Insurance quoting (Only from one source?)

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theskunk
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Insurance quoting (Only from one source?)

Postby theskunk » Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:25 pm

So I'm in the ball park of figuring out how much an LSA is actually going to cost me (looking at fractional ownership).

Obviously low time hurts me, but after calling AOPA, it appears that nobody else is even willing/able to talk to me for legal reasons... has anybody else heard this?

I called Avemco, and they actually told me that they couldn't talk to me even if they wanted to for two reasons:

1) They no longer insure LSA's

2) I've already talked to somebody else about this, thus not allowing me to talk to anybody else -- does this make sense at all?!

Jim Stewart
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Postby Jim Stewart » Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:18 am

Call Bill Tassio at 949.756.0732

He's a broker and has handled my LSA insurance for 4 years. He may fax you a release to sign if you've gotten quotes somewhere else, but it shouldn't be a big deal.

theskunk
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Postby theskunk » Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:20 am

Jim,

Thanks for that -- I'll absolutely give him a call tomorrow -- any idea what i'd be looking at for a student pilot in a remos or a ctls/ctsw or the like?

Jim Stewart
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Postby Jim Stewart » Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:24 am

I don't know what it would be now. As a student I was paying something like $2600/yr. When I got my pp license it dropped to something like $1900/yr and would have been somewhat higher with a sport pilot license.

Jack Tyler
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Postby Jack Tyler » Fri Nov 18, 2011 5:33 am

Skunk:

Typically, one shops for insurance using a broker. It may not be wise to volunteer to Broker 2 that you already have spoken to Broker 1, as - for the same pilot, a/c and airport details, all the brokers are going to quote you the same premium for the same coverage from the same carrier. Thus, while you might think you're being a wise consumer, they can end up feeling that you are just wasting their time (since they can't better the quote/coverage you got elsewhere). Having said all that, the brokers I've been working with just this week were all gracious about my contacting them, and I think the main reason is that they each write for some more obscure carriers and so have a shot at offering you a quote you couldn't get from another broker.

In your case, I'd suggest you seek quotes from 3 sources:
-- Falcon Insurance: they are affiliated with USAA (altho' you don't need to be a USAA number) who imposes very high standards on them; USAA enjoys a very high service levels repuation) as well as other orgs (EAA, Cessna OO, etc.). I'd recommend you talk with Brenda Briswell (1-866-750-8722). Brenda has 20 years experience writing aviation coverage, knows the carriers very well, and the benefit of contacting her is that, if you ask for her help, she will not only give you quotes (assuming they can bind coverage for LSAs) but also a perspective between the companies who are offering you coverage. Falcon is directly linked with all the major (and some minor) carriers, so she actually watches the quotes immediately come back into her computer right after she's finished taking down your info. Very large operation with plenty of experience, and unlike many brokerages you have a fall-back if the broker disappoints you since you can go back to USAA (assuming you are a USAA member, of course). Falcon offers discounts on behalf of some carriers if you are an EAA or AOPA member.
-- AOPA (which you've apparently already done), assuming you are an AOPA member. Discounts applied for AOPA member, a large operation, and its just one of many funding programs that helps AOPA operate. AOPA doesn't enjoy 100% support from the pilot community (as is true for EAA), but they are doing more to lobby on behalf of GA than any other organization and the breadth of member services is, I find, very helpful.
-- Once you narrow down your LSA choice, ask the distributor or retailer of the LSA brand which broker(s) they have established a relationship with and seek a quote from them. Planes don't get sold without coverage being available so anyone serious about retail aircraft sales *should* have a relationship with one or more brokers who can write for their potential customers. Sometimes, a given a/c make will have a club or type organization (COO or all Cessna owners, CFO for Cessna Cardinal owners, AYA for Grumman owners, and so forth) so if you are considering one of the LSA's that's sold in some numbers, there may be such a relationship via that make's club/association.

