Helmet laws and motorcycle insurance in South Carolina

Whether motorcyclists are required to wear a helmet or not while riding can vary by state, and the decision to wear or not wear protective gear can also have insurance consequences as well. As a general safety rule, it is always best to wear a helmet and protective equipment to minimize the chances of injury or death while operating a motorcycle in Myrtle Beach, SC. 

South Carolina’s helmet laws

Any motorcyclists who are under the age of 21 are required to wear a helmet at all times while operating a motorcycle or riding as a passenger. Once the person reaches the age of 21, they can choose to no longer wear a helmet without violating any traffic laws. Any helmets that are worn must meet the state department of transportation’s requirements, which include a chin strap and reflectors on the helmet’s sides. 

Insurance consequences

Most riders will want liability and collision coverage that will protect them financially if they are ever involved in an accident. An agency such as Benefit Insurance Services can provide this protection. If a cyclist is injured in an accident when they were not wearing a helmet, they may be considered partially or completely at fault for their own injuries as a legal matter. This is because most jurisdictions in the U.S., including South Carolina, have negligence laws that allow a defendant to be relieved of liability if the person suing them is partially or mostly at fault for the accident and injuries.

Learn more about motorcycle insurance from an agent

There are agents who serve the Myrtle Beach SC area with guidance related to choosing a policy and learning about coverage. Benefit Insurance Services has professionals ready to speak with you about any of these concerns. 

What All New Condo Owners Need to Know About Insurance

If you’ve recently made the decision to buy a condo in Myrtle Beach, SC, congratulations are in order. A condo here often provides more amenities and sense of community than other housing options while still giving you your own personal space and property. But before you get all moved in and really enjoying your new life, it’s crucial to make sure you are protecting your investment. This is why all condo owners need a good insurance policy, and at Benefit Insurance Services, we’re here to answer all of your questions.

How is Condo Insurance Different from Homeowners Insurance?

As a condo owner, it’s important to understand the differences between your ownership and that of owning a separate house or entire building. While you may own the individual unit, you do not own the building itself that connects you to your neighbors’ condo units. There may also be common areas (both indoor and outdoor) that are open to everyone. For these reasons, condo owners must have their own insurance policies that address their unique needs. Regular homeowners insurance will not do, because it is designed for house ownership. 

What About My Condo Fees?

If you’re like most condo owners in Myrtle Beach, SC, you pay an HOA or community fee as part of your terms for living on the property. And in many cases, this fee does include some level of insurance. It’s important to understand, however, that in the vast majority of cases this insurance will not cover the interiors of your home or any of your personal property. Instead, this insurance is typically used to cover the general property, including any public areas. In fact, many condo associations and property managers require condo owners to carry their own individual insurance policies.

We invite you to reach out to our team at Benefit Insurance Services if you have more questions or would like to learn more about your condo insurance options.

What’s the Best Way to Get Additional Home Insurance Coverage?

When you first take out home insurance, you’ve likely burned through much of your savings before you move in. You might have been denying yourself any number of things in order to move into the home in the first place. That’s why it’s so common for new homeowners in Myrtle Beach, SC to take out the bare minimum.

But as time goes by, you might choose to upgrade your home. Maybe you buy new things or redo the kitchen fixtures. Whatever it is, you’ll need new home insurance to cover damages or loss if something happens to these things. Benefit Insurance Services wants you to more about the best way to add more coverage to your policy. 

Assess the Changes 

The first thing you need to do is ask yourself what exactly has changed. Did you recently buy a new TV or laptop? Are you spending more on clothes and jewelry? Did you install new fixtures in the bathroom? Whatever the answer happens to be, this can help you decide if you need more coverage. In some cases, you won’t need to increase your coverage. Your policy has a range that you may still fall into. But in other cases, you’ll need to think about expanding the terms to fit the new conditions of your home. 

Call an Expert 

It’s not just home changes that you may have made in Myrtle Beach, SC that may require extra coverage. You may want to expand your coverage to meet the needs of certain events. For example, flood insurance may not be covered under your current policy and you may want to add this as a rider. If you have questions, call Benefit Insurance Services today for more information on adding coverage. 

Buying a New Motorcycle? Avoid These Common Mistakes

Before shopping for a motorcycle in Myrtle Beach, SC, it’s important to research your options. You may have one model in mind only to discover it’s way beyond your budget or doesn’t really meet your riding needs. These tips from Benefit Insurance Services can help you avoid common mistakes in buying the bike of your dreams.

Buying Beyond Your Skill

Some motorcycle models are more powerful than others, requiring greater riding abilities and skill. A powerful bike can be unsafe for an inexperienced rider, putting him or her at greater risk of accidents. When shopping for a motorcycle, it’s important to stick with models you can manage, taking into consideration your motorcycle training, experience, and skill.

Breaking the Bank for the Bike of Your Dreams

It’s easy to get carried away when buying a motorcycle and choose a model that’s way beyond your financial means. You can avoid paying too much by shopping around and seeing what various motorcycle dealers in Myrtle Beach, SC have to offer. Then sit down, review your budget, and choose a bike that’s within your financial means. Keep in mind that pricier bikes are also more costly to insure, putting an additional burden on your budget.

