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A daily look at what we buy, how we spend, and the companies that do right - and wrong - by their customers.

insurance - All posts tagged insurance

  • Aug 26, 2011
    6:00 AM ET

    Home Improvements To Save Your House From the Next Big Storm

    iStockphoto

    From a protect-your-home standpoint, there are two ways to thumb your nose at Hurricane Irene and other natural disasters like her.

    Option One: Have an insurance policy that covers windstorm damage and flooding (or whatever natural disasters are typical in your area). Two, fortify your house so that should a disaster strike, the building has a better chance of making it through undamaged — which keeps you safe if you’re weathering in place better phrase? confusing, and gives you a home to come back to, if you’ve evacuated.

    Option Two comes with some financial incentives. As we reported earlier this year, more insurers are offering policy discounts:

  • Aug 18, 2011
    10:34 AM ET

    Blood Pressure Alert: Health Care Costs Set to Climb

    iStockphoto

    Consumers can’t get a break. Food prices keep rising, the market remains volatile and now health care costs are on the way up.

    The cost of employee health care benefits is expected to rise by more than 7% in 2012, according to a report released today by the National Business Group on Health, a non-profit industry association.

    In response, employers are planning to shift more of those costs to workers. Next year, more than half of employers plan to increase how much employees contribute to premiums and 39% plan to raise in-network deductibles, according to the same survey.

  • Jun 23, 2011
    3:13 PM ET

    Kelly Kapoor’s Auto Insurance Headache

    If only “The Office” star Mindy Kaling had access to the corporate credit card or a travel-booking HR rep, she might not have overpaid for car rental insurance.

    Getty Images

    Kaling, who plays Kelly Kapoor on the popular show, tweeted Thursday, “Beware guys! Rented a car on Expedia. They sold me car insurance. I picked up the car, was told the insurance didn’t cover that type of car.” She said she ended up buying insurance from the rental company, but couldn’t get the “25-50 bucks” spent through Expedia refunded.

    Without more information from “The Office” actress (who declined to comment), it’s tough to say who’s at fault — the unnamed car rental company, Expedia, or Kaling herself, says Phil Reed, consumer advice editor for Edmunds.com. “I can’t think of any reason why it would not be covered,” he says. (An Expedia spokesman says the company is investigating, and that its policy is to offer a refund in cases where there has been  a miscommunication on coverage. The company tweeted Kaling to apologize, asking her to follow them and send them a message with details so that they could look into the issue.)

About Pay Dirt

  • Pay Dirt examines the millions of consumer decisions Americans make every day: What to buy, how much to pay, whether to rave or complain. Lead written by Quentin Fottrell, the blog examines these interactions, providing readers with news, insight and tips on shopping, spending, customer service, and companies that do right – and wrong – by their customers. Send items, questions and comments to quentin.fottrell@dowjones.com or tweet @SMPayDirt.