Lallis and Higgins Blog

Insurance Agents Should Understand Your Home Insurance Needs

Joseph Coupal - Monday, June 04, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MAHome insurance customers most value having an insurance agent or broker who completely understands their individual needs and helps them assess and manage their risk. The highest-ranked insurers deliver on both of these metrics. Basically, your insurance agent makes a difference.

Overall customer satisfaction and interaction has the highest importance to home owners, followed by policy offerings. Interaction satisfaction is highest when customers interact with an agent or broker in person.

Providing face-to-face consultation, from insurance policy review to helping customers understand price adjustments initiated by the insurance agent, is crucial. Home owners who have face-to-face contact with their insurance agents are more likely to understand their coverage, its value and the reason for a price adjustment.

Policy offerings are increasingly important, especially for home owners on the water or in flood zones. Insurance brokers often have more and better options because they have access to different types of policies and can shop around for the homeowner to provide the best coverage.

Home owners want and need the confidence that they’re properly insured. They also need to understand the variety of insurance coverage options and they need to know that the policy meets their needs.

If you want a high level of service and a comprehensive understanding of your insurance policy, contact Lallis & Higgins Insurance. In fact, we were recently voted #1 Insurance agent in Weymouth and in the regions, which comprises Weymouth, Quincy, Scituate, Hingham, Abington, and Braintree, MA.

Excerpts - Insurance Journal

Business Insurance is an Asset

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MAToo often business owners feel like paying for business insurance is a waste of money, money that is going out into the ether, never to be seen again. For this reason, business owners want to keep that monthly bill as low as possible, so they are often not insured properly. Unfortunately, when you are dealing with a loss is a bad time to find out you have the wrong or not enough business insurance coverage.

Commercial business insurance is extremely important to the health and security of your business, regardless of the type of business you own. No business owner should treat business insurance as an expense, because in the case of a you’re your business insurance can be your “best asset”. You can be sure that your insurance policy is tailored to your specific needs, potential risks, and your budget. A business insurance broker can offer advice as to the style and level of insurance coverage that you need to protect your business.

Whatever your commercial insurance needs, Lallis and Higgins Insurance can design an insurance policy. Our business insurance services include, but are not limited to the following:

For information on business insurance or for a review of your policy, contact Lallis and Higgins Insurance.

Breaking in the Grill This Memorial Day!

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MASummers mean backyard grilling – safely!

Just like hamburgers and hot dogs, a sizzling grill is a symbol of summer and grilling isn’t just about great food. Backyard barbecues often create treasured memories with friends and family.

Keep in mind, however, that when you grill, you’re literally playing with fire. Thousands of residents each year learn this the hard way, suffering damage to their homes or even serious injuries in grilling accidents.

There’s good news, though: You can prevent grilling accidents by taking some simple precautions. The tips below can help ensure you cook only your burgers — and not your house — the next time you fire up the grill.


Your grill, whether gas or charcoal, should be on a level surface outdoors, away from anything that could be ignited by flames (bushes, fences, etc.).
NEVER use a grill indoors. Odorless carbon monoxide fumes could kill you.
Keep your grill clean and well-maintained. Check parts regularly to determine if replacements are needed.
Never leave a hot grill unattended or let children play near it.


Do not add lighter fluid directly to hot coals. The flame could travel up the stream of fluid and burn you.
Never use gasoline or kerosene to light a charcoal fire.
Use flame-retardant mitts and long-handled barbecue tongs, as coals can reach up to 1,000 degrees.
To dispose of coals, allow the ashes to cool for at least 48 hours before disposal in a non-combustible container. If you cannot wait 48 hours, carefully place coals individually in a can of sand or bucket of water.


From the National Fire Protection Association
Check your grill’s hoses for leaks before using it for the first time each year. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. A propane leak will release bubbles. If you have a leak, and it will not stop after the grill and gas is turned off, call the fire department. If the leak stops when the grill and gas are turned off, have your grill serviced by a professional.
If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not move the grill.
Do not keep a filled propane tank in a hot car or trunk. When getting containers refilled, make that your last stop before going home.
Store propane tanks in an upright position, and never indoors.

From all of us at Lallis & Higgins Insurance, happy grilling, and stay safe this summer!

Special Event Insurance so You Can Enjoy the Big Day

Joseph Coupal - Monday, May 14, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MAGet special event insurance, then sit back and enjoy your big day!

