You have questions.
We have answers.
The below frequently asked questions are only some of the many insurance questions we come across at Thunder Bay Insurance. We strongly encourage you to contact one of our insurance brokers to discuss more fully your insurance questions and needs. You can also visit the Property Insurance, Auto Insurance sections of our website for more information.
Why is the replacement cost on my building so high?
Replacement cost is a calculation estimating how much a contractor would charge an insurance company to rebuild the home in the event of a loss. This calculation has been estimated from the amount insurance companies have paid to replace or repair homes of equal size and quality. Replacement cost factors in the cost to remove all damaged material from the construction site resulting in the sizable cost of getting the property ready to be rebuilt. On top of that, insurance claims are always unexpected, forcing contractors to pay a higher cost in materials and labour than they would building a number of homes at one time as in a subdivision. Visit our Property Insurance and contact your broker for more information.
Who can drive my vehicle?
You can lend your vehicle to anyone with a valid driver’s licence* and your permission to drive the vehicle. Be aware, if you lend your car, you lend your insurance. Other drivers of your vehicle can seriously affect your insurance rates should a claim occur. If an individual does not have their own auto insurance coverage, your policy will be the sole provider of compensation. All licensed drivers in the household must be listed on your policy, shown to be listed on a policy, or be specifically excluded from driving the vehicles. So remember, if you lend your car to someone and that driver causes an accident, at fault or not, that accident is charged to your policy. It’s as though you were driving the vehicle yourself.
*To validate a driver’s license, you can call 1-900-565-6555 or visit the Driver License Check website at www.rus.mto.gov.on.ca/DLCheck/Scripts /OrderForm.asp (subject to a service fee).
What should my liability limit be?
We recommend a minimum liability limit of $2,000,000. This coverage protects you for your legal liability for bodily injury to others or damage to property of others arising out of your premises or your personal actions. It will pay for legitimate claims against you or other insured persons up to the limit of your coverage, and the cost of settling claims.
What can I do to reduce my insurance costs?
There are many discounts that can be applied to your insurance. Talk to your broker to make sure you are receiving all of the discounts you are eligible for. Additionally, you can decrease your premium by increasing your deductibles. Make certain that you are prepared to pay that increased deductible in the event of a loss. Speak to your broker to learn more about your various options with deductibles.
What should new drivers know about insurance?
There are many opportunities to save as a new driver. Driver’s education provides you with a starting rating of 3 which credits you with three years of driving experience. This will result in a lower premium. In addition, discounts are available for drivers who receive their G2 and G licences so make sure to keep your broker up-to-date on your driving status.
New drivers should also avoid distracted driving. Distracted driving can occur any time a driver’s attention is taken away from where they should be focusing their concentration — the driving task.
Driver distractions include: cell phone calls and texts, eating, drinking, changing a CD or fiddling with radio dials, talking to a passenger, experiencing emotional distress, personal grooming, and looking at billboards or even other vehicles on the road. Drive safely by keeping your eyes on the road, your hands on the wheel and an appropriate focus on your driving.
Visit http://www.caa.ca/driventodistraction/home.html for more information on distracted driving and what you can do to avoid it.
Should I insure my children on their own policy or add them to my policy?
It is often less expensive to insure your children under your policy if they are an occasional driver rather than the principal driver of a vehicle. If your child gets traffic tickets or has an accident your premium will go up as a result. It may be in your best interest if they are the principal driver for them to have their own policy.
If I am going on vacation and/or my dwelling is going to be vacant what should I do?
If you are going on vacation or leaving your dwelling vacant, you should make sure your dwelling is checked regularly for unforeseen circumstances. You should also make sure to speak to your broker to determine if your insurance needs to change, and should carefully review your policy wordings to ensure you keep your coverage active by meeting all insurance company requirements.
What does property insurance usually cover?
It depends on the type of property you are insuring, whether it is a home, condominium or apartment. If you own a house, your property insurance will cover the house itself and any detached structures (e.g. garages). You can choose to insure your house against most unexpected situations, or only against situations specified in your policy. Your property insurance will also cover your personal belongings which include: jewellery, artwork, furniture, computers, carpets and more. If you have a large amount of high-valued items you may need to purchase additional coverage to ensure you will be fully reimbursed. Talk to your broker to discuss your needs and learn about your options. Most property insurance policies also include third party liability if somebody is injured while on your property.
Does my policy cover all water losses?
In general, your policy is written to provide coverage for any sudden, accidental and unforeseen water damage losses. However there are some causes that may be excluded so make sure to review your policy with your broker.
Broad Water Damage may be purchased to protect you from sewer back-up losses. Contact your broker to see if you are eligible for this coverage.
How long does it take to get an insurance quote?
Thunder Bay Insurance is a strong advocate of our TRI™ – Total Review of Insurance which is our commitment to review current coverage, provide recommendations and explain the benefits. The comprehensive step-by-step process enables our team to achieve the status of Trusted Advisor for our clients. With this process in mind, the processing time of your TRI™ will range depending on the complexity of your needs.