What Are the Responsibilities of a Condo Board

A condo board is the elected representatives of a homeowners association and generally includes a President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Their job is to carry out the business of the HOA, which boils down to three main responsibilities.

1. Manage and Maintain

Managing multifamily housing is a big job. The board must hire contractors for maintenance and repair work, select insurance carriers and approved vendors for hire by owners, collect dues, and manage funds.

2. Enforce Compliance and Standards

The one thing that comes to mind when people think of a condo board is actually a small part of their time, but an important duty. Bylaws help protect the community physically and aesthetically, thereby preserving the property value. The board members are required to hear complaints, investigate violations, and levy fines if necessary. However, they cannot make laws without input from owners and must adhere to the privacy protections required by local laws.

3. Plan for the Future

The most important job of the condo board is planning for the future of the community. All associations have a reserve fund to meet the future needs of the property. The board hires an audit company, ensures the reserve is funded, and carries out updates or repairs as needed.

A condo association exists to preserve the investments of its owners. This is an important job and can be intimidating for new board members. Keeping these responsibilities in mind at all times will help ensure the success of the board member, the board, and the association as a whole.

4 Innovative Ways To Market Your Insurance Agency

The insurance market has become increasingly competitive over the years. With so many agents vying for the same pool of customers, you’ll need to have an edge over the competition. While some tried and true methods are always useful, here are four innovative ways to market your insurance agency.

Brand Recognition

It used to be the domain of big corporations, but even small businesses are using the principals of branding to immediately convey trust and loyalty to their clients. Nowadays, a savvy insurance agent marketing firm can help your agency by creating logos and polishing marketing materials.

Social Media Presence

Cultivating a social media presence is both necessary and rewarding in today’s business climate. Not only will you create and maintain relationships with clients, you’ll also benefit from ad costs that are relatively inexpensive and highly effective.

Online Reviews

Most customers read online reviews on social media and other websites before doing business. Although one bad review can be out of your control and detrimental to your business, you can balance that risk by encouraging satisfied customers to leave online reviews on preferred platforms. Never underestimate the importance of a good reputation.

Insurance Blogs

Blogging is a great way to increase your agency’s brand recognition while simultaneously educating your clients. You can also utilize insurance agent marketing firms that hire professional writers to create quality content to drive traffic to your website.

Insurance marketing is changing, and utilizing the newest methods will always keep you ahead of the competition.

What You Might Not Have Known About Certificate of Financial Responsibility Applications

If you own a marina, run a cargo boat business or operate some other type of marine vessel in US waters, you probably already know that you need to apply for and secure a Certificate of Financial Responsibility, also called COFR or eCOFR in some cases. This certificate essentially guarantees that in the event of an oil spill, you will be able to cover resulting costs. If you’re unfamiliar with the application process, though, there are a few specifics to be aware of.

Ensure On-Time Renewal To Prevent Harsh Penalties

Making sure you have your COFR in place before starting operations, or renewing it on time if you already have one, is critical in order to avoid harsh penalties. If you are found to be running operations without this certificate, penalties could include:

  • Steep daily fines
  • Denial of entry or even detainment
  • Vessel loss

You Can Fill Out Your Application Online

In this day and age, many applications have moved to a digital format, and the COFR application is no exception. On the US Coast Guard website, you can find a streamlined filing process to take you from first-time application all the way through to receiving an electronic COFR.

For anyone working in US waters in marine operations of any sort, securing an COFR is essential. Now that you understand the particulars of the application process, you can secure the necessary certificate for your company.

4 Historical Careers That Still Exist Today

You probably know the modern world is full of careers that didn’t exist even just a few decades ago. However, you may be shocked to learn there are some occupations that are almost as old as civilization itself that still exist today.

Farmer

Cultivating the land to grow food was pretty much the impetus for modern civilization. Although many innovations and mechanizations have changed modern agriculture, the job still comes down to growing and harvesting crops just as it did thousands of years ago.

Dockworker

Once trade among countries began, dockworkers became necessary to load and unload goods. Seafaring and its related professions have always been dangerous, but today workers enjoy USL&H liability coverage that financially protects them from injuries on the job.

Doctor

Medicine is one of the oldest professions that has also experienced the most innovation in modern times. Gone are the days when snake oil tinctures and barbaric practices like bloodletting ruled the day. Today, doctors are highly trained specialists whose treatments rely on empirical study and factual data.

Miner

In many parts of the world including the U.S., mining is still a lucrative occupation. The hazards of the job are similar to what they were centuries ago, but methods are becoming safer for the workers who are still pulling rocks and minerals from deep below the earth.

It’s easy to think the modern world is far removed from the one of your ancestors. However, seeing the same occupations around today can help forge connections with your forefathers.

What To Look for in an Insurance Agency

The right insurance coverage can protect you from unexpected expenses whether you’re a homeowner or a business owner. While finding a great policy is fairly simple, finding an insurance agency you can trust for years to come isn’t as easy as you might think. Here’s what you need to know:

Look for These Qualities

Great insurance companies do more than just offer stellar insurance products. They prioritize their customers in everything they do. Look for companies that have these features:

  • A simple claims process
  • Responsive agents
  • Great customer reviews
  • Years of experience
  • Custom insurance solutions

When you find an insurance agency that has these features, you’ll know that you’re in good hands. These agencies care about their customers and will do everything they can to help you find the best insurance solutions for your personal risks.

Price Shouldn’t Be the Deciding Factor

Though your budget matters and can influence the types of insurance you buy, you should never base your decision on the price of coverage alone. You need to pay attention to the quality of the agency, the confidence you have in their services and their overall competence in the industry.

