Health Insurance FAQ

Choosing health insurance can feel a bit overwhelming in the last few years. Here at HBW Insurance Group, serving Catonsville, MD, we look forward to the opportunity to educate our clients and potential clients on these important issues. If you have questions about health insurance, we have answers. 

What Is A Deductible, Co-Pay, and Premium?

Understanding key health insurance terms is crucial to choosing a good plan. These are the three main terms you will hear when you first begin shopping for health insurance. 

Premium– This is the amount you pay each month to be a part of the health insurance plan. This is a very important amount to consider because it will be part of your monthly, recurring budget. 

Deductible– This is the amount that you will pay out of pocket for your health care costs before the health insurance policy will kick in. This is also an important amount to consider as it will have an effect on your yearly budget. 

Co-Pay– The co-pay is the amount that you will pay at each doctor’s visit. 

Why Are There Different Deductibles and Premiums for Different Policies?

Each individual and family will have different medical needs throughout the year. In order to plan ahead, you will consider the amount of medical care your family normally requires during a year. The deductible amount will often affect the premium amount.  You should keep this in mind while shopping for health insurance.  A health insurance representative can then help you understand a practical deductible and premium for your family. The best way to understand health insurance options is by speaking with a representative directly. 

If you would like to learn more about health insurance, and which options are best for your family, please contact us at HBW Insurance Group, serving Catonsville, MD. 


When does someone in Maryland need flood insurance

For people all over the Catonsville, MD area, owning a home is a great long-term option. When you own property in this area, it is very important that you adequately protect it with insurance. Depending on your situation, this could include getting flood insurance. There are several situations when someone in the area may need to get flood insurance.

When it is a Lender Requirement

One of the most common situations when someone may have to get flood insurance is when it is a requirement set forth by a lender. If you have a home that is located in a FEMA flood zone, the lender will likely require that you carry flood insurance at all times. To ensure that their collateral is protected, they may also require that you escrow for these payments along with your monthly loan payment. 

When Not Covered by Base Policy

Even if you are not required by a lender to have flood insurance, it still would be a good idea to get it in some situations. If you are at risk of flood damage and your base home insurance policy will not cover it, flood insurance is a practical necessity. This ensures that you will be able to pay to rebuild or replace your home if it is damaged by floodwaters. 

There are a variety of situations when getting flood insurance will be a good option for someone in the Catonsville, MD. If you are looking for flood insurance for your property, you could find that the process of getting a policy can be complicated. The team at HBW Insurance Group could help you to get into a policy that gives the right type and level of protection. When you reach out to HBW Insurance Group, they will examine your situation and find the right type and level of flood insurance coverage. 

Common Misconceptions about Condo Insurance

The next step after purchasing a condo is protecting your investment with condo insurance. At HBW Insurance Group, we offer a number of condo insurance options to suit every need. We’ll also help you sort through misconceptions about this coverage so you can avoid costly mistakes in your policy. Here are just a few misconceptions to watch out for when insuring your Catonsville, MD condo.

Misconception: Your condo association’s master policy protects your unit so there’s no need for additional insurance.

Your association’s master policy covers damage to your building and common areas, not your individual unit and certainly not your personal belongings. By obtaining an individual condo insurance policy, you can protect the interior of your unit and your personal goods against any eventuality.  

Misconception: Condo insurance only provides protection for personal property. 

Condo insurance offers much more than property protection. In addition to protecting your personal goods, condo insurance can protect the interior of your condo to include ceilings, walls, floors, cabinets and built-in structures against fire or storm damage. Condo insurance also protects you against liability claims and helps recompense you for living expenses if you have to leave your condo due to extensive damage from a major disaster.

Misconception: Upgrades to your condo are automatically covered by your dwelling coverage.

Renovations to your condo aren’t automatically included in your policy. You need to add them to your coverage by updating your policy. We’ll help you include these upgrades in your insurance and adjust your premium accordingly.

Misconception: Condo insurance protects you against flood damage.

Standard condo insurance doesn’t cover flood damage to your abode. You can, however, add this protection to your coverage by purchasing a separate flood insurance policy.  

For more information about condo insurance and the protection it provides, contact HBW Insurance Group in Catonsville, MD.

How Do You Get Flood Insurance?

Food insurance in Catonsville, MD is important because a home insurance policy will not cover damages caused by floods. Flood insurance is available through the federal government or private companies.

Your agent or insurer, such as HBW Insurance Group, should be participating in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). There aren’t any restrictions on who can purchase a flood policy. While you don’t need to live in a floodplain or a high-risk area, the cost of the policy can usually deter those with low risk. Your community does need to participate in the NFIP but most communities do.

