Understanding replacement cost and market value

It is important to understand the terminology when talking about homeowners insurance. The professionals at PorchLight Insurance in Portland, OR can help you through the maze and find the policy that is best for your situation. Two of the most important concepts to understand are Replacement cost and market value.

The replacement cost is what it would cost to replace an item or a structure like your home. This means getting the item or structure replaced. The market value, on the other hand, is what the item is worth in current dollars. This can fluctuate wildly due to depreciation and the value of the item. A 20-year-old couch that cost $2,000 new, is not going to be worth much today in current market value. If you have replacement cost insurance, you will get a new couch and it may cost more than $2,000. If you have market value coverage, you will get what a 20-year-old couch would cost at a used furniture store, which might not be $100.

In that scenario, replacement cost coverage would be better, but it would cost more, so you would have to balance the cost of the premium against the risk you are willing to take.

It might be best to go for market value in some other areas, however.  If you have an older house with plaster finished walls, the replacement cost would be very expensive and would raise your premiums a lot. You could go for fair market value there an get a very nice market value settlement with a lower cost premium.

Visit or call the PorchLight Insurance agency in Portland, OR today to learn more about getting the best possible coverage for your home. You want to protect it, but you also want to be wise in the decisions you make.


As a renter, will I benefit from having a home security system?

Renters who live in Portland, OR may choose to install a home security system for an added layer of protection against intruders. Whether you live in an apartment or a home that is rented, home security systems offer benefits that include peace of mind and a sense of security. The agents at PorchLight Insurance can provide additional information as to how a home security system may be a good choice. 

Home Security Systems for Renters

Many home security companies like Ring, Arlo, and SimpliSafe offer systems that can be easily installed by renters. Most have video cameras that can be installed without tools and are capable of providing 100% wireless security. Systems can be remotely accessed through smartphone apps that allow the renter to see who is inside their home at any given time. Many of these systems are easily taken down and can be transported and re-installed in a new location.

Are They A Good Idea?

If you want the peace of mind that comes with having a video surveillance system that allows you to view your home when you’re away, then yes. A home security system will offer you the benefits you want without having to worry about your property being damaged or vandalized. You may want to talk to your landlord prior to installing the system, but in most cases, it’s a personal choice. 

At PorchLight Insurance, the agents serve residents throughout the Portland, OR area. If you are considering installing a home security system in your apartment or rental unit, talk to the agents to find out whether or not it will be beneficial. They have the answers you need. 


Why an umbrella policy may be right for you

When you are a homeowner and/or drive a car, you are a good candidate for an umbrella policy. Think about what an umbrella does; it protects you from a rainy day. That is what an umbrella policy will do for you, protect you above and beyond the liability coverage provided by your homeowners or auto insurance. One umbrella policy covers all your needs. You don’t need to get separate ones for your home or your car.

Typically, liability coverage on an automobile or home is limited in its scope. A basic umbrella policy will take over when the liability limit of your policy has been met. Depending on what you have for assets, you may want to consider more than a minimum umbrella. If you have an auto policy, the umbrella policy will be in addition to the coverage on the face of your policy. While this may seem like a lot of money, if you happen to be sued, a ruling can attach not only your current assets but future assets and earnings.

You may also be required to pay legal fees, and these can add up quickly. An umbrella policy can pay for your defense expenses which if a case drags on can be devastating whether you win or lose. Even if you are not wealthy, an umbrella policy protects you and your smaller home or older car from the possibility of a lawsuit that can take away all that you have worked so hard to earn.

If you live in Oregon and want to learn more about what an umbrella policy can do for your financial security, Porchlight Insurance has offices in Portland, OR. You can contact Porchlight Insurance in person at their office or on the phone at (866) 272-8522. Reach out to our agents in Portland, OR for more information.

How Much Comprehensive Auto Insurance Do You Need?

Most people know that car insurance is a requirement, but you may not know how much coverage you actually need. Even if you have full coverage insurance with comprehensive, you may not know which coverage amount to select. So, what instances would you need a higher amount, and when should you choose the lowest amount?

Choosing Comprehensive Coverage Amounts

Selecting to have comprehensive insurance doesn’t always offer the protection you may need while on the road. Comprehensive will cover items such as damage from storms or theft. If you have a vehicle with a higher price tag, you should elect to choose comprehensive coverage close to the value of your vehicle. If you have an older car, or you bought an economy car that you have had for some time, you may want to select a lower amount. Consult with your auto insurance agent to discover which options are right for your situation.