It's your day, and you shouldn't have to put any limits on your fun. And the last thing you want to worry about are damages and injuries.

That's why you might want to Event Insurance. This protects you, your guests and your venue from accidents, unexpected damages and some cancellation costs.

What is event insurance and why do I need it?

Event insurance is a type of special event insurance (also called one-day insurance) that covers injuries and venue damages. Plus, you can add coverage for cancellations, rings, cakes, dresses, etc. The average wedding now costs $31,000, making it a significant investment.

What does event insurance cover?

You can build your own special event insurance policy, and here are the coverages offered:

Event cancellation

Insures your deposits, cake, flowers, rental cars and more if you have to cancel or postpone your event because of unforeseen circumstances.

Special coverage

Insures wedding rings, dress, tuxedos, gifts, photographs and more.

Wedding liability insurance

Comes standard and covers damages to the venue or injuries to guests. This is the type of insurance that venues often require.

Guaranteed to meet your venue's insurance requirements!

Event Insurance is available for all types of events, including rehearsal dinners, birthday and anniversary parties, showers, dinner events, sporting events, weddings, and more.

For more information, contact Lallis & Higgins Insurance.

Fair Plan and MPIUA Homeowner Clients Have More Options

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MACustomers of the Massachusetts Fair Plan often ask: "Do I have any other insurance options?" Often, the answer is yes.

However, it is important to understand how people end up buying their insurance there in the first place.

"Fair Plan" is short for Fair Access to Insurance Rates. It came to be after the riots of the urban riots of the 1960’s because, as a result, these neighborhoods became difficult to insure. Most states have their own version of this kind of insurance, all with different models. The Massachusetts Property Underwriting Insurance Association (MPIUA) is the official name of "the Massachusetts Fair Plan".

Insurance agencies in Massachusetts use the Fair Plan for insurance buyers who have a profile that is difficult to insure. The most common example is coastal homes; in fact many companies choose to avoid these properties. Often times the Mass Fair Plan is the only option for coastal homes if an insurance agency only has access to a limited amount of companies to quote your homeowner insurance with.

Fortunately for Lallis & Higgins Insurance clients, we represent many insurance companies – some of which will help homeowners that live right on the shore line. We are located in Weymouth, a South Shore town that is right on the water, so it only made sense for us to align with carriers that can help our neighbors. We have many options other than the Mass Fair Plan to help insure homes that sit on the beaches in cities and towns like Quincy, Weymouth, Cohasset, Scituate, Hingham and more.

Some homeowners choose the Fair Plan over other insurance alternatives, most often for price. But buying only on price can be shortsighted. Homeowners must consider the coverage offered through the policy, and how well the Fair Plan could handle a major coastal catastrophe, such as a hurricane. On the South Shore and all the way down the coast of Massachusetts there is a high concentration of homes on the coast. The ability of the Fair plan to handle the demand is a concern. We prefer to work with carriers with a broad reach across numerous states. This way they can bring in assets to assist in a disaster quickly and efficiently. Insurance should be about getting claims paid quickly and fairly.

If you're insured by the Fair Plan because you had a claims with your previous carrier, we can look into other options. Contact Lallis & Higgins for a review of your policy and let us find you a better insurance solution.

The Right Insurance for Your Summer Toys – RVs, Motorcycles, Boats and More!

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Lallis and Higgins, Weymouth, MAThe weather is about to warm up. That means you will be playing outside more with your summer toys, like boats, RV's and motorcycles. Now is the time to be sure your summer toys are properly insured for "smooth sailing" while you play.

It is very important that you have the proper insurance when you enjoy your summer recreation.

You always want to be sure you have the proper coverage because these summer vehicles and boats are expensive. But, on top of that if you accidentally injure someone or damage their property you want to be sure that you have the proper coverage for that as well. You need to be insured for any potential.

Many people ask if you can just wrap insurance for a jet ski or motorcycle insurance into an existing homeowners policy. Well, you can but is that really the right coverage? If your boat doesn't have a motor on it, you may be able to add it to your home policy, but if it does have a motor, it will usually be excluded.

For a boat with a motor you need boat insurance. This covers the hull, motor, and trailer and you are protected if someone gets hurt. Same goes for RV insurance and motorcycles. There are special types of insurance policies that are tailored for those types of items. You often get extra coverage like trip interruption insurance, spare parts coverage, and roadside assistance and other things like this that you may need during the summer.

