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Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

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Insurance Blog

Motorcycle Safety in The Fall

Can you feel it? It is almost indiscernible after this hot summer but there are already hints of fall in the air and it is beautiful to behold. More people are eager to get out and enjoy the cooler weather and the stunning foliage than ever, so we have some safety tips as you enjoy the local sights around Wilkes-Barre, PA this fall. At the Shay Agency, we will also be enjoying all a Pennsylvania fall has to offer, and we want all of our friends and clients to be as safe as possible out on the open roads. 

Tips For Motorcycle Safety in the Fall

  • Remember that even on warm days the temperature drops fast after dark. Do not get stuck far from home shivering because you dressed for warmer weather, because extreme cold while driving is not only uncomfortable, it can be dangerous. 
  • Watch for ice. Early ice is not uncommon yet may motorist are not prepared and it comes as a surprise, often a dangerous one. Keep your eyes out for icy conditions such as a drop in temperature after a fall rain. 
  • Pullover to enjoy the views. The fall foliage is worthy of a photo or at least a moment of enjoyment but do yourself a favor and get off of your bike a moment. Do not try to take in the best views from the road, pull over to a safe spot to soak it in.

Contact us at the Shay Agency if you need motorcycle insurance coverage or if you have any questions about fall road safety. We proudly serve the Wilkes-Barre, PA area with quality insurance services. 

How To Decide What Kind of Life Insurance is Best For Your Needs

When going grocery shopping, did you ever notice that there is a whole aisle of cereals to choose from? There are dozens of varieties. With life insurance it is similar, there are many varieties to choose from; however, you have an advantage with life insurance because you get help from your agent at The Shay Agency serving Wilkes-Barre, PA, and the nearby areas.

Think of your agent as a personal shopper’s helper, who will give you an intelligent recommendation of the type(s) of life insurance that will best fit your needs.

The Two Biggest ‘Flavors’ of Life Insurance

Like chocolate and vanilla, there are two broad categories of life insurance. One is the type of policy that builds up cash value over time and therefore has some investment/savings qualities. This most popular of this type is called “whole life” because it is meant to be put into place while young and then kept for protection and investment purposes for a person’s entire life.

The other is the type of life insurance does not build up value and lasts only for a certain number of years before you need to renew it or get a new policy. The most popular type of this kind is called “term life.”

Universal Life vs. Whole Life

Universal life insurance is a mixture of the characteristics of whole life and term life. Universal life insurance is considered “permanent” like whole life insurance because it does not have a time limit. At the same time, universal life has lower premiums than whole life. These lower premiums are similar to term life insurance.

Whole life insurance has a death benefit and consistent monthly premiums. It has a guaranteed increase in its cash value over the life of an insured person. Whole life pays an annual dividend that either accumulates or can be taken out. Once the whole life policy has a cash value, you can borrow against it

Universal life has a death benefit, flexible premiums, and a savings option that can be chosen to build value. If it has a cash value because of choosing the savings option, you can borrow against it.

Summary

There are many other types of life insurance to consider. Each type is useful for different purposes. The characteristics to consider are the investment/savings portion and the insurance portion, along with the premium schedule.

In some cases, it may be beneficial to have two separate life insurance policies for different important reasons such as whole life to create long-term value and term life for protection against unexpected risks when younger.

To get personal help making these choices, contact an agent at The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA by calling 570-704-0074 or use our convenient online form to get a quote.

3 Ways Flood Insurance Protects Your Property

Flood insurance is usually not included in a standard homeowner’s insurance plan, and instead comes as a specific rider that you can add-on to your property. The Shay Agency wants you to know why flood insurance is necessary to keep your investment safe from destruction. 

1. Swift Action Means Less Damage 

When you have water damage in your home, it’s not always clear just how much it will be to fully clean. Because the moisture can sink deep into the surfaces of the home, the repair bills can be astronomical. Instead of fixing it right away, homeowners in Wilkes-Barre PA may choose to wait if they don’t have insurance to cover the full costs. Flood insurance allows you to take care of the trouble as soon as possible, which will save the property as well as your finances. 

2. It’s Healthier 

Your home was never meant to be infused with mildew. It can pollute the air and lead to anything from allergies to respiration problems. Plus, if you let water damage sit for too long, you increase the odds of a mold formation in the home. This can be more than irritating, it can actually be deadly. 

3. You Have a Resource 

When your home is flooded, it’s a lot easier to protect your property when you have someone you can call. The Shay Agency is here to help the people of Wilkes-Barre, PA do more for themselves, so they can live in a stable property and maintain their resale value. 

If you want to find out more about what it takes to add flood insurance to a policy, call our staff today. We can help you determine your level of coverage based on everything from the size of your property to the value of your possessions. 

Are You Guilty of These Bad Driving Habits?

Bad driving habits can, over time, damage your vehicle. Even new vehicle models can be ruined by poor driving. At the Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA, we encourage our customers to develop good driving habits that will preserve their vehicle and keep them safe on the road. Here are some poor driving habits that will take a toll on your car.

