family looking toward sunset | life insurance | NJ

Three Reasons You Should Consider Life Insurance Now

Life insurance is something people often try to avoid thinking about. Mortality is kind of a bummer, so it’s one of those things that people don’t consider unless they’re forced to have a sudden realization. But, whether we want to think about it or not, life insurance can be a valuable investment. You won’t see the benefits of this investment, obviously, but your loved ones will. That’s why life insurance is something you need to start thinking about, no matter what your age. Here are a few reasons why you should consider buying a policy.

Expenses

One of the first reasons to consider life insurance is to cover the costs that your death will incur on the ones you leave behind. Aside from the sadness that will surely come from being deprived of your company, your loved ones will have a lot to deal with. Your funeral and burial expenses are one such thing. Sadly, death is not cheap and there aren’t many ways to avoid a pretty hefty expense to make sure you have a proper burial. A policy, even some of the cheaper ones, will ease the burden of these expenses on your family.

Comfortable Living

Another reason to consider a life insurance policy is to ensure that your family can continue to live comfortably without you. A life insurance policy should help those who are dependent on you and your income to continue living the lives they’ve grown used to. The right policy can help a spouse afford mortgage payments without your income or pay for a college education for your children. When your time comes, it’s good to know that your loved ones can go on and succeed and that they won’t struggle without you. Which leads me to my next point.

Peace of Mind

The immense mystery of dying scares the heck out of most of us, which is why we’d rather not talk about something like life insurance. But when we take away some of the mystery and address some of the possibilities now, we empower ourselves and ease some of the anxiety that can come out of being a mere mortal. Purchasing a life insurance policy now gives you some peace of mind and makes sure that you won’t have to think about these things later unless you need to change your plan.

Life insurance doesn’t have to be scary or complicated. ABCO can help you find the perfect plan to make sure that you’re prepared! Contact us today to discuss what you need from a life insurance policy.

pool safety and homeowner's insurance plan | NJ

The Right Homeowner’s Insurance Plan and Pool Safety

A pool can turn your backyard into an oasis, add to the value of your home, and ensure your summers are never boring. There’s nothing like relaxing by the pool and enjoying a summer’s day, especially if friends and family can join you. But there are things to consider if you’re a pool owner. Safety is paramount poolside. So, you’ll have to be sure that you’re taking the proper precautions and have a good homeowner’s insurance plan.

Safety

Pools can be a great feature in any backyard, but they can also be a massive hassle for the homeowner. Not only is keeping a pool clean quite a task but making sure that people are safe while using the pool can be difficult. Properties that have pools on them are required to be fenced in if the pool is deeper than 18 inches. This is to help prevent people from entering your yard and falling into the pool, particularly children. Aside from having the appropriate fencing, it’s a good idea to make sure that you have some flotation devices for people who may not be able to swim. You also need to be vigilant while people are in the pool. People should also be told not to run around the pool or dive in shallow pools.

Liability

Aside from proper pool safety, you should make sure you have a homeowner’s insurance plan that covers your pool. The first reason for this is to prepare for possible accidents. Liability coverage is essential for anyone who has a pool. If someone is injured while in your pool, liability insurance will help cover the potential for paying for medical costs and legal costs that may be associated with an accident. You may want to increase liability insurance from the standard coverage just to give yourself peace of mind.

Damage

A decent homeowner’s insurance policy may also cover potential damages to your pool. For example, say a storm brings high winds that pick up the umbrella from your patio set. The wind and sends the umbrella flying into your above ground pool, tearing the side of the pool. The damage done to your pool will likely be covered by your homeowner’s insurance. That means you don’t have to spend a fortune in pool repairs and can get back to enjoying your summer, poolside.

The Right Homeowner’s Insurance Plan

If you’re interested in a homeowner’s insurance plan, ABCO can help you find a plan that suits you and your needs perfectly! Contact us today!