While the government backs policies, there isn’t an option to buy flood insurance directly though the government and you have to buy from an agent. The premiums will be the same no matter what agent or insurer you go through. The rates are set by the NFIP and will depend on predetermined factors, such as the year your property was built, the flood risk, and the value of the property. When you file a claim, the insurer and not the government will handle it. There are many pros of buying this type of coverage, including that it’s available to everyone and it’s reliable.

There is also the option to buy private flood insurance that is separate from the NFIP. Flood insurance purchased through a private policy can be more or less expensive than policies from the NFIP. There are also a few risks with buying insurance like this since you may be suddenly dropped and you may actually be required by your mortgage lender to have a policy backed by the NFIP. It’s also not available to everyone. However, there could be higher claim limits and a shorter waiting period before coverage kicks in.

Contact HBW Insurance Group, serving Catonsville, MD, to get a quote on flood insurance.

Is Condo Insurance Required In Catonsville, MD?

Catonsville, MD condo owners have a number of concerns that will need to be addressed. In many instances, these condo owners find themselves wondering if they are required to obtain condo insurance in the first place. For starters, the condominium association in question must carry master insurance policies on all of the buildings that they currently own.

These policies are also designed to cover individual units as well. Common elements are covered by these policies and this can cause condo owners in Catonsville, MD to wonder why they would require any additional coverage. 

The condo owners’ policies are known as HO-6 policies and when it comes to making the right decision for your protection, there are factors that must be considered. Unit owners themselves may not believe that they need assistance from HBW Insurance Group. After all, the condo is already protected, right?

In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. It is incredibly risky for a condo owner in Maryland to avoid these responsibilities. Not only is the condo owner typically required by law to obtain the aforementioned HO-6 coverage but they are also required to provide proof of this coverage to their condo association in most instances.

Property damage coverage is offered by these policies, especially when the structural damage occurs inside of the unit. A condo association may handle damages to common areas but they are not going to held responsible for damages within the unit. If the unit owner has decided to install any items that are designed to better the property, they are responsible for their protection.

Any condo owner in Maryland that is looking for further insight on these matters is urged to contact HBW Insurance Group as soon as possible. Take a moment to visit the firm’s website, so that you can find out everything that you need to know! 

Receiving Guests for the Holidays? Update Your Renters Insurance

Accidents are more likely to happen during the busy holiday season than other times of the year, especially if you host dinner parties or have guests staying over in your rental property. By updating your renter’s insurance from HBW Insurance Group in Catonsville, MD, you can be prepared for any eventuality. Here’s how renters insurance can protect you this holiday season.

Liability Coverage

With a house full of guests to include children and pets, there’s always the risk of accidental injuries or damage to a visitor’s property. A slip and fall could send a guest to the hospital, leaving you to foot the bill for medical costs. Liability insurance covers medical expenses and damages of guests who have accidents on your property. If a guest decides to sue for damages, this coverage helps cover your legal costs and settlement, up to the limits of your policy.

Your HBW Insurance Group agent can help you determine how much liability coverage you should have to protect your assets. You don’t want to suffer financial loss due to skimping on liability coverage.

Contents Coverage

Holiday cooking increases your risk of starting an accidental fire, which could cause a lot of damage to your personal property. If you’re not careful, holiday lights can also spark a fire and damage your furniture, electronics, and other costly items. Renters’ contents coverage protects your goods against perils like fire, smoke damage, storm damage, theft, etc. If you have costly goods, replacement cost coverage offers the best protection as it pays to replace your goods without taking off for depreciation. This could save you thousands of dollars out-of-pocket.

By updating your renter’s insurance, you can enjoy the holidays to the full without worrying about unforeseen events or accidents. Contact HBW Insurance Group in Catonsville, MD today to update your renter’s coverage.  



Discussing Life Insurance With Aging Parents

Discussing death is never an easy topic. It can be even more difficult when you are discussing it with your own aging parents. Discussing life insurance issues with your aging parents may feel awkward or uncomfortable, but it is a necessary conversation to have. The folks at HBW Insurance Group are here to help you navigate these difficult waters. We are now serving Catonsville, MD and surrounding areas. 

Why You Should Have This Conversation

In some cases, parents have not shared with their children the necessary information which they will need in the event of their death. The details of existing life insurance policies, burial information, and other related topics often get avoided. Taking the time to have a conversation in which these details are explored will help you be able to take care of your parent’s final wishes as well as deal with the expense when the time comes. 