Getting The Best Auto Insurance

You always want to make sure you are working with an insurance agency that will have your best interest in mind. That means selecting an auto insurance provider that will sit down with their clients and explain the options that will deliver the most coverage for their specific needs. If you are located around the Tigard or Portland, OR area, consider consulting PorchLight Insurance. We will outline products that will give you protection and reliability. 

Don’t guess when it comes to comprehensive coverage. Get the facts from PorchLight Insurance serving the residents in and around the Portland, OR area. Call or stop by today for more details and to speak with a knowledgeable representative. 

What Is The Difference Between Condo Insurance And The Condominium Owners Association Insurance?

Do you Own a Condo in the Portland, OR area?

One has many options in choosing a dwelling such as a house, townhouse, apartment, and condominium. In each of these dwellings, you have personal property interests that you want to protect. A house contains your personal belongings, and you need to ensure that not only your personal property is protected, but you must also protect the structure of your home and all of its surrounding real estate. While condominiums, townhouses, and apartments, in effect, store your personal belongings, which ones are your responsibility to insure or protect?

Types of Coverage

HO-6 form is designed for individual condominium owners and provides for liability coverage such as medical payments coverage and personal property coverage.  Additional livings expenses coverage can be obtained if you suffer damages because of theft and fire or any other loss that is stated in your policy for the improvement of your condo. If you can not live in the condo, your policy should cover living expenses outside of the unit. You can also obtain additional coverage for jewelry, computer equipment, expensive art, or any other type of valuables. Depending on where you live, you may obtain coverage for certain acts of nature such as earthquakes, windstorms, or flooding. A homeowners’ insurance policy is similar to the type of coverage as stated in individual condominium policy.

A condominium owner must be a member of a condominium association which has a policy referred to as the Master Policy. This policy does not protect the condominium owner from any of the perils identified in the owner’s condominium insurance policy which results in the loss of personal property or liability to others.  The condominium association insurance policy covers structural damage to the building, outside walls, any elevators, the roof, heating unit, basement, and all common areas shared by the condominium.

The agents of PorchLight Insurance in Portland, OR will meet your needs in protecting your dwelling. Please call our offices to get a quote or visit PorchLight Insurance to speak with an agent face to face.






How do you stop house fires before they start?

A house fire can be one of the most devastating disasters that can befall a family. Not only can a fire destroy your most precious investment, but it can put you and your family at risk. PorchLight Insurance, serving Tigard, OR, has some helpful hints on how to stop house fires before they start.

The most common place where house fires start is in the kitchen. You should make sure that your cooking surface is cleaned of grease or oil. Food being cooked should be attended to at all times. The handles of pots and pans should be positioned in such a way that they are out of reach. Flammable materials such as potholders and paper towels should be kept away from cooktops when they are in use.

If you live in an older home, you might want to consider having an electrician check your house’s electrical system for shorts and frayed insulation, especially around outlets. Any extension cords you might use should not be worn or frayed. You should make sure that the cords are kept away from flammable objects such as drapes or rugs.

  • You should keep matches and lighters away from small children. A considerable number of house fires start when children play with them.
  • You should never smoke in bed. You might fall asleep before finishing, dropping the cigarette and catching it against the blankets.
  • You should keep space heaters away from anything that might catch fire. Keep flammable objects away from fireplaces.
  • Finally, you should keep your home equipped with smoke alarms and at least one fire extinguisher. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using the extinguisher.

If you have any questions about house fires or home insurance, contact PorchLight Insurance, serving Tigard, OR.

When is renters insurance required?

Moving into a new apartment or rental home is always a very exciting experience. When you are moving to a new place, there are many important responsibilities that you need to fully understand. One responsibility that you will likely have will be the need to have renters insurance in place. 

Required by Landlord and Lease

In the vast majority of situations, you will be required to carry renters insurance by your lease agreement. You will be required to carry this coverage for the entire term of your lease and the landlord may require that you provide evidence of coverage before you are able to move in. This could include requiring you to show that you have paid for at least one year’s worth of coverage in advance.

Why it is Required 

There are many reasons why a landlord will require that you have renters insurance in place. A renters insurance policy will provide both you and your landlord with a variety of different types of available protection. For the landlord, this will include providing them with coverage if you cause any damage to the property. It will also provide them with additional liability protection in the event you were found liable for some form of an accident.

Even if you find a landlord that does not require you to have renters insurance, it is still a good idea to have this coverage. The renter’s insurance policy that you received will provide you with coverage for both your personal property and liability should someone become injured.

