Is Your Auto Insurance Working For You?

Auto insurance is in place not to cause trouble for drivers but rather to protect them from the event of an accident. As such, it is important that your auto insurance policy work for you not against you. For those in Charlotte, NC for instance, insurance needs are different than for people in other locations making it important to get the perfect policy.

The first step to finding out if your policy is working for you or not is to take a look at your premiums, all the premiums that you have paid since you took out the policy, not just those that you are currently paying. This helps you to determine how much your policy has gone up in price, how much your policy has changed since you took it out, and any other fees that may have been associated with it. This is going to give you a good look at how much you are paying and if the policy is still worth the amount that you are paying each month.

The next step is to take a look at how many claims you have made against your policy. If you have had the policy for ten years for example and have never had a claim but the price has still gone up exponentially every year, you may want to think about switching agencies and getting a lower rate. Agencies often raise premiums for those that do not have claims to help compensate for those that have made claims.

The last thing you want to do is consider any perks that the agency you are working with offers. Do they have cash back, safe driver discounts, and more? This is again going to help you determine if the policy is worth the price that you are paying. For those in Charlotte, NC talking with an agent can help you determine what policy and coverage you need.  

Installing a New Fence? Make Sure It Will Protect Your Home

Ah yes, you’ve decided to add a beautiful white picket fence to the front of your property this year. Lovely. But have you considered if it will do anything beyond adding beauty to your home? A fence can be a key element of your home security system when the right one is installed on your Charlotte, NC home. The folks over at Jim Boyce Insurance offer up these tips to help you protect your largest investment.

Fence Should Be Four Foot Tall

In order to increase the security of your property, a fence should be tall enough that it poses an obstacle to a potential intruder.  A wrought iron fence still offers an elegant view of your home while preventing casual intruders. If you own a pool, some municipalities require it to be taller. Check with your city inspector for applicable rules and regulations. By securing the perimeter of the yard, you may actually see an increase of the value of the entire property.

Surround Your Property for Best Defense

Placing a gate and fence along the road at the front of your yard looks very formidable to a thief casing the neighborhood.  However, if the fence does not encircle the yard it actually creates an invitation for a burglar to gain entry at the rear out of sight of your neighbors. Fencing at the back of the property does not have to match the front where it is visible and choosing a more economic version can provide protection while reducing costs.

Electronic Monitoring Raises the Game

With the cost of home security systems dropping and improving with technology, it’s not hard to add a camera and electronic surveillance at your gate. This can add extra security and convenience.

Your agent at Jim Boyce Insurance is available to answer any more questions you might have about protecting your Charlotte, NC area home. Give us a call today.

Protect Your Home as an Airbnb

Home sharing has become a popular option for travelers looking for that cool tourist experience that allows them to stay just exactly where they want to and for homeowners who want to take advantage of this trend.

So, you have a beautiful home. One you’d like to share with others. You want a boost to your income. You make the decision to list it as an Airbnb. There are some things to consider putting into place to protect yourself, your home and your property.

The first step should be a call to your insurance agent for a discussion about what your homeowner’s policy covers in this situation. When you consistently use your home dwelling as an Airbnb, the use changes from residence to rental property. Depending on your insurer and the state you’re in, your homeowner’s policy may not protect you under these circumstances. 

Some policies have a provision that allows for a limited short-term rental of one four week period— say, you want to take advantage of the fact that the Super Bowl is happening down the street, so you put your home up as a rental. Beyond that, many policies have a “business activity exclusion” that would prevent using your home as a rental property for longer than that brief period.

If, however, you can’t resist the idea of using your home as an Airbnb, possible options for increased protection include:

  • Consider an add-on endorsement or rider that supplements your current policy. 
  • Look at getting a home business policy that provides much greater protection.
  • Check out whether a landlord or rental dwelling policy would apply.
  • See if you insurer offers a combination of a homeowner’s and short-term rental insurance policy.
  • Incorporate. Since your Airbnb is a business this might be a worthwhile choice.

If you’re going to open your doors to the world of home-sharing, be smart about it. Contact Jim Boyce Insurance, serving Charlotte, NC,

Be Prepared For Chilly Charlotte Weather: Fall Home Checklist,

Fall means more than just lower temperatures and falling leaves for homeowners in Charlotte, NC. When autumn rolls around, it’s time to perform your annual fall home maintenance to get ready for winter. Make sure you’re ready for another Charlotte winter with this fall checklist to ensure your home is prepared for the colder months ahead.

Have Your Furnace Inspected. When temperatures drop, your heating system is likely to see a lot of use, so schedule an inspection now to make sure it is running smoothly. By preparing now, you’ll avoid having to wait in line for repairs when it’s time to turn your heating system on.  

Clean Your Gutters: The fall season is the best time to clean debris and leaf buildup from your gutters. While Charlotte generally has mild winters, it’s better to clean them now than taking the chance that snow or ice could accumulate in blocked gutters and cause them to pull away from the house.

