Remodeling Your Home? Why You Should Take a Look at Your Current Home Insurance Policy

As you prepare to remodel your home, it is important to take the time to glance at your home insurance policy, and even consider making changes to the policy, if needed. Here at Gallina and Sons, serving the greater Pittsburgh, PA area, we would like to let you know why it is essential to do so. Here is why you will want to take a look at your current home insurance policy when you are remodeling your home. 

What to look for?

When you are remodeling your home, odds are, you are using materials that are of higher cost than what is already in your home. In the event of a fire, flood or other incidents that are covered by your home insurance, your home insurance company will pay to replace the materials that were damaged, as long as you have enough coverage. Unfortunately, many people do not think about increasing their coverage level after a remodel, and as such, they may not have enough coverage to pay for these higher costs. They only receive what their maximum coverage level is, and that may not be enough to get your home back to its pre-existing condition. This is why it is so important to take a look at your policy when remodeling your home. 

If you have taken a look at your policy and have come to the conclusion that it no longer meets your needs, it may be time to get a new one. At Gallina and Sons, serving the greater Pittsburgh, PA area, we can help you find the right coverage levels and policies for your needs. Give us a call now to get started. 

What Type of Auto Insurance Do I Need?

Owning a car is a big responsibility. In order to make sure that you are safe and responsible, those that are in the Pittsburgh, PA will need to have the right type and level of auto insurance coverage. There are several types of auto insurance coverage that you may need to have based on your situation. 

Liability Coverage

When you are driving a car in Pennsylvania, you will be required by law to carry a minimum level of liability insurance. You will need to have minimum property damage insurance coverage of at least $5,000 per incident as well as bodily injury coverage of at least $15,000 per person with a minimum cap of at least $30,000 per incident. If you do not carry at least these levels of coverage, you will violate state laws and could face stiff penalties if you are caught.

Collision and Comprehensive Coverage

The state minimum liability insurance coverage levels will only protect the other driver if you are at fault in an accident. If you have an expensive car that would be hard to replace, or if you have an auto loan, you will also want to have collision and comprehensive coverage. This type of coverage will give you a more blanket level of protection and will ensure you are covered for a variety of losses including theft or vandalism. 

If you own a car in the Pittsburgh, PA area, you should contact Gallina and Sons to discuss your auto insurance needs further. The team at Gallina and Sons can help anyone to understand better the type of auto insurance that they need to have. Our company can then get you into a reliable policy that provides you with the right level and type of coverage. 

Commercial Insurance: Does Your Business Need It?

Whether your business needs commercial insurance or not can depend on a lot of factors. One of those is the size of your business, but the main issue is merely the kind of business you have. If you have a large warehouse or retail space, or anything where you have customers coming to your physical location, commercial insurance from Gallina and Sons to protect your Pittsburgh, PA area business can be important. The same is true if you have employees because you need to make sure they have the protection they need, as well. But if you work from home online and have no employees, commercial insurance may not be required.

The general rule for commercial insurance and whether your business needs it is based on how much liability and risk you are taking by operating that business. When you have employees and customers at your location, and they could potentially be harmed or cause harm to others, having insurance to protect you from these types of issues matters financially. People who work out of their homes and do not have employees or customers at their location do not have the same types of risk factors for these types of problems, so they are less likely to need any type of commercial insurance policy.

Your Pittsburgh, PA business matters and you want to keep it safe. By reaching out to us today at Gallina and Sons, we can help you determine whether you need a commercial insurance policy for your company. If you do, we can help you get the policy that will work for you and be the best for your needs. Then you can have real peace of mind, and know that your business is protected the right way for the long term.

Am I Required to Have Home Insurance?

When you purchase a home in Pittsburgh, PA, there’s no question that it is an exciting time and experience. As a new homeowner, you may wonder if you really need to contact Gallina and Sons to help you purchase a homeowner’s insurance policy. Is this needed? Why should you have to pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year for it?

While these are good questions, there is one situation where it is required. However, even if you don’t have to have this policy – it’s still a good idea to invest in it. Keep reading to learn more.

Do You Have a Mortgage?

If you have received a loan to purchase the home you are now living in, it is often required by the lender that you have homeowner insurance. This policy will protect the investment they have made and ensure if something is damaged, broken, stolen, or some other issue arises, that it can be repaired and the lender will still have a structure that is worth its original value.

No Mortgage – No Insurance?