RVs and classic cars have different types of policies. Because a classic vehicle can gain value you want to make sure you insure it at an agreed value in most cases. Classic car insurance policies tend to be much less money than your standard everyday car insurance policy because your classic car is treated differently by you used less.

For more information on insurance for seasonal vehicles and toys, contact Lallis & Higgins Insurance.

Does your Business Need Umbrella Coverage?

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Can your business weather a potential multi-million dollar lawsuit?

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MABusiness owners don't need another reason for a sleepless night, but here's a big one: in our experience, nearly 80 percent of businesses are not covered against potentially business-ending lawsuits and catastrophic losses. That's because they fail to add commercial excess and umbrella insurance to their coverage package. The reality is that when it comes to protecting businesses, umbrella coverage is a necessity, not an option.

Umbrella coverage provides that extra protection a business needs for big, unexpected events that can quickly exceed its primary insurance limits — from devastating multi-million dollar lawsuits to liability claims, employee auto accidents, and more. And coverage is surprisingly affordable. Just keep in mind that an umbrella is a supplemental policy, not a standalone policy. Liability is simply a factor of doing business. And every business that plans on remaining solvent and competitive should have an umbrella policy for proactive peace of mind. It offers extra protection needed in the event of a catastrophic loss or lawsuit, with limits that go well beyond standard general liability limits.

Five reasons why your business may need umbrella insurance

  1. You could go bankrupt without it — especially if your business is in a litigation-prone industry. One large jury award could quickly put you out of business, if it exceeds your policy limits.
  2. Your customers require it — if an accident occurs, they want to make sure your business has enough coverage to handle it.
  3. Your business is inherently dangerous — you manufacture hazardous materials, or have a high risk of occupational injury to your employees.
  4. You have company vehicles or employees who drive their personal cars for business — which brings liability on every mile traveled.
  5. You have a physical presence — one slip, fall or other accident on company property is all it takes.

Make sure your business plans for that rainy day

Consult Lallis & Higgins Insurance, an independent insurance agent, to learn more about tailoring a commercial umbrella policy for total business protection.


Understanding your Home's "Replacement Cost"

Joseph Coupal - Friday, April 20, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MAYour home's replacement cost is a major factor in making sure you are correctly insured.

Here's a statistic that may surprise you: more than half of homes in the US are underinsured. This may be because home insurance policies are often believed to provide coverage based on a home's market value, as opposed to its replacement cost. Understanding the difference between these two concepts is a key factor in making sure your coverage is up to the high standards of your home.

Replacement cost versus market value

When you think of what your home is worth, you tend to think of either what you paid for it, or the price you can sell it for on the open market. This may be affected by factors beyond the size and features of your home, such as its neighborhood, school system, market demand and other external considerations.

But insurance carriers are more concerned with the replacement cost of your home. This is essentially the amount it would take to rebuild your home from scratch in the event of a total loss. There are many factors that go into determining this figure, and as a result, a home's replacement cost often (and sometimes greatly) differs from its market value.

Here's an example (for illustration purposes only). Let's say you purchased your home for $225,000, and you opt to insure it for this amount. But then, unfortunately, a fire destroys your home completely, and the cost to rebuild it, factoring parts and labor, comes to $280,000. You would be underinsured for $55,000 – which means you may not have enough funds to rebuild your home the way it was.

Some factors that go into replacement cost

  • Roof and shingle style and quality, which can vary widely from home to home
  • Exterior features like porches, decks, and breezeways
  • The age and quality of your heating and cooling systems
  • The materials used in your kitchen and/or bath
  • The style of your garage, and whether it is attached
  • Present-day costs of building materials and labor
  • The costs of debris removal, which are not included in new home construction

Replacement costs can change during the life of your home. That's why it's important to make sure you have the coverage you truly need should you ever suffer a total loss. Contact Lallis & Higgins Insurance, your independent insurance agent, we have the tools and expertise that can help you determine the right replacement cost for your home.

Better Home Insurance in New Hampshire

Joseph Coupal - Friday, April 13, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MAIf you own a home or are in the market to buy a home, you’ll be happy to know that Lallis & Higgins Insurance new services all of New Hampshire. Winner a Reader’s Choice Award in Massachusetts for the last three years we are happy to bring our knowledge, customer service, and menu of insurance providers to the New Hampshire area.

