Archive for March 2016

What You Need to Know About Life Insurance

What You Need to Know About Life Insurance

Considering life insurance? Here’re the basics.

When buying life insurance, you may be overwhelmed by the plethora of information available. To protect your future from poor choices today, organize your insurance by learning about the basics of life insurance!

Life Insurance 101
As the owner of a selfless insurance policy, you will never actually get to benefit from your life insurance. Your policy is designed to protect your family and finances. When you’re no longer around to provide for your family, life insurance helps your family cover your funeral costs, pay off remaining debt, and can even be used for your spouse to retire as planned or your child to go to college.

Term 
This provides life insurance protection for a specific length of time at a fixed rate (5 years, 10 years, 20 years). If you were to die during the provided coverage time, term policies pay out in a lump sum to the beneficiaries. The young and healthy can benefit from securing a fixed term and enjoy low premiums – so don’t wait!

Whole 
This is otherwise known as a permanent policy. It is not defined by a specific term length, but it pays a guaranteed benefit to your beneficiaries when you die, and generally accrues a cash value over time through interest. This policy is exempt from income tax and the premiums normally stay the same over your lifetime. The cash portion can be withdrawn for an investment such as your kid’s college education, your spouse to retire on time, or to pay off the mortgage. For those with higher financial burdens, this is significantly valuable.

Universal 
This is referred to as a flexible premium or adjustable life insurance. It’s not limited to a set term and usually has cash accumulation too. In this policy, the premiums, cash values, and coverage limits may be increased or decreased during the lifetime of the policy. Usually, the adjustments can be made after life milestones or as your needs change.

Having trouble deciding on what policy is best for your family, budget, and needs? Contact the insurance experts at the Insurance Agency of Dean Davis to find the best life insurance policy for you in Austin, Texas.

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Common Reasons Why Employees Sue & How to Protect Your Business!

Common Reasons Why Employees Sue & How to Protect Your Business!

Protecting your business from disgruntled employees is essential to growth and success.

Every business is responsible for upholding their employees to a certain standard. In this day-n-age, team members need to understand how to meet goals, how to improve, and when to check in with management.

In the ever-evolving litigious society, should an employee feel that they were wronged in some way, when they are terminated, they can lash back in the form of a lawsuit.

Below are the top 4 reasons why employees sue companies (and how to protect your business!):

Not providing a reason for termination. If you’re an at-will employee, you can fire at will, right? Wrong! Most employees think that they’re great workers, and if they get fired for a mysterious reason, they’ll make up their own reason – or their lawyer will. The reason for termination needs to be clear.

Firing an employee for a bad performance when the employee has good performance reviews. In contrast to the above situation, supervisors need to understand that they’ll need a performance paper trail if they want to fire someone. Without written warnings and a host of good reviews at hand, your case will not be strong.

Poor timing. An example of this is when an employee files an internal complaint about the employer or a supervisor, and then is disciplined for an unrelated event. Employees who file complaints can, of course, be disciplined, but the supervisor better have the documentation in order before making the move.

Out of control greed. For example, the owner of a company drives a brand new Ferrari but tells an employee that the company cannot afford to give him a raise from $9 an hour to $9.15. Should that employee get fired, they’ll likely call a lawyer for this unjust work environment.

Fortunately, commercial insurance can mitigate the costs, should your business be slapped with a lawsuit. Businesses can ensure that your HR and legal teams are doing their best to provide the proper protection and training, and secure your business with reliable commercial insurance for time and cost help defending your business.

For a quality insurance policy for your business, contact the Insurance Agency of Dean Davis, located in Austin, Texas!

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The Fastest Way to Do Your Spring Cleaning!

The Fastest Way to Do Your Spring Cleaning!

Focus on the big three: carpets, appliances, and furniture and your home will gleam by the time you’re done.

Spring has sprung, and it’s time to renew your home by giving it a deep clean.  Having a clean space can renew us mentally and help us to think clearly and begin anew as the seasons change.

Shampooing Carpets

Test out the carpet shampooer in an inconspicuous part of the house.  When you’ve got the right ratio of shampoo to water, and you’re sure the machine won’t damage the rug, tackle a large room filled with furniture by putting wax paper under the feet of the furniture and only moving it out of the way to clean.  You don’t have to move it fully out of the room. This will save time and the wax paper will make the furniture easier to slide and avoid the feet from getting wet.

Ceiling Fixtures

Be sure to hit lighting fixtures, vents, ceiling fans, and other fixtures with a cloth or vacuum with a soft nozzle attachment. You might be surprised how much more light you get after cleaning off lighting fixtures.

Wash the Walls

You may not even notice that the walls are dirty until you take a sponge with dishwashing liquid and water, and actually wipe the walls.  Then, watch how bright those dingy walls become. A sponge mop will help you reach those high places.

Don’t Forget Your Doormats

This is the first thing everyone sees as they enter your home. Shake them out, shampoo them, vacuum them, and beat them with a tennis racket (like in old country).  A clean welcoming doormat will set the tone that your space is fresh.

Raid the Fridge

Empty all the food and then do a deep clean of the fridge, including removing dust from the coils in the back.

For all of your home insurance needs in Austin, Texas, contact Insurance Agency of Dean Davis.

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Major Homeowner’s Insurance Mistakes: Watch Out!

Major Homeowner’s Insurance Mistakes: Watch Out!

With winter in full swing, and record-breaking storms on the horizon, it’s important to know how well your home is covered. 

The tragedy happens when you think that you’re covered, but loopholes in your policy leave you vulnerable.  Make sure you know your policy and have the exact coverage that you want, and, more importantly, need.

With a little bit of research and being proactive, you can make sure you have a great policy in place. Here are some common mistakes to avoid.

  1. Don’t Underinsure

Many homeowners only purchase enough insurance to cover their mortgage, which can be only up to 80-90% the value of their home.  Furthermore, even if the full value of your home is covered, it may cost more to rebuild your house.

Here’s what to do.  Hire a professional to estimate the value of what it would cost to rebuild your house. Many insurers provide this service for free or a fee of about $300.  If you truly value your home, this fee may feel very small compared to the knowledge you’ll be getting in return.

  1. Don’t Assume You Have Flood Insurance

Make sure to always ask your agent if you are covered for a flood. If you live near a body of water, it may be part of your mortgage agreement to have flood insurance, but if not, then double check. Look at floodsmart.gov to see how big the risk is in your area and make sure you are adequately covered.

  1. Don’t Think You Have One Deductible Across the Board

You might think that your maximum out of pocket payment will be $500 or $1000, but make sure that there aren’t special circumstances that make you have to cover 10-15% of the cost.

With these helpful tips, you’ll be better aware of how strong your policy actually is.

For all of your home insurance needs in Austin, Texas, contact Insurance Agency of Dean Davis.

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