According to the above, you may think that if you paid cash for your home, or if you have paid off your mortgage, that you no longer need to pay for home insurance. This is not correct. The fact is if you don’t have this coverage and someone is injured on your property, if a fire occurs, or even a natural disaster, you won’t have any means to rebuild or pay expenses. This can leave you homeless. By having home insurance, you have coverage to ensure you can rebuild and that your investment is protected.

If you need to purchase home insurance, please be sure to call the professional team at Gallina and Sons, proudly serving the Pittsburgh, PA area today.

Common Misconceptions About Auto Insurance

At Gallina and Sons, we have worked with people who have some pretty common misconceptions about car insurance. If you live in Pittsburgh, PA or the surrounding area and have any of the following ideas, we are here to bust them.

Insuring a Red Car Costs More

Too many people have asked us over the years if their red car is going to cost more to insure. Color has nothing to do with your policy premiums. Your policy will be affected more by things like your driving record, credit history, and more.

You Always Get The Best Policy

Many people believe that an agent is going to find the best possible insurance policy for them, no matter what. That isn’t always the case. While an agent will get you the best policy their company offers, they won’t suggest one outside of their employer. There’s a strong fact that you might get a better policy option from a different company.

Gender Affects Your Coverage

The idea that men have higher premiums than women is a silly misconception that is more like a bad sitcom joke than anything. Insurance companies base their premiums on a driver’s history and the quality of their vehicle. The gender of the driver has almost nothing to do with it.

Lapsed Coverage Saves You Money

Some people try to save a little money by letting their insurance policy lapse for a few months. This mistake is a huge one. That’s because you can not only get severely penalized if you’re caught without insurance but will end up paying higher premiums because of your lapse.

Avoid These Misconceptions

So if you live in Pittsburgh, PA or the surrounding areas and suffer from these misconceptions, please contact us at Gallina and Sons. We can help you better understand your insurance policies and ensure that you don’t experience any complications due to a misunderstanding.

How to Change Home Insurance

Home insurance is something that is very important and with the right information you can get a policy that is going to work for you in the most beneficial way possible. Knowing how to switch your coverage or change it is one of the best ways you can be sure you are getting the most out of your policy. For those in the Pittsburgh, PA area, the agents with Gallina and Sons can help you find the home policy that works best for you.

Changing your Home Insurance Coverage

Home insurance is something that is very important, and the right coverage is essential to make sure your home is protected from any issue that you may come up against. The proper coverage can mean the difference between being able to rebuild or move after your home is destroyed and can mean the difference between being able to carry on and financial ruin. Switching home insurance coverage is not as difficult as you imagine.

Taking the time to talk with an agent at a local insurance agency is the best way to know how to go about changing your home insurance coverage. You are going to need to first initiate the change by contacting the agent or new agency you want to have your home insured with. You then need to have an adjuster visit your home to see how much it is worth and how much it should be insured for. You can then talk with an agent to find out what policy is going to work best for you and what coverage you need.

For those in the Pittsburgh, PA area, the agents with Gallina and Sons can help you to find the coverage you need and the coverage that is going to keep your home safe from any disaster that might strike and destroy your home. Contact our agents for more information.

When Can You Claim Your Condo Association Insurance?

Owning a condominium usually brings along unique insurance needs. You need to remember the fact that when you purchase a condominium in Pittsburgh, PA, you are acquiring an interest in a property of homes. 

A condominium board or Homeowners’ Association is in charge of the property. What you own as an individual is the space around the four walls, but anything outside is shared. You will be expected to pay fees for amenities and to maintain the condo complex. 

The shared ownership of the space usually creates a great challenge when it comes to liability and property damage claims. However, a Condo Association insurance policy from Gallina and Sons will go a long way towards addressing these issues. So, when should you claim your condo association insurance policy?

When There Is a Liability Claim Filed By a Third Party

It is good to mention that your condo association’s insurance policy helps cover the structure of the building and all common areas. The policy may or may not extend to the inside of your unit depending on the service provider.

You can file a claim on your condo association’s policy if you are hit with a lawsuit or if you need to cover the medical costs of another person who suffered injuries after slipping and falling in a common area that is maintained by the association.

When There Is Property Damage on the Common Areas

The property coverage on your condo association’s insurance policy is meant to offer protection against different disasters that may affect all the common areas of the units that you share with the other residents such as the basement, the elevator, walkways, roofs, and courtyards.

Don’t be afraid to file a claim if something happens and any of these common areas are rendered unusable. The insurance provider will take care of all the necessary repairs.

Do you own a condominium in Pittsburgh, PA? Contact Gallina and Sons today to learn more about a condo association’s insurance policy.

