McDougall https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com Insurance & Financial Tue, 21 Mar 2017 20:20:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.3 5 Helpful Spring Home Cleaning Tips https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/03/21/5-helpful-spring-home-cleaning-tips/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/03/21/5-helpful-spring-home-cleaning-tips/#respond Tue, 21 Mar 2017 20:20:00 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=13225 Old man winter may be keeping a tight hold on this March, and has been throwing some nasty snow and winds at the outside of your home, but there is good news ahead – springtime is here. We have had hints of the warmer weather here and there, so take advantage of those warmer days […]

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Old man winter may be keeping a tight hold on this March, and has been throwing some nasty snow and winds at the outside of your home, but there is good news ahead – springtime is here. We have had hints of the warmer weather here and there, so take advantage of those warmer days by getting your home cleaning done and your house ready for the beautiful weather.

However, before you begin planning your gardens and pulling out the patio furniture, you might want to get a check list ready for your home and yard. Here are a few tips to get you started:

1.     Examine your roof

Those high winds may have left a few shingles in the yard over the winter. Replace any missing shingles, and any that are cracked, buckled or loose. Also, check flashing around plumbing vents and chimneys. If you are looking at an older roof, start budgeting now for your replacement.

2.     Gutters and downspouts

Not just a job for the fall – spring is an important time to check your gutters for any clogs and for loose or leaky areas. Improper drainage here can lead water down into your basement, so you want to ensure that any melting snow or rainwater is draining well away from your home. You should also look into overland water protection on your home owner’s policy. Water damage is now responsible for more property insurance claims than any other, ask your broker about upgrading your policy.

3.     Cracks in concrete

Inspect all concrete areas in your foundation, walkways and patios. All exterior slabs should drain the water away from your home, so if you see cracks fill them as soon as possible with concrete crack filler or silicone caulking.

4.     Move firewood and debris

If you stored firewood near your home over the winter, now is the time to move it away. It should be at least two feet from any structure and at least 18 inches off of the ground. This is a good time to do a clean sweep of any garbage or debris around your home that may be damp.

5.     Outdoor faucets, lighting, and air conditioning units

Turn on your outdoor faucets and check for any leaking or damage that may have occurred over the winter. Check that all of your outdoor lighting is in good working order and have your air conditioning unit inspected before you turn it on. Servicing this unit on an annual basis will ensure it is operating at peak and will help prolong the life of the unit.

A good start to any season is to prepare your home and these tips can help you target the main areas that need maintenance now.

Canada has experienced some rather extreme weather in recent years, and this is a trend that is expected to continue. Blame global warming, Mother Nature or whatever it may be, but this weather has had an effect on home insurance rates due to an unexpected increase in claims. One of the best ways to mitigate the chance of a claim is through proper home cleaning and maintenance. And although you cannot control the weather, you do have control over your home insurance coverage and the protection options available to you. Talk to a broker today!

 

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How Do Successful People Spend the Weekend? https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/03/16/how-do-successful-people-spend-the-weekend/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/03/16/how-do-successful-people-spend-the-weekend/#respond Thu, 16 Mar 2017 20:18:07 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=13212 You don’t have to work seven days a week to be successful. Doing so is counter-productive. Not working on the weekend can actually improve your chances of success. But that does not mean lazing around and eating bonbons on your time off. Forbes magazine has dedicated several articles to successful people and their pursuit of […]

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You don’t have to work seven days a week to be successful. Doing so is counter-productive. Not working on the weekend can actually improve your chances of success. But that does not mean lazing around and eating bonbons on your time off. Forbes magazine has dedicated several articles to successful people and their pursuit of organized relaxation and rejuvenation during the weekend.

Successful people know that shifting gears on your days off to relaxing and rejuvenating is important to make your week ahead more productive and enjoyable. This may be easier said than done for many – we can certainly get caught up in the habit of sleeping in, puttering about the house and doing chores. Chores are work – by doing them on the weekend you just put in a seven-day work week.

