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ASZ International, Inc.

200 Summit Lake Drive
Suite 220
Valhalla, NY 10595

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Does My Landlord’s Insurance Cover My Apartment?

While landlords in Westchester, NY are legally required to obtain dwelling insurance for their rental properties, this does not necessarily mean tenants are fully protected. Let ASZ International Inc. explain more about the risks tenants face and how you can protect yourself.

What Your Landlord is Required to Insure

The law says landlords must obtain dwelling coverage. But what does that mean? A landlord’s dwelling coverage is a policy that protects the structure of the building. In the event of a covered peril, such as fire, the policy will pay for the cost of repairing the damage to the structure.

This does not mean your personal property is covered.

What Your Landlord is NOT Required to Insure

Tenants are not protected against losses to their personal property. That means if your property is damaged, even in the same event, you will not be able to recover the value of your belongings. At least not without your own insurance.

Renter’s insurance is not required by law, but getting it is a good idea. It covers you and your property from perils such as:

  • Personal Property Loss (due to natural disaster or theft)
  • Loss of Use
  • Personal Liability & Medical

Some of these risks can even be covered when you are not home. For example, if your bike is stolen off the rack at the park, your renter’s insurance policy would cover that loss.

How Much Renter’s Insurance Do You Need?

The amount of renter’s insurance you need will depend on several factors, such as your income and the value of your personal property. ASZ International Inc. can help you determine the right amount of coverage for you. We will also help you understand how to compare multiple policies to find the best deal.

If you’re a tenant or about to become one in Westchester, NY, contact us today to get started!

Do You Have to Carry Motorcycle Insurance or Is it Optional?

At ASZ International Inc., serving the greater Westchester, NY area, motorcycle insurance is one of the types of insurance products that we offer our customers. One of the questions that we are frequently asked is whether you legally have to carry motorcycle insurance or whether motorcycle insurance is optional. Learning the truth can help you obtain the insurance you need to ensure you are complying with local laws. 

Do You Have to Carry Motorcycle Insurance in New York? 

In New York, you are required to obtain motorcycle insurance to register your bike. You are also legally required to get insurance and have insurance on the motorcycle any time you are operating it. The fines can be the same as auto drivers for motorcycle riders who do not obtain insurance. 

What Can Happen If You Do Not Carry Motorcycle Insurance? 

In New York, you can experience a wide array of issues if you do not obtain motorcycle insurance. If your car is not insured, you can be denied the vehicle’s ability to register. A law enforcement officer can also cite you for operating a motorcycle, something that carries a hefty fine. Finally, if you are involved in an accident and do not have insurance, you can be held financially liable out of your own pocket. 

If you are looking for motorcycle insurance in the greater Westchester, NY area, ASZ International Inc. would love the opportunity to help you. Reach out to us today to discuss your motorcycle insurance needs, and let us provide you with an estimate for a policy. 

Spring Cleaning Tips for Homeowners

As warm weather approaches, the urge to start spring cleaning around our homes and property arises. It is important to remember that spring cleaning is not just about fixing up the appearance of your home but also cleaning and fixing damages for a safer living area. Here are some helpful tips for spring cleaning and avoiding homeowners claims:

Clean Out Gutters and Remove Drain Build Up

Fall leaves and winter weather tend to leave behind lots of debris in your gutters and drains outside your home. Make sure to clean out the gutters and drains to prevent damage to the foundation of your home, rotting wood, leaks in your roof, water spots, and basement leaks.

Check Driveway and Sidewalks

The drastic change in weather and temperature from season to season can lead to ground movement creating uneven walking areas that can cause hazards on your property. By checking your driveway and sidewalks for cracks and holes and patching them, you can prevent claims that arise from injury.

Check Roof, Siding, Porch, and Deck

Wind, rain, snow, and other weather conditions can lead to damage to the roof, siding, porch, and/or deck of your home. It is important to assess the outside of your home to find areas of sagging, missing shingles/siding, rotting or loose material, loose nails, and unfastened railings. These hazards can affect your home’s safety and increase the likelihood of a homeowner’s claim.

Check Caulking in Your Bathroom and Kitchen

Over time, the caulk in your bathroom and kitchen can deteriorate and create cracks that lead to water damage in your home. Staying on top of the conditions of the caulking in your showers, sinks, bathtubs, and other plumbing areas in your home can help reduce the likelihood of claims and losses due to water damage.

Clean Out Dryer Vents

Lint buildup in your dryer can cause major problems in the effectiveness of your machine and can also cause dryer fires. It is important to not only clean the lint trap after each use but also to inspect the dryer hose and wipe out extra lint in your machine periodically as lint is extremely flammable.