Will my insurance cover times when my business can’t be open through no fault of my own?

At Gallina and Sons, we know how important it is to protect your business in Pittsburgh, PA. Your business is not just your most valuable asset, but you are depending on it to provide income and support for you and your family for years to come. Obtaining the right commercial insurance policy is the first step in protecting your investment, and normally people purchase these commercial policies for auto, property, and liability.

Another important loss that no one can be prepared for is when the business is temporarily closed, such as in the aftermath of a natural disaster. The bills still need to be paid, like the mortgage and the electricity. Workers still need to provide for their families, and you may even owe them money for work they have done. But when your business isn’t open, you can’t generate the income you need to pay for everything. The losses will add up, and temporary closures have often caused companies to eventually shut down permanently when they could not recover.

With business interruption insurance, your small business can survive a temporary shutdown. You can add business interruption insurance to your already existing commercial policy, such as your BOP (Business owner’s policy). Your policy can cover profits you expected to receive, operating expenses you are still paying, and extra expenses that your business incurs because of the disaster. Your policy may even cover the expenses associated with moving your business temporarily until your original location is accessible again. 

If you have a small business in Pittsburgh, PA and you want to protect it against a temporary shutdown, or if you have any other commercial insurance questions, please call Gallina and Sons today.

How to Organize Home Improvement Projects

Homeownership in Pittsburgh, PA is a never-ending battle. It’s you versus the infinite list of things you want and need to do to the home. Before you pull your hair out of your skull, Gallina and Sons have a few tips to help you create a project hierarchy that will help you stay productive and satisfied with your efforts.

Priorities

Many experts talk about prioritizing projects that add the most value to the home. While there’s merit to that approach, it might not be the best starting point. You can worry about cost and value before you commit, but usually, it’s better to prioritize the things that matter most to you on a personal level. Put things that bother you at the top of the list (as opposed to things you really want). Fixing the squeaky door often grants more peace of mind than building the new deck or outdoor fireplace. The projects that add the most value to your daily life are often less ambitious, and they’ll keep you motivated to move on to the next.

Cost vs. Value

Still, comparing cost and value is a good way to pick between projects when other methods fail. There are plenty of tools to help you estimate what kind of return you’ll get for your spending, and it can help you make informed decisions.

Timing Is Everything

The most valuable resource for DIY projects is time. Here’s a rule to help you determine whether or not you should start a project. Estimate how long you think it will take, and then triple it. If you don’t have the time to handle unexpected problems that arise, then maybe it should wait until later. This doesn’t apply to emergency projects that are necessary to keep the house functioning and safe (like plumbing issues), but it can help you organize your more ambitious ideas.

Since you’re doing so much with your Pittsburgh, PA home, there’s one thing to remember. Changes to your home can, on occasion, necessitate changes to your insurance policy. Be sure to check in with your Gallina and Sons agent every once in a while to ensure you still have the best plan.

Is Auto Insurance Required in Pennsylvania?

If you’re an adult living in the Pittsburgh, PA area, chances are you drive a car. With each state and territory having their laws governing auto insurance, it’s no wonder there’s confusion across the United States over what is and isn’t required. Fortunately, Gallina and Sons Insurance is here to help. Currently, auto insurance is required under law for all Pennsylvania drivers. That said, the law itself is a little more complicated when it comes to buying auto insurance and making sure you have what you need. Here’s what you need to know:

Pennsylvania Uses ‘Choice No Fault’ Regulations

Most people are familiar with either fault (where the driver deemed to be liable for the accident pays for the damages and medical costs through their insurance or personal funds) or no-fault laws. (where both drivers involved have their insurance companies pay for the damages and medical costs) However, Pennsylvania is pretty unique in that it has "choice no-fault" laws, where drivers can opt in or out of no-fault auto insurance.

However, it is essential to know that this choice must be made at the time that auto insurance is purchased, and the choice cannot be changed in the event of an accident. 

There Are Minimum Coverage Requirements

Like most states, Pennsylvania does have a minimum coverage limit for drivers. While the numbers are subject to change, they are currently at $15,000 per person or $30,000 per accident when it comes to bodily injury. With medical benefits, the minimum is at $5,000 per accident. Pennsylvania also can impose hefty fines on people who are caught driving without proper auto insurance (especially if they are involved in an accident), so it is essential to make sure you have a great insurance policy that both fits your budget and adheres to state laws. 

If you live in the Pittsburgh, PA area, contact Gallina and Sons to learn more about how to obtain a quote and a policy.