Does your Business need “Loss of Income” Insurance?

Written By Charlotte Insurance on August 22, 2017. It has 0 comments.

When you own your own business, anything can happen. A big storm can take off your roof. A natural disaster can flood the area and force your business to shut down. A fire might destroy your inventory. As a responsible business owner, you’ve purchased business insurance on your property, inventory, and equipment.

Your insurance coverage will help you rebuild and get back to business. But what will you do for income while you wait? How will you pay your employees, the mortgage or rent on your property, or yourself? You’re a small business with a single location and a few employees. When your doors are closed, your income stops. “Loss of income” insurance helps you pay the bills while you repair and rebuild after a claim.


Just because your business is shut down from a fire or other covered peril doesn’t mean that your responsibilities stop. Also known as business income coverage, “loss of income” coverage pays for specific types of financial loss you may experience as a result of damage or theft:

  • Lost net income
  • Continuing expenses like payroll, taxes, mortgage, and advertising
  • Relocation expenses and advertising costs if you set up a temporary location

Loss of income insurance works in conjunction with your commercial property insurance policy. If the damage is covered by a covered peril, loss of income coverage kicks in. Keep in mind, you have to have filed a claim for the initial property damage before you can file a claim for loss of income.


Not every possible situation is included in a business income coverage policy. There are several incidents that may be rare but could result in a serious loss of income for your business. When considering loss of income insurance, talk to your agent about these add-ons.

Extra expense coverage: This provides income for expenses that are above and beyond your normal operating costs.

Utility coverage: This provides income if you unexpectedly lose utility services like water, gas, or electricity that forces your business to close and lose income.

Civil authority: If customers lose access to your business or if you are forced to close due to civil authority like an evacuation during a disaster, this will cover your lost income during that time.

Dependent property: When other entities that you rely on for business are unable to provide goods, services, or customers, your lost income is covered. This includes certain scenarios:

  • Suppliers are unable to provide goods or services to you.
  • Customers are unable to receive your goods or services.
  • Your manufacturer is unable to fulfill direct orders for your customers.
  • The leader location that provides traffic to your business no longer attracts customers or goes out of business. Example: An anchor store in a shopping center

If you can protect your business property with insurance, why shouldn’t you cover your income, too? Not every business can rely on other locations to keep bringing in money to make up a temporary closure. You still have bills to pay when a fire or disaster shuts your doors. Use loss of income insurance to keep yourself and your employees going until you can open up again.

Here at Charlotte Insurance, we take pride in helping our fellow small business owners protect what you’ve worked so hard to build. Give us a call and let’s talk about how to make sure your income doesn’t dry up after a major disaster.

6 Mistakes that Renters make

Written By Charlotte Insurance on August 17, 2017. It has 0 comments.

Renting your first apartment is exciting. You’re on your own and you can’t wait to decorate! Slow down for just a minute. Before you sign the lease and pack up your stuff, make sure you don’t make these mistakes as a renter.


A lease agreement is a legal document. What’s written in a lease can determine whether you’re evicted for something or not. It will tell you that what you pay for (above and beyond the rent), what your responsibilities are, and what your landlord is responsible for. Always read the lease completely before you sign it. If you don’t understand something, talk to someone who does and get an explanation first.


When it comes to leases, landlords want to make them as favorable to themselves as possible. Make sure the lease you sign and the place you rent will actually work for you after the excitement wears off. Some things that might be included in a lease agreement that won’t work for you in a few months include:

  • No pets
  • No roommates
  • No guests for longer than a day or two
  • You have to pay for all repairs / lawn care / etc


When you move out, you’ll be responsible for any damage in your rental. If you can’t show something was already damaged prior to your move in date, you’ll lose your security deposit. Shoot some video or take pictures of every single room, pointing out any noticeable damage, wear and tear, or problems. Keep it on your phone or in the cloud but make sure you have it if you need it.


Assuming your lease agreement says the landlord is responsible for repairs (and it should), always call right away if something goes wrong or breaks. You have to replace light bulbs yourself but you need to call when a light switch doesn’t work. If a pipe bursts, the air conditioner doesn’t blow cold air, the refrigerator stops working, or anything happens, call your landlord right away. Not calling them means the damage will only get worse and you might lose your security deposit later because they didn’t know about a problem.


Paying your rent a day or two late one time isn’t the end of the world. It happens to everyone. Consistently paying your rent late can get you into trouble. Your lease might not be renewed. You’ll pay extra fees on top of your rent. You won’t get a good rental reference when you want to move out. And if you stop paying your rent completely, you’ll definitely get evicted.