The following list contains the things that successful people do to find balance on the weekend; and balance is key to help you face the week ahead – even better, you can hit the ground running giving 110% on Monday morning.

Routine

It is so tempting to sleep in on the weekend, but don’t. You likely wake just before the alarm anyway, and that is because your body is ready to get up. You have conditioned yourself, made a routine, so stick to it. Confusing your sleep cycles by staying in bed disrupts your routine, even making you feel a little more tired, and certainly throws off your Monday.

Pursue Your Passion

There is no better energy than creative, passionate energy. Known as one of the best ways to relieve stress and open your mind to new ways of thinking, problem solving and planning – pursuing a passion on the weekends will stimulate positive energy for the coming week. So go ahead, paint, play the piano, cook – whatever it is that you are passionate about. I mean we at McDougall Insurance are passionate about our field but we also like to do other activities to open our mind up.

playing an instrument

Disconnect

Disconnecting from work texts, emails and so on is one of the most important strategies to truly taking this time off work. Failure to disconnect on your days off simply means you are still working. This prevents you from relaxing, refocusing and recharging.

Spend Time with Family and Friends

Family time is one of the most essential ways to recharge and relax. Quality time with family is so important, and successful people know this. Also important is your ability to socialize, so call those friends and have them over for dinner. Family and close friends are the most significant relationships in your life – treat them so. You will be glad you did.

Reflect

Weekends are a great time to reflect, and from this reflection comes planning and improvement. Use the weekend to be more introspective about the big picture. This is the time to review your life. You want to focus on the bigger picture which may involve your family, what you are going to do to provide them with a happy life, what your time after retirement will look, and the finances you will require to accomplish those dreams. During a busy work week it can be hard to clear your mind and reflect on these things but on the weekend it is a perfect opportunity. And remember McDougall Insurance has financial services representatives who can help make this reflection period even better.

reflection

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Drive Safe Tips for Daylight Savings Time https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/03/10/drive-safe-tips-for-daylight-savings-time/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/03/10/drive-safe-tips-for-daylight-savings-time/#respond Fri, 10 Mar 2017 20:23:25 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=13158 Here we go again – that time of the year where we adjust our clocks in hopes of maximizing daylight hours. The fall back is easier in that we gain an hour; however, the spring forward always carries with it the moans and groans of losing that hour. On Sunday, March 12th at precisely 2am we […]

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Here we go again – that time of the year where we adjust our clocks in hopes of maximizing daylight hours. The fall back is easier in that we gain an hour; however, the spring forward always carries with it the moans and groans of losing that hour.

On Sunday, March 12th at precisely 2am we spring forward into Daylight Savings Time (DST), and we lose that hour of sleep. It may be darker in the morning, but we make up for it as we gain that hour of daylight in the evening. Some do not even notice the difference, yet others will feel out of sorts for days afterwards.

Losing an hour of sleep is pretty tough on our bodies; it affects our moods, appetites and actually can make you a little more accident prone. The hardest hit are those on shift work or those who have irregular sleep patterns. Your body’s internal clock is pretty accustomed to routine, and although your brain knows that the time has changed, your body’s circadian rhythm needs time to adjust.

Sleeping baby

There are a few things you can do in order to prepare yourself for this hour loss; they may seem small and simple but know this, they could just save your life! There have been studies that show a rise in car accidents on the first workday after DST. From a recent article in The Globe and Mail:

“The loss of one hour’s sleep associated with the spring shift to daylight savings time increased the risk of accidents,” one study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, concluded.

Here are a few tips to help you adjust to the change:

Start early

Reset one clock in your home back by one hour and then try and schedule your daily routine to that clock.

Go to bed earlier

This weekend, try heading to bed earlier – even if it is just by 15 minutes a night. This can make a big difference.

Control light and dark

In the morning, lighten up the place, open blinds and turn lights up. This will send a message to your body to wake.  In the evening, do the opposite and most importantly, turn off the electronics, this will tell your body it is time to wind down.