Dragging Brakes

Dragging your brakes will wear out your brake pads and discs before their time, obligating you to replace these parts at your expense. By putting your vehicle in low gear when going down hills, you’ll only need to apply your brakes sparingly to avoid wear and tear.

Overloading Your Vehicle

It’s tempting to overload a vehicle, especially when going on vacation as there’s so much you want to carry. Overloading your vehicle, however, can put a strain on your suspension, drivetrain, and brakes. Review your manual to see how much your vehicle can carry safely. Then try to stay within this limit to protect your car.

Not Slowing Down for Speed Bumps/Hitting Potholes

Hitting an occasional pothole is one thing. If you’re in the habit of going over potholes consistently due to distracted or careless driving, you risk ruining your tires, getting your steering system out of alignment or damaging your suspension. Not slowing down for speed bumps can hurt the front, rear and underside of your car, particularly your exhaust system.

Slamming on Brakes

Sudden braking is sometimes necessary for emergency situations. If you’re consistently slamming on the brakes, however, you’ll wear out the pads and discs much faster than normal. You’ll also consume more fuel.

Good driving habits can protect you and your vehicle as well as save you money on your auto insurance costs. For more information on quality auto insurance coverage at affordable costs, contact The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA.

Do I Need Condo Insurance?

Living in a condo in Wilkes-Barre, PA comes with many advantages; amenities like a clubhouse, pool and/or hot tub, playground, landscaping, and nearby neighbors, to name just a few. While these extras are paid for by your condo due and protected by the condo association, it’s also important to protect what’s inside your condo, like your furniture and other valuable items. If you’re considering whether you need condo insurance, the answer is "yes". Read on to learn a few reasons why.

Protect Your Condo from Theft

Property crime in the United States happens frequently. In fact, according to a report by Homeland Security, there were an estimated 7,694,086 property crimes in 2017, many of which were burglaries. If someone were to burglarize your condo, you would need condo insurance to submit a claim and recoup your financial loss after your deductible. 

Protect Your Condo from Fire

Condos are close together so if your neighbor were to accidentally start a fire, it could easily spread to your unit. There is also the chance that a fire could start in your own condo. If either scenario were to happen, only the outside of the condo would be covered without your own condo insurance policy. In order to protect your valuables, you need your own policy.

Protect the Rest

To protect your plumbing, appliances, and electrical wiring, as well as any liability cases you will also need to secure the right condo insurance policy. Considering you own your condo, it’s just like a house and everything in it and whatever happens there is your responsibility. 

To learn more about protecting your condo in Wilkes-Barre, PA, contact The Shay Agency serving this area. Our knowledgeable and friendly staff will answer all your questions and concerns, determine what you want to be covered, and then help you find the right policy at the right price by comparing quotes. You can contact The Shay Agency today at 570-704-0074. 

 

Do I need full coverage if my car is paid off?

A lot of well-meaning people will tell you that, if your car is paid off and not worth very much, you should drop full coverage and only carry the mininum required by law. They will tell you to think about all the money you can save when you have a lower insurance premium.

Those people mean well, but they are basing their advice on the fact that you won’t be able to recover very much of the value of your own vehicle if you are in an accident. That is true, but there are other reasons keeping full coverage through The Shay Agency could save you in the long run.

Minimum Coverage

If you live in Wilkes-Barre, PA, you are mainly required to carry liability coverage. If you are at fault in an accident and only have minimal coverage, the maximum amount your insurance will pay out to cover damages is $5,000 for property damage and $15,000 for bodily injury, with a total of $30,000 for each accident for bodily injuries.

You will also need to carry uninsured and underinsured, in case the other driver isn’t properly insured but causes the accident.

What You Will Be Missing

You probably noticed right away that those policy limits wouldn’t be enough unless the accident was relatively minor. Anything insurance doesn’t pay you would still owe, if the accident was your fault.

If you keep your collision and comprehensive insurance, you are still protected in single car accidents where the damage was to a fence or a pole. You can also get roadside assistance, rental car coverage and other extras.

If you live in Wilkes-Barre, PA and you’re thinking about dropping full coverage, or if you’re thinking about adding it, call The Shay Agency so we can find a policy that fits your individual needs.

How much auto insurance do you need?

You may be tempted to find the cheapest insurance policy on the market to cover your car or truck. Such a strategy may not be the best idea seeing as how not all indemnity policies are created equal. How much insurance do you need in Pennsylvania, though? Read on to find out!

State Minimum Limits

The state of Pennsylvania requires drivers to have at least $15,000 in bodily injury coverage per person. Drivers must also have property damage that pays at least $5,000 per incident. Pennsylvania is a state that requires uninsured motorist protection. Drivers must have at least $15,000 per person and $30,000 per incident in coverage.

How Much Coverage Do You Need?

