News & PR

For posts relating to E&C in general. News worthy events, press releases, etc.

Read & Ride!

It’s summer time and that means Read & Ride! Once again, Estabrook & Chamberlain is proud to sponsor the annual Read & Ride program in association with the Bridgewater and West Bridgewater Public Libraries. This year’s theme is “Build a Better World”.

To participate, kids simply have to register, in an appropriate age group, and pledge to read just one book during the program. At the end of the program, lucky winners* will receive new bikes!

We urge parents to tell their kids about the program and get them involved. It’s lots of fun, helps them discover the joy of reading and is a great alternative to staring at a video screen. So be sure to stop by the Bridgewater or West Bridgewater Public Library and sign up today. Registration forms may also be obtained at our 45 Main Street office in Bridgewater.

Ride Sharing Shortfall?

If you drive for Uber, Lyft or any other ride sharing company, it’s important to be aware of insurance gaps. Your own insurance or that provided by Uber/Lyft/etc. may not cover you in all instances or may not provide as much coverage as you’d like. To address this, one of our insurance companies now offers a plan that provides coverage during “standby periods” – the time when you’re online and available for hire, but have not yet accepted a passenger.

This stand by coverage extends your personal auto policy for certain coverages that are not offered by ride sharing companies. The plan also offers excess liability coverage for both bodily injury and property damage. This gap insurance applies only during the standby period. For details on this coverage, call or email
us today.

Boston Blazes

In a recent study, one insurer found that the cities most at risk for fires are:

1. Detroit, MI
2. Shreveport, LA
3. Boston, MA
4. Flint, MI
5. Richmond, VA

It’s disappointing to see Boston in the top 5, but it does help illustrate the need for better fire safety and prevention education. One in eight Americans have experienced a home fire. Knowing how and when most fires happen can help keep that number from growing.

The top three causes of home fires are:
Electrical 26% Cooking/stoves 25% Candles 12%

Knowing when fires happen can also help you avoid them. The data shows that:
Most fire claims are reported on July 5th
Lightning fires are most common in the summer
Most cooking fires take place on Christmas Eve
The 2 weeks following Christmas see the most electrical fires

Geographically, the Northeast experiences the most heating-related fires. Given our cold winters and the use of portable space heaters, this isn’t too surprising. However, combined with the other data, it underscores the need
to be aware of specific dangers and times of the year.

Even with all this information, it’s not always possible to prevent a fire. So be sure you’re protected. For more information about homeowners insurance, or to make sure your coverage is up to date and adequate,
get in touch today.

Homestead Protection – Not Just For Pioneers

In order for homeowners in Massachusetts to protect the value of their property up to five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000) per residence, per family, a document called a “Declaration of Homestead”, must be filed. The form is filed at the Registry of Deeds in the county or district where the property is located, referencing the title/deed to the property.

There are additional caveats and requirements, such as, a Homestead filing applies only if the property serves as your principal residence. But, it’s actually quite easy and affordable to file. For more info, call or stop in today. We’ll provide all the details.

Free Winter Safety Tips

roof-snowEstabrook & Chamberlain has free brochures containing tips on ice dam prevention, carbon monoxide detection, and wood stove safety. We also have a specific wood stove safety brochure. All are free.

Just stop in or call/email to receive one by mail.

Heftiest Home Insurance Rates

UmbrellaAs you probably know, rates for homeowners’ insurance vary, based on a number of factors. One of the most important of these is location. Chances are, if you live in a state where there is a greater likelihood for natural disaster, there’s a greater likelihood your insurance rates will be higher too.

As can be seen in the list below, the 10 states with the highest homeowners’ insurance rates are predominantly Eastern coastal regions, which are prone to hurricanes, and Midwestern states, which experience higher tornado activity.

01. Florida

02. Louisiana

03. Oklahoma

04. Texas

05. Mississippi

06. Kansas

07. Rhode Island

08. Massachusetts

09. Connecticut

10. Alabama

There isn’t much you can do about natural disasters, aside from moving. But, there is something you can do about homeowners’ insurance premiums. Reviewing your policy is a great start and that’s where we can help. We’ll help identify areas where coverage is lacking and find ways to lower your premium – such as switching carriers or changing deductibles. Call or stop by our office today for more information.