Protect Against Air Leaks: When you crank the heat up this winter, you don’t want to be heating up the outdoors. Air leaks in your home will raise your home energy costs and leave you chilly. Check your home for air leaks by sealing and insulating your home properly. Caulk cracks and gaps and install weatherstripping around doors and windows. Have your ducts inspected as well. Heat loss through ducts can cause as much as a 20% loss of heat from your home.  

Schedule a Chimney Inspection: If you are planning to use your wood stove or fireplace when the cold days arrive, you should have them checked to make sure they are clean, safe, and operating properly. Additionally, when using a wood stove or fireplace, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that you have a battery-operated smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector installed in the space being heated. Contact Jim Boyce Insurance to make sure your homeowner’s fire hazard insurance coverage is up to date.

Prepare Your Yard: If your home features outdoor living areas such as a patio or deck, fall is generally a good time to begin packing up the grill, storing gear, covering furniture and prepping your outdoor spaces for inclement weather. Remove leaves and debris from decks or patios to prevent mold and mildew, turn off exterior faucets and reset the timing for automatic sprinklers.

For more information about how to keep your Queen City home safe and warm this winter, contact the Charlotte, NC home protection experts at Jim Boyce Insurance today.  

Knowing if a Company is Responsible for a Fall Claim

So a person slipped and fell on the premise of a business. The company is probably in panic wondering if the person is going to sue and for how much. What’s best for a company to do is to assess the situation and determine if the business is at fault, and of course, contact the insurance company and attorney. 

1. Was There Water on the Floor

Once a fall occurs, it’s important for the company to look and see if there was water on the floor. This isn’t always a just reason for a claim, though. If there was a sign, cone or other labeling that states the floor is wet or to be cautious, it’s the responsibility of the person. The sign must be in plain sight, though, or the business could still be held responsible. 

2. Was the Area Damaged

Holes, cracks and uneven sidewalks are common causes of falls. It’s vital that a company fixes the issues in a timely manner. In between the time the damage arises and the repair or replacement, the company must create a sign that states the area is damaged and the person must avoid it. Caution taping off the area is one way to prevent people from passing through the area. If the portion of the building is left for anyone to walk on without any warning, a lawsuit could arise from the fall. 

3. Winter Accidents 

When it snows and is icy, it’s obviously not the company’s fault. However, if a fall results from the business not cleaning a sidewalk off or plowing the parking lot, it can be considered the company’s fault. If the sidewalks and parking lot were maintained recently and it just kept or started snowing again, the fall wasn’t necessarily the business’ fault. However, if the sidewalks and parking lot wasn’t touched, it can be considered the company’s fault. 

To create a policy that protects your business and makes your business less likely to experience a liability claim, contact Jim Boyce Insurance, serving Charlotte, NC, at 704-364-9955. 

What You Should Know About RV Insurance

An RV is a great investment. It gives you a chance to gather the family and see the country together. While an RV is a great investment for the family, it is also an expensive one. The best way to protect your investment is to purchase RV insurance through Jim Boyce Insurance, who serves the Charlotte, NC area. Before you do, however, you should understand how RV insurance works.

What Does RV Insurance Cover?

RV insurance is similar automobile insurance. It includes collision, comprehensive, and liability insurance. If you want additional insurance for your belongings on board or any equipment attached, such as an awning or satellite dish, it can be purchased separately.

How Much Does RV Insurance Cost?

The cost of RV insurance depends on the class. There are three RV classes. They include:

  • Class A: This class includes luxury coach models, converted buses, and motor coaches. The vehicles in Class A can be up to 75 feet long.

  • Class B: This is the smallest class of RV’s. They can include cargo vans, travel trailers, and camper vans.

  • Class C: RV’s in this class use a cargo van for driving the RV. The camper portion extends over the cab area. It also covers all 5th wheel vehicles.

When it comes to cost, insurance for Class A RV’s is the most expensive. That is followed by Class C, and then Class B.

The cost will also depend on if you are going to be using your RV occasionally or if you are going to be living in it full time. Your driving history and your past claims also have a great deal to do with the cost of insurance. If you choose a low deductible, the cost of your insurance would be higher. If you choose a higher deductible, your insurance would be lower. Finally, if you add any additional riders to your insurance, such as coverage for personal belongings or towing and roadside assistance, your premiums would be higher.

The rates and coverage vary from state to state, therefore,  you would need to contact an agent for a quote.

Motorcycle Insurance Makes the Charlotte Drive Much More Exciting

In life, there are few things that are quite as exciting and exhilarating as riding a motorcycle down North Carolinas’ roads, the knowledge that you have the freedom and control that you’ve always wanted when you first got your license. It is not enough to just have your license, unfortunately; you need insurance as well. Without insurance, a single bad mistake made by you or even someone you have never met could wind up doing severe damage to you and your livelihood. So don’t let a lack of insurance be the one thing that does you in – let Jim Boyce Insurance help you figure things out.

