Thursday, April 28, 2016

The hidden costs of "cheap" auto policies -- just ask your insurance agent these three questions...



Q:  Does my auto policy automatically cover a rental car if I decide to take one on vacation instead of my regular car?
Restrictive policies cover only the vehicles specifically listed on the policy.  Don't assume all policies are the same.  You may have to accept the additional expense of the car rental company's pricey insurance.


Q:  Does my policy allow "permissive use", or does it cover only drivers who are specifically listed on the policy itself?
Be sure you know if you can loan your car to a friend or other family member.  What if they crashed your car and your insurance refused to pay for it because it doesn't allow "permissive use"?

Q:  If I wreck and total my car, do you take depreciation out before you pay me, or do you give me a fair market valuation, similar to what car dealers in the area are charging?
How your insurance policy valuates your vehicle at claims time can mean a huge difference in dollars to you.  Watch out for the phrase "Actual Cash Value" in your policy.

Do you think the low-cost insurance purveyors are going to specifically point out these deficiencies in their policies?  Of course not!  You only learn about them after it's TOO late.  Now, you have no excuse, if you read this blog!

David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816  Fax 615-778-1817
 
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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Why you should first stop by your insurance agent's office when shopping for a home or vehicle...


Whether you're buying a house or a vehicle in Franklin TN, Brentwood TN, or elsewhere in Middle Tennessee, I can help save you money and prevent headaches, in ways you might not expect.

Home help:  Check with me early in the process of your home hunting, even as you're looking at multiple homes.  When I create a home insurance proposal, I'll also be able to tell you if the home had insurance claims filed recently -- crucial information for you, especially for a claim that wasn't disclosed.  Absence of claims is probably a good thing, where an abundance of claims likely isn't!


Auto help: If you're considering several different makes/models of cars or trucks, let me provide you with auto insurance quotes for each one -- early on.  You'll be surprised at the difference in insurance rates for various vehicles.  As you'd expect, some are safer than average, or less expensive to repair than average -- and should cost less to insure.  Others are quite the opposite, and will cost more to insure.  Wouldn't you like to know this early on?
I'll bet I can save you $$ in more ways than one!

David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816 Fax 615-778-1817
dyates1@farmersagent.com

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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Home Mortgage Myths


Home buying season is just around the corner, and I thought this would be a good time to share some insights for those looking into a new home mortgage or a re-fi.  According to my friend, Erica Kelley, of Caliber Home Loans, here are some of the most prevalent myths out there, along with the straight scoop:
Myth: You can't buy a home without a 20% down payment.  There are many mortgage programs that allow you to put down less.  Conventional loans start at 5%, and FHA loans can be as low as 3.5%.  There are also state grant programs like the THDA, which provides a grant to cover the down payment, or the USDA program, that is 0% down payment. 
Myth: You can't get a mortgage with a low credit score.  Depending on the lender, you may be able to score as low as 620 to qualify for a conventional loan, and as low as 580 for an FHA.  Review your credit report with a lender, so that you know exactly what is reporting.  In addition, lenders are also looking for foreclosures, collections, late payments, bankruptcies etc.  But even if your report isn't what you were hoping for, an experienced lender might have some strategies for increasing your score quicker than you think.
Myth: A "Pre-approval" is the same as a "Pre-qualification".  These are totally different animals.  Pre-qualified means you've provided preliminary information to a lender, who made initial calculations based on that information, to see what you might be able to afford.  To become pre-approved, though, you do need to provide documentation to your lender so they can review your income, credit, debt and assets to see what specific loans you may qualify for.  Of course, being pre-approved and ready to move forward gives you the advantage in the eyes of a seller with multiple offers.  Multiple offers are very prevalent in our market, especially in Nashville, Brentwood, Franklin, Nolensville, Thompson's Station, Spring Hill, and College Grove.
If you're in the market to buy or refinance your home, Erica can expertly guide you through the process.  Give her a call at 615-423-3095, or head over to her website at www.caliberhomeloans.com/ekelley
David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816  Fax 615-778-1817
dyates1@farmersagent.com

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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Which one of these is really THE secret to avoiding most car accidents...

 
The two insurance companies that offer plug-in devices to monitor their customers' driving habits have collected much information over the years.  Whether you like this "Big Brother" approach, or not, these companies have gleaned fascinating insights I thought might be helpful to you, as reported in the January 11, 2016 issue of The Wall Street Journal:


  • Older folks who don't yield at intersections are riskier compared to people of any age who get speeding citations.
  • A mile driven at 2 a.m. is at least 4 times riskier than a mile driven at 7 a.m..
  • Hard braking apparently is a major predictor of future accidents.  According to one company, if you slam on your brakes more than eight times every 500 miles, you're 73% more likely to be in an accident.
While these are all thought-provoking facts, the real nugget is the hard-braking finding.  What a simple, yet powerful concept!  How can we avoid most hard-braking situations? 
                                  DON'T SPEED and DON'T TAILGATE!
 