Insurance | NJ

Road Trip Tips for a Safer Drive

It’s definitively “windows-down” driving season. That means more people enjoying everything that the road has to offer. Nothing really defines the carefree summer drive as much a road trip. Hitting the highway, solo or with a group of friends, can lead you to adventure, relaxation, and brand-new experiences. But it’s important to not let the fun and excitement make you forget that the road can be a dangerous place and that proper caution needs to be observed. Here are a few tips to make sure your road trip is safe.

Emergency Supplies

There’s a lot you’ll want to bring with you on a road trip. But one of the major things that Americans forget when preparing to hit the road is to pack emergency supplies. This doesn’t necessarily have to be an extensive bug-out kit of survival gear, but you should plan accordingly and pack a first aid kit, some tools like a utility knife, plyers, and a lighter, some water, some food, and anything else that you may need in a pinch. Especially if you’re traveling far, it’s a good idea to make sure you have emergency items to get you out of a sticky situation and keep you alive and comfortable if you become stranded.

Have a Plan … But Be Prepared to Divert from It

Before heading out on any adventure, it’s a good idea to make sure you have a plan. Flying by the seat of your pants is all good for the minor details of the trip, but your general route and itinerary should be planned in advance. Of course, you should allow for the possibility that this may change. But by knowing this ahead of time, you’ll be able to have a clear picture of where you’re headed and how you’re getting there. This makes it easier for you to adapt quickly if a road is out, you get lost, or something else unexpected happens to divert you from your route. It’s also a good idea to have a physical map with you for areas where there may be no service.

Focus on the Road

Most importantly, you need to make sure that you’re not adding danger to the road by driving while distracted. Distracted driving is one of the most dangerous things we do while on the road. Make sure you’re not looking at your phone or doing other things that can limit your ability to react to hazards on the road. It’ll be easy enough after spending so much time in the car to start doing these things, so be mindful and make sure you pull over in a safe place before answering your phone.

Insurance

It’s important to help limit risks by having the appropriate insurance plan too. Of course, vehicle insurance is a necessity if you’re on the road, but you’ll also want peace of mind, knowing your home and possessions are safe while you’re on your trip. ABCO Insurance Agency Inc. can help you find the perfect insurance plan, so contact us today!

Professional Liability Insurance | NJ

What Kind of Businesses Need Professional Liability Insurance

If you own a business, insurance can be a tricky thing to navigate. No matter what kind of business you’re in, you need insurance. Aside from homeowner’s, life, and auto insurance, business owners need to protect themselves from the many risks that can come with owning and operating a working business. Professional liability insurance is one type of insurance that most businesses need to consider investing in. Also known as professional indemnity insurance, or errors & omissions insurance, professional liability insurance protects you by covering losses that can result from lawsuits filed against you. But what kinds of businesses need this insurance?

Any business that provides a service or gives advice to a client needs this type of coverage. But the following industries have a particular need for this.

Contractors

There are few industries that can be as hazardous and unpredictable as contracting. The potential for contractors to make mistakes is one thing, but weather, materials, and time are another. All of these can lead a client to sue a contractor for not delivering. That can be because they missed their deadline, or their work did not meet expectations. Contractors are not always at fault for mistakes on a job site, but some clients may still sue them.  So professional liability insurance can protect you.

Lawyers and Doctors

Legal professionals and medical professionals often find themselves facing lawsuits from disgruntled clients.  Many states require these attorneys and doctors have some type of professional liability insurance. So, if you’re a doctor in lawyer in one of these states, it’s a necessity for you to have this insurance. But even if it isn’t required by law, considering the potential cost of facing a malpractice lawsuit, you should consider professional liability insurance.

Creatives

Independent contractors and freelancers who work in creative fields such as writing, or photography run the risk of lawsuits when they can not deliver the work they agreed to complete. This can happen for a number of reasons. Some of those reasons are absolutely legitimate such as illness or a death in the family. Some clients may not be reasonable about a missed appointment or delay in work, though. This means you can run the risk of facing a lawsuit. For many creative professionals, legal fees may seem impossibly expensive when they face a lawsuit. Professional liability insurance will cover or at least defray some of the costs incurred.

