurance. Also, it’s a good time to look at ways you can save on your insurance bills.

With some insurance coverage, of course, you automatically have to make changes. When you buy a new car, to meet the requirements of the lender you use, you have to show you have adequate insurance. But you also should look at things you can do to lower the cost of your auto insurance. One of the key ways is to make sure your policy takes into account all of the safety features of your vehicle. For others, talk to your Daytona Beach insurance agency.

Boat and motorcycle insurance doesn’t change that much, unless you got a new boat or motorcycle. There could be regulatory changes that could affect your insurance, though.

For your home insurance, you need to look at any remodeling you may have done in the past year that increased the value of your home. Also, keep in mind what we just wrote about how you need to compensate for adding expensive personal belongings.

If you had a new child in 2011, congratulations on the added tax break, but are you sure you’ve got your new bambino covered financially in case something happens to you? Or do you have a child leaving the nest? You could get a break now that you are no longer financially supporting a child and could use your insurance for other reasons, like paying off your child’s college loans.

There could be other changes in your life in 2011 that you need to discuss with your Daytona Beach insurance agency. At the Quinn Insurance Agency, we’ll make sure you’ve got the insurance you need for your auto, boat, home, motorcycle and life.

Holiday Travel and Palm Coast Auto Insurance

With more autos on the road the next few days, it is time to be more careful than ever when you are driving.

AAA estimates 91.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home during the period Dec. 23, 2011, to Jan. 2, 2012. The travel volume is the second highest in the past decade. The auto club expects 4,350,100 Floridians to hit the highways during the two-week period, up 1.8 percent from 12 months ago.

With all that traffic, the chances of auto accidents can only increase and your Palm Coast auto insurance agency encourages you to drive safely and practice good travel habits. Here are some tips on staying safe while traveling “over the river and through woods” this holiday season.

  • Make sure everything is working properly on your vehicle.
  • Remain alert to what other drivers are doing, or whatever is happening along the road.
  • Be extra careful in inclement weather: Drive slowly, don’t follow behind another vehicle too closely and avoid sudden braking or movement of the steering wheel.
  • Wear a seatbelt: It’s not only a good idea; it’s the law in most states.
  • Don’t drive drowsy: Make a habit of getting a good night’s sleep every night.
  • Avoid Distractions, such as cell phones, drinking or eating, interacting with passengers or applying makeup.
  • Don’t speed: keep an eye out for posted speed limits and drive even slower in inclement weather.
  • Don’t drive if you are impaired by alcohol or drugs.

The O’Quinn Agency, your Palm Coast auto insurance, wishes everyone a happy and safe holiday and a successful and prosperous new year.