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Key Agent Newsletter
December 2016

Did You Know...?

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Fire Prevention at Self-Storage Properties

.Fire is a serious concern for self-storage businesses and one of the costliest causes of loss for property owners and insurance carriers. In addition to the cost of repairs and lost income while spaces are unavailable to rent, the toll a fire can take on the operation can be devastating. The sight of a damaged, burned-out building can make it difficult to rent units to prospective customers, and current tenants may think twice about continuing to rent at the facility. The self-storage industry has seen an increase in fire losses in recent years, so it is critical that business owners take action to mitigate the potential risk of fire on their properties.

Ongoing tenant education is a top priority when it comes to fire prevention at a self-storage facility, and regular communication to customers can go a long way toward mitigating the risk of fire on the property. Examples of tenant communication include the following:

. Signage — “No Smoking” signs posted throughout
. the facility as well as signs reminding tenants that
. the use of candles or other open flame is prohibited
. on the property.

. Bill Reminders Brief educational messages and
. safety tips included in hard-copy and electronic bill
. reminders such as a list of items that are prohibited
. from being stored (gasoline, paint thinner and
. propane) and reminders to drain fuel from lawn
. mowers, chain saws, gas generators, lanterns, and
. heaters prior to storage.

. Hazard Reporting Hotline — A dedicated hotline
. telephone number and/or email address that
. permits tenants to report safety hazards to facility
. management.

While it is certainly beneficial to recruit tenants to help identify safety concerns, facility managers are always the first line of defense. As an independent insurance agent, you can encourage your self-storage clients to provide training for managers to monitor tenant activity and speak up if they see a hazardous situation such as someone smoking in a unit, using a space heater, or overloading a power strip. Managers should also be aware that frequently visiting a unit is a reason to identify the purpose of a tenant’s visit.

Further information is available via the MiniCo Safety Shorts video series. The video entitled “Tenant Safety Checklist” provides detailed information to help self-storage managers identify hazards on the property.

Watch Video
 


Insurance Solutions for Challenging Properties

Since 2008, property claim costs due to severe weather have increased in both severity and frequency. As a result, insurance carriers are non-renewing policies or renewing with limitations and declining a greater number of new submissions for self-storage properties with marginal underwriting characteristics such as geographic location, loss history, and age or use of buildings. Facilities located in geographic areas prone to severe wind and hail are facing rising percentage wind/hail deductibles.

With these challenges in mind, MiniCo Insurance Agency has been named a coverholder for London-based Lloyd’s, which grants MiniCo the authority to underwrite business on behalf of Lloyd’s syndicates. As a result of this business relationship, MiniCo has introduced two new insurance products for challenging self-storage properties.

. Wind/Hail Deductible Buy-Back Program For Commercial
. Property

Enables commercial property owners to purchase a stand-alone buy-back policy that permits the deductible to be as low as one percent or a specific dollar amount in order to decrease the property owner’s potential out-of-pocket financial exposure and assist in compliance with mortgage deductible requirements.

Learn More

. Property Only Coverage for Difficult Self-Storage Exposures
Offers a coverage solution for self-storage facilities that are difficult to insure due to geographic location, age, or loss experience. Stand-alone general liability with self-storage specialty liability coverage also available.

Learn More

The history of Lloyd’s is long and colorful. In the 17th century, Edward Lloyd’s coffee house became recognized as the place to go for ship and cargo information and soon for insurance, too. This was the beginning of the Lloyd’s we know today.

Lloyd's is the world's only specialist insurance and reinsurance market that offers a unique concentration of expertise and talent, backed by strong financial ratings and international licenses. It is often the first to insure new, unusual or complex risks, providing innovative insurance solutions for local, cross border and global risks. Its strength lies in the diversity and expertise of the brokers and managing agents working at Lloyd’s, supported by capital from across the world. More than 90 syndicates underwrite insurance and reinsurance at Lloyd's, covering all lines of business from more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.

To learn more about the wind/hail deductible buy-back and property only coverage programs, contact your MiniCo underwriter at 800-447-8383 or customercare@minico.com.

 
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Marketing Tips and Tools from the MiniCo Blog

The MiniCo blog is an excellent resource for agents seeking information about topics such as getting started as a new agent, e-mail marketing, social media, website design, video marketing, customer service and networking.

If you have not yet checked out the MiniCo blog, get started with two of our most popular posts.

Handling Online Complaints and Reviews

.It would be ideal if complaints from customers were received via email, but with the rise of online review sites like Yelp, receiving complaints through private channels is less likely. It’s common for insurance agencies to encounter online posts, blogs and reviews on third-party sites that critique their business. While it is not possible to remove these comments, it is possible to respond. In addition to seeking positive reviews online, your agency should develop a process for handling online comments and complaints.

Continue Reading

3 Keys to Happy and Motivated Employees and Agents

.A work environment that’s consistently motivating, inspiring and positive can be conducive to genuine productivity. If you want all of your employees and agents to look forward to showing up to work on a daily basis and doing their best, these useful and practical tips may go a long way for you.

Continue Reading

Follow the MiniCo blog on Facebook or Twitter.

Go to the MiniCo Blog

 
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MiniCo’s Corporate Holiday Schedule

The holidays are fast approaching, and MiniCo wants to ensure that you and your insureds receive the highest quality customer service throughout this hectic time of year. Our regular hours are listed below, along with a schedule of the days MiniCo’s corporate offices will be closed for the holidays.

MiniCo’s Corporate Hours – Office 800-528-1056
. Eastern time zone – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
. Central time zone – 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
. Mountain time zone – 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
. Pacific time zone – 6 a.m. to 4 p.m.

MiniCo’s Corporate Holiday Closures
MiniCo’s corporate offices will be closed on the following days:
. December 23rd
. December 26th
. January 2nd

If you need to report a claim during our holiday closure, please call 855-851-0876 to reach an adjuster.

We at MiniCo thank you for your business in 2016 and wish you a peaceful and prosperous New Year!

 
 

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MiniCo Insurance Agency, LLC

10851 N. Black Canyon Highway, Suite 200, Phoenix, AZ 85029
California License # 0H04984

© 2016 MiniCo Insurance Agency, LLC. All rights reserved.


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