2016 Read & Ride Winners!

Moving-kidsEstabrook & Chamberlain partnered with the Bridgewater and West Bridgewater public libraries again this year to sponsor the 2016 Summer Reading Program. As in past years, the program’s intent is to help kids expand their knowledge and horizons through reading. The Read & Ride program also offers young readers the chance to win a new bike – just for reading one book over the summer.

This year’s participation was once again outstanding and we’re proud to announce the winners.

West Bridgewater winners Ethan Weir on the left and Lucas Melo on the right are pictured with Tom Chamberlain.

Centennial Celebration!

100-YrsThis year, Estabrook & Chamberlain celebrates 100 years of service to surrounding communities. Here’s a brief history of our agency …

In 1916 Samuel Cholerton started the Cholerton Insurance Agency.At the time, Bridgewater was very rural area and Cholerton, an ambitious man, would ride his bicycle to the train station. He’d load his bike on to the train and get out at stops along the way to peddle his insurance products to local farmers.

1954Agency sold to Harold Estabrook – managed by David Chamberlain.

1962Harold Estabrook Jr. becomes co-owner with David Chamberlain.

1976Tom Chamberlain joins the agency.

1982Agency name changed to Estabrook & Chamberlain Insurance Agency.

1986Harold “Hank” Estabrook III came into the business.

Tom Chamberlain and Hank Estabrook have been operating the third generation family business since 2002 and take pride in providing personal and business insurance to over 3,200 current clients.

On your mark, get set, READ!

3-kidsblurredEstabrook & Chamberlain is, once again, proud to sponsor the annual Read & Ride program in association with the Bridgewater and West Bridgewater Public Libraries. The purpose of the program is to encourage kids to expand their horizons and have fun through reading.

To participate, kids simply have to register, in an appropriate age group, and pledge to read just one book over the program period – June 25th to August 6th. The lucky winners* will receive a new bike! Winners will be drawn at each library on thefollowing dates – Bridgewater on Monday, August 8th at 7:00 p.m. and West Bridgewater on Friday, August 5th at 11:30 a.m.

Parents are urged tell their kids about the program and get them involved. It’s fun and rewarding, so be sure to stop by the Bridgewater or West Bridgewater Public Libraries and sign up today.

Registration forms may also be obtained at our office – 45 Main Street in Bridgewater.

* Previous winners are not eligible.

Avoid Insurance Surprises

Jack-in-boxConvenience and savings are the main reasons people shop online, and that’s just what some direct insurance companies count on – especially when it comes to auto insurance. But for consumers, that could be a big mistake, because paying less could cost you more – much more.

One example of how buying auto insurance online from a direct company can cost you, involves Progressive Direct. Their repetitive ads, stressing savings and simplicity, attract a lot of traffic to their site. But, for many Massachusetts customers, their Progressive auto policy cost them more than they ever imagined.

A multi-million dollar class action suit was brought against Progressive for including an $8,000 deductible on personal injury protection (PIP) for customers with private health insurance. Since the high deductible lowered their premium, over 4,300 Massachusetts drivers likely didn’t realize how nonsensical this was – especially since a typical Mass. auto policy from an independent agent offers much greater PIP coverage with absolutely no deductible – zero.

With a Progressive policy, those customers with a high PIP deductible would have to dig deep into their own pockets to pay for things like medical expenses, lost wages, or services such as house cleaning or grocery shopping, should they become unable to perform such tasks. With a policy from an independent agent, all this and more is included, standard.

Here’s another example of how some direct insurance companies may not be the right choice. Currently, a Mass. statute requires that customers receive a 20 day notice for non-payment of premium. But, some direct companies such as Allstate, eSurance, GEICO, Progressive and others seem focused on getting around that. In some cases, they’ve received approval and in other cases, have submitted paperwork requesting that they be allowed to issue immediate cancellations, leaving policy holders out in the cold, with no coverage at all.

Direct insurance companies can sometimes leave you in the dark, but an independent agent can help you see the light. Spending a few more minutes with a trained independent professional can help you better understand available options and help you find the right coverage at the right price. If you know someone who could benefit from the services of an independent agent, please be sure to tell them about Estabrook & Chamberlain.