Does My Dog Really Need Insurance?

Interesting dog fact, the very first pet insurance policy was issued in 1982 to cover the dog playing Lassie on television. Today, an estimated 20 million cats and dogs have their own insurance policy in the United States. The pet insurance industry is growing rapidly and insurance for your pet is increasing in popularity.

According to the National Pet Owners Survey- eighty percent of U.S. households, or about 85 million families, own a pet. This is up from 56 percent of U.S. households in 1988, the first year the survey was conducted. And if you’re one of these 85 million pet parents, you already know how expensive your little furry friend can be.

My Mumford <3

My Mumford <3

About a year ago, my four-legged dog child, Mumford, ate some type of unidentified foreign object. To this day it’s still a mystery what he ate or how he found it. All I know is one morning at 4 am I awoke to the sounds of him repeat vomiting. It was not pleasant. Poor guy had gotten into something and it was causing him pain and discomfort. And as a responsible dog mom, I had to do whatever was needed to make him feel better.

So three days later, after multiple x-rays, blood tests, and some induced vomiting, he was finally better. The foreign object was gone from his system and he was my normal crazy mischievous pup again.

But - it wasn’t cheap.

My three-day vet bill was $3,200. Luckily, as an insurance agent, I was aware of pet insurance and had gotten Mumford a policy shortly after adopting him. My policy covered my entire pet bill, minus the deductible. Some people may not see the need for getting a pet insurance policy, but I was very thankful I had mine. I would hate to ever have to make a choice of not getting the best care for my pet because it was too expensive. Having pet insurance, you never have to make that choice.

Multiple pictures of Mumford are necessary for this blog:)

Multiple pictures of Mumford are necessary for this blog:)

So what do you look for in pet insurance? Not all policies are the same, so here are 5 tips to help you make the best choice.

  1. Coverage. Look closely at covered medical expenses, and more importantly, expenses not covered.

  2. Annual deductible vs. per condition deductible. Once you have met your chosen annual deductible, you no longer pay a deductible for the remainder of your annual policy period. A per condition deductible assigns deductibles per incident or condition—meaning cancer treatment may be subjected to a separate deductible than an ear infection. An annual deductible typically reimburses you more than per incident or per condition deductible.

  3. Reimbursement. Not all companies pay on the actual veterinary bill, and some don’t cover the examination fees.

  4. Claims Limits. Some companies apply claim limits per incident, per year, or over the pet’s lifetime.

  5. Pre-existing Conditions. Pet insurers do not cover pre-existing conditions; however not all prior conditions are considered chronic, and some pet insurance companies have a time-frame after which curable conditions may again be covered.

At Burgett, Ross & Associates we partner with Figo Pet Insurance. It’s the insurance I have for Mumford and I think they have the best coverage. So, if you want to insure your pet’s health to ensure you never have to make a tough choice between money or care, get a quote today and see if pet insurance is right for your furry best friend.


6 Reasons Why Millennials Need Life Insurance

You’re young, carefree, and starting to learn all about the world of adulting. At this point, life insurance is just something for old people, right? You probably don’t spend too much time thinking about what will happen when you die. And who wants to, right? It's a somber subject. But what's worse is being unprepared. If you have a spouse, kid, an aging parent, or anyone in your life that depends on you, here are some things to consider on why it's a good idea to invest in life insurance while you’re young.

1. It's Cheaper When You're Young

The number one reason to invest now in life insurance is that it will be cheap. Your monthly rate could be as low as $12. Because of your age, you are considered a low-risk client for life insurance carriers. If you are a low-risk, your rate is lower. Being young, healthy, and a non-smoker you will have the lowest premium available.

2. You Have Debt

Chances are you're paying off a big student loan. Most millennials are. If something were to happen to you, the co-signer of your loan would be held liable for the debt, especially if it’s a private loan. A life insurance policy will protect your loved ones from having to pay for your debt, including mortgages, credit cards, and your student loans.

3. People Depend On You

Even if you don't have kids, you probably still have people in your life that depend on you. If you’re a wage earner you’ll want to replace your salary for the people that depend on you. If you are providing for an aging parent or someone with special needs, who will provide for them if something happens to you? A spouse or a significant other is a dependent and they would be affected if you were to die. Not only would they be dealing with grief, but also the finical loss of income and burial costs. Life insurance can offer you peace of mind knowing that all of your loved ones will be taken care of.

4. Funerals Are Expensive

As bad as this’s really expensive to die. The cost of a funeral can range anywhere from $5,000 - $10,000 and you know your loved ones will only want the best for you. Life insurance will cover the costs and reduce the financial burden on your loved ones during their time of grief.

5. Employer Life Insurance May Not Be Enough

Working for a company with great benefits, you probably assume you’ve got life insurance covered. Most employers do offer a life insurance plan as part of your benefits package. However, if you were ever to become sick and unable to work, your employer's policy may no longer be effective. Or the coverage may be minimal, the standard company offered policy is $50,000. If you have debt, $50,000 isn’t going to last very long. A policy separate from your workplace insurance will ensure your loved ones will have the needed amount to cover your debt, income replacement, and funeral costs.

6. It’s Will Build Your Wealth

Most people don't realize a trick to building wealth is with life insurance. If you want to build wealth, it's a good idea to start when you're young. Permanent life insurance policies will allow you to build savings in a tax-advantaged account. Basically, with life insurance, you are investing a lot of money into an account and letting it grow tax-free. That’s money you can access during your lifetime and can always be used as the ultimate emergency fund if it’s ever needed.

I know talking about death and illness is not a fun subject, but being unprepared in life can cause a huge burden to your family. Just consider the peace of mind a life insurance policy can bring. And remember, the younger you are, the less expensive it will be!

