The following FAQs are answered based on changing insurance laws and regulations. Be sure to check with your agent to verify the information found here, and before making and major changes to your policy.
APIA Insurance has agents standing by to help! Call us at 1-800-890-5563.
General Insurance FAQs
Q: What kinds of questions should I be expected to answer when I’m applying for an insurance policy? Why do insurers need so much information?A: When you apply for an insurance policy at APIA Insurance you will be asked a number of questions. For example, we might ask your name, age, gender, address, etc. You will also be asked a series of other questions which will be used to determine how likely you are to make a claim.
As an agency, APIA Insurance does not dictate rates or approval statuses, but we do exchange information back and forth with insurance companies in order to get customers set up with the best insurance rates and coverage possible. When insurance companies are deciding whether or not to offer car insurance to a potential customer, they want to know about your previous driving record, whether you have any recent accidents or tickets, and what type of car will need to be insured.
APIA Insurance offers coverage from a variety of different insurance companies and offers programs for different customers. Adults with good driving records will generally pay less for car insurance, than young drivers with traffic tickets. In order to determine which program you qualify for, we will need basic information about you.
In addition to your age, gender, and driving experience, information about the car you drive and your driving record is also needed to determine a fair price. For example, a large luxury car costs more to repair or replace than a compact car. Also, someone who commutes 30 miles each way to work is more likely to be in an accident, than someone who commutes via bus and only drives on weekends.
A: By using an independent agent such as APIA Insurance, the policyholder receives more personalized service. Having direct contact with your agent can be very important when purchasing insurance, and absolutely necessary when filing a claim. APIA Insurance is able to deliver quality insurance in Alaska, Georgia, Nebraska, and Nevada with competitive pricing and local, customized service. Click here for more details on the numerous benefits of using an agent to purchase insurance.
Q: What are the advantages to using an agent to purchase insurance?
Car Insurance FAQs
Q: I have an older car whose current market value is very low–do I really need to purchase car insurance?A: Most states have insurance laws that require drivers to have at least some car liability insurance. These laws were put in place to ensure that victims of car accidents will not be forced to pay out of their own pockets for losses that were another driver’s fault.
Often times the cost of repairing the damages to an older car is greater than its value. In these cases, your insurer will usually just "total" the car and give you a check for the car’s market value, less the deductible. Because of these factors, many people with older cars decide not to purchase any physical damage coverage.
If you have a classic car, its value will be more significant and these same rules do not apply.
A: Collision is defined as losses you incur when your car collides into another car or object. For example, if you hit a car in a parking lot, the damages to your car will be paid under your collision coverage.
Q: What is the difference between collision physical damage coverage and comprehensive physical damage coverage?
Comprehensive provides coverage for most other direct physical damage losses you could incur, including theft. For example, damage to your car from a hailstorm will be covered under your comprehensive coverage.
A: A number of factors can affect the cost of your car insurance—some of which you can control and some that are beyond your control.
Q: What factors can affect the cost of my car insurance?
The type of car you drive, the purpose the car serves, your driving record, and where the car is garaged can all affect how much your car insurance will cost you.
Even your marital status can affect your cost of insurance. Statistics show that married couples tend to have fewer and less costly accidents than those who are single.
Homeowners Insurance FAQs
Q: What are some practical things I can do to lower the cost of my home insurance?A: There are a number of things you can do to lower the cost of your homeowners insurance. The easiest thing to do is request a comprehensive review of your policy and your needs from Alaska Pacific Insurance Agency.
It’s not surprising to find quotes on homeowners insurance that vary by hundreds of dollars for the same coverage on the same home. When you shop, be careful to make sure each insurer is offering the same coverage.
Another way to lower the cost of your home insurance is to look for any discounts that you may qualify for. For example, many insurers will offer a discount when you place both your car and homeowners insurance with them. Other times, insurers offer discounts if there are dead bolt exterior locks on all your doors, or if your home has a security system. Be sure to ask us about any discounts that you may qualify for.
Another easy way to lower the cost of your homeowners insurance is to raise your deductible. Increasing your deductible from $250 to $500 will lower your premium, sometimes by as much as five or ten percent.
A: The typical homeowners policy has two main sections: Section I covers the property of the insured and Section II provides personal liability coverage for the insured. Almost anyone who owns or leases property has a need for this type of insurance. Usually, homeowners insurance is required by the lender to obtain a mortgage.
Q: What does homeowners insurance cover?
Q: What is the difference between "actual cash value" and "replacement cost"?A: Covered losses under a homeowners policy can be paid on either an actual cash value basis or on a replacement cost basis. When "actual cash value" is used, the policy owner is entitled to the depreciated value of the damaged property. Under the "replacement cost" coverage, the policy owner is reimbursed on an amount necessary to replace the article with one of similar type and quality at current prices.
A: There are a number of factors you should consider when purchasing any product or service, and insurance is no different.
Q: What factors should I consider when purchasing homeowners insurance?
Below is a checklist of things you should consider when you purchase homeowners insurance:
- Determine the amount and type of insurance you will need. The coverage limit of your house should equal 100% of its replacement cost. If your policy limit is less than 80% of the replacement cost of your home, any payment from your insurance company will be less than the full cost to replace your home — you’ll have to pay the rest out of your own pocket.
