Blog

July 24, 2020
insurance costs

Young or Wizened: Different Stages of Life Mean Different Insurance Costs

While as a society we celebrate the energy of our youth and the wisdom of our seniors, the insurance world takes a different approach. Underwriters deem these age groups to be high risk, which translates to higher insurance costs. And, if someone in those age brackets has an accident, they are more likely to be dropped or have their premiums skyrocket.   We had a situation come up recently that exemplifies this problem. Our client is an 80-yr old widow with homes in both Carmel and Naples, Florida and a newer Mercedes. As she was pulling into a grocery store parking lot, she ran over a curb and heard a horrible screech. Like many of us would do, she backed up, which then tore the bumper off her car. No one was hurt, but insurance companies still consider this an at-fault accident. Damage to the car was $6,400 of which our client paid $1,000, with insurance paying the rest. Her coverage came up for renewal in April, and her premiums doubled! The good news is, the insurance company did not drop her entirely. Our client was of course appalled at the increase and asked us to look for another carrier. However, with her age, the value of the car and her claim history, there were not a lot of options. Fortunately, as an independent insurance broker, we were able to help. Insurance-in-a box agents are limited by the one company they represent when finding options for their clients. If that company refuses coverage or work with the situation, the customer must find another agent. At Wharton & Power Insurance, we can tap into multiple providers, finding the best option for each client. In this case, it turned out that the renewal was still the cheapest option. We were able to talk to multiple other underwriters to gauge their coverage and premiums, but no one could come close to her current provider. Our research helped reassure her that she was getting the best price. We know that when many of our clients reach retirement age, they want to take advantage of their success. They want a nice house (or two), nice cars, and lots of toys. We agree! But we have to let them know that insurance could be expensive. The best thing retirees can do is work with an independent broker who can shop around for an appropriate policy. Aging tends to get expensive, with higher costs for life, medical and personal insurance. It can be frustrating, especially when some insurance companies avoid covering older adults. The Wharton & Power Insurance Team is not daunted by the challenges of finding good insurance coverage for ALL our clients. If you are in the market for a new policy, reach out to us. Send us an email or give us a call at 317-663-4138.
July 20, 2020
personal insurance

Words To Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

July 13, 2020
business insurance

Words To Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

July 8, 2020
employee health benefits

How A Local PEO Helped This Indiana Small Businesses Save on Employee Health Benefits and More

Like the rest of the country, Hoosier businesses are struggling to balance the increased costs of providing employee health benefits with maintaining a strong bottom line. One Indiana small business looked to another Indiana business, WorkSmart Systems, for a cost-effective and streamlined solution and found what they were looking for. A manufacturing and installation organization with 15 employees, this company has been committed to attracting and maintaining its workforce by providing employee benefits. However, with the double-digit premium rate increases, they were becoming worried about their ability to stick to that promise. As a Professional Employment Organization, or PEO, WorkSmart was able to offer access to a better plan at a price they could support. The key behind WorkSmart’s cost-effective health insurance program is the power of pooling. Their co-employment model allows them to place each client’s employees into one large group, thereby spreading the risks and costs. WorkSmart does their own underwriting, and so is able to manage the age risk and demographics of the pool. By partnering with businesses with well-rated employee bases, WorkSmart protects everyone in the plan from skyrocketing costs. While other group health insurance plans have seen double-digit rate increases in the past few years, WorkSmart has been able to keep theirs in the single digits year after year. Another advantage to WorkSmart’s group health benefits is employees have access to 4 plan options, allowing them to choose a plan that suits their own situations. Discussions with this small business about health insurance also uncovered other human resource issues they were experiencing. The transactional functions of managing HR in-house was proving unwieldly, taking up too much time and effort by their HR specialist. WorkSmart’s pooling model allows them to offer small businesses Fortune 500-level HR admin services from one place. Payroll, benefits management, employment processes, worker’s comp, compliance reporting and employee benefits are all under the same umbrella, saving businesses the cost of the admin fees from multiple vendors. For one per-employee fee, companies have access to a state-of-the-art HRIS, HR and legal experts, and a dedicated account manager who serves as a resource and advocate for their needs. This level of service was music to the ears of this Hoosier business! WorkSmart is able to offer Indiana businesses cost-effective yet high-quality employee health benefits, allowing employers dedicated to caring for their employees a viable option. However, WorkSmart is more than a health insurance provider. Their full array of HR services streamlines and centralizes the internal processes, avoiding the headaches inherent in having employees. Employees have 24-hours access to their records, and all communications and paperwork are managed in one place. WorkSmart does not believe in nickel and diming their co-employment partners, charging fee after fee for small things like re-printing a W-2 or answering employee questions. Once a business becomes a partner, WorkSmart is there for all of their HR management needs. Is your business struggling with the rising cost of employee health benefits and the headaches of managing HR admin? WorkSmart may be […]
June 29, 2020

Words to Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

June 22, 2020
business insurance

Words To Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

June 17, 2020
independent insurance broker

Storm Damage? We Hope You Work With An Independent Insurance Broker!

