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  #1  
Old 05-26-2011
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Insurance

Today, We received our new policy from the Good Hands People. What a shock. The premium for boat, contents, liability, and medical, has way more than doubled over what it has been for the last few years. We have filed an inquiry and complaint with the Commissioner of Insurance for Louisiana.

We cannot afford these increases, and are retired on fixed income, so we will be shopping around or doing without, except for liability of course. Has anyone else experienced this recently, or any suggestions on where to look for reasonable coverage.
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Old 05-26-2011
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Curious why you would file a complaint? They gave you a price, you don't like it, so don't buy the policy.

The obvious answer is to shop around for a better price. A lot of people recommend US Boats, I found them higher than Progressive but it also depends on type of boat, location, types of coverage etc.
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Old 05-26-2011
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Leo, did you ask the insurer or broker what changed? Maybe it was a rate increase, maybe it was a change, i.e. someone entered a different age group?
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Old 05-26-2011
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I filed a complaint at the direction of the Insurance Commissioner, as they were astounded at the amount of the increase, as all blanket increases here must be approved by their office before being implemented by any insurance company.

According to our agent, whom we have known for years, like, and respect, this rise is not unique to us, but an increase which applies to all policy holders here. That is what may put the ball in the court of the Commissioner. Our agent advises that he is receiving many complaints of this nature, which originate from the company and not his office.

We have been doing business with this Company for 50 years, everything we own is covered through them. We have had normal rate increases over the years like everyone else, but never one which is even near 110%.

We, like most others, live on a budget. We expect and plan for some consistent expenses so that we can plan our lives and meet our obligations. Imagine what would happen to most of us here if tomorrow ones boat note, house note, or car note doubled, without much advanced notice. True, this is not exactly the same thing, but the effect is the same.

How many of us will be able to retain full coverage on our boats if this is a trend?

In our case we are seeking other sources. We are putting this out here to see if this may be a trend or an isolated situation.

Last edited by Leocat66; 05-27-2011 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 05-28-2011
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Insurance is a royal pain! In part I guess we have the idiots that turn in claims for every scratch, stubbed toe or other minor mishap. I go with the cheapest I can find, right now its Progressive. I have heard the arguments about discount insurance being below par and I can believe that. I also have heard about extended warranties on appliances and cars being a good idea. I never buy extended warranties either. If I look at insurance as one block of expense that I have been paying for my entire life, whatever loss I may take will have been paid for though the savings I've aquired throughout the years. Now this is on selective things, I do plan on upgrading my homeowners insurance due to the addition of an apartment I just built above the garage, but other than that I choose the cheap way out.
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Old 05-28-2011
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50 years

I suspect if you have been with the same company for 50 years, you have paid too much money over many of those years. If you mean that you have used the same independent agent for 50 years, I might understand that, if you have a good rapport / trust with them.

Even if thats the case, you should still do a little shopping. Friendship is all well and good but don't assume a close relationship is going to help you with claims etc. The insurance company pays the claims, not your local agent. If you find that other companies aren't cheaper (be sure you are comparing apples to apples) then you will feel even better. If another company is noticeably cheaper, let your agent explain why you should pay more for his policy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leocat66 View Post
I filed a complaint at the direction of the Insurance Commissioner, as they were astounded at the amount of the increase, as all blanket increases here must be approved by their office before being implemented by any insurance company.

According to our agent, whom we have known for years, like, and respect, this rise is not unique to us, but an increase which applies to all policy holders here. That is what may put the ball in the court of the Commissioner. Our agent advises that he is receiving many complaints of this nature, which originate from the company and not his office.

We have been doing business with this Company for 50 years, everything we own is covered through them. We have had normal rate increases over the years like everyone else, but never one which is even near 110%.

We, like most others, live on a budget. We expect and plan for some consistent expenses so that we can plan our lives and meet our obligations. Imagine what would happen to most of us here if tomorrow ones boat note, house note, or car note doubled, without much advanced notice. True, this is not exactly the same thing, but the effect is the same.

How many of us will be able to retain full coverage on our boats if this is a trend?

In our case we are seeking other sources. We are putting this out here to see if this may be a trend or an isolated situation.
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Old 05-28-2011
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A good friend of mine, who does some insurance work told me that unless you've had to make claims you should shop around every 5 years. When you buy insurance you go into a 'class' and as claims get processed for the class the rates go up. Shopping around every 5 years will get you into a new class at a lower rate.
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Old 05-28-2011
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By all means, shop around, but before you pick a policy, be sure you read the policy--they're not all the same when it comes to what is covered and how they will depreciate your boat and gear when a claim comes due. I had an issue with my power boat insurance last year when I found out that they would not provide new parts for a motor more than 5 years old. As it turned out, I had paid for a higher coverage on my motor than they were willing to honor.

On the other hand, I had a lightning strike on my sailboat last year that was fully covered with new replacement equipment--but that was with a different underwriter. I had checked BOATUS a few years ago for a rate comparison, and I could have saved $200/year, but they would have depreciated the lightning-damaged electronics. I kept my original policy and am glad that I did.
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