Your landlord has insurance on your rental, that’s true. But their insurance only covers the building. None of your stuff will be replaced after a fire or other damage unless you’ve got renters insurance. Without it, you’ll have to pay to replace everything you own – and still pay the rent and bills that month. Sounds impossible, right? If you think your belongings aren’t worth that much, add up what it would cost to replace your TV, computer, cell phone, and clothing – not to mention your furniture. It’s more than you thought, isn’t it? That’s why renters insurance is so important.

Renting your first place is exciting and sometimes a little scary. Being prepared will keep you safe. Making sure you have renters insurance will make sure you can get back to normal even after a big disaster.

Contact us at Charlotte Insurance. We can help you find an affordable renters insurance policy.

What you need to know before buying Home Insurance

Written By Charlotte Insurance on August 15, 2017. It has 0 comments.

The first time you ever think about home insurance will be the first time you buy a home. While it’s a necessary step to get to the closing table, it’s something you want to understand before you select your policy. It might feel like buying homeowners insurance is just another “to do list” item, but there are things you need to know and understand so you don’t have any nasty surprises later.


A standard home insurance policy covers a number perils. These are things that, when they damage or destroy your home or property will be covered if you file a claim.

  • Fire or lightning
  • Smoke
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Weight of ice, snow and sleet
  • Freezing of household systems
  • Windstorms and hail
  • Damage caused by vehicles
  • Overflow or discharge of water
  • Damage from artificially generated electrical current
  • Sudden tearing, cracking or bulging of home
  • Damage from aircraft
  • and more

Some perils aren’t covered at all like nuclear hazards, wear and tear, or infestations. Other events, like flooding or earthquakes, require a separate insurance policy. Flood insurance is recommended for all homeowners regardless of whether you’re in a high-risk flood zone or not.


Having insurance is one thing, but understanding exactly what you can file a claim for is another. These are the parts of your home and other issues you can file a claim for.

  • The dwelling – your home and any attached structures – like the garage
  • Standalone structures – fences, sheds, and carports
  • Loss of use – living expenses when you can’t live in your home due to a covered claim
  • Personal property – all of your belongings
  • Liability – when you’re responsible for someone else’s injuries
  • Medical payments – when a guest at your home is injured or you cause the injury of someone away from your home


There are two types of payments you need to understand about your insurance: How you’ll pay for your homeowner’s insurance, and how you’ll be paid if you file a claim. Not knowing how this works can lead to some big shocks later on.


If you have a mortgage for your home, as most people do, your insurance premiums can be paid through your lender. One part of the payment you make to the lender each month will be a portion of your annual premiums. It will be held in an escrow account on your behalf. When it’s time to renew your insurance policy, the funds will be distributed on your behalf. If the premiums are higher than expected, your monthly mortgage payment will increase to offset that increase for the next 12 months.


When you purchase an insurance policy, you have a choice about how a claim will be calculated. You can choose the replacement cost option or the actual cash value option. Replacement costs mean that when something is damaged or destroyed, you’ll receive a dollar amount that allows you to replace the item. If you choose “actual cash value,” you’ll receive an amount of money that equals the value of the item. The vast majority of things, like electronics and other goods, decrease in value over time. With this option, you’ll receive less than the amount to replace what was lost.

You might want to get your homeowner’s insurance purchase done and out of the way. But make sure you know exactly what you’re choosing and what’s in your policy. The time to find out exactly what’s covered isn’t the day you call to file a claim.

Here at Charlotte Insurance we’re happy to help new and existing homeowners find the best coverage for their home. Give us a call, and we can explain your current policy coverage or help you find something better suited to your needs.

7 Strange Insurance Claims

Written By Charlotte Insurance on August 10, 2017. It has 0 comments.

If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “Why do I have insurance? They won’t pay a claim for that!” think again. People have had strange things happen to them and filed an insurance claim as a result. Not only was it a weird moment for them, but the insurance company paid the claim! It just goes to show that if something can go wrong, it will – and it pays to have insurance to help you out when it does.


A livestock farmer was tending to one of his cows giving birth. It was a dark and stormy night so he used his iPhone as a flashlight. In the birth canal of the cow. And he lost his phone – in the birth canal. He was able to retrieve it a few hours later, but not surprisingly, it no longer worked.