If you are working out the anticipated costs of ownership, I hope you're using the AOPA-built spreadsheet that they offer (free) to members. Prompts you for all possible costs associated with a) buying, and also b) owning an a/c, and has a matrix that lays out those costs for a single owner and for multiple owners (up to 5 or so). Easy peasy. It's available in the Aircraft Ownership section. Don't forget that AOPA membership is free for 6 months to student pilots. Their training magazine, if you haven't seen it, is well worth subscribing to.
Jack
Flying in/out KBZN, Bozeman MT in a Grumman Tiger
Do you fly for recreational purposes? Please visit http://www.theraf.org

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deltafox
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Postby deltafox » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:01 am

Just starting my 2nd year owning an LSA. I have used www.SkySmith.com and found them to be helpful, reasonable and easy to work with. (Right in the $1900/yr range.) (515) 289-1439
Dave

flyboy2007
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Postby flyboy2007 » Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:36 pm

I have liability only from avemco for 600 a year.
"Keep on Draggin"

Jack Tyler
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Postby Jack Tyler » Sat Nov 19, 2011 5:56 am

Just a reminder: The only thing we receive when purchasing aviation insurance is the potential servicing of a claim. Any claim is handled by an adjuster who works for the insurer, and works to the insurer's guidelines and those of the policy. Neither a great broker nor a lousy broker play any role in that process.

A good broker may make shopping for the coverage easier or help answer questions better than a so-so broker, but brokers don't have unique rates available only to them and play no role in the claims process. IOW don't shop for the coverage by accepting a referral to a broker, not that broker recommendations don't have their place. Shop for coverage by assessing claims performance of the insurers who have provided you quotes. Much harder to do but far more relevant. (One very useful source of such information is to go back and read the forums for the period when claims were discussed after a microburst destroyed or damaged many planes at Sun 'n Fun 2011).
Jack
Flying in/out KBZN, Bozeman MT in a Grumman Tiger
Do you fly for recreational purposes? Please visit http://www.theraf.org

3Dreaming
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Postby 3Dreaming » Sat Nov 19, 2011 10:28 am

I have to agree and dis-agree with Jack. While he is correct that a broker does not get a better rate from the same company than the next will the broker can make a big difference. I have a commercial policy. I meet with my broker every year before renewal (his idea) to make sure any changes to the business are covered by the insurance. He has pointed out things that I need, and things I don't. If I have a question I can talk to him on the phone. I swithced insurance several years back just because of the personal service.

3Dreaming
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Postby 3Dreaming » Sat Nov 19, 2011 10:39 am

Skunk, I think Avemco is the company that covers the insurance for AOPA. Once a company issues a qoute for a certain "N" number airplane that quote is tied to the broker who requsted it. What AOPA didn't tell you are there are other insurance companies out there that they don't deal with. Not al brokers have access to all the same companies, so some may be able to get you a different quote. Also brokere in other parts of the country may work with a different office of the insurance company. I have seen one office quote a commercial policy for a LSA while the other office with the same company would not. Tom

Jack Tyler
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Postby Jack Tyler » Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:45 am

3Dreaming, I agree with your comments about a good broker bringing value beyond the coverage itself. As stated:
"A good broker may make shopping for the coverage easier or help answer questions better than a so-so broker..." and
"don't shop for the coverage by accepting a referral to a broker, not that broker recommendations don't have their place."

BTW AOPA's insurance affiliate seeks quote from at least 5 carriers (see their website for the list) and seeks quotes for others when the a/c is unique.

Also, let's remember that brokers - even good ones - are not infallible, can't read our minds, and get tired and make mistakes just like the rest of us. In my recent search for coverage, I got quite different quoted premiums for the same coverage from the same carrier from two different brokers. I then went back to each broker, we worked our way thru all the data they entered (some not solicited from me but just assumed), and in the end STILL had two different premium amounts. Why? Because one broker specializes in the make & model I'm buying, and so the carrier has agreed to accept all hours in related airframes (AA-5, AA-5A, AA-5B) as 'make & model' time. The other broker then went to the carrier and requested the same consideration, which was granted. So...now I had two identical quotes for the same coverage from different brokers - I'm done except for picking a broker, right?

Nope, because one broker didn't bother to learn (or perhaps just failed to stipulate to me) that, even with make & model time, the carrier still wanted a 1-hr Check Ride with a CFI since it was a new-to-me a/c. I can understand that and the broker that got my business was the one that made sure I knew about that requirement. (BTW that was Falcon, who writes for some of the best, longest lived aviation insurers such as USAIG, Phoenix and Global Aerospace).

I went thru all this just to point out that shopping for insurance can be like peeling an onion.
Jack
Flying in/out KBZN, Bozeman MT in a Grumman Tiger
Do you fly for recreational purposes? Please visit http://www.theraf.org


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