Get outside and exercise

Not only is this good for you physically, getting that extra sunshine will increase your vitamin D levels – good for your body in so many ways, but important at this time of the year, it increases serotonin levels to help you keep smiling!

Don’t drive distracted

Of course this is important all year long – but even more so after Daylight Savings Time. If you feel the effects at all of losing that hour of sleep, you need all of your attention on the road during your morning commute. This means no coffee on the drive (save it for the office), eat your breakfast at home and put that cell phone away.

Check, replace, renew

Daylight Savings Time in the spring is also the time we should be checking those carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors to ensure they are in good working order. If you haven’t already, replace the batteries. This time of year is also a good time to check on your car insurance premiums. Are you getting the best rates available to you? Just like the time, car insurance rates change too.

Hopefully these suggestions will help you adjust more easily to this biannual time change.

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What to Pack in Your Carry On https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/02/23/what-to-pack-in-your-carry-on/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/02/23/what-to-pack-in-your-carry-on/#respond Thu, 23 Feb 2017 19:18:17 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=13107 Getting ready for your trip south this winter? With some of the latest weather, many Canadians are packing it in and opting for a week or two somewhere sunny and warm. Most airlines now charge for checked bags on flights; so smart packing with that carry on is more important than ever. Start with the right bag. […]

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Getting ready for your trip south this winter? With some of the latest weather, many Canadians are packing it in and opting for a week or two somewhere sunny and warm. Most airlines now charge for checked bags on flights; so smart packing with that carry on is more important than ever. Start with the right bag. Choose one that is light-weight and meets the airlines size requirements. Then pack like a boss with these tips and make the flight to your travel destination that much easier on you and your travel mates.

Itineraries

Where are you going? Where will you be staying? It’s a good idea to have these documents including addresses and phone numbers on paper (that flat white stuff in the copier). Yes, you can store it on your phone – but as a back-up have a paper copy. Whether there is a language barrier or cell service interruption – it is nice to hand paper to a taxi driver and then you are off.

Documents

Leaving the country? You won’t get far without your passport. Some countries require a visa or tourist card. Know before you go – Government of Canada Travel Advice. Make sure these documents are in a safe part of your carry on with little chance of falling out or being vulnerable to theft.

Insurance

One of the most important and often forgotten items in your carry–on is your travel insurance. Travel insurance is as different for every individual as your travel plans are, so shop around and get the policy that fits your needs and plans, and carry a copy of your policy with you. Don’t know where to start for a travel insurance quote? Talk to one of our travel insurance experts. In some cases you may already have coverage through a group plan or your even your credit card plan.

travel insurance photo

Photo telegraph.co.uk

Valuables

Your best bet is to leave your valuables at home (special jewelry etc.), but for those items you will need – wallet, money, phone, keys, camera – keep these items packed in your carry on.

Personal items

A change of clothes, a pair of pj’s and your basic toiletries are handy to keep in your carry on. Make sure your toiletries are stored in a clear, reseal-able bag and the containers meet the airlines specific requirements for size. If the airlines ever loses your checked luggage, you sure will appreciate having these items on hand.

Snacks and entertainment

A few small snacks and an empty water bottle will help keep that hunger at bay during the flight. Most flights offer complimentary drinks and will fill a water bottle for you. Also, chewing gum is helpful to have for take-off and landing to keep the ear popping to a minimum. Books, laptops or tablets will keep you entertained – don’t forget your headphones and chargers too!

Medication

Have your meds also stored in a clear plastic bag, clearly labelled.

loading airplane

Whether you are taking a short trip or a long flight somewhere tropical, these basic carry on items will help make the flight that much more comfortable. Your travel needs may require more or less of these items – just ensure you have what you need when you need it at your finger tips!

