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Express Financial & Insurance Services

3222 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90404

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How an Insurance Agent Can Help You Navigate the Health Insurance Marketplace

If you are looking to obtain health insurance through the health insurance marketplace, you are able to do so on your own, without the help of anyone. But at Express Financial & Insurance Services, serving the greater Santa Monica, CA area, we can help you navigate the system. This may leave you wondering how and why it is beneficial to you to have an insurance agent help you. Here are a few of the things an insurance agent can help you with. 

Help You Determine When You Can Enroll

The health insurance marketplace is not open to purchase insurance from to everyone at all times. You either need to enroll during open enrollment period or within 60 days of a life-changing event. An insurance agent can help you determine when you are eligible to enroll. 

Explain the Differences in Plans to You

Another benefit of working with an insurance agent when buying health insurance through the health insurance marketplace is that they can explain the different plans to you. Not every plan is right for every person and selecting the right plan can be confusing. An insurance agent is familiar with insurance jargon and helps you to better understand the plans available. 

Determine What Credits You May Be Eligible For

The last benefit way an insurance agent can help you navigate the health insurance marketplace is by helping you determine what instant credits or tax credits you may qualify for. This helps to keep your costs as low as possible for your health insurance policy. 

If you are looking to purchase a health insurance plan in the greater Santa Monica, CA area, give Express Financial & Insurance Services a call. We can help guide you through the buying process, ultimately making the process as smooth and easy as possible. 

What Factors Affect RV Insurance Costs?

Various factors affect the cost of RV insurance. Some are under your control – others aren’t. Greater awareness of how RV insurance costs are determined can help you save money on coverage. Here are some of the main factors that can affect policy costs.

RV Use

How you use your RV will determine the insurance coverage you need and subsequent costs. If you live in your RV year round, you may need more extensive coverage than someone who uses their unit for recreational traveling in the Santa Monica, CA area. Getting the right insurance coverage is essential to protect you and your investment. At Express Financial & Insurance Services, we can personalize your RV insurance to suit your needs at a price you can afford.

Deductible

The higher your insurance deductible, the lower your premium costs. Before getting a policy with a high deductible, make sure you are financially capable of paying this deductible in the event of a claim. Otherwise, you could be “penny wise and pound foolish” in your decision to raise your deductible to save a few dollars on your premium.    

Discounts

If you’re not taking advantage of discounts on RV insurance, you could be paying too much for your coverage. Many insurers offer discounts to experienced RV drivers who have a good driving history with few accident claims. Membership in an RV association and multiple insurance policies (car insurance, home insurance) could also qualify you for a discount on your RV insurance policy.

Marital Status/Credit Rating

If you’re married or have good financial standing, your insurer may consider you more responsible and less of a risk of causing an accident. This could qualify you for lower rates on your RV policy.

Contact us at Express Financial & Insurance Services, Santa Monica, CA, to learn more about RV insurance options and costs.  

The Benefits of Decreasing Term Life Insurance

As you age, you may be thinking about decreasing your term life insurance policy amount. If you are thinking about doing this, you may be wondering what, if any, benefits there are. At Express Financial & Insurance Services, we want to educate our clients on the importance of increasing life insurance when needed and decreasing life insurance as needed. Here are a few benefits of decreasing your term life insurance policy. 

Lowered Cost

One of the biggest benefits to decreasing your term life insurance policy is the lowered cost. As a general rule of thumb, the lower your policy amount, the lower your premium payments will be. If you are looking to decrease the cost of your life insurance policy, or no longer need to carry as much insurance as you have in the past, lowering the policy limits on your life insurance policy may be a great way to go about doing so. 

Carrying What You Need

Most people need less life insurance as they age. Their children may leave the nest and their home may be paid off. When you have children and/or when you have a home that is not paid off, you should be carrying enough life insurance to pay down your debt and support your family. But when these things are no longer in play, you can decrease your policy amount and only carry what you need. This helps to ensure that you are not over insuring yourself. 

If you are in the market for a new life insurance policy, or are looking to increase or decrease your policy amount, contact Express Financial & Insurance Services. We can help you determine how much life insurance you should have based on your current life expectancy and financial situation. 

What Happens to Life Insurance in the Event of Divorce

Once a couple decides to divorce, there are substantial decisions to be made about asset and debt distribution. One example of an asset is life insurance, a policy that is often used by spouses to protect the other in the event of one’s untimely death and the financial loss it would incur. Costs that need to be met might include paying the rent or mortgage, food expenses, and raising any children. This matter of adjusting life insurance is often overlooked, as the couple is preoccupied with more pressing matters such as custody of any children and adjusting to single life, possibly in a new home, as well.