Change Smoke Detector Batteries

It is important to change the batteries in your smoke detectors at least twice a year. Adding it to your spring-cleaning checklist can help protect you, your family, and your home in the event of a fire.

Benefits of liability insurance for boat owners

Liability insurance for boat owners is vital, no matter what craft you have. The team at ASZ International Inc. has the experience and knowledge that Westchester, NY area residents rely on when it comes to all of their insurance needs.

Benefits of increased liability protection for boat owners

Liability protection is a no-brainer for boat owners. There are many different scenarios where you can be held responsible for damage, injury, or loss. For example:

  • Your boat is involved in an accident that causes injury to a passenger.
  • A vessel you are piloting causes damage to another craft or someone’s property.
  • Any mishap that occurs when you are transporting your boat to or from the water.
  • Someone slips and falls on your boat while it is in the marina.

This is just a very short list of the many situations that can cause a liability headache for a boat owner. If you want to avoid such an experience, liability insurance can help. When you have adequate liability protection, you can be covered for the expenses that occur in the above or similar mishaps.

While exact financial protection is dependent on the policy and coverage level that you choose, having robust liability protection is always a smart idea! If you think it’s time to take a closer look at your current boat insurance policy, give our office a call today to set up an appointment.

Let us help you find the right coverage for your needs

ASZ International Inc. is here to serve the insurance needs of Westchester, NY, area boat owners. If you would like to find out more about the range of available boat insurance policy options, give us a call today!

Umbrella Insurance FAQ

With so many different types of insurance products available, it is vital that you understand how these products work and which products will work for you. At ASZ International Inc, serving Westchester, NY, and the surrounding areas, we can help you navigate these topics to make sound insurance choices. Keep reading to learn about umbrella insurance and how it can benefit you. 

What Is Umbrella Insurance?

Umbrella insurance is a type of insurance product designed to add to your other policies. If you have a claim event on one of your policies and the expenses exhausted the coverage amounts, an umbrella policy can kick in to pay the difference. Without an umbrella policy, you would be responsible for paying any difference. This could present a financial challenge. 

Who Should Get Umbrella Insurance?

An umbrella policy can benefit anyone who would like extra coverage. Still, it is beneficial for those with many assets they wish to protect from liability. If an insurance policy is exhausted, your assets could be at risk. This could leave you financially vulnerable in the future. 

What Will Umbrella Insurance Cover?

You can add an umbrella policy to auto, life, health, and commercial insurance. The best way to understand how to make this policy work for you is to sit down with an insurance agent. This professional will be able to look at your particular set of circumstances and make insurance recommendations that will best benefit you. 

If you would like to learn more about umbrella insurance or any of our other insurance services, don’t hesitate to contact us at ASZ International Inc, serving Westchester, NY, and the surrounding areas.  

Flood preparation tips for Westchester, NY residents

Floods are the costliest and most destructive natural disasters in Westchester, NY, and other parts of America. They are also the most common and pose a tremendous threat to property and human life.  However, the damages don’t have to be severe if you take your time to put the necessary measures to prevent water from entering your home. 

ASZ International Inc recommends buying flood insurance to protect your financial security. In this article, you will learn four flood preparations tips to help you protect your Westchester home or commercial property.

Develop an evacuation plan

Your priority during any disaster is to protect yourself and your family. Before making other plans, you want to ensure that you have an evacuation plan. If you live in a high-risk flood area, plan to evacuate immediately after you receive a flood warning.  Even if the storm is expected to be less severe, you might still want to have an emergency evacuation plan if the situation worsens.

Create diversion

If you have lived in the same house for several years, the chances are that you already know the direction of the water flow. To prevent this water from entering your home, you can create a diversion by digging the water path and using cement bags to create a wall between the water path and your home.

Prepare an emergency supply kit

Once you have an evacuation plan in place, your next step is to prepare an emergency supply kit and keep it in different parts of the house in case you need to get out of the house quickly. Your kit should include enough water, flashlight, food, change of clothes, phone, cash, batteries, and a first aid kit.

Stay connected

It’s essential to keep in touch with your family members and friends. Always have a phone with you for communication in case you need help. Let your Westchester, NY family know the weather condition and stay tuned for emergency weather updates and warnings.

If you haven’t bought flood insurance yet, this is the best chance to get the policy and protect yourself, your family, and your property. ASZ International Inc can help you find a policy that fits your flood insurance needs and budget. Call us for more information.

