How do I know if Whole Life Insurance is for me?

When choosing the right life insurance, you must first consider which type is best for your needs.  One of those types is whole life insurance.  Whole life insurance is a type of permanent life insurance that provides coverage for your entire life as long as the premium amounts are paid.  Whole life insurance accrues a cash value when a portion of your premiums are invested. 

Our insurance advisors at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC serving Tuscaloosa, AL could work with you in figuring out if this policy is right for you.

Examine your situation right now

When first deciding if a whole life policy is for me, you must look at your situation right now.  Whole life insurance may be more expensive than term life insurance, but it does last your entire life.  You may be a parent with a disabled child and want the security of knowing that he or she will receive the death benefit as long as you meet the premiums.  You might want to consider the state of your health and your age.  Would term life insurance be enough if you’re not in the best health or if you’re older?

You Need a Cash Value Life Insurance Policy

You may be trying to save for retirement.  In that case, whole life insurance does come with a cash value feature that does grow throughout your policy.  However, financial advisors do recommend turning to 401Ks or individual retirement accounts (IRAs) when saving for retirement.  But if you maxed out your contributions, your whole life insurance can be redeemed.

Contact Us Today

If you’re an Alabama resident trying to save up for retirement or make sure your beneficiaries are financially secured when you’re gone, a whole life policy might be best for you.  Contact our team of insurance experts at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC to schedule an appointment in Tuscaloosa, AL concerning whether this policy is what you need.   

Why basic auto insurance isn’t always the right choice

Basic auto insurance is what the state mandates you have for coverage. In Alabama, basic liability coverage is in the amount of 25/50/25. At Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL, we get to know our customers so that we can help them make educated choices when it comes to their coverage. As an independent insurance agency, we have access to more carriers, which provides our customers with more options. 

Coverage For Your Auto: More Than The Basics

Liability insurance provides protection for other drivers from an accident where you are the at-fault driver. Basic coverage provides $25,000 for injuries to one person in an accident, with a total of $50,000 for all injuries. $25,000 is provided for property damage. This may be enough coverage for you if you have no assets, but with the cost of a hospital stay, it could be lacking. 

If you owe money on your vehicle or if you are leasing it, you won’t be able to get away with just basic insurance. You will need to cover the vehicle as well. That means full coverage with glass, collision, and comprehensive. 

Collision insurance covers your vehicle in an accident where you are at fault. But it also covers you if you are in a one-vehicle accident or if you are a victim of a hit-and-run. 

Comprehensive coverage is lots of non-collision things that can damage your vehicle. If your vehicle is stolen or vandalized, you are covered. If a deer jumped into your vehicle, no problem. Glass coverage is usually included. Make sure it is full glass coverage. Many weather-related incidents are also covered, including high winds, flooding, and hail. 

Give Us A Call

Contact Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL when you are looking for the right auto insurance policy. Call us or stop by for a free quote. 

 

Business Insurance in Alabama: What’s Required and What’s Not?

If you own a business in Tuscaloosa, AL, you may wonder if you must have commercial insurance. The answer isn’t always straightforward, as it depends on various factors. Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC is here to assist with everything you need to know about business insurance in Alabama.

Certain types of businesses are required by law to have commercial insurance in Alabama

These include any business that:

  • Has employees, including full-time, part-time, or seasonal workers
  • Operates vehicles for business purposes, such as delivery trucks or company cars
  • Provides professional services, such as accounting or financial advice
  • Manufactures products

You must have commercial insurance if your business falls into one of these categories. Examples of common types of coverage businesses must carry include workers’ compensation, liability, and property damage. 

An important note:

Even if your business does not require commercial insurance by law, it’s still a good idea to consider carrying it. This is because commercial insurance can protect your business from various risks, such as lawsuits, natural disasters, and theft. 

On the other hand, some types of businesses are not required to have commercial insurance in Alabama. These include sole proprietorships and partnerships without any employees. However, even if your business does not require commercial insurance, you may still want to consider carrying it. This is because commercial insurance can provide valuable protection for your business in case of a lawsuit or natural disaster. 

Get The Right Coverage Today

When it comes to commercial insurance for businesses in Tuscaloosa, AL, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. It depends on the type of business you have as well as your specific needs. Contact Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC if you have any questions – we are here to help.

Can I deduct my home insurance on my taxes in Alabama?

If you’re a homeowner, you’re probably always looking for ways to save money. And if you’re like most people, you might wonder if your home insurance is tax deductible. Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL can give you general advice, but we recommend talking to a tax professional about your specific situation.

While there are some exceptions, in general, most homeowners in Alabama can deduct their home insurance premiums on their state income taxes.

There are a few things you need to keep in mind:

First, your policy must be effective on or after January 1st of the tax year for which you are claiming the deduction.