Now, I'm really not trying to be preachy.  I was no saint on the roads when I was a teen, but have cleaned up my act since then.  Being in the insurance business has helped me see this issue even more clearly, though, and I'm telling you, if you live by just this one rule, you'll likely stay out of trouble with the police, avoid large insurance rate-hikes, and most importantly, possibly save a life!  Try it for 21 days, and you might just make a habit out of it.  Plus, the drivers of Franklin, Brentwood, Thompson's StationSpring Hill, and Nashville will thank you for it!


David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816  Fax 615-778-1817
 
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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Need a last-minute free stocking stuffer (no, it's not related to auto or home insurance!)...



As we wish for and buy gifts this Christmas, it's important to remember that our most precious gifts are our children.  Help us keep our community’s kids safe.  For the 10th straight year, the David Yates Insurance Agency is pleased to offer Child I.D. Fingerprint kits, courtesy of Farmers Insurance, free of charge to anyone who requests them.
Child I.D. Fingerprint kit
These kits have everything you need to properly take and store your child’s fingerprints and personal information, and have ready in the event of an emergency.  It's a terrific stocking stuffer!


These all-in-one kits could play such a significant role in keeping your children safe, that I'll be glad to deliver them to you in person in the Nashville/Brentwood/Franklin/Nolensville/Spring Hill area.  Just give me a call. 


Of course, you are always welcome to stop by our office located at 1881 General George Patton Dr, Suite 103, Franklin TN 37067 (in Cool Springs), and we'll be happy to provide I.D. Kits to you free of charge.


David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816  Fax 615-778-1817
dyates1@farmersagent.com



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Monday, November 30, 2015

Who's better at handling your auto insurance claim? Satisfaction study says...



http://www.davidyatesinsurance.com/
Who would serve you better --
 a far-away call-center or a local agent?
When you have an accident and need help from your insurance company, do you think you'd get better service from a company with a local agent, or from a 1-800 or .com-only company?

According to the latest survey of auto insurance claims satisfaction (provided by a widely recognized consumer research firm), the two biggest 1-800/online-only auto insurers fall BELOW the industry average when it comes to auto claims satisfaction. 

Yes, they advertise to you at every opportunity, asking you to click or call 1-800 -- but are ranked below-average for customer satisfaction in this important claims category. 


Meanwhile, stable companies with local agents -- like Farmers Insurance Group -- finished ABOVE the industry average for auto insurance claims satisfaction.

It makes sense when you think about it.  Wouldn't you prefer a local agent who takes a great interest in making sure you have the right coverage from the start, and is there at claims-time -- when you really find out what kind of policy you bought?

Compare this to someone in a cubicle, 1,000 miles away, signing you up for "state minimum" coverage, without a second thought, because you weren't sure what you needed, and trusted them.  Then, never speaking with you again, because your calls are always routed to next available representative after waiting through each voicemail prompt.  Or worse, getting your own policy online, without ever speaking to a human!

And, if something happens, and it's claims-time, only then do you realize you don't have the coverage you need.  You wish you would have gotten some good, personalized advice from an expert in your neighborhood, a local agent, whom you know, advising you of the best steps to take -- and backed by an above-average insurance company.

There's real value in going with a quality insurance policy and a local agent in Franklin TN who knows you.  That's what I'm here for.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you!

David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816  Fax 615-778-1817
dyates1@farmersagent.com


Monday, October 12, 2015

How to help your home survive the winter and save you money...


The top four crucial items to put on your Fall maintenance to-do list right now, before winter sets in, courtesy of Jerry Ross of Deluxe Home Inspection Services LLC in Franklin, TN

1. Remove leaves, branches, and other debris off the roof and gutters.  Debris can cause water pooling and form ice dams which can break or deteriorate roofing shingles and breach the moisture barrier.  Keep all drainage free of debris.  A defective roofing system can cause serious and costly damage to your home.

2. Fall is an excellent time to look for cracks around doors and windows.  Caulking these cracks will help keep the warm air in, and the water and insects out.

3. Service your furnace at least once each year.  Cleaning the furnace will help it run efficiently and minimize a failure when you need it most.  Be sure to change your filters regularly.

4. Remove hoses from hose bibs.  Any trapped water can freeze and crack water pipes.  Also, close vents to the crawlspace to help trap some warm air as plumbing and sewer pipes can freeze if too much cold air is allowed in.  Insulating water pipes can help slow the freezing process.

By the way, I think Jerry Ross is the best residential home inspector in the business.  You can contact him at 615-310-3230 or jerryxross@gmail.com.

Be sure to look back through my entire blog, as you'll find plenty of home-maintenance and money-saving tips for all seasons. 

David Yates – Farmers Insurance
1881 General George Patton Dr., Suite 103
Franklin, TN 37067
Phone 615-778-1816  Fax 615-778-1817
dyates1@farmersagent.com

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