If you need a quote today or are just curious about what your premium may be, let's chat.


Wedding Day Insurance - Why You Need It

It’s your big day! You’ve been dreaming about walking down the aisle in a beautiful dress, saying “I do” to the love of your life, and the joy of your guests dancing happily at the reception. Hopefully, all will go off without a hitch and your wedding day will be everything you’ve imagined.

But what if it’s not.

Accidents happen, businesses close, and sometimes people just aren’t reliable. And if one of those things happens to you on your wedding day, you could suffer financially and be out thousands of dollars. That’s why there’s wedding insurance. Today, I’m going to tell you what it is and why you need it for your big day.

Wedding insurance protects a couples investment for circumstances beyond their control and can help you get money back in the event of loss or damage of anything relating to your wedding, even if your wedding is unexpectedly canceled.

Here are a few worse case scenarios that could happen on your wedding day:

  • Your DJ is a no show and you have to scramble to book someone last minute and they charge triple the price.

  • The reception venue you booked months ago goes out of business and you lose your deposit and have to find a new space.

  • You spend months planning a destination wedding in the Caribbean and a hurricane causes your wedding to be postponed. You lose all of your deposits and have to rebook your venues and vendors.

  • After spending thousands of dollars on a photographer, you get a call saying your wedding photos were ruined during the development process.

  • Your spouse is in the military and is unexpectedly deployed forcing you to reschedule your wedding.

  • The bridal shop you bought your gown from goes out of business, leaving you without a gown.

Now, let’s hope none of these things ever happen to you on your wedding day. But if one of them did and you had the proper insurance coverage, you could recoup your financial loss.

Wedding insurance covers problems related to the venue, weather, vendors, key people, sickness or injury for the wedding day, rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.

At Burgett, Ross & Associates we offer a full coverage wedding policy with Travelers Insurance Wedding Protection Plan. For as little as $160, your wedding insurance policy can cover a variety of situations, such as:

  • No dress. You can get repair or replacement cost if the bride’s wedding gown or groom’s tuxedo is lost or damaged.

  • Lost deposits. You can be reimbursed your deposit if a vendor goes out of business, declares bankruptcy before your wedding or simply fails to show up.

  • Lost rings. You can receive repair or replacement cost if the bride or groom’s wedding bands are lost or damaged.

  • Reimbursement is available if a necessary and unavoidable cancellation or postponement of the event occurs. Reimbursement is available for transportation, food, catering services, property and equipment rentals, hall and location rentals, and more.

  • Ruined photos. If your photographer’s film is defective, or negatives are lost or damaged, we can help cover the cost to retake new photos.

  • Call to duty. If the bride or groom is unexpectedly called up to active duty or has her or his military service leave revoked, forcing you to postpone the event, we can provide reimbursement for non-recoverable expenses.

  • Damaged gifts. You can get repair or replacement cost if your wedding gifts are damaged.

  • Sudden illness. If the wedding needs to be postponed because sudden illness prevents the bride, groom or their parents from attending, you can receive reimbursement for certain non-recoverable expenses.

  • Venue requires insurance. As an additional option to your policy, you can add liability coverage to protect yourself in case a guest is injured or causes damage to property.

  • Liquor liability. As an individual liability option to your policy, you can add this coverage to protect yourself against liability arising from alcohol-related occurrences.

  • Additional expense. If a vendor suddenly becomes unavailable for your event but you can find a last-minute replacement, we can reimburse you for the difference in cost, up to 25 percent of the original contract price.

Wedding insurance helps make things right when something goes wrong. Make sure before you spend upwards of $30,000 for your wedding day, you say, “I do” to wedding insurance.

To see if a wedding policy is right for you, get a quote now or just email us any questions you may have about protecting your perfect wedding day!


Do You Need Flood Insurance In Nashville?

We all remember the devastating floods of 2010. The torrential rains on May 1 and 2, 2010 resulted in a number of deaths and widespread property damage. At least 30 counties in Tennessee were declared major disaster areas by the federal government, an estimated 31% of the state covered in flood damage. It costs millions of dollars in property damage. And sadly, most people had no flood insurance.

This disaster was a once in a thousand-year flood. So chances are, we won't see this type of devastation again in our lifetimes. However, we all know mother nature lives by her own rules. This year alone has been unlike any other February rainfall we've seen in previous years. So far in 2019, we’ve had record rainfall with 11.37 inches.

According to the Tennessean, The three wettest Februaries on record for Nashville were in 1880, 1820 and 2018.

  • In 1880, Nashville had 12.37 inches of precipitation, the current record.

  • The city had 10.95 inches in 1820.

  • The total in 2018 was 10.91 inches.

Here are rainfall totals in Nashville since the year 2000:

Source: National Weather Service; AccuWeather; *2019 total through Feb. 19

As you can see from the data, rainfall is not predictable. And there is no way of knowing if we will ever see the kind of flood damage we had in 2010.

So do you need flood insurance if you live in Nashville?

You may want to consider that it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Most people are not aware that their homeowners policy will not cover flood damage. Flood damage is excluded under standard homeowners and renters insurance policies. However, flood coverage is available in the form of a separate policy from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP provides coverage for up to $250,000 for the structure of the home and up to $100,000 for personal possessions. Most policies cost around $500 a year for low-risk areas.

The best way to decide if you need a flood policy is to find out what options are available to you. Getting a quote for flood insurance is a quick & easy process. We can easily identify if you're in a high or low-risk flood zone, and how much the premium would be to cover your home.

If you're interested in protecting your home with a flood policy, let's chat and give you some peace of mind that if mother nature acts up again, you’re covered!