There are other requirements as well. For example, you can only deduct the amount of premium that exceeds 3% of your adjusted gross income. So, if your adjusted gross income is $50,000 and your home insurance premium is $1,500, you would only be able to deduct $450 ($1,500 – 3% of $50,000).

If you have any questions about whether or not you qualify for the deduction, we recommend speaking with a tax professional. They will be able to help you determine if you qualify and how much of a deduction you’re eligible for.

Contact Us Today

While there’s no clear-cut answer as to whether or not home insurance premiums are tax deductible in Tuscaloosa, AL, it’s generally safe to say that most people will be able to take advantage of the deduction. However, there are a few requirements that must be met for you to qualify. If you have any questions about whether or not you qualify for the deduction, we recommend speaking with a tax professional before filing your taxes.

If you have questions about your home insurance policy contact Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC.

Is it helpful to have an umbrella insurance plan in Alabama?

All people in and around the Tuscaloosa, AL area need to take their insurance needs seriously. A type of coverage to always consider getting here is umbrella insurance. If you are insured with this type of coverage, it can provide you with some additional personal liability coverage.

There are various reasons why this type of insurance is helpful to have

Coverage for Significant Claims

A good reason for anyone to have an umbrella insurance plan in this state is so they can have coverage for significant claims. You will likely have some liability insurance in a home or auto plan. However, these plans always have a liability cap. While most claims fall under this cap, there could always be a serious accident that has significant damages that exceed the cap. With an umbrella insurance plan, you will have coverage on top of your other insurance plans.

Prepare for the Unexpected

It can be very difficult to identify all possible personal liability risks. If you are going to invest in an umbrella insurance plan, you will be able to prepare for the unexpected. When you have a full umbrella insurance plan, it will offer you the support that you need as it provides you with a broad level of personal liability coverage. 

Get Umbrella Coverage Today

You should always ensure that you are appropriately covered and insured. One of the best ways that you can do this is by investing in an umbrella insurance plan. When you are looking for this coverage in the Tuscaloosa, AL area, it would be wise to call Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC. There are a lot of complexities that come with selecting umbrella coverage and Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC will help you choose a plan that will give you coverage and peace of mind. 

What Types of Floods Does Flood Insurance Cover?

Here at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC, serving the greater Tuscaloosa, AL area, we have witnessed people make many mistakes when it comes to insurance policies. One of the most common mistakes that people make is assuming their homeowners’ insurance will cover them if there is a flood. Unfortunately, many homeowners’ insurance policies exclude flooding. However, you can purchase flood insurance to protect your home and belongings from floods.

Flood insurance covers two different types of flooding:

Flooding Caused By Storms

Flooding can occur in your home if it rains and rains. Creeks, rivers, or other bodies of water may spill over and cause mass flooding. Or, the flooding may be contained to your home only, such as when a basement floods due to heavy amounts of rain. If you have flood insurance, your policy will cover flooding that is caused by storms, including the process of removing the dirty water and sanitizing your home after the water has been removed. 

Flooding Caused By Plumbing Problems

The other type of flooding that is covered by flood insurance is flooding that is caused by some plumbing issues. If the pipes in your home unexpectedly burst open or your water heater cracks, a portion of your home may flood. As long as the item did not break due to a lack of maintenance or repairs, flood insurance will cover the flooding caused by plumbing problems. If the problem occurred because you did not properly maintain or care for these elements, flood insurance may not cover the expenses. 

If you are looking to purchase a new flood insurance policy in the greater Tuscaloosa, AL region, Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC would love to help you. Our team can help you find the flood insurance policy that is right for your needs. Call us today to obtain an estimate. 

Will life insurance pay for my burial?

Many people invest in life insurance to help their family members pay burial costs and to help with other living expenses. However, life insurance can be used to provide money for a wide variety of different expenses. Typically, a life insurance policy will list a beneficiary to receive the cash benefit without having to go through probate. The beneficiary can make burial plans after the policyholder has died.

Our team at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC knows that Tuscaloosa, AL residents may have questions regarding how to use their life insurance policy to pay for a burial. We are here to assist you with this important insurance coverage.

How Does Life Insurance Cover Burial Costs?

The policyholder lists a beneficiary to receive a cash benefit after they pass away. This cash benefit can be applied to burial costs. The beneficiary typically takes the life insurance policy to a funeral home and the funeral home fills out the paperwork. The funds are then applied to the bt cover the burial costs. However, the cash benefit may or may not cover the full burial cost. Anything that’s not covered by the life insurance company will be the responsibility of the beneficiary or their family. The funeral home will claim the benefit on behalf of the beneficiary and apply it to the funeral/burial costs. 