If you need professional liability insurance, contact our team today!

Insurance Agency | NJ

Don’t Let Your Guard Down – Spring-Time can be Dangerous

Spring is a time that people rejoice in. The weather changes and the trees and flowers start to bloom. It’s really a great time of year and full of life. But life, as many of us know, is unpredictable. And even in these moments of joy and life, disaster is possible. Spring is a great time of year, but there are risks that come along with the spring weather. Here are a few of the possible problems you should be wary of and be sure not to let your guard down just because it’s warm enough to wear short sleeves. And be sure you have an insurance plan that will protect you!

Rain

April showers bring May flowers, as they say. But rain can also cause major damage to your home and property. Especially after severe winter weather, your home’s defenses may be weakened. Your gutters may not be diverting water away from your house in the right way, or your roof may have damage you didn’t notice. It’s important to make sure that your home is prepared for spring rains. Water damage can ruin your home’s foundation, leak into your ceilings and walls, and flood your basement. Don’t let spring fever make you neglectful.

Mud and Flooding

With rain comes two other potentially disastrous spring conditions: mud and flooding. If you live in an area prone to flooding, you need to be ready for spring storms that may bring heavy rain. Be sure to take proper precautions and follow any instructions from officials if roads flood. It’s easy to misjudge a flooded road and swamp your car. As for mud, you should be aware that mud can be a dangerous element. Loose, muddy ground caused by rain can make it easier for trees to come down during storms. Not to mention, mudslides can wash out roads, and lead to major destruction. Be aware of muddy areas, steep inclines, and runoff around your home.

Fire

With all this talk of rain and water, you may think that fire is not a major problem during spring, but you may not be thinking about the fact that spring is also a time for night-time firepits. As a warm day turns into a cool night, a lot of people like to have backyard fires to keep friends and family warm during get-togethers. High winds and dry conditions can make this potentially risky. Be sure to pay attention to weather and warning before having a backyard fire this spring.

Insurance

Of course, you hope that none of this will be an issue for you, but you can protect yourself and be sure that if it does, you’ll be able to recover with the right insurance plan. ABCO can help you find the perfect plan. Contact us today to discuss what types of insurance will work best for you.

Homeowner's insurance | NJ

Get Your Home Ready for Spring

Spring is in the air and people are getting excited about it. Parks are packed on the weekends with families barbecuing and picnicking, people are out and about everywhere you look, yard work is being taken care of once again. All this points to winter moving on and summer preparing for its entrance. But there are things you need to take care of as a homeowner before you can enjoy the spring weather. Here are a few home maintenance tips that will help you get your home ready for warmer weather, spring rains, and the possible return of snow, which all make homeowner’s insurance necessary.

Winter May Not Be Over

The first thing to keep in mind during spring is that weather is unpredictable and winter may not have released her grasp quite yet. Especially in early April, it can be dangerous to assume that winter has officially given up. So, the first tip is to make sure that you don’t overestimate warm weather and leave windows and doors open overnight. Even on the warmest spring days, the night can bring major cooldowns that can bring things down to freezing levels. It’s also a good idea not to put away shovels and salt until you’re sure that the weather is going to stay warm.

Rain

Another thing to prepare for in spring is rain. The old adage goes “April showers bring May flowers”, but rain can also bring major problems for the unprepared. As spring moves in, it’s a good idea to check and clean your gutters and inspect your roof. If you’re comfortable on a ladder, these are things you can do yourself. If not, you can hire professionals to do it.

Outdoor Faucets

You should also check outdoor faucets for any damage. Winter weather can lead to broken pipes that you may not notice until Spring. You can easily check by turning on the water and placing your finger over the faucet. If the water stops, it may be escaping through a crack or break.