Divorcing spouses are recommended to keep their life insurance policies active to protect the financial interests of both ex-spouses, as well as any dependent children. However, most couples without children will remove their ex-spouse from the life insurance policy as they don’t want the other to profit in the event of their death.

Beneficiaries can be changed, however. It’s easy to change your beneficiary by calling your life insurance agent and making sure your policy is revocable so the beneficiary can be re-designated.  

Getting Divorced and Changing Your Life Insurance Policy

If you are in the midst of a divorce in Santa Monica, California, contact Express Financial & Insurance Services to learn more about how the asset of life insurance can be fairly changed for you and your ex-spouse, whether or not you have children.

We can help you with all your insurance needs, from auto insurance to commercial insurance. Contact us today at (310) 453-5736 to get a quote.

Fixes for Tight Condo Spaces

If you own a condo in the Santa Monica, CA area, you know that space can be an issue.  There are several ways to tackle space problems and keep from needing stash things in odd places.  The first thing is to train yourself to banish clutter from your home.  You can do this by tossing something out when you bring something new home.  How many things do you own that you haven’t worn or used in years?  It could be time to prune down your belongings.  Start thinking vertically because the walls can do more than hold up your ceiling.  Hanging things from the roof, installing high-rise shelving, pegboards for hanging things, and magnetic strips for knives or other metal items creates instant space.

Use the inside of closet, cabinet, and interior doors to add storage.  Wall-mounted magazine files on the inside of cabinet doors are a great way to store many kitchen or bathroom items.  Purchase some vertical door organizers for the inside of closet and interior doors to create instant storage for shoes, cleaning supplies, light bulbs, batteries and more.  Door organizers come in different shapes, so you’ll have choices of the best fit for your unique needs.  Today, containers come in various styles, materials, and shapes.  Inexpensive fabric storage boxes are perfect for all kinds of items that can be stacked on shelves inside closets. Viola!  Your stuff is organized and containerized with a beautiful appearance. 

Express Financial & Insurance Services

Express Financial & Insurance Services is a unique agency because they are an independent company providing insurance coverage to those in the Santa Monica, CA area.  What this means for you, is finding the condo insurance you need at the best price possible.  Don’t wait, contact an Express friendly agent today.

Why Families Need To Explore Life Insurance

One permanent thing about life is risks, many of which are most often unavoidable. That doesn’t leave us helpless because there is something we can do something about it.

Life insurance is an indispensable tool in protecting a family’s economic welfare if a partner or parent dies. Life insurance is designed to pay loved ones a tax-free single sum death benefit if the insured party dies. The benefit should be sufficient enough to allow them to have a reasonable life free from serious financial worry.

The sum can be used to pay off debts, cover the cost of education, pay for medical expenses, and even pay for a home. Life insurance doesn’t save the life after a breadwinner, but it can save the lives of their dependents.

Life insurance can also protect a business. The death of a business partner may have far reaching effects on a company’s operations, and life insurance can aid the surviving partner in preventing the business from folding. Life insurance can provide the necessary funds that will enable the surviving partner to buy out the deceased partner’s share. Also, the deceased partner’s family will receive full compensation when they sell their share of the company.

There are different life insurance policies, such as universal life, whole life, variable life and index life. Each policy is specific and can be tailored to meet an individual’s family needs. Some are cheaper than others, provide protection for specific risks, while some are more focused on the interval between payment of premiums.

The loss of a family’s breadwinner can have a devastating effect on the surviving family members. Ongoing mortgage and rent repayments, education fees, credit card debt and everyday groceries can quickly balloon into an unbelievably high sum. Even the death of a ‘stay-at-home mom can leave the surviving partner with no option but to employ a housekeeper to provide and care for the children. If you are living in Santa Monica, CA, you need to take advantage of the favorable life insurance policies provided by Express Financial & Insurance Services.

Santa Monica, CA, Express Financial & Insurance Services provides quality insurance policies.

 

How To Protect Your Home In Santa Monica, CA

When you live in Santa Monica, CA, it’s vital that you do all that you can to protect your home. At Express Financial & Insurance Services, our goal is to help you find a good home insurance policy. With a strong policy, you can file a claim with confidence knowing that insurance will take care of most of the financial aspects.

Secure Your Home

You should have a security system on your home. This includes sensors on the doors and windows so you know if they are opened. It should be monitored as well, thus telling you what’s going on, even if you are not at home. Systems are more advanced than ever before and you should have at least something in place.

Create a Home Inventory

If someone breaks into your home and steals something, you want to know what it is. Some items might be obvious while others might not be. A home inventory is a great way to protect your home in Santa Monica, CA. You go room by room to list all that you own. From there, take photos of high-value items and ensure that values are attached to them all. It makes it easier to get the right insurance and helps with filing a claim later on.