Considerations

A life insurance benefit is paid to a beneficiary. This means that the beneficiary can use the funds however they see fit. There’s no automatic guarantee that the beneficiary will use those funds to pay for a burial. The beneficiary could use the funds to pay for other expenses. The sole choice in deciding how the funds are spent is left to the beneficiary’s discretion. The beneficiary receives the funds from a life insurance policy shortly after the policyholder has passed away.

Contact Us Today

If you’re concerned about paying for a loved one’s burial and want to know how life insurance can help, call us at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL. We can answer all of your questions. 

Required Auto Insurance in Alabama

When you drive in Alabama, you have to have auto insurance. You must have the right types of coverage in your policy, and you have to carry proof of your insurance policy. Like all states, state laws dictate the required coverages. If you need auto insurance in Alabama, call us at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL. 

Required Auto Insurance in Alabama

Liability Coverage

There are two types of liability coverage that are required in these policies with three different amounts stated in the law. The two coverage types are bodily injury liability and property damage liability. Bodily injury liability is a type of coverage that pays for the expenses of those who are injured in an auto accident that is your fault. These expenses can include medical expenses and lost wages. There is an amount of coverage required for one injured person and another amount required for all the injured parties. Property damage liability pays for the damages done to someone else’s property, such as a car or landscaping, when the damage is caused by you.

These are the only two types of insurance that are required by the state, but there are other types that are generally recommended for Alabama motorists. 

Optional Insurance

Getting collision and comprehensive insurance are optional, but they are incredibly helpful after an accident. If you were to cause an accident and had damage to your vehicle from that accident, collision insurance would pay for that damages, less your deductible. This coverage is often required by auto lenders. Comprehensive insurance covers your vehicle against a wide range of risks that can happen to it when it isn’t being driven. 

Get Your Vehicle Covered

When you drive in the state and don’t have auto insurance, you are vulnerable to fines and fees. If you don’t have insurance, call us at Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL.

Types of commercial insurance most businesses can benefit from

Owning a business is never easy. You are vulnerable to many things that can damage your ability to remain open. Mitigating as much of that danger is vital to your success. Commercial insurance strives to minimize your vulnerabilities. Having an independent insurance agent who understands your business is essential to getting the right coverage. In Tuscaloosa, AL,  Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC will work with you to address all your insurance needs. 

Types of commercial insurance 

Commercial Liability Insurance

Almost every business is in danger of being on the receiving end of legal action against them. It can come from customers, vendors, or even employees. Surviving a legal action is much easier when you have commercial liability insurance. It can pay for a judgment against you and even for your legal expenses to defend yourself.  

Commercial Property Insurance

Commercial property insurance is the business equivalent of home or renters insurance. You don’t need to own the building where your business occupies in order to benefit from it. Property insurance also offers content coverage that covers what you use in your business. Tools, machinery, raw materials, office equipment, or inventory are all included. It is hard to do business without these. 

Commercial Auto Insurance

If your business owns any vehicles, they should be covered with commercial insurance. If you do use your personal vehicle for business, you could leave yourself vulnerable. Many personal auto policies do not cover business usage.

Workers Compensation Coverage

In Alabama, workers’ compensation coverage is required by all employers who have five or more employees. This insurance benefits both workers and employees. It provides medical coverage as well as lost time for employees who are injured in the performance of their job. 

Contact Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC in Tuscaloosa, AL when you’re ready to discuss your business and commercial insurance needs. 

Things that home insurance won’t cover

You get home insurance to protect your home. You may think you are completely safe, but the truth is, home insurance doesn’t cover everything that can happen to your home. Homeowners in Tuscaloosa, AL can count on Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC to give them the advice they need to make an educated decision regarding home coinsurance overage. Independent insurance agents work for their customers, not for one insurance company, and they have many carriers for you to choose from. 

Things that home insurance won’t cover

Earth movement

Earth movement is exactly what it sounds like. The earth moves, and it damages your home. This includes things like earthquakes, mudslides, and sinkholes. Your traditional home insurance policy will not cover damage from these events. However, you can purchase an endorsement or a totally separate policy to protect yourself if you live in an area where these hazards are a potential problem. 

Flooding

Floods are a serious hazard in many parts of the country, and your home insurance will not cover flooding that results from surface water. This includes bodies of water that overrun their banks and tidal flooding. If, however, you have a busted pipe in your home, this is included with your home insurance policy.   

Owner neglect

Many different things can be considered owner neglect. If your home suffers termite damage, insurance doesn’t pay for that. You, as a homeowner, should have your home treated for termites. If your old roof leaks and damages your ceilings and home, it’s on you. You need to replace your old roof before it does damage. If, however, a hurricane blows off your roof and you suffer damage, that should be covered. You can’t control the wind and rain. 

In Tuscaloosa, AL contact Baldo-Downs Insurance LLC when you are in the market for home insurance.