DIFS Alerts Consumers to Recurring Scam and How to Avoid It

With home values up do you have enough insurance coverage?

From: Michigan Dept. of Insurance and Financial Services <DIFS@govsubscriptions.michigan.gov>
Date: Tue, Jun 28, 2022, 8:31 AM
Subject: Press Release: DIFS: Increased Home Values, Rising Supply Costs May Leave Homeowners With Insufficient Insurance Coverage If Disaster Strikes

Media Contact: Laura Hall, (517) 290-3779, DIFS-press@michigan.gov
Consumer Hotline: 877-999-6442, Michigan.gov/DIFScomplaints


For National Insurance Awareness Day, the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) is urging consumers to confirm that their home’s replacement value is adequate in today’s housing market, and to make sure they understand the terms and conditions of their policy, particularly the policy’s deductible, that will apply if disaster strikes their property.

Home Values

“Home values and building supply prices have increased across the country, and the current coverage provided by your homeowners policy may not be enough to replace or rebuild your home if it is damaged or destroyed,” said DIFS Director Anita Fox. “Though some policies may provide automatic value adjustments, this is a great time to contact your company or agent to discuss your home’s value and to make sure you understand your policy to ensure that it will fully protect you in the event of a loss.

”Homeowners insurance is a contract between a consumer and an insurance company to provide protection for a home. The contract specifies the potential risks, called hazards, that the policy will cover and any applicable policy terms, limitations, exclusions, and policyholder responsibilities. It will also detail things like the premium, deductible, the replacement value of a home, any outbuildings, and any valuable personal property, such as jewelry or collectibles, that may require additional coverage with a personal property endorsement.

In exchange for providing the coverage described in the policy contract, the insurance company will charge the policyholder a premium. Premiums may be billed on a monthly basis, though discounts may be available if consumers elect to pay on an annual or semi-annual basis. The policyholder is also responsible for any relevant deductible, which is a certain amount of money that must be paid out-of-pocket before the insurance company will pay a claim after a loss. For example, a homeowners policy may have a $1,000 deductible, meaning that the insured must pay $1,000 of a covered loss before the company will pay.

“Policy premiums typically decrease when a consumer chooses a higher deductible but choosing a higher deductible may make it more difficult for a family to recover from a disaster,” said Director Fox. “It is important that you have a plan, such as a dedicated emergency fund, for paying your policy deductible or your family could face a severe financial strain if a fire, tornado, or other natural disaster damages your home or possessions.

”For more information and tips on saving for emergencies or other financial goals, visit the DIFS Financial Education website.

For additional information on insurance policies, the claims filing process, or to file a complaint against an insurance company or agent, visit Michigan.gov/DIFS or call 877-999-6442, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The mission of the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services is to ensure access to safe and secure insurance and financial services fundamental for the opportunity, security, and success of Michigan residents, while fostering economic growth and sustainability in both industries. In addition, the Department provides consumer protection, outreach, and financial literacy and education services to Michigan residents. For more information, visit Michigan.gov/DIFS or follow the Department on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.


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How to save for a family vacation

How to save for a family vacation

Family Vacation Time?

Financial literacy is an essential life skill necessary to make informed decisions about budgeting, borrowing and more. Equipped with this knowledge, kids grow up prepared for financial independence.

Teaching kids and teenagers financial literacy often falls on parents’ shoulders — and it isn’t always easy. You need to both keep your youngster involved and interested and make the process fun. One way is to use exciting opportunities, like family vacations, to teach your kids good saving habits.

Set goals for you and your kids

So, you’re going on a family vacation. It’s time to set some goals.

  • Decide where you’re going

First, decide on where you’re going. Use selecting a destination as an opportunity to get your kids talking about where they want to go and to create excitement. Pick a place together and let your kids know that the trip can only happen if they chip in financially.

  • Determine the costs

Whether your family is planning a Disneyland trip or a vacation to your kids’ favorite spot, it’s time to determine the costs.

Involve your kids in the process. Break down the numbers for transportation, lodging, entertainment and other expenses. Show your kids the total and discuss how they’ll help you save that amount.

  • Set a timeline

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How Do I Get Recreational Insurance?

How Do I Get Recreational Insurance?

Recreational Insurance| Shield Quoting Portal | Recreational Insurance |

If you want to buy insurance for recreational activities like fishing or golf, you will likely have to buy it separately from your homeowner’s or car’s insurance.  If you are self-employed or work for a small company, you may be able to get coverage through your small business owners or association insurance plan. 

Some employers may also offer group health insurance that covers some or all of the cost of recreational insurance. To learn more, consult with Shield Insurance Agency in Michigan. 

Recreational Insurance: What You Need To Know

Recreational insurance is specifically designed to help protect your investment in a vacation. You can get this type of coverage through an association, an organization, or a company. 

Associations provide lower rates because they tend to have higher-risk members. 

You can purchase a policy that specifically covers recreational activities, or purchase a general homeowners or renters policy. 

You can compare the cost of recreational activities to the cost of replacing the item. If the activity costs less than the item, you may be able to file a claim with your homeowners or renters insurance. 

When you go to buy your recreational insurance, you will likely be required to have some money in a certain type of account. 

Recreational insurance protects you from any potential damages or harm that you might face while participating in a recreational activity. 

Let’s say you are going camping with your friends and you go hiking in the mountains, and while hiking, one of your friends slips and falls down a cliff. 

What if he ends up breaking his arm? You will be responsible for them if you don’t have any sort of recreational insurance. 

Contact Us Today 

It’s important to obtain some sort of recreational insurance before engaging in any recreational activities. It could be as simple as getting an umbrella policy that covers all the things while engaging in a recreational activity. 

You can also get specific policies for different activities such as skiing or snowboarding, mountain climbing, etc. For expert advice, give us a call at Shield Insurance Agency in Michigan.


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Employers Needed to Support a Child Care Innovation

Employers Needed to Support a Child Care Innovation

Your Grand Rapids Chamber will be co-hosting an online webinar on child care and the Tri-Share Pilot Program in Michigan. This is a no-cost event and all are welcome to join to hear about this incredible opportunity to support child care access and affordability for employees.  

During this live webinar, interested employers can learn how to participate in the program and offer child care support to their employees. In a critical time for talent attraction and retention, Tri-Share is one solution to attracting and retaining talent and addresses one of the largest barriers to employment.  

A Grand Rapids Chamber-led priority, Tri-Share is an innovative public/private partnership that equally shares the cost of childcare between employers, employees, and the State of Michigan. This initiative is the first-of-its-kind childcare support program in the country and is now in 57 counties across Michigan. This pilot runs through the end of this year, but with the support of the legislature and Governor, we are on track to secure funding to continue the pilot through the end of next year.  

View the list of participating regions/facilitator hubs HERE.
View frequently asked questions HERE.

We will be joined by Cheryl Bergman, Executive Director of the Michigan Women’s Commission, and Michelle Richard, Senior Advisor on Education to Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who are tasked with overseeing the pilot from the state. We’ll also be joined by a facilitator hub and a current participating employer. Register now!

Chamber-led Child Care Package Moves Closer to Governor’s Desk  

After more than three years at the design table, the Senate passed legislation to allow child care providers to accept a few more kids, give them 90-day grace periods for implementing new mandates and create an electronic option for sharing safety records.  

Providers overseeing non-toddler and non-infant youths would see their staff-to-child ratio expand, making a difference in profitability. The package also combats over-regulation and is hopefully a step forward in removing some of the barriers faced by providers.  

Check out the full story here!

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