When you choose an agency that puts customers first and helps you create custom coverage solutions to keep your investment safe, you’ll never have to worry about coverage gaps. Make sure each agency you consider working with has these key qualities in place.

Qualifying for Legal Grow Op Insurance

With the legalization and normalization of cannabis in many states, new businesses in the industry find themselves needing insurance. They also find themselves in an insurance landscape that was not built to cater to cannabis, because for generations it has been contraband in most of the country. Despite the legal status of the plant changing in many markets, insurance providers that do not understand the industry often fail to provide realistic protection to farmers. So how do you get grow op insurance coverage? First, you make sure you are licensed. Then you contact an insurance provider that caters to businesses like yours.

Established Providers of Cannabis Business Insurance

While recreational legalization is a fairly new phenomenon that is only available in a small number of states, it is growing quickly as more and more states realize there is wide public support for legal cannabis. What has been around a lot longer is the medical marijuana industry, which operates in more than half the country now. While not every state with legalized medical marijuana has allowed a commercial industry to form around it, many of the early adopters of medical cannabis like California have. In those areas, insurance providers have already been working with businesses like yours for decades, and those same providers are now branching out to take care of recreational and medical businesses in new markets. They’re the ones who can provide you with the coverage you need for today’s hottest cash crop.

How Insurance X Dates Can Generate New Clients

In the insurance marketing business, you must be able to reach out to potential clients. X dates are the expiration dates for a person’s insurance policy. How can commercial insurance xdates help your agency reach clients?

Clients May Switch Agencies

Many businesses consider changing insurance carriers when they reach the expiration date of their policy. Some may do this because they believe the cost is too high or that the policies do not offer the necessary benefits. Sometimes, there are better insurance companies and a client may not be able to explore the other options until time runs out on their current policy. If you contact a potential client when he or she is considering a change, you are more likely to secure a client.

Clients Value Customer Service

To reach out to clients to discuss insurance options shows the client that you value customer service. If he or she is on the cusp of changing insurance carriers, you can discuss the importance of cost and benefits, not to mention how you could better protect their business. Show potential clients that your company values its clients to win them over.

There are a lot of ways that you can generate leads for your insurance company. One of these ways is through software that automates x dates.

The Risks in the Retail Business

When you own a retail store, there are going to be risks. Fortunately, there are ways that you can mitigate the risk and protect your financial interests from the different risks.

Data Breach

There are several different ways that cyber criminals can target retailers. Shopping fraud and data theft are major risks to retailers. It isn’t an uncommon story anymore, to hear about a retailer that loses its customer’s personal and financial information because of a cyber criminal. Cyber insurance and risk management methods can help protect your business’s data.

Physical Theft

While you might have security systems in place to prevent theft, it is still plausible that your store will suffer physical theft at some point or another. Commercial property insurance can protect you from financial losses in the case of any theft.

Customer Accidents

When you have shoppers in your store, there is always risk of injury. Even if you do your due diligence and post wet floor signs or to warn about any construction, a customer may still suffer a slip and fall or other types of accidents. The cost of a personal injury lawsuit can completely break your business if you don’t have liability insurance.

Without a retail industry insurance policy, you are wide open to a number of different risks. From personal injury lawsuits to theft losses, your retail store is vulnerable.

Get Covered With Agency Captives

The insurance industry is complex, with many types of policies and protections. Agency captives are a highly specialized type of coverage insuring unusual or expensive risks. Experts suggest exploring agency captive solutions to find the right choices.

The Basics of Agency Captives

With captives, companies create agencies to get self-insurance as a way to cover gaps and obtain full coverage for uncommon risks that are either too expensive to insure or for which coverage is unavailable.

Agency captives, however, guard the financial assets of insurance brokers and agents. They are particularly popular during a hard cycle for the insurance industry, which can happen if there are a number of natural disasters, for example, or sharp economic downturns.

Benefits of Agency Captives

Agency captives provide needed coverage at good rates—coverage that might not otherwise be available or might be extremely costly. There are also other important benefits.

  • Customizable for an array of account sizes and needs
  • Low historic loss ratio
  • Specialized underwriting available for businesses with more and higher risks

You can reap the most benefits by seeking out experienced brokers and agencies that understand agency captives well.

Agency captives can increase financial efficiency and reduce operational expenses through low premium rates and less out-of-pocket risk. These types of policies give you freedom to relax, do business, and feel safe.

What You Should Know About Benefits Administration

The role of a fiduciary can be both broadly and specifically defined, as these individuals are defined by their roles. It may be assumed that a benefits administrator is a fiduciary based on their functions of overseeing an employee plan, but a consultant overseeing a retirement plan for an individual is also considered a fiduciary. As such, a fiduciary liability rests on the nature of the work performed and not a specific job title.

Protect Your Assets

For many businesses, employees are seen as the primary asset. However, fail to accurately or honestly oversee their benefits plan, and you may find that they are more a liability. Employees can file a claim of mismanagement if details or elements of their retirement, healthcare, or wellness package aren’t what was specified upon hire. A clear code of conduct has been drafted for those who act as fiduciaries, and any breach of these rules could lead to a liability claim against the company or fiduciary.

Take Strategic Measures Against Mismanagement

Not only does carrying fiduciary liability aid companies when a claim is brought, but there are many common situations where proactive attention can prevent or reduce potential mismanagement. Automated processing and self-service portals are just a few of the ways to reduce calculation or data error, and third-party benefits management can also devote more time to benefits administration that your company’s small departments.