Lallis and Higgins Insurance can help you with all of your home, condo and renter insurance needs. In fact, because of our menu of providers, we can match you up with the best home insurance option for your situation. The insurance companies we represent allow us to help families from the Cape to Quincy shore, from Salem to Sudbury and now, from Nashua to New Hampton and beyond. We have the ability to get the best product at the best price for you and your family.

But, don’t just take our word for it, see what some of clients are saying:

"Couldn't be happier! I shopped around to multiple insurance agencies and by far found the best price. In addition to the best price, Anthony took the time to really look at each of my policies to make sure I was properly covered and suggested adjustments that made sense. I finally feel like I have the proper coverage and have someone who cares. Thanks again!"

"Derek was so easy to work with and really knows his stuff. He allowed me to get things done at my own pace and prepared everything for me and explained all the products and suggested what was best, all while saving us money. Very happy with my home policy and our new awesome agent."

"Derek Higgins is an amazing agent and was able to save me money and also increase my coverages to protect me against any future incidents. If you are using a national insurance company, you need to rethink your insurance and give Derek a call ASAP!"

"Hands down the best customer service! They make you feel as though you are part of the family. Always readily available to assist and accommodate your needs and requests. Very professional team!"

"By far the most helpful, kind, professional people on the planet. Plus I’ve saved more money than imaginable!"

Need home owner's insurance or want a review of your existing coverage? Contact Lallis & Higgins Insurance.

Insurance Tips for First-Time Home Buyers

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Lallis and Higgins Insurance, Weymouth, MANothing is as exciting or overwhelming as buying your first home. Which do you do you first: look for the perfect property or chase the right mortgage?

There’s so much to consider that many first-time buyers don’t think about home insurance — a factor that will be important when it comes to closing on their house.

You should factor the ongoing cost of home insurance into your home-buying budget, because it will probably show up in your monthly mortgage payment along with payments on your loan principal and interest and your property taxes. That means you should go into your search knowing the basics about insuring your house and what can drive up the cost of coverage.

Once you choose the house and make an offer, it will be time to find an insurer. There are a few things to take into consideration before settling on a provider — all policies are not the same. Using these tips can help you save money and ensure that you have quality coverage to protect your largest investment.


You know credit matters when it comes to getting a favorable interest rate on your mortgage. But did you know it also matters for home insurance? That’s because home insurance providers use your credit report as part of the formula for assessing the risk you pose as a policyholder. Their models show that consumers with good credit are much less likely to file claims.

Before you get too far into the buying process, assess your credit and take steps to improve your score. At the very least, make sure to correct any errors. Improving your credit score can result in big savings on your mortgage and your home insurance premiums.

Work with an Agent that has options

The price of home insurance varies widely from carrier to carrier. That’s because each provider has a different algorithm for determining customer premiums. This is one reason why it’s a good idea to use an insurance broker to comparison shop. You could end up saving yourself hundreds of dollars simply by getting a few different quotes.

Don’t skimp on coverage

While you want to save money on home insurance, it’s important not to skimp on coverage. Standard home insurance policies typically offer protection from a variety of potential risks, ranging from liability to damage from weather-related perils. However, you may want to adjust or add coverage depending on your needs.

In particular, pay close attention to is your amount of dwelling coverage — the part of your policy that protects the structure of your home. You should have enough dwelling coverage to rebuild completely in case the house is destroyed by a covered peril. That amount, however, is often different from the purchase price. An online dwelling coverage calculator can help you estimate the amount of dwelling coverage that’s right for you.

Bundle your policies

Buying home and auto insurance from the same provider can save you as much as 20% on your annual premium. Do you have multiple vehicles? Or even a boat? Talk to an insurance agent about bundling all of these items with one carrier.

Evaluate risks as you look

When you’re evaluating potential homes, consider the risk each proposes. Is the house in a high-risk flood plain? Standard home insurance doesn’t cover flooding. For this protection, homeowners must purchase a separate policy. Just a few inches of flood water can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage.

Does one of the homes you’re considering have a swimming pool or trampoline on the property? Either factor can increase the amount you’ll pay for home insurance.

Remember, take your time, ask plenty of questions and keep your eyes open for potential problems, and you’ll be well on the way to finding the perfect first home.

For more information contact Lallis & Higgins Insurance.


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