Early summer begins severe storm season here in Central Indiana as we were reminded recently. Some foul weather arrived during the mid-point of the COVID stay-at-home order and caused damage to many homes. The Wharton & Power Insurance Team has been handling clients’ claims but we have also been contacted by people who are unfortunately now figuring out that their insurance-in-a-box policies are not serving them well. We see two starting points for insurance claims: either a homeowner notices that a neighbor is having their roof inspected, decides to do theirs too, and finds they have damage or a week after a large storm interior issues pop from roof leaks. Either way, after the roofing company makes an assessment, an insurance adjuster will visit the property to determine coverage. However, some people are finding out that just because their neighbor’s roof was deemed a loss does not mean theirs will – the result depends upon the adjuster’s determination. Many adjusters work directly for particular insurance companies, creating a conflict of interest. Fortunately for our clients, they have chosen to work with us – an independent insurance broker who partners with organizations that use independent claim adjusters. Another issue many homeowners face is separate deductibles. We received a call from a person who found out he had a different deductible for hail claims; rather than the $1,000 he usually pays, the hail deductible was half percent of his dwelling coverage. So, his $800,000 house meant he had a $4000 deductible! His insurance-in-a-box policy did not serve him well. His broker was limited by one company’s offerings so his best interests were not included in the decision-making process. Needless to say, he has now become a client of Wharton & Power Insurance. When homeowners work with an independent insurance broker like us, they get the power of choice. We work to understand the specifics for each client and find the best option for their situation. We then help them understand what they are purchasing so there are no nasty surprises. Our options may not be the lowest premium per month, but when a claim occurs, they end up being far cheaper than the one-size-fits-all options. We pride ourselves on the long-term relationships we have created with our clients over the last 30 years. One reason they stay with us is that when they need to use their policies, we and the companies we represent are there to help, not hinder. If you have had a bad experience with an insurance claim, reach out to us. We can help you find the right coverage with the right provider. Send us an email or give us a call at 317-663-4138.
June 15, 2020
personal insurance

Words to Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

June 11, 2020
cloud-based HRIS

Why A Cloud-Based HRIS is Better for Your Business

If you are an employer looking to streamline your HR activities, a robust cloud-based HRIS (Human Resource Information System) is your best option. A centralized, easy to use and well-supported system will allow you to focus your energy on more important aspects of your business. Benefits of a Cloud-Based HRIS: 1) HR Management in One Place – There is no need to manage your employment functions across multiple websites, log-ins and vendors. From initial job postings to separation procedures, every step of the employee lifecycle can be managed through a paperless system housed in one program. Simple and easy. 2) Accessibility for Everyone – Cloud capability means your information can be accessed from any computer or mobile device anywhere there is internet access. Managers and employees can have level-based access to the portal, making communication and information sharing trackable and seamless. And, employees do not have to take up another person’s valuable time to view items like accrued vacation time and health benefits information. 3) Updated Functionality – Keeping the HRIS in the cloud allows developers to more easily create tools that support your company’s needs. It is impossible to affect a program downloaded to your computer without requiring another download! Cloud computing enables a nimble and responsive working relationship, making the system more effective for your business. 4) Custom-Tailored Tools Suite – WorkSmart Systems has an upgraded cloud-based HRIS that offers a multitude of tools. While the system can manage every aspect of the employee lifecycle, from recruiting, hiring, on-boarding and benefit enrollment, to payroll, evaluations and separation or termination processing, not every organization needs every module. Our system allows you to pick and choose the functionality that suits your business. 5) Access to Experts – Smart HRIS providers like WorkSmart Systems understand that technology does not solve every issue. We provide all of our partners with an account manager familiar with your business to serve as your guide. Having employees comes with a great deal of complexity. You are an expert in your line of work, and Worksmart is an expert in theirs. Their knowledgeable team has the latest employee management information and technology, and can guide you through all of your employment processes and issues. There is no longer a need to put up with complex and cumbersome HRIS programs. Learn more about how a cloud-based HRIS can help streamline the HR functionalities of your business. Send us an email, or give us a call at 317.663.4138.
June 8, 2020
business Insurance

Words to Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

June 1, 2020
personal insurance

Words to Thrive By | Business Quotes from Wharton & Power Insurance

May 27, 2020
life insurance

What You Need to Know to Purchase Term Life Insurance These Days

One thing we have all learned over the last few months is that life can change drastically in a very short time. It may be that you have been contemplating ways to protect your assets and loved ones if something else unexpected were to happen. Life insurance was created to do just that, so it may be a good idea to review your policies. However, just like everything else during the pandemic, the industry has changed. Below we offer some advice on how to approach purchasing term life insurance. What is Term Life Insurance Think of term life insurance like renting – you are paying each month without building equity in a home. The policy does not build a cash value, rather it covers you for a specific amount of time with level premiums. Typical terms run from 10 to 30 years and during that time you are covered for the stated amount of the policy if something happens. It is the most straight-forward life insurance product – set amount of time, set premiums, set benefit. Term Life Insurance Process Changes For the 18-60 age bracket, the biggest change in purchasing term life insurance is the underwriting, or risk assessment, process. It used to be that after submitting an application, a nurse would come to your home to take your blood pressure and draw blood for testing. Due to the pandemic, insurers are now instead reaching out to your doctors and reviewing your prescription history to determine your health risk. That assessment will determine both your eligibility for and the cost of your policy. Determining How Much Coverage You Need Most people who come to us looking for life insurance are doing so because they have a family to protect. At Wharton & Power Insurance, we work with our clients to determine how much coverage they need to provide for their loved ones. Our approach follows an income replacement formula. For example, what happens if you as the breadwinner dies unexpectedly?  What needs to happen immediately to ensure that things stay as close to “normal” in this new normal? The first concern is replacing your lost income. Say you make $100,000 per year. Financial planners suggest you follow a 4% ratio, meaning 4% being the max you can take out of an investment account to sustain the principal over your family’s lifetime. In this scenario, you would need a $2.5 million term life policy to replace the $100,000 per year income. Term life insurance is one of the least expensive ways to protect your family for the unexpected. If you consider the amount of money you will make over your career, your family is looking at missing out on millions of dollars of income. At Wharton & Power Insurance, our goal is to find the right policy for your situation, and one that will sustain your family for a long period of time. If you would like more information on term life insurance, send us an email or give us […]
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