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Driving Green Vehicles Can Save You Green https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/02/09/driving-green-vehicles/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/02/09/driving-green-vehicles/#respond Thu, 09 Feb 2017 18:56:59 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=13090 Driving green vehicles offers more benefits besides helping the environment; they can also help you save money. And no we don’t mean driving vehicles that are the colour green we mean vehicles that use alternative methods to gas consumption. So how do they help save you money? First, they lower your fuel costs, and secondly, […]

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Driving green vehicles offers more benefits besides helping the environment; they can also help you save money. And no we don’t mean driving vehicles that are the colour green we mean vehicles that use alternative methods to gas consumption. So how do they help save you money? First, they lower your fuel costs, and secondly, they can lower the cost of your car insurance. Not only can you be proud for doing your part for the planet – you can save money too!

 

What is a green vehicle?

Green vehicles are either hybrids or ‘deep greens’. A hybrid car has an electric engine running alongside the conventional petrol\diesel motor such as the Chevrolet Volt or the Toyota Prius. Deep green vehicles, such as Tesla model cars, are wholly powered by electric motors and use no fuel. More and more vehicles are hitting the market that fall into the green vehicle category. Solar powered cars are also being developed to see if they would make feasible alternative to fuel consuming cars.

Solar Powered Vehicle

How can green vehicles save you money on insurance?

Insurance premiums for driving green vehicles vary, for the most part. If you start on par with the premiums of non-green cars and compare that to a hybrid or deep green vehicle you will find the premium is lower. In many cases, the insurance providers are offering discounts of between 5 and 10 percent to the owner of a hybrid or electric vehicle in Ontario as a way to promote driving vehicles that are better for the environment. On top of that the actual rating factors that most companies use to determine your premium generally score better because they are safer, more reliable vehicles.

Since the purchase price of these green vehicles is higher than the conventional gas-guzzler, how can the insurance be lower? Insurance is based on statistics, and so far the stats suggest little difference in the cost of claims for green vehicles vs regular vehicles. Although the vehicle itself is more expensive, and the repairs are slightly higher in price, overall, the frequency in which they are involved in accidents is lower so in this category the premiums remain on par.

Green vehicles are generally smaller, and also less powerful which helps to keep them safer. The technology is getting more sophisticated and manufacturers are able to build more powerful models; but drivers of these cars know that hybrids achieve better fuel economy at low, constant speeds, and the batteries of both hybrids and deep greens can have a longer lifespan as a result of these low speeds. Overall, the result is a safer ride.

 

Where can green vehicles fuel up?

hybrid fuel stations

Photo by plugshare.com

 

Earlier this year, the Ontario government announced in a press release that it is working with 24 public and private sector partners to build 500 electric vehicle -charging stations at more than 250 locations across the province.

Officials in the press release said that a shift to low and zero-emission vehicles is vital to the fight against climate change, and Ontario has a target to reduce greenhouse gas pollution to 80% below the levels of 1990 by the year 2050.

The province’s $20 million investment will include a network of charging stations that will be fast, reliable and affordable.  In essence, you can plug your car in while you enjoy a cup of java at your local Tim Horton’s. The vast majority of electric car charging happens at home or at work, however, public charging stations allow people to top up while they go about their daily routine and support longer road trips for those venturing out across the province.

The network of charging stations will be added to the Ontario 511 interactive map, and the stations will be posted on the Ontario Open Data Cataloque. In addition, PlugShare is a wiki-based map and App of charging stations across North America – of course, there is an app for that!

It is getting easier and easier to get into a green vehicle. If you already own or are in the market for a green car, you should always shop around for green car insurance quotes, and read the fine print – ensure your policy fits your needs.

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Winter Car Maintenance https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/01/20/winter-car-maintenance/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/01/20/winter-car-maintenance/#comments Fri, 20 Jan 2017 19:52:18 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=13034 Winter car maintenance in Canada seems it should be routine. But all to often you see drivers who dismiss this subject. You may think that this information is common knowledge, and admittedly it is a reminder for some; however, there are many new drivers out there, and still more experienced ones that need to be […]

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Winter car maintenance in Canada seems it should be routine. But all to often you see drivers who dismiss this subject. You may think that this information is common knowledge, and admittedly it is a reminder for some; however, there are many new drivers out there, and still more experienced ones that need to be told not to use cruise control in the winter.