Buying the Wrong Type of Bike  

Before buying a bike, consider how it will be used. If you’re looking for a motorcycle to commute to school or work to save on fuel costs, you’re not going to choose a costly sportbike. By looking for a bike that’s appealing and manageable, reasonably priced, and suited to your lifestyle, you’ll have a quality product you can enjoy for years to come.

Once you’ve purchased your ideal motorcycle, you’ll need motorcycle insurance. At Benefit Insurance Services, we offer motorcycle coverage for all bikes and lifestyles. Contact us for all your motorcycle insurance needs.

3 Ways to Protect Your New Condo

Once you’ve finalized the purchase of your new condo in Myrtle Beach, SC, you’ll want to take measures to make it a safe and secure place in which to live. The following tips from Benefit Insurance Services provide greater insight into how you can improve the safety and security of your new abode:

Invest in a “Home” Security System

Home security systems work just as well in condos as they do in single-family homes. For optimal protection, consider a system that includes an alarm, security cameras, and motion sensors for your windows and doors. If your condo had a previous owner, have a locksmith change the locks on your doors as a precaution against intruders entering your condo when you’re not home.

Install Exterior Lighting 

Install motion sensor lighting around the exterior of your condo to deter would-be burglars from targeting your unit. If your unit is located in a high-rise building, make sure your hallways and stairwells are well lit at night for greater safety and security. You should also petition your association to have security lights installed at the main door.

Purchase Condo Insurance

Purchase condo insurance to protect your unit and belongings. Your association’s master policy only protects your building and common areas, not individual units. A standard condo policy offers dwelling, property, and liability coverage.  

Dwelling insurance covers the interior of your condo (ceiling, walls, floors, and built-in structures) against fire, water damage from faulty plumbing, storm damage, lightning strikes, and other mishaps that can cause financial loss. You also have the option of purchasing property insurance to protect your belongings and liability coverage to protect you against accidental injuries that may occur while someone is visiting your condo. 

For more information about condo insurance in Myrtle Beach, SC, contact your Benefit Insurance Services agent today.

How much home insurance do you need in South Carolina?

The median home price for homes in Myrtle Beach, SC was just under $170,000 last year. Single-family property values are expected to rise throughout the cities as more individuals choose to live along the coast in South Carolina. So many new residents coming to the city may cause you to wonder about your home insurance policy. Is your plan enough to cover the unexpected? How much home insurance do you really need? The agents at Benefit Insurance Services can help you answer these questions and more. 

How does your home’s value impact your home insurance?

The value of your home works hand-in-hand with your insurance policy. Some indemnity providers commit to replacing your home according to its market value if it is a total loss in an incident. You stand to benefit if your home’s value is higher than what you paid when you purchased the property. On the other hand, you stand to lose money if your home’s value is less than what you paid for the property. 

It is a good idea to remain up-to-date on your home’s value so that you are not caught off-guard if your residence is destroyed. A simple search on a real estate site can give you a basic knowledge about median home values in Myrtle Beach, SC. 

How much home insurance do you need?

You certainly want to purchase enough home insurance to cover the cost of relocation should your home be destroyed. It is typically a good idea to search the database of median home values and purchase an indemnity policy accordingly. 

Your insurance policy should also cover your possessions inside the home. It may be a good idea to pay more to cover your antiques rather than rely on a standard policy, which may not give you the full value for such goods. 

The agents at Benefit Insurance Services can help you create the home insurance plan that works well with your finances. Call them today to schedule a consultation and to request a quote!

What kind of coverage is received with motorcycle insurance?

For those that are in the Myrtle Beach, SC area, riding a motorcycle up and down the coast can seem very appealing. When you are able to do this, you can enjoy the warm weather while also getting to your ultimate destination. While there is a lot of fun that comes with riding a motorcycle, it is also an asset and responsibility that you need to take seriously. Part of this includes getting a quality motorcycle insurance policy as it can protect you in several ways.

Protection for Asset

One type of coverage that is received with motorcycle insurance is property coverage and protection for your asset. If you are in an accident, if the motorcycle is stolen, or any other type of loss occurs, it would be hard and expensive to repair or replace the bike. When you get a motorcycle insurance policy, you will receive coverage for all of these situations, which ensures it can be replaced or repaired affordably. 

Ensures Legal Liability Compliance

Additionally, when you have motorcycle insurance you will stay in compliance with state laws. Anyone that operates a motorcycle in Myrtle Beach, SC will be required by law to carry motorcycle insurance at all times. When you have this coverage, you will have liability coverage if you are found responsible for damages caused in an accident. 

When you are ready to start looking for motorcycle insurance, it is important to work with someone that you can trust. The insurance professionals at Benefit Insurance Services have helped people all over the state get into quality motorcycle insurance policies. Benefit Insurance Services will spend time with you to assess your current situation to figure out what type and level of coverage you need to provide the right coverage. 