Life Insurance Concerns for Aging Parents

This topic should be explored with your parents to ensure that they have sufficient life insurance to cover their final needs. In many cases, life insurance policies were purchased years, even decades previous. The coverage amounts in these policies may not be sufficient today. It is important to discuss this issue with your parents in the event that additional life insurance needs to be purchased. 

How to Ease the Discomfort

If your parents are very resistant to having this type of conversation, perhaps you could bring up the topic by first addressing other financial concerns and then easing into this particular concern. It is important that you are sensitive and compassionate to their feelings and thoughts on this topic. 

If you would like to speak to an insurance representative at HBW Insurance Group, please give us a call today. We are proudly serving  Catonsville, MD and surrounding areas. 


Can I Get A Supplemental Policy That Covers Prescriptions?

Health insurance can be confusing. Many people are unsure of what their insurance actually covers and in what amounts. The agents of HBW Insurance Group are available to clear up any confusion that Catonsville, MD residents may have. For some, one of the main problems they have is paying for their prescription medications. Some policies include prescription medication benefits while others may be rather limited in that area.

Prescription Costs

Prescription medication costs can be excessive, especially when dealing with medications that are needed for chronic health conditions. Covering these costs can be tricky, especially for individuals who are on disability or a fixed income. There are supplemental policies designed to cover the cost of your prescription medications, you just have to be able to choose the right one that meets your particular needs.

Adding A Supplemental Policy

There are many types of supplemental policies that you can add to your health insurance. Supplemental policies for prescription medications are available. They can help cover the cost of expensive medications that are needed on a regular basis. Discussing your needs with your insurance agent will allow you to choose the right supplemental policies to meet your needs.

Catonsville, MD residents who are looking for supplemental insurance to help cover their prescription medication costs can call the agents of HBW Insurance Group to get the advice they need to make sound choices. There are many types of supplemental policies. Choosing the right one can take time and a little research to ensure you get just the right coverage. Stop by the office or call one of the agents to set up a time to meet. Get the information you need today!

What you need to know about flood insurance

Summer is a great time to be outside and enjoy the warm weather and longer days, it is also a time of significant storms in the greater Catonsville, MD area. If you are a homeowner in the area, now is a good time to meet with the pro team at HBW Insurance Group and find out more about flood insurance. Make sure that you have the supplemental policies that are required in your area. If you live in a flood plain, or near one, you’ll want to know that you’re protected.

What you need to know about flood insurance

Many homeowners think that their primary policy will protect them from all types of damage. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case. If your home is damaged by water, your coverage will be determined by the cause of the water. Whether it be a burst pipe, excessive rain, or floodwaters. There are different policies that cover different events, and supplemental flood insurance is usually necessary as this type of damage is not covered by a primary homeowner’s policy.

Before you find out that you don’t have the coverage you need, why not sit down with a knowledgeable local agent who can help guide you through the decision-making process? No one wants to find out after the fact that their coverage is inadequate! For residents in historically flooded areas, your lender will likely advise you on the level of insurance that they require, but even if it is not required flood insurance is a smart idea.

Don’t wait until you have flood or water damage to find out you don’t have the coverage you need! Meet with the HBW Insurance Group today and find out how we can help you protect your Catonsville, MD area home.

Ways to Keep Your Condo Safe

With some condo safety measures in Catonsville, MD, you can have peace of mind and may be able to save on some insurance costs.

Get a Carbon Monoxide Detector: This colorless and odorless gas can be produced by the furnace, stove, or fireplace, and it can be hard to realize there has been carbon monoxide poisoning. The symptoms are similar to other illnesses. A device can alert you to the chemical so you can leave immediately.

Test Smoke Alarms: Many condos will come with smoke detectors, but if yours didn’t, you should get some. You should have one in each sleeping area and living space and on each floor. Create a regular schedule to check batteries.

Change Your Locks: When you move into a new condo, change your locks. The old owner may still have a backup set of keys and you want to be the only one with access to the home.

Install a Home Security System: It may be called "home," but it still works for a condo. Even if your condo is on a higher floor, burglars can still enter through second-story windows. Ask an agent at HBW Insurance Group if you can get a discount with a security system.

Light Exterior: Good outdoor lighting is important for outdoor security. If there is a building with multiple units, there should be installed lighting near the front door. Hallways of a high-rise condo building should be well lit.

Know Your Neighbors: Knowing your neighbors is a safety measure. Introduce yourself when you move in and get to know schedules so you can keep an eye out for them too.

Prepare for Disasters: Disasters can strike at any time, and for certain disasters, you could be more at risk by living in a condo. Plan escape routes and emergency preparedness options before any disaster strikes.

Contact HBW Insurance Group, serving Catonsville, MD, to get a quote on condo insurance.