Most of you have probably already completed many of following tips, but there may be a few forgotten or new-to-you steps ahead. A quick read through should ensure your car continues to be dependable all winter long.

Winter tires

Check. Most Canadians are already onboard with winter tires. These tires are much more capable of staying flexible during the low temperatures. They provide improved traction when you are trying to stop and turn on the cold roads. The best part, many insurance companies offer a discount on premiums if you are equipped with a complete set of winter tires. If this is not on your winter car maintenance list you are missing out.

Check your battery

A quick volt test on your battery will let you know if you need of a new one or if you are simply good to go. The cold winter air makes it more difficult for the battery to operate, and if it is already weak, it could leave you stranded.

Check your lights

The winter brings with it shorter days meaning less daylight and in particular, in the evening for your commute home. Couple that with blowing snow and your visibility is limited. Make sure all your lights are in good working order and keep them clear of ice and snow.

car covered in snow

Clean off your car…completely

This may be the most important winter car maintenance tip! Play it safe, even if you are running late – believe me, the 30 seconds it takes to clean your back window is well worth it! It never fails, on those stormy Monday mornings, you see that driver who did not take the time to clear the snow and ice from the rear window. Clearing your car of snow, ice and built up road dirt and salt protects you as you are driving and protects your car from exterior corrosion. Safety first – and it’s the law!

Regular fluid top ups

This includes gas, washer fluid, engine coolant and more. Cold temperatures can cause condensation in your gas tank which can lead to freezing gas lines. Consider adding a gas line antifreeze with your next fill up. If you need an oil change, just ask and they will gladly ensure that all your other vehicle fluids are topped up.

Avoid the excessive warm up

Idling for more then a few minutes is unnecessary and wastes gas, not to mention the environmental concerns. The best way to warm your vehicle is to start out slow, driving gently at the beginning of your trip.

No cruise control

Never use your cruise control during the winter months. Much the same as in rainy conditions, if you hit any icy roads (including that hard-to-see black ice), your tires will spin as your car accelerates to maintain its speed – the result could be loss of control. It is simply too risky to use the cruise on wet, snowy or icy roads.

Pack a survival kit

This may not be so necessary for the urban dwellers heading to and from work each day; but, rural drivers should consider one for your vehicle. Or, if you are a city driver and taking a road trip – a small survival kit never hurts. Should you ever find yourself stuck on a rural road, you never know when another car may come along.

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(Insurance) Award Season https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/01/11/insurance-award-season/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/01/11/insurance-award-season/#respond Wed, 11 Jan 2017 18:36:47 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=12987 And the winner is… Is something you will hear a lot in the upcoming weeks. It’s award season, and that means people across the world will tune in to catch the Hollywood buzz and see who the big players were last year. The Golden Globes, hosted by Jimmy Fallon just happened; unfortunately I was off […]

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And the winner is…

Is something you will hear a lot in the upcoming weeks.

It’s award season, and that means people across the world will tune in to catch the Hollywood buzz and see who the big players were last year. The Golden Globes, hosted by Jimmy Fallon just happened; unfortunately I was off in La La Land so I missed the big winner. If you also missed it never fear, Car Pool Karaoke creator James Corden will be hosting The Grammy Awards in the near future. The Oscars are also right around the corner with comedian Jimmy Kimmel manning the ship. Perhaps the most coveted award season just wrapped up: The Insurance Award Season. And in case you somehow missed it, here’s the recap:

Boy oh boy, what a year it was! Big names appearing left, right and centre. And yet, as so often happens in award season, one name stood above the rest. The year of 2016 saw the name McDougall Insurance & Financial take home almost as much hardware as the 1997 film, Titanic. And perhaps the word titanic, which www.dictionary.com defines as: “of exceptional strength, size, or power” is the appropriate title for the year McDougall Insurance & Financial just experienced. Exceptional strength with the knowledge and capability of our employees. Exceptional size with our 29 different branch locations. Exceptional power with more insurance markets than anyone else in Ontario. And so, without further ado let’s check out the awards!