Choose the Right Insurance

There are all sorts of options when it comes to homeowners insurance. You want to make sure that you choose a comprehensive policy with a good insurance company. By working with an independent insurance agent, you get the help throughout the entire process. You can then enjoy peace of mind knowing that your home is protected to the highest level.

When you want to discuss home insurance and get the help from a professional insurance agent, contact us at Express Financial & Insurance Services so we can work with you. 

In Santa Monica, CA, What Does Commercial Liability Insurance Cover?

Business owners in the Santa Monica, CA area can rely on the agents of Express Financial & Insurance Services if they have questions about liability insurance for their commercial properties. Businesses can face many types of liability from unknowingly selling a defective product to slip and fall accidents that involve injuries to a visitor. The key is to know how much liability insurance your company needs to be fully protected if a mishap or accident occurs. It is important for a business owner to have their commercial liability policy reviewed every few years to ensure they have the right amount of coverage for the size of their business.

Liability is the one type of commercial insurance that, although optional, is extremely important when it comes to protecting businesses from financial ruin if an accident occurs. Liability insurance covers many different things ranging from bodily injury sustained in an accident on the property to property damage if something breaks and a vehicle is damaged. When it is determined that a company is liable for a certain type of damage or injury, the company must financially compensate the victim accordingly. This is where liability insurance comes into play. Without sufficient coverage, the financial repercussions can be devastating.

The agents of Express Financial & Insurance Services can answer questions concerning many different types of liability when it comes to commercial property and business operations. A business owner’s main priority should be protecting their company from any type of financial loss. The best way to do this is to have the right type of insurance coverage in the right amount. Don’t take chances. Have your policy reviewed today to find out if you need to increase your coverage.

Why You Should Use Cruise Control When Driving on the Highway

Santa Monica, CA is full of things to see and places to explore, but there are a lot of things to see and do once you leave the city limits.  We may find ourselves driving long distances to visit friends and family. Other times we may find ourselves in a job with a long commute. Whatever the reason, Express Financial& Insurance Services knows that costs add up and that there are ways to save when driving long distances. 

Use Your Cruise Control

Your cruise control may be foreign to you if you don’t leave Los Angeles very often, but it can make for a more efficient trip if you turn it on. It has been said that cruise control helps maintain a constant speed when driving on the highway. When you use your cruise control you may save money which will help you in the long run. 

The Proof

 In an CNN article a writer makes reference to a study comparing the fuel economy of two vehicles. The study looked at a Land Rover LR3, a Ford Mustang.  When the cruise control was set at 70 the Land Rover got 14 better mileage and the Mustang got 4.5 better percent mileage.  If the drivers had gone at self -controlled speeds they would have paid more. The owners of both vehicles would have had to stop to get gas sooner if they had not used cruise control.

The Exception

Driving on the highway can be a lot like driving in Santa Monica, CA. There are lots of people on the road and that makes for a lot of traffic. It is not appropriate to use cruise control in light or heavy traffic.

Express Financial & Insurance Services knows that we have lots of costs to worry about and using cruise control can help.

Home Renovations that can Cut Insurance Costs

Many homeowners today are looking for ways to cut back on their insurance premium. By making certain home improvements, it’s possible to qualify for reduced insurance costs. A talk with your Express Financial & Insurance Services agent in Santa Monica, CA can give you a better idea of how to take advantage of home renovations such as the following to lower insurance costs.

New Roof

By installing a new roof on your home, you reduce the risk of storms causing structural and/or interior damage to your property.  A new roof made of damage resistant materials could substantially increase your home’s protection, making you eligible for lower insurance costs.

Home Security System

A home security/monitoring system is yet another investment that could reduce home insurance prices. Modern security systems offer advanced protection against theft, vandalism, intrusion, fire, water damage and carbon monoxide poisoning. An automated security system will alert you and the authorities when these dangerous situations arise, reducing the risk of theft, health issues or having your property suffer from extensive damage. Lower insurance rate is one-way insurance companies reward homeowners for taking better care of their property.

Plumbing and/or Electrical System Upgrades

If you live in an older home, chances are your plumbing and/or electrical systems could use an upgrade. Outdated plumbing and electrical systems increase the risk of indoor flooding and fire. By updating these systems to modern standards, you can protect your property from burst pipes that can cause flooding or electrical shorts that can cause a fire.

There are numerous renovations that make a home a safer, more secure environment. Homeowners who make safety and security a priority are more apt to benefit from lower home insurance costs. At Express Financial & Insurance Services, we can advise you on ways to reduce the insurance premium on your Santa Monica, CA home without compromising your coverage.