Your liability insurance is a very important component of indemnity coverage. Liability assurance can prevent you from being sued if you have an at-fault accident. Imagine having everything that you own being placed on the line because you did not have enough assurance to protect you from such financial turmoil. This scenario could be a reality if you do not properly protect yourself.

The amount of auto insurance that you need depends on the value of your assets. You should not be convinced into thinking that your premium should decrease with the number of assets you own. In actuality, you should seek more coverage when you have a lot to lose. Everything from your home to your hefty bank account is up for grabs in a lawsuit.

Contact The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA

The Shay Agency has experts who know about auto insurance. They can help you find the policy that works best for your situation. Call the Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA to get started with a quote!

What happens if I don’t have home insurance?

Owning a home is a great long-term investment, when you do own a property, it is very important that you have home insurance. While most people are aware of the necessity to have home insurance, not everyone gets it. If you do not have home insurance in place, a number of different things could happen.

Inability to Make Repairs

The main benefit of having home insurance is that you will receive coverage if your home is damaged or destroyed by a fire, storm, flood, or other casualties. If you do not have home insurance in place, you will not have this coverage. Unless you have a lot of money saved, you might not be able to repair your property.

No Liability Protection

If a guest or visitor of your home is injured when they are at your property, you could face a lawsuit. If you have home insurance, you will receive liability coverage against these risks. If you do not have this insurance coverage, you could end up being sued and having to make restitution out of pocket.

Violation of Agreements

If you have taken out a loan to buy your home, you will have to maintain home insurance until the loan is paid off. If you do not have insurance, you will be in default under the loan agreement. The lender could then take whatever action they see fit, including forcing you to pay off the loan.

Since it is very important that you have home insurance, The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA can help and provide the assistance that you need. When you contact The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA, the insurance team will help you to find a policy that provides you with the right level of coverage for your situation.

4 Ways Commercial Liability Benefits Your Business Right Now

You don’t have to wait for misfortune to benefit from your commercial liability policy. Here are several ways your commercial liability policy from The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA helps your business right now.

  • Your commercial liability insurance can help you find more business. For construction contractors and those who provide direct services to clients, an active commercial liability insurance policy can be an essential selling point. With these policies, your clients know that any damages they sustain from your services or products will be financially covered. Let potential customers know that you care about their property enough to carry extra protection.
  • Are you looking for a small business loan? Your active commercial liability policy makes you a more attractive candidate for bank loans. If an accident occurs while your loan is still open, lenders know that they’re more likely to recoup their investment when you have adequate insurance coverage.
  • Professional entertainers, writers, and others who frequently state their opinion in a public forum are at high-risk for lawsuits related to slanderous speech. Your active commercial liability policy protects you from the financial fallout of these cases. If you’re trying to convince a publication, station, or other outlets to carry your brand, this type of coverage could help convince them that you’re worth the risk.
  • Freelancers and independent contractors often work together on more significant projects. This allows them to make more profits with less effort. However, you can’t always be sure of the other person’s abilities. With an active commercial liability policy, your interests are always protected, no matter who you work with. If an accident or loss occurs, your policy ensures that you’ll be able to afford any legal liabilities. It may also make you a more attractive partner for more experienced partners.

The Shay Agency in Wilkes-Barre, PA offers commercial liability insurance coverage for businesses of all industries, sizes, and purposes. Let us know how we can help you achieve your business goals with comprehensive insurance coverage.

Is Full Coverage Worth Purchasing For Your Motorcycle?

Basic liability coverage is a must-have for any motorcycle rider and a requirement when riding in the Wilkes-Barre, PA area. Full coverage goes beyond what typical liability insurance coverage offers, giving you better protection against financial uncertainties while making it easier to replace your motorcycle after an accident. But is it worth adding extra coverage beyond liability insurance? You can count on The Shay Agency to help you find out.

What Full Coverage Gives You

Here’s a brief list of additional coverage options to choose from when considering full coverage:

  • Comprehensive and collision – These options can help you replace your motorcycle if it’s damaged in an accident or stolen.
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist – This option covers you if you’re in an accident with someone who has inadequate insurance coverage or no coverage at all.
  • Medical payments – This add-on covers your medical expenses regardless of whether you were found at fault or not.
  • Custom parts – There’s even coverage for your motorcycle’s custom parts and equipment, especially for components that aren’t covered by comprehensive and collision insurance.

When to Purchase Full Coverage

Buying full coverage motorcycle insurance is a good idea if your motorcycle’s resale value is higher than what you could comfortably replace out-of-pocket. For a high-value classic or custom motorcycle, the increase in your insurance premiums is a small price to pay compared to the cost of replacing a total loss out of your own pocket.

If you have a cheap used motorcycle, on the other hand, the extra premiums may not justify the benefits you’ll get from a full coverage policy. In this case, you may end up saving money by paying for the repairs yourself.

It’s up to you to decide if full coverage motorcycle insurance is right for you. The experts at The Shay Agency can help you and others in the Wilkes-Barre, PA area select the right coverage.