Trees

Your yard will likely need attention too, it’s very important you check out the trees in your yard while you’re doing this. Spring storms can bring down dead trees and rain can wash away sturdy ground, making it easier for trees to fall, damaging your home.

Furnace and Air Conditioner

Spring is also a good time to clean your furnace and get your air conditioner ready for summer. Cleaning out air filters, blowers, and motors can make it easier when it comes time to use these things in the future.

Homeowner’s Insurance

The most important thing to keep in mind is that your home is well protected with the right homeowner’s insurance plan. ABCO can help you with this, so contact us today!

restaurant insurance | NJ

Restaurant Insurance: Protection in a Very Risky Business

A lot of people think they can start a restaurant because they have some great recipes or because they host great dinner parties. But the restaurant business is risky. In fact, most restaurants fail pretty early on after they open. That doesn’t include the potential risks outside of the balancing act of trying to make your restaurant successful. There are a lot of liability issues to contend with where fire, water, people, food, and alcohol come into close contact. Restaurant insurance is a necessity.

Kitchen Accidents

You’ve probably invested a lot of money in your restaurant, so it’s important to protect that investment. Restaurant insurance helps you protect your restaurant and your finances from the unpredictable. Considering that your kitchen uses fire, heat, electricity, and some sharp, potentially dangerous equipment, having the right insurance plan is imperative. Fire can cause damage to your property or even potential injuries to employees. The same goes for water in your kitchen or your dining room.

Guest Accidents

Not to mention that a successful restaurant is one with customers. Guests who come to your restaurant can potentially have accidents. Slipping and falling, tripping, and other potential accidents can lead to lawsuits and more. When someone comes into your restaurant you are responsible if they have an accident. It’s better to protect yourself instead of hoping the worst never happens. The right insurance plan will help protect you in the event that something happens.

Food Problems

There are also less obvious threats to your financial security in the restaurant game. Food can be immensely fickle. If there’s a power outage and you’re not aware of it, you may lose thousands of dollars in spoiled food. Employee theft can also lead to losses you were not prepared for. Replacing damaged equipment can also cost a lot, whether it’s your dishwasher, oven, broiler, or other kitchen implements.

ABCO

The restaurant industry is not easy. Or a sure way to riches. But ABCO can help you find an insurance plan that will cover you for all of the above potential losses. That kind of coverage can help you recover from a disaster in a business already prone to potential failure. Contact us today to discuss restaurant insurance for you from ABCO.

insurance | NJ

Home Maintenance Can Help You Protect Your Home

Regular home maintenance can go a long way to keeping your house safe and secure. By making sure you’re taking care of certain chores, you’re preventing possible damage and disaster. Being proactive is always your best defense when it comes to possible dangers and accidents that can ruin your home and leave you with a hefty repair bill.

Your Climate Control

As far as maintenance goes, your home’s climate control system can be something that gets neglected easily. But it’s one of the most important things to stay on top of. A problem with your climate control can lead to major issues. From flooding caused by a frozen pipe while you’re away to an electrical malfunction with your air conditioner causing a fire, you should be sure to stay on top of your climate control system all year.

Gutters

Your gutters are another neglected part of your home that can lead to major problems. Your gutters divert water away from your home when it rains. If your gutters are clogged, you may wind up with water build up. This can lead to overflowing gutters that can damage siding, roofing, and eventually structural problems. Regularly cleaning your gutters and replacing broken gutters or downspouts will help prevent this.

Trees

If you live in an area with a lot of trees, you need to be taking care of them. Trimming branches and removing dead trees is the only way to prevent them from falling on your home. Some trimming and tree removal may be easy to do, but for the most part, you should have a professional check out your trees and do the work. It’s important you keep an eye out, though.

General Care

By keeping up with your house, you also make it less appealing to burglars. When your house falls into disrepair, it looks like there’s no one living there. This can lead to your home becoming the target of thieves. Simple things like shoveling walkways, raking leaves, collecting trash and refuse, and keeping things organized can keep your home looking occupied at all times.