- Decide if the personal property and personal liability limits are adequate for your needs.
- Decide which, if any, additional endorsements you want to add to your policy. For example, do you want the personal property replacement cost endorsement, an earthquake endorsement, a jewelry endorsement, or all three?
A: Note: this answer is based on the Insurance Services Office’s HO-3 policy.
Q: What are the policy limits (i.e., coverage limits) in the standard homeowners policy?
The home and other structures on the premises are protected on an "all risks" basis up to the policy limits. "All risks" means that unless the policy specifically excludes the manner in which your home is damaged or destroyed, there is coverage. The policy limit for the home is set by the policy owner at the time the insurance is purchased. The policy limit for the other structure is usually equal to 10% of the policy limit for the home.
Losses to your personal property are covered on a "named perils" basis. "Named perils" means that you have coverage only when your property is damaged or destroyed in the manner specifically described in the policy. The policy limit on the coverage is equal to 50% of the policy limit on the home. Limits for the coverage of additional expenses that the policy owner may incur, when the residence cannot be used because of an insured loss, is equal to 20% of the policy limit on the home.
The coverage limit on personal liability is determined by the policy owner at the time the policy is issued. The coverage limit on medical payments to others is usually set at $1000 per injured person.
For more details on homeowners policies and their coverages, read our blog, “How Much Homeowners Insurance is Enough?”.
A: Personal property (except property that is specifically excluded) is covered anywhere in the world. For example, suppose that while traveling, you purchase a dresser and you want to ship it home. Your homeowners policy would provide coverage for the “named perils” while the dresser is in transit—even though the dresser has never been in your home before.
Q: Where and when is my personal property covered?
Q: Do I need earthquake coverage in Alaska?
A: If you live in an area that is susceptible to earthquakes, you’ll pay more on earthquake coverage than if you live somewhere unlikely to have an earthquake. Before you decide to buy earthquake coverage, APIA Insurance can help you weigh the costs and benefits based on living in Alaska, Georgia, Nebraska, and Nevada.
How can I get it?A: The standard insurance policy does not pay for direct damages caused by "earth movement." "Earth movement" is a much broader term than earthquake. It includes earthquake, volcanic activity and other earth movement. This coverage may be available by endorsement for an additional charge.
Renters Insurance FAQs
Q: Why would I want to buy renters insurance?A: If you live in an apartment or a rented house, renters insurance provides important coverage for you and your possessions. A standard renters insurance policy protects your personal property in many cases of theft or damage, and may pay for temporary living expenses if your rental is damaged. It can also shield you from personal liability. Anyone who leases a house or apartment should consider this type of coverage.
A: A renters insurance policy provides named perils coverage. This means that the policy only pays when your property is damaged or destroyed by any of the ways specifically described in the policy. These usually include:
Q: How does a renters insurance policy protect my personal property?
- Fire or lightning
- Windstorm or hail
- Vandalism or malicious mischief
- Falling objects
- Weight of ice, snow, or sleet
- Accidental discharge or overflow of water or steam
- Sudden and accidental damage from artificially generated electrical current
- Volcanic eruptions (but this doesn’t include earthquake or tremors)
A: Owners of apartment complexes buy insurance policies for their liability in order to cover their buildings and personal property. However, these policies do not cover any of the tenant’s property or liability. By requiring their tenants to have renters insurance, the apartment owner is assured that the tenants will not mistakenly believe the apartment complex owner’s policy will provide coverage for a tenant’s property or personal liability. Although this type of requirement benefits the apartment complex owner, there are benefits for the renter as well. At APIA Insurance, we recommend you purchase renters insurance regardless of what your landlord requires.
Q: Why do some apartment complexes require tenants to have renters insurance?
A: Standard renter’s policies cover only you and relatives that live with you. If your roommate is not a relative, each of you will need your own separate renter’s insurance policy to cover your own property and to provide you liability coverage for your own actions.
Q: What if I share my apartment with a roommate? Do we both need to have renters insurance?
Umbrella Insurance FAQs
Q: What is a personal umbrella liability policy?A: The personal umbrella liability policy is designed to increase your liability protection. This single policy acts as an "umbrella" over all of your other personal liability policies—home, car, boat, RV, etc., so you have a higher personal liability limit than what would otherwise be available. In certain circumstances, an umbrella insurance policy may provide personal liability coverage that is otherwise excluded from your other policies. For example, an umbrella insurance policy provides coverage anywhere in the world, whereas your car insurance policy usually provides coverage in only the US and Canada.
A: It used to be that the only people who needed personal umbrella liability policies were wealthy individuals, who had sizable amounts of personal assets that would be at risk in a lawsuit.
Q: How do I know if I need a personal umbrella liability policy?
However, in our very litigious society, even individuals with modest incomes and assets are often subjects of large lawsuits. Since those with modest incomes are even less able to pay damages than a wealthy individual, APIA Insurance recognizes the need to provide coverage limits greater than what can be obtained from their homeowner insurance or car insurance policies.