There are a lot of snares that a rider may face out on the road. One thing I hear a lot is that they do not need any insurance because they are a good driver (this is something I also see with why people use cell phone while driving or drive without buckling their seatbelts). This, of course, is never true, and it’s never worth the harm that a lack of insurance may cause. No matter if you wind up having your license suspended (thereby making it more difficult to get your daily activities complete), wind up paying for part or all of your medical bill, or having to pay costly repairs for your ride (or even get it outright replaced).

NC riders can feel relaxed to know that in the event of an accident, their insurance plan’s endorsement will extend medical payments coverage to two-wheeled motor vehicles. The laws vary from state to state and can be complicated, so if you have any questions or concerns, make sure to contact Jim Boyce Insurance online or by phone at (704) 364-9955 so we can sort it all out for you.

Do You Need Flood Insurance?

Whether you are a new homeowner or you have lived in your property for some time, you may be wondering if you really need to purchase flood insurance. Flood insurance is something that many people do not consider because they assume that they do not need it if they are not in an area that is prone to flooding or if the area is not at a high risk for flooding. Unfortunately, this is a big mistake that people can make and there are several reasons why you should consider flood insurance. Continue reading to find out why.

  • Your homeowners policy probably does not protect you. One bug mistake that many people make is assuming that their homeowners insurance policy also covers flooding. Unfortunately, most of them do not. It is worth taking a look at your policy to see what is and is not covered so you can know for sure. 
  • Twenty percent of all flooding happens in low to moderate flooding areas. That means that even if the area is not known to flood, floods still happen quite a bit. That is a big percentage to consider. Flooding can happen anywhere because if a burst pipe or a variety of other factors. 
  • New construction areas are more prone to flooding. The soil that used to absorb water is not covered by sidewalks and roads which means the water has to go somewhere. It can result in flooding which is something many people do not even consider. 

If you are interested in taking a look at your current policy for any gaps or would like to find a new flood insurance policy, contact us today at Jim Boyce Insurance. We will be happy to help you through the entire process and find an insurance policy that meets your needs. 

Stress Free Moving Comes from Great Packing

How items are packed determines if they will make it safely through a move and arrive undamaged at the new location. Many like to save money by packing their own things, instead of paying others to do the packing. Be aware that when the items are self-packed, a professional moving company will not take responsibility for any damage to goods, which occurs during the moving process, caused by bad packing of the items.

For those doing self-packing, here are a few packing tips that reduce the stress of a move and the chances of damage when moving:

  • Before the move, do a clutter purge. Get rid of any unneeded items. Throw out expired medicines. Give away or have a yard sale for items that did not see any use for the past year. Reduce refrigerated food to a minimum.
  • Before starting the packing process, have plenty of packing supplies, which includes free boxes collected in advance from stores in the neighborhood, wide markers, colored duct tape, scissors, old newspapers, and a notebook for recording the inventory.
  • It is important to pack a “first night” box to open first in the new location. Put all the items that are critical for a normal daily routine in this box. This helps tremendously while unpacking the other boxes and when putting stuff away.
  • Use softer items, such as towels, sheets, clothes, socks, etc. as packing materials to protect fragile items like glassware.
  • Pack books, which are very heavy, in small boxes.
  • Color code boxes with the colored duct tape, using one-color for each room. Number the boxes and label them with the pen, using a general description of the contents. Write the numbers and detailed descriptions in the inventory notebook. This helps to find things later.

One other important thing is to get homeowner’s or renter’s insurance for the new location and cancel the coverage of the old location after the move is complete. Check with the agents at Jim Boyce Insurance by using the website to get a quote for home insurance or a renter’s insurance policy.

ATV tips for first-time riders in Charlotte, North Carolina

Charlotte, North Carolina is the biggest city in the state, but that doesn’t mean it is easy to get out into the forests and countryside to ride your new ATV. However, if you are going to make this a regular hobby, make sure you have taken the proper precautions to protect your expensive new toy and yourself as you ride your four wheeler around the wilds of North Carolina.


Don’t just throw yourself into the fire so to speak when you start riding your ATV. Find a flat field or large patch of dirt and learn how your ATV rides. Practice turning, accelerating, braking—all of the techniques you will be using regularly when you are riding down trails in the middle of the forest. The more familiar you are with these basic riding techniques, the less of a chance you will have an accident, hurting yourself or your ATV.


Make sure you’re not setting out all by yourself on your ATV, especially when you are first learning how to really ride. Another ATV rider with their own vehicle should be with you, so that if there is an accident and someone is hurt, or one of the ATVs has a mechanical failure, you won’t be stranded in the middle of nowhere. Cell phones aren’t enough here, because reception is often spotty in these back country ATV riding areas. So convince a buddy to come along every time you go riding.


The chances of you having an accident of some kind on your ATV when you first start riding is usually pretty high. So you will want to make sure you and your all terrain vehicle are properly insured so that the damage caused by whatever accident happens isn’t also damaging your pocketbook. Check with a company like Jim Boyce Insurance, who serves the greater Charlotte area, for an ATV rider’s policy that works for your needs.