Monday, August 7, 2017

What the Heck?

Once a year, I get a call from my insurance agent asking to set up an appointment to review my insurance and verify that it still meets our needs. It is also the time that he tries to persuade me to buy more insurance products that I don't want which I dislike. However, I put up with that because I do make chances to our insurance coverage from time to time.

Case in point, at our last meeting I was fairly fresh from the experience of having someone run a red light and hit me head on. Fortunately it was at low speed but it still did several thousand dollars worth of damage to our minivan. During that process I discovered that the blue book value for our minivan was only around $5000. Now that it has been in the shop three times to repair damages inflicted upon it by other drivers, I'm sure $5000 would be pretty optimistic even if we still love the vehicle. But it didn't seem worth it to be shelling out for comprehensive insurance on it anymore. So when I had my last meeting with the insurance agent, I told him to cancel comprehensive on the minivan and just retain liability insurance.

Two weeks later we got caught out on the open road in a hail storm dropping two inch diameter frozen slush balls on us and it turned our minivan into a golf ball. I felt fortunate that it didn't break the windshield. Needless to say, since I had just canceled comprehensive I was a little miffed at my misfortune but since I don't mind driving a beat up vehicle, I got over it quickly. It just add character and prevents people in new shiny cars from parking so close to me in parking lot situations.

Now a month and a half later, I got my annual bill for my home and auto insurance premiums and realized that I still had comprehensive insurance. My agent had dropped the ball and not cancelled it. I called him up and explained the situation. He was understanding and said that since he dropped the ball, I could cancel it back to our meeting and get refunded the money OR I could go ahead and get the hail damage fixed and THEN cancel the comprehensive part of the insurance again and be prorated back to the day after the hailstorm.

I still have $750 in deductible that I would have to cover so I have to decide if it would be worth it to me. I've scheduled an auto body shop to give me a repair quote to perhaps swing my mind one way or the other. Since I realistically hope to have another five or six years of driving the minivan before getting another one (it's only ten years old), it might be worth it to pop for the repair. Who knows, they may even just total the thing and I might get another one sooner. But I don't like dwelling on decisions like that until I know all the facts and I still have to wait a week or two before I get all the facts back.


Kelly said...

How about that... a mistake that might just benefit you in the long run. I hate hail.

btw... it just dawned on me this morning that you probably couldn't truly appreciate the color in that photo I sent. Trust me... it was a nice shade of red and orange!

sage said...

We just went through the insurance thing--there were some changes in the homeowners that we didn't like and we ended up paying more for homeowners, but no longer have a nearly 10k deductible on "named storms" and "hail" The hurricane threat last year was a little too much--had one of the trees fallen another direction, we'd easily met the 10k deductible. But, we learned that we could insurance our golf cart for $15 and not the $215 as someone wrote it as an Off Road Vehicle, so that saved us 1/2 the additional premium.

Bob said...

You will (obviously) have to run the numbers and see which will better benefit you. Good for your agent for owning up to his mistake and taking responsibility. He might have just saved himself a customer there.

Ed said...

Kelly - Yes it was more of a reddish brown to me but the meaning is just the same!

Sage - I've been through the insurance thing a few more times than I like this past year but I guess I would rather have to go through it than out of pocket every single time.

Bob - They have been my insurance agent for two and a half decades and have always treated me right which is why I have kept them. Still I do check every now and then to make sure we are still in the ballpark.

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

I too dislike those meetings because I can't stand sales' pitches and having to say no. However, it sounds like things might work out for you, either way on this little screw up. I'm glad they gave you the option. You'll have to let us know what you decide. :)

Susan said...

The waiting is the worst part. Having to rely on others for answers drives me crazy, but is a part of my life. MY gosh, that hail must have been something else to drive through!

Ed said...

Pumpkin Delight - I guess I rather like the thrill of the meetings and the negotiating which I suppose is why I do well in third world countries where negotiating is expected.

Susan - It was very scary. I thought my windshield would be in a million pieces any second but miraculously it held up while the rest of the car was beat to heck.

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