What do you get when a beautiful wedding dress gets too close to the open fire barbecue at the reception? You get a fiery bride. Thankfully she wasn’t injured because her new husband saved her by throwing her into the sea.


You might not realize it, but your tropical vacation could be dangerous for your health. Each year, 150 people are killed by coconuts falling on their head. Thankfully for a woman vacationing in Sri Lanka, she was only knocked unconscious by the coconut that landed on her while she was reading a book under a palm tree.


We all get busy at the holidays, and sometimes our live Christmas tree isn’t as secure on the top of our car as it should be. One driver found out the hard way. Another driver hadn’t tied the tree properly to the top of their car, drove too fast, and took a sharp corner. The tree flew off the top and landed in the windshield of the driver who immediately called his insurance agent to file a claim.


Strange things happen on exotic vacations. Ask a couple who visited Malaysia. A monkey came into their room, stole all their clothes, and scattered them throughout the nearby jungle. They filed an insurance claim and were compensated for the damages.


Another exotic vacation, another animal with no time for tourists. This time, a driver was sightseeing through parts of Australia when he came across a wild camel who had no patience for him or his car. The camel kicked in the door of his car, and thanks to video evidence, the insurance claim was paid.


Ahhh, kids. They can be so cute and lovable. They can also be mischievous and cause property damage. Ask the parents of the children who buried their expensive camera in the sand on their beach vacation. Someone went to bed without dessert that night.

No matter where you go or what you’re doing, things happen that you can’t predict. You’d be surprised at how often your insurance will cover even the strangest claim. But you have to have good insurance first.

Make sure you have enough insurance to handle whatever life throws at you. Contact us at Charlotte Insurance for a free quote on home, auto, life, or any other type of insurance you might need.

16 Back to School Tips

Written By Charlotte Insurance on August 7, 2017. It has 0 comments.

Summer vacation is winding down, and the new school year is fast approaching. It’s time for new school clothes, shoes, backpacks, and all those supplies. The kids will be back in school before we know it. Whether your child is anxious to be back or dreading every minute of it, it’s always best to be prepared. Here are a few back to school tips to help you and your children get the school year started off on the right foot.


Kids of all ages get nervous before the first day of school. Sometimes it’s a new campus or town, and other times, they wonder if their friends have forgotten them. Here are some back to school tips to help your child be less nervous about the first day of school

  1. Remind them that other kids will be nervous, too.
  2. Point out the positives of going back to school – like seeing old friends and making new ones.
  3. Attend any orientations, open houses, or other opportunities to meet teachers or tour the school before the first day.


For some kids and their parents, backpacks are a necessary evil. With all the books, folders, laptops, papers, and forms that come home, they need one. Prepare your child and their backpack before the first day for an easier transition.

  1. Choose a comfortable backpack that’s easy to carry.
  2. Pack as lightly as possible, only taking what’s necessary. If you can drop school supplies off early, do it.
  3. Organize their backpack so that the heaviest items are at the bottom.
  4. If the school allows it, consider buying a rolling backpack for the school year.


Six in the morning on the first day of school isn’t the time to decide how your child will get to school. Take some time now to prepare them for their routine.

  1. Decide if your child will ride the bus, get a ride with someone, be driven by a parent or family member, walk, or bike to school.
  2. If they take the bus, make sure they know where the bus stop is, which bus to ride, and what time to be at their stop in the morning.
  3. If riding in a car, make sure you’re both comfortable with the driver if it’s not you or their other parent.
  4. Remind your child to always wear their seatbelt in the car.
  5. Know the pick-up and drop-off times as well as the location of car-riders at the school if you’re driving your children to school.
  6. Make sure bikers and walkers know the route to school, can and will follow all traffic laws, and will listen to crossing guards. You may want to find out where crossing guards will be along the route to school ahead of time.


There is nothing more difficult than getting a child out of bed on the first day of school. They’ve been staying up late and sleeping in all summer and now it’s time to wake up to an alarm clock. It’s much better to ease into this instead of starting on the first day of school.

  1. Practice waking up to an alarm in the weeks or days leading up to the start of school.
  2. Establish an earlier bedtime for younger children in the weeks before school.
  3. Have kids keep a schedule during the day – even if it’s just a schedule for chores, shower, and meals – so they’re not completely out of practice for school.

The first day of school is an exciting time every year, even if your kids don’t completely agree. With a little preparation, and by following these back to school tips, you can reduce everyone’s stress and maybe get a first-day-of-school picture with a smile instead of a grumpy frown.