The first award is a prestigious award in the Quinte Area, which is awarded to the Best Insurance Broker as named by The Intelligencer. Unlike the US election, this award actually considers the popular vote when determining a winner. McDougall Insurance was voted by the people as the best Insurance Broker in the Quinte Area. Consider this award comparable to taking home Best Motion Picture at the Golden Globes. To boot, McDougall Insurance & Financial was also awarded Best Financial Services in the Quinte Area, which to us is like winning Best Foreign Language Film! No one really understands it but we’ll take it!

Having a successful motion picture is impressive, but it can’t happen without a good cast and crew. Our organization is no different. Our very own Christian Hutchison was recognized as the Top Broker Under 40, a situation that very much resembles that of Leonardo Dicaprio and his journey as an actor. Both Leo and Christian are prominent figures in their respective fields and in 2016 they received the recognition they deserved. The only difference is Christian did not have to sleep in a dead horse and get mauled by a bear to win his award.Christian Hutchison Top Broker

McDougall Insurance also received the CSIO Technology Leader of 2016 award. When you think of this award, picture something similar to the Best Visual Effects award at the Oscars. The general public doesn’t really care, some nerdy guys go up to accept it and give a very nervous looking speech. However, without it the motion picture just wouldn’t be the same. Oh and it means a lot to those nerdy guys!insurance technology

Our Cobourg branch was nominated as one of the Top Customer Service Brokerages in all of Canada by Insurance Business Canada. Best Actor in a supporting role? We think so! Without the support and localized service of our branch locations and the tremendous support of our clients we would not be the successful organization we are today.

You’ve made it to the finale of the show and now it’s time to reveal the grand winner; The Academy Award for Best Picture. With so many other great nominees out there McDougall Insurance was honored to be awarded one of the Top Brokerages in Canada by Insurance Business Canada. We would like to thank our mom and dad, the random people you don’t know, our fellow nominees, our insurance partners, but most importantly you, our clients. Without you, the year of 2016 wouldn’t have been a success. As our promise to you, we won’t stop here; we will continue improving in the years to come! Thank you for your support!McDougall Insurance Top Brokerage Award

 

PS. If there was an insurance award for best mascot, we would win it hands down.

#FrugalMcDougall

 

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What Does My Insurance Cover When It Comes To Water Loss? https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/01/05/water-loss-insurance-coverages/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2017/01/05/water-loss-insurance-coverages/#respond Thu, 05 Jan 2017 20:30:36 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=12921 Are you covered for water loss or damage to your property? This is a very complex question. Once upon a time all the rage was fire protection, however, the insurance world has realized water claims are now more common than any other claim on a homeowners policy. So are you covered for water damage to your […]

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Are you covered for water loss or damage to your property? This is a very complex question. Once upon a time all the rage was fire protection, however, the insurance world has realized water claims are now more common than any other claim on a homeowners policy. So are you covered for water damage to your property? You better talk to your insurance broker, they can answer!

Water loss or damage comes in various forms; burst pipes, overflow of a household appliance, sewer back, sump pump failure and overland water to name a few. The first couple are fairly common and easily understood. However sewer back up, sump pump failure and overland water are less clear.

Sewer Back Up

Sewer back up/sump pump failure is “The sudden and accidental backing up or escape of water or sewage within your dwelling or detached private structure through a: sewer on your premise; septic system on your premise; or sump pump located within your dwelling or detached private structures”, according to one insurer.

Overland Water

Overland water is “Direct loss or damage by “surface water” entering the insured location as a result of the sudden accumulation of rain, spring run-off, or overflow form freshwater lakes and/or rivers”, according to one insurer.

