What is Personal Insurance?
People are exposed to a variety of risks that insurance provides protection from. Personal insurance policies can both help safeguard property that Massachusetts residents own and shield residents from potential liability lawsuits.
“Personal insurance” is used to distinguish insurance policies that are written for individuals from those that are written for businesses. Policies written for businesses are usually called either “commercial insurance” or “business insurance.”
Who in Massachusetts is Insurance Right For?
Most state residents should have insurance. Without adequate coverage, residents may be dangerously and unnecessarily exposed to potential risks that they couldn’t afford to financially recover from.
For example, without coverage a house fire or major liability lawsuit would leave many residents devastated. Insurance won’t bring back the items lost in a fire or eliminate the emotions involved in a lawsuit, but it may help minimize the monetary burden of incidents like these.
What Personal Policies Do Insurers Offer?
Because people face a wide array of risks, insurance companies offer many different personal policies. Some of the more common types of insurance that people get are:
- Homeowners Insurance
- Condo Insurance
- Renters Insurance
- Auto Insurance
- Flood Insurance
- Personal Umbrella Insurance
In addition to these, there are many other policies that insurers offer. They range from the relatively broad (e.g. boat insurance) to the more specific (e.g. high-value home insurance).
Do Personal Policies Cover Sole Proprietorships?
Personal policies usually aren’t designed to insure businesses of any kind. A few homeowners and auto insurance policies might have options to extend the policy’s coverage to a home office or personal vehicle that’s occasionally used for work. These policies tend to be the exception rather than the rule, though. In most cases, people who own sole proprietorships or other businesses need to purchase commercial policies for their work activities.
What is an Endorsement or Rider?
Endorsements and riders are largely the same feature, and they’re available on many policies. These are normally optional protections that add on a specific and narrowly defined protection. For example, an endorsement to protect jewelry might be added to a homeowners policy.
Since they increase the protections a policy offers, endorsements usually raise a policy’s premiums. The premium increase is frequently minimal, though, because the protections are so narrowly defined.
What Factors Affect Policies’ Premiums?
Insurers consider many factors when they’re calculating policies’ premiums. Just a few items that might influence how much a policy costs include:
- The location of the insured property
- The limits and coverages selected
- The policyholder’s claims history
- Certain demographic information about the policyholder
Depending on what type of policy is being purchased, there are lots of other considerations that insurers may take into account. For example, a person’s driving record will likely influence their auto insurance premiums, and the size of a resident’s home will probably affect their homeowners premiums. Each personal policy has its own list of factors.
Do Credit Scores Affect Policies’ Premiums?
In Massachusetts, residents’ credit scores don’t impact their insurance premiums. Many states let insurers check policyholders’ credit scores and charge those with low scores higher premiums. Massachusetts, however, is one of the three states that have passed laws prohibiting this practice. (California and Hawaii are the other two states.)
How Can Residents Get Personal Insurance?
For help finding the personal policies they need, Massachusetts residents should talk with a personal insurance specialist from Flavin and Flavin Insurance. An agent who’s familiar with all of the various personal policies that are available will be able to recommend the best options, and agents who are independent have the freedom to show residents any policy that’s available.