Reviewing Your Homeowners Insurance: Five Tips For Seniors

Many older Myrtle Beach, SC residents who own a home enter their retirement years looking for ways to cut expenses. One place they could be saving money might be their homeowner’s insurance.  Because a home is usually the largest investment your family might have, it wouldn’t be wise to indiscriminately cut property and liability coverage. So, what is the best way to evaluate your insurance coverage to ensure you’re protected? 

Bring Your Coverage Up to Date 

Because older policies may be providing inadequate coverage, it’s important to read your current homeowners policy and make sure your coverage is up to date, especially if you’ve owned the policy for a while. You may want to consider purchasing guaranteed or extended replacement cost coverage rather than actual cash value coverage which typically only pays the current value of your home – minus age and wear-and-tear deductions.  

Increase Your Deductible 

Having a low deductible sounds great in theory, but in reality, you pay a premium for having a low deductible in the form of higher annual payments. If you have savings or an emergency fund you can save money by raising your deductible for claims up to $1,000 or more.  

Sign Up for Duplicate Premium Notices 

If you, like many retired homeowners, don’t have a mortgage, your premium is not being paid by the bank from your escrow account anymore. The premium notices are instead sent directly to you. If you misplace or forget to pay your premiums your coverage may be canceled, which has the potential for catastrophic consequences.  It is wise to designate an adult child or other trusted relative to receive a duplicate premium notice and ensure that it’s paid on time. 

Don’t Be Tempted to Cancel Your Homeowners Insurance 

Many American homeowners – especially those who have never filed a claim, make the mistake of canceling their homeowner’s insurance once their mortgage is paid off. If you are like many retirees, your home represents the greatest part of your net worth, yet older homes face greater risks for fire.

Check Your Liability Coverage 

The most overlooked homeowner’s insurance coverage is a liability, according to experts. As a retiree, you are more likely to have someone in the home helping you. If someone slips and falls, you may be sued, and you could lose all of your retirement nest egg. Make sure your personal liability coverage is equal to your net worth. 

Do You Have Questions About Your Myrtle Beach, SC Homeowners Insurance? 

We have answers! Give Benefit Insurance Services a call today to find out if your current homeowner’s policy needs updating.  

What are the benefits of getting a motorcycle insurance for my South Carolina motorcycle

For those that are in the Myrtle Beach, SC area, spending a nice summer day on a motorcycle riding up along the coast is a dream. While there are plenty of exciting reasons to get a motorcycle, you need to remember that it is a very valuable asset that requires proper insurance consideration. Due to this, you should get motorcycle insurance as it will benefit you in many ways. 

Legal and Loan Compliance

One of the reasons why you should get a motorcycle insurance policy for your motorcycle is that it will ensure that you are in compliance with all requirements under your loan agreement and state laws. If you took out a loan to buy your motorcycle, your lender will undoubtedly require you have a full collision and comprehensive insurance policy. Also, state law for those in the Myrtle Beach, SC area will require that you have liability insurance for your motorcycle. 

Ensures Your Asset is Covered

If you buy a motorcycle, whether it is with a loan or cash, you likely will invest a lot of money into it. One of the worst things that could happen would be if the motorcycle is damaged in an accident and you are not covered by insurance. Your motorcycle insurance policy will give you protection for accident damage as well as many other situations that could cause a loss for you. 

When you get a motorcycle and need insurance in the Myrtle Beach area, you should reach out to Benefit Insurance Services. The professionals at Benefit Insurance Services know how important insurance is for motorcycle owners. They can then help you to get into a policy that will give you peace of mind and provide you with all necessary forms of protection. 

What does condo insurance cover

Owning a condo is in some ways like owning a freestanding house and in other ways, it is quite different. When it comes to what condo insurance covers, it is important to understand what is covered by the association’s insurance and what needs to be covered by your personal policy. Condo owners in Myrtle Beach, SC can count on Benefit Insurance Services to have the answers to any questions they may have about condo insurance. 

When you own a condo, the exterior of the building and the shared areas like the pool, gym, walkways and parking lot are covered by the insurance that the association holds. It should have insurance that covers damages as well as liability in case someone is injured while visiting. South Carolina requires that associations have insurance but it does not define the specifics of the necessary coverage. As an owner, it is wise to double-check that coverage.

As a condo owner, you may be required by your lender to have a condo policy. Your policy covers the interior of your structure, the interior floors, ceilings, walls, etc. It also includes your personal property such as your furniture, clothing, appliances, and electronics. Above that, it also provides you with liability insurance in the event that someone is injured inside your dwelling or by your personal pet outside the building. It can also protect your personal property when you are carrying it with you away from home. Coverage includes things like fire, water, vandalism, and wind.

If you are purchasing a condo or already own one and you live in or near Myrtle Beach, SC, why not give Benefit Insurance Services a call or stop by our office. We have knowledgeable agents who are happy to sit with you and explain all the benefits that condo insurance can provide.