Preventing Pipes from Freezing

As the winter months continue, and temperatures continue to fly below freezing, it’s important for everyone to learn tips on how to avoid freezing pipes. With early detection and proper preparation, you can easily avoid this well-known winter peril.

Pipes that can freeze:

Frozen pipes can occur in both indoor and outdoor areas. Due to their outdoor location, the more common water lines that freeze are outdoor hose bibs, swimming pool supply lines, and water sprinkler lines. The indoor areas are where people tend to forget that they could be at risk. Unheated interior areas such as basements, crawl spaces, attics, garages, and kitchen cabinets that run against exterior walls that may have little or no insulations, are also in danger of freezing.

Contributions to frozen pipes:

There are a few different factors that can play into pipes freezing. Often, we think about the decline in temperature as being the main reason for freezing pipes. But there are other factors to also consider. One of them being the construction of the building. Buildings that are poorly designed and don’t withstand severe weather, as well as the age of the plumbing system in the home can play a huge part in frozen pipes. The quality and quantity of insulation are other key factors to think about. Blow-in or foam insulation added between interior and exterior wall surfaces and studs may actually insulate heat away from pipes, making them more prone to freezing. Lastly, it’s important to consider the fact that power outages could in fact impact your pipes. Most heating systems depend on electricity, so when the power goes off, so does the heat. Of course, it is most important to realize the impact of power outages during the cold winter months when the pipes are more susceptible to freezing without heat as damage could occur before the power is restored.

Preventing frozen pipes:

As the fall comes to an end, and the winter season is soon to begin, it’s important to drain and disconnect all outdoor pipes. For example, be sure to drain the water from your swimming pool, water sprinkler supply lines, hoses, and any outdoor plumbing systems. Using compressed air to blow outlines is an effective way to empty any water that may be left. It’s also important to store away any hoses used outdoors so they’re not damaged during the cold weather. Be sure to close inside valves that supply outdoor hose bibs and keep the outside valve open so any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing damage to the pipe. Keeping your house temperature set to at least 55 degrees is another key factor in keeping your indoor piping safe. Lastly, you should check for water supply lines that are in unheated areas (examples are listed above) so you can properly insulate these pipes by using specific products like a “pipe sleeve” or installing UL-listed heat tape, heat cable, or similar materials.

What to do if a pipe bursts:

It is extremely important to shut off the water at the main valve if a pipe bursts. Be sure to identify the pipe or pipes that have burst. Try your best to dry things out if you can and document everything that happened by taking photos of the damage/occurrence and writing down everything that has been damaged. Next, contact your insurance company to notify them of your claim. If you have standing water, you should also contact a plumber and property damage company to evaluate and remediate any water damage that may have occurred. If you would like recommendations, please contact ASZ International for assistance.

Do all condo owners need to carry condo insurance in New York?

There are many benefits that come with owning a condo in the Westchester, NY area. Condos tend to come with a lot of amenities and reduced maintenance needs. While owning a condo can be a great option, you do need to ensure you have the right insurance at all times. There are a few reasons why the typical person will need to have condo insurance here. 

Insurance Offers Valued Protection

A key reason that you will want to have condo insurance is that it will offer valuable protection. Condo insurance offers various types of protection that will make it worth the investment. This can include providing you with coverage for the condo, any personal assets, and liability coverage. This will prove to be helpful if you incur certain types of loss or are found liable for an accident.

Insurance is Often Required

You should also get this coverage as it is typically required for condo owners. If you choose to purchase a condo, you need to abide by rules that are set by the home association. This typically will include requiring all owners to have a full condo insurance plan. Further, many condo owners will take out a mortgage when they buy their condo and lenders will require that you maintain condo insurance at all times. 

When you are assessing your needs for condo insurance in Westchester, NY, you can find that it is hard to choose the right plan. Fortunately, the team with ASZ International Inc. is available to help you. With so many choices to make when looking for coverage, ASZ International Inc. is a great resource as they will take a personalized approach to help you build and choose a plan that will protect your condo and ensure you are in full compliance. 

Do you have the health insurance that meets your needs?

ASZ International Inc. is your Westchester, NY area insurance partner. We are here to help our clients find the health care insurance that best meets their needs. If you are feeling overwhelmed about your health insurance options, we are here for you!

Make sure your health insurance policy meets your needs

Selecting a health insurance policy can feel overwhelming because there are so many options available. In addition to the available policy options, there are also provisions for deductibles, copay amounts, and lifetime caps. All of these variables can make it incredibly overwhelming when it comes to choosing your health insurance policy.