If you are a renter in the Portland or Tigard, OR area, contacting PorchLight Insurance is a smart insurance move to discuss all your coverage needs. The team at PorchLight Insurance will ensure that you and your Portland or Tigard, OR rental unit are properly covered and that you have a reliable insurance policy for your home.

What is an umbrella insurance policy?

You might have heard something at some point or another about umbrella insurance and were thinking, "What is umbrella insurance?" Umbrella insurance is a term that many people are unfamiliar with, but if you have ever been the defendant of a lawsuit, you might have some idea of why it is important. Continue reading or contact an agent from PorchLight Insurance in Tigard, OR to learn more about umbrella insurance and why it might be important for you.

Umbrella Insurance Defined

Umbrella insurance provides an additional layer of liability insurance. It can help protect you from lawsuits and other claims against you. It helps to protect your personal assets and the integrity of your future. These are two ways this kind of insurance can help you.

What Does Umbrella Insurance Do?

One way it protects you is by providing the extra liability coverage above any limits of other policies including homeowners, auto, and boat policies. It will kick in once the limits have been reached on those insurance policies. Another way it helps is by providing the coverage for claims that might have been excluded by your other policies in their terms. This can include things like slander or libel, false arrest, and even the liability coverage of rental property. 

What is Covered?

Injuries, damage to property, certain kinds of lawsuits, personal liabilities, and other situations can be covered by these policy types. Various claims can be filed against you where you are considered at fault, and umbrella insurance can hedge against these circumstances. You might have to cover damage to property as the result of an accident and umbrella policies can help here too. There are many similar scenarios. For specific questions on coverage and policies, you should contact an agent at PorchLight Insurance in Tigard, OR. 

Should I tell My Auto Insurance Provider After I Upgrade My Car

So, you finally decided to spring for that upgrade to your vehicle. Maybe you decided to go with the new stereo system, or perhaps with larger rims and spoilers. You love the way the car looks and sounds, so now you’re done with the auto upgrades for the time being. The next question you need to ask yourself is whether or not to tell your insurance provider about the upgrades. When living in or around Tigard, OR, PorchLight Insurance can help you decide. 

Insurance Will Likely Go Up

First of all, yes, your insurance price will likely increase. This is because the value of your vehicle likely went up at the same time. The larger rims or new stereo system increases the value of the vehicle and, often times, it also increases the chance of auto theft as well. So yes, your auto insurance policy will likely increase in cost. 

Added Protection

The slight increase is there to protect your vehicle add-ons. If you are in an accident and need to have the vehicle repaired, your insurance policy will not cover the add-ons. If you installed spoilers but the policy doesn’t have spoilers listed on your make and model, you will not have this covered and you’ll need to pay out of pocket. Basically, you’ll be forced to buy the add-on a second time. Due to this, it is almost always best to inform your insurance provider when you upgrade your vehicle. 

After opting for aftermarket upgrades on your vehicle, you now need to decide whether or not to tell your auto insurance provider. It really comes down to if you want to protect the new features you just added. At PorchLight Insurance, whether you live in or around Tigard, OR, the team can help you decide the right move and help you update your insurance policy. Contact our office for more information.

Shaking Walls and Stereo Earthquakes

Teens love their music. Generation after generation has had to deal with teenagers who play their music loud. However, today’s teens probably have the most capability of doing something close to structural damage because the stereos they have are capable of literally shaking the walls, and that’s a real problem in a shared residential facility like a condominium. Whether it’s a stereo, exercise equipment, an entertainment system or similar, anything that generates big noise and bass is going to cause vibrations, and they will carry through the walls to the neighbors.

The first defense for an affected condo resident is to use the condominium association to enforce the residential rules. However, that approach typically only deals with behavior and not the outcomes. The second step, if a clear responsibility can be linked, is to talk to the responsible party when damage has been caused. Some folks will immediately take responsibility, deal with the problem, and restore the status quo. However, if no cooperation is possible, and the condo owner has no idea where the cause is coming from, the owner’s condo insurance policy may or may not be an option.

A lot depends on what kind of terms the current condo insurance policy covers. Some are bare bones and only deal with structural issues like a burst pipe or frame break. Other policies are far more robust and cover unexpected damage to property for all sorts of problems, including noise vibration. There is no one standard, so a Tigard, OR resident has to do a bit of research. To help find clarity, PorchLight Insurance can help. Our staff is well-trained and experienced in policy comparisons and matching various products to specific condo owner needs. Give PorchLight Insurance a call today to find out how we can help.