“According to one insurer” is a key point. All insurance companies offer different wordings and coverage for these types of losses, which is why understanding what you have coverage for can be so complicated.

Most companies have what is called an anti-concurrent clause. This means if you have a water loss that is both sewer back/sump failure and overland water at the same time (which can very easily happen) you aren’t covered for either unless you have both! Clear as can be right? Some companies will limit the amount of coverage you have for sewer backup/sump pump failure and/or overland water! This will show on the coverage sheet of your paperwork from the insurance company.

Lets take a look at how certain insurance companies differ from others when it comes to water loss:

Aviva will allow you to purchase one coverage without the other.

Travelers have combined the coverages together.

Gore has only 2 zones (out of a possible 6) that can qualify for overland water coverage. If your property falls outside of that zone you cannot purchase overland water through Gore.

Optimum has 18 zones and you can purchase the coverage in every zone except zone 18.

Intact requires you to buy coverage for ground water (ground water is water that enters the basement from water found underground in the soil) in addition to their overland water and sewer back up coverage.

Economical includes ground water in their overland water coverage.

Cost can vary between insurers and will depend on how they categorize your location. For example, cost for overland water coverage could be a little as $40 and as much as several hundreds of dollars.

Don’t let water damage find YOU at a loss. You need an insurance broker to break it down!

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Automatic Emergency Braking and Your Insurance https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2016/12/30/automatic-emergency-braking-insurance/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2016/12/30/automatic-emergency-braking-insurance/#respond Fri, 30 Dec 2016 15:31:07 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=12878 Travelling along the 401, you notice an awful accident on the opposite side of the highway, you just cannot help but look; it is human nature, and it is quite dangerous. Suddenly your car slams on the brakes! What just happened? Your car sensed an imminent chance for a collision with the car in front […]

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Travelling along the 401, you notice an awful accident on the opposite side of the highway, you just cannot help but look; it is human nature, and it is quite dangerous. Suddenly your car slams on the brakes! What just happened? Your car sensed an imminent chance for a collision with the car in front of you and took matters into its own hands (or brakes).

Yet another step towards autonomous driving in the name of safety, automatic emergency braking (AEB) is coming to a car near you. This technology has the potential to prevent a crash or reduce the impact speed of a crash.

Automatic Emergency Braking is a road safety system that uses sensors to detect possible front-end collisions. AEB is always scanning, using radar, cameras and lasers to determine if you are about to hit the car ahead of you, a pedestrian or other large object, like say a moose.

Moose on the road

Photo by alberta.ca

This system will come into action if it detects a potential emergency situation. The system first alerts the driver by way of a warning – usually a sound alert – then the system will apply the brakes harder and faster than the driver could.

Automatic Emergency Braking could save you money on your car insurance

In a precedent setting move, Aviva has announced that it is offering a 15% discount on car insurance for owners of a vehicle equipped with automatic emergency braking systems, a discount that went into effect in December 2016 in Ontario. Using the tagline “Prevention Pays Off”, Aviva is offering the discount, which will be applied to the policy after you purchase a vehicle equipped with AEB. Don’t worry, unlike the Winter Tire Discount you do not need to notify us if you have a vehicle using automatic emergency braking as it is built directly into the VIN# of the vehicle and is automatically rated with the discount!

It is important to note that this technology cannot be retrofitted to your vehicle – it is a feature that is factory installed only.

Common Causes for Rear-End Collisions

  • Follow-too close – section 158 of the Highway Traffic Act – there is a reason this is against the traffic laws; it is a leading cause of rear-end collisions. AEB will detect if you are too close to the vehicle ahead of you and warn you to back off.
  • Distracted driving – this includes more than texting (although that occurs far too often!), eating, rubbernecking and distractions by passengers all take the drivers eyes off the road.
  • Poor weather – snow, sleet, ice covered roadways, even standing water can prevent a driver from stopping in time (reminder not to use cruise in poor weather).
  • Speed – of course, slow down.
  • Impaired – the use of drugs or alcohol significantly decreases reaction times for the driver.