Insurance

If you’re looking to further protect your home, the right insurance plan can help. Contact our team at ABCO to discuss an insurance plan that fits you!

Home safety tips | homeowner's insurance | New Jersey

Things to Know About Your Home Heating System

When it comes to a comfortable home during the winter months, heat is high on the list of desired amenities. But heating systems can become a serious problem if they’re not maintained correctly. Make sure you’re not only getting the most out of your heating system but keeping your home and family safe with these tips from ABCO.

Fire

Fire is one of the most obvious dangers of a problematic heating system. Yearly maintenance is the first thing to do to help prevent fire hazards with your heating system.  Make sure your heating system is maintained by someone who knows what they’re doing. Getting your heating system in order should be something you do at the start of every winter season, if not before. The same goes for fireplaces and chimneys; have these inspected every year.

Gas leaks can lead to dangerous situations both from inhalation and from the potential of this flammable gas causing an explosion or fire. Natural gas is colorless and odorless, but the gas company adds a chemical that makes it smell like sulfur or rotten eggs. If you notice this smell, call your gas company or 911 and leave the house immediately.

If you use portable heaters or space heaters, be careful not to leave them running while you’re not there. And make sure not to leave heaters like this on overnight.

Carbon Monoxide

You’ll also want to be mindful of carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is often referred to as the silent killer and any type of combustion process can produce this colorless, odorless gas. Regular maintenance for your heating systems and a carbon monoxide detector can help keep your family safe.

Water Damage

You may not think about your heating system causing water damage, but if your home is heated by hot water, broken pipes can leak and cause major damage. And damaged or missing radiator valves can cause steam to leak out, which can cause severe burns. You’ll want to make sure you drain your boiler periodically to help prevent leaks from acidity and water impurities.

Further Protection

Regular maintenance and some common sense can go a long way to keep your home’s heating system operating safely. But there’s always the chance for something to go wrong. You can further protect your home and possessions with an insurance plan. You never know when disaster may strike, but with a homeowner’s insurance plan from ABCO, you can rest assured that you’ll be covered. Contact us today to find a plan that suits your needs!

 

Got Car Insurance?

Practical Insurance: Make Sure You’re Appropriately Insured

Insurance is a necessity. No doubt about that. But practical insurance does not mean that you need to or should insure every item in your home, or purchase insurance plans that are not relevant to you. You need to find insurance plans that work for you, your budget, your line of work, and more. Here is a quick guide to help you figure out what insurance items are necessary, practical, or not needed.

For Everyone

The first thing to note is that some insurance plans are necessary or, at least, should be considered by most people. One form of necessary insurance is car insurance. If you own a car, you are legally obligated to insure the car in order to be road legal. You can be fined for driving an uninsured vehicle and in the event of an accident, you’ll have to pay out of pocket. One form of insurance that almost everyone should consider is life insurance. You’re not too young to look into life insurance plans. These plans help you prepare for the future and ensure your family is always taken care of.

Your Specific, Individual Needs

Next, you’ll want to figure out what type of insurance is right for you. If you own a home, you’ll want a homeowner’s insurance plan. If you run a business, you may want to invest in different plans that relate to your work. You may need to insure a specific, expensive item in your home that’s separate from your homeowner’s plan. Flood insurance may be a good idea if you live in an area prone to flooding. It is really important to understand your risks and research what insurance plans may fit your needs best. You need to have a good idea of what you want to insure and what you can afford to insure.

Finding Your Plan

Once you understand what your needs are and have a general idea of what you want to insure, the best way to make sure you’re getting an appropriate insurance plan is by talking to experts. When you talk to insurance professionals, like those at ABCO Insurance Agency, you can be sure you’re getting the right coverage. We can help you find plans that cover you and fit your specific needs, because not everyone will have the same needs.

If you’re in need of insurance, or considering a new plan, ABCO can help. Contact our team today!