Luckily, your local agent is here to help! Sitting down with an experienced insurance agent can help you sift through all of the options and narrow down your choices. There are many different reasons why a high deductible plan may work for you but not for someone else. Likewise, there are many different factors that will weigh in your decision when choosing coverage levels. 

There’s no reason to despair! Simply reach out to an informed and friendly area agent and get the help you need to make an informed choice. Health insurance doesn’t need to be a stressful part of your life. Let us help you find the coverage that is most appropriate for your needs. 

Don’t wait, contact us today!

If you are a resident in the greater Westchester, NY community, we are here to help you with all of your insurance needs. ASZ International Inc. can help provide you with the information you need to determine the right policy for your needs. Give us a call or stop by our office today!

Insurtech: Creating Nimble Solutions for Small Business Owners & Brokers

Traditional buzz words surrounding the insurance industry typically include one or more of the following: boring, opaque, and antiquated in its approach to customer service. However, the advent of the concept of “Insurtech” over the last five years has infused new life into the insurance marketplace. A report released by Willis Towers Watson in 2021 highlights the USD 7.1B investment in Insurtech companies across a wide variety of seed stages and a range of insurance products, even amid a global pandemic. There is no doubt that this focus on insurance technology will have an impact on the way the insurance industry does business in the following ways:

Distribution: Insurance companies and brokers/agents have historically relied on face-to-face relationship building and in-person client interaction as the cornerstone of their distribution strategies. A majority of Insurtech companies are focused on improving and refining these approaches by providing a more open & transparent marketplace driven by data & instant consumer feedback.  

Coverage/Risk Specificity: Insurance technologies are enabling underwriters to establish more defined parameters around their acceptance of risk, leading to more accurate (less obsolete) coverage and pricing. For example, in the P&C space, satellite imagery, location data, and camera footage are being utilized to underwrite property risk. In the life & health space, multiple raw data points (weight, family medical history, smoking habits, etc…) are compiled together to create a single “score” that is the foundation of life insurance underwriting.  

Efficiency:  As clients become more and more tech-savvy, they are demanding speed & efficiency in everything from proposal generation/delivery to underwriting and credit decisions. Insurtech allows insurance professionals to be more nimble in all of these areas and better serve different types of clients (i.e. small businesses and independent contractors) who were at a disadvantage as their inherently smaller premium spends were not always profitable within more traditional mega-insurance companies/brokers with massive overhead.

The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 turned the world on its head and forced insurance professionals to address never encountered issues relating to communicable disease spread, massive business interruption, real estate vacancies, employment practices/workers compensation claims implications, and beyond. It will be invigorating to see how Insurtech companies & investors utilize this momentum to push advances in technology and risk management strategy as a new global normal emerges.  

At ‘ASZ’ our focus is to improve our client interactions to account for changes in consumer expectations and desires. We continue to roll out more digitized and automatic insurance solutions to make client engagement as effortless and seamless as possible.  We enhanced our digital automation at all stages of client interaction, from prospect, to new business client to renewal and even separation.  Our business technology has been customized to help us quickly identify opportunities, streamline communication, identify issues/gaps and help continuously measure performance and profitability at all levels.  We have the ability to maintain transparent and open 24/7 dialogue with our clients with integrated text/email/fax capabilities via our web platform.  We also have been expanding out integrations with our insurance market partners for the most efficient interactions.  Given our increased focus in the Insurtech space, we would be remiss if we did not pay close attention to issues such a cyber security and privacy regulations.  We strive to be overly compliant with all NYS/Federal regulations relating to cybersecurity matters. We have secure integrations with collaborative partners for regulations, licensing and KPIs on front and back-office operations

Sources:

QBE North America. (2019). Impact InsurTech: How InsurTech is Transforming the Insurance Industry. Retrieved from Risk & Insurance, Village Capital: https://riskandinsurance.com/impact-insurtech-how-insurtech-is-transforming-the-insurance-industry/

PWC. (2019). This is InsurTech’s moment. Will insurers seize the opportunity? Retrieved from PWC.com: https://www.pwc.com/us/en/industries/financial-services/library/insurtech-innovation.html

Willis Towers Watson. (2021, January). Quarterly Insurtech Briefing: Q4 2020 & Year In Review. Retrieved from CB Insights: https://www.cbinsights.com/research-insurtech-report-q4-2020?utm_campaign=marketing_wtw-insurtech_2021-01&campaignid=270202443&adgroupid=115917991854&utm_term=%2Binsurtech&utm_campaign=Reports&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_content=adwords-reports-a


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