The technology we see in vehicles is advancing more and more each and every day to try and make our world of transportation more efficient and safer. The AEB system is impressive but as with all technology it is not perfect. It is important to remember that even with the AEB system, you, the driver, always have complete responsibility for the vehicle at all times.

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Tips for Safe Travel this Winter https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2016/12/14/tips-for-safe-travel-this-winter/ https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/2016/12/14/tips-for-safe-travel-this-winter/#respond Wed, 14 Dec 2016 20:25:27 +0000 https://www.mcdougallinsurance.com/?p=12630 Every winter approximately 500,000 Canadians travel to warmer temperatures to avoid the worst of what winter here in Canada has to offer. Following the path of many migrating birds, these travellers have come to be known as our snowbirds, and they are normally gone from three to six months of the year. Although quite a few […]

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Every winter approximately 500,000 Canadians travel to warmer temperatures to avoid the worst of what winter here in Canada has to offer. Following the path of many migrating birds, these travellers have come to be known as our snowbirds, and they are normally gone from three to six months of the year.

Although quite a few snowbirds have already flown the coop, there are still many lingering here in the north ready to head out after the upcoming festive Christmas dinner. Whether you are a seasoned winter traveller, or if you are venturing south for the first time, there are a few things to add to your checklist before you go.

 

  1. Heath Care

For very good reasons, this is the number one item on the checklist. Be sure you are very familiar with your coverage and in particular, how long you can remain south without losing your health care benefits. If you are unsure of your health care benefits or are in need of a travel insurance plan talk to one of our experts by clicking here.

For more information about Ontario’s Minister of Health and Long Term Care http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/public/programs/ohip/ohipfaq_mn.aspx

  • It is also a good idea to have a quick check up with your doctor, dentist and eye doctor too before you go.
  • Carry a copy of eye glass prescriptions if you have one – in case you break or lose your glasses while you are away.
  • If you take any regular prescriptions, ensure you have ordered enough to cover you for the entire length of your trip.
  • Always pack your prescriptions in their original bottles – never combine them into one bottle.

 

  1. Your home.

For your own peace of mind, it is wise to have your biggest investment taken care of while you are away.

  • Have someone stop by to look in your home frequently, keeping it looking lived-in and occupied. Not only will this help prevent theft or vandalism, it will also help in the event there is damage to your home to have someone notified as soon as possible.
  • Have your mail forwarded.
  • Advise your home insurance provider of your travel plans. They may have some good advice to pass on to you. In the winter months if you are gone for an extended period of time it may be a good idea to maintain your water lines.
  • Turn your heat down – but not off! You certainly do not need to come home to damaged pipes due to freezing.

 

  1. Travel Documents.

Forgot to pack your bathing suit? No worries, you can always buy a new one. But, do not leave home without current and up-to-date travel documents.

  • Check your identification to ensure it does not expire while you are away. This includes your drivers licence, passport and health card too. The last thing you want is to be stranded at some airport or border crossing because your identification has expired – and it happens all too often!
  • Get the travel insurance coverage you need before you go. In case off illness or accident, you want to ensure you are covered while you are away. It is important to have this coverage and even more so to understand the terms of your specific policy.
  • Do you need a travel visa? Depending on where you are headed, a visa may be necessary.

travel insurance coverage

  1. Stay in touch.

It takes just a few minutes a week – or every other week to give your loved ones peace of mind. Stay connected.

  • Let your family and close friends know of your travels plans, including departure and return dates.
  • Ensure they can reach you in case of an emergency.
  • You can easily check in with them frequently using text, email, Skype, or FaceTime but make sure you have a phone plan or are using WiFi before doing so! The bills can be pretty hefty otherwise.

With everything at home safe and secure, and with your travel documents and insurance in hand, you are sure to relax and enjoy your well deserved extended vacation in the sun! Have fun!

 

 

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