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GIA: Providing protection for your important assets - The Galveston County Daily News : Business Review

November 25, 2014

GIA: Providing protection for your important assets

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Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 1:00 am | Updated: 2:14 pm, Tue Aug 20, 2013.

With hurricane season in full swing, it’s important that individuals and businesses alike be prepared. Galveston Insurance Associates (GIA), a locally owned and operated Independent Insurance Agency since 1892, can help you today.

“We know our clients and our community. We will always stay locally owned and operated because that’s what allows us to build strong relationships,” said GIA president Garry P. Kaufman.

GIA, voted Galveston County’s Best Insurance Agency in 2010 and 2011, has been the agent of choice for families and businesses for 121 years. GIA is the oldest agency in the county and largest on Galveston Island, providing reliable, quality insurance products and service.

Being an independent insurance agency provides GIA with access to many of the best insurance companies, allowing the agency to shop the insurance market for its customers. GIA provides coverage for multiple generations of families as well as businesses that range from sole proprietors just getting started to well-established companies with multiple locations and hundreds of employees.

GIA has dedicated departments for Personal, Business, Life and Health and Financial Services. These departments are staffed with licensed, accredited Account Managers and Sales personnel.

As members of the community, GIA staff understands the different coverages needed to protect homes and businesses in the Coastal area. The agency is one of the largest writers of windstorm and flood insurance in the state. When you are talking about taking care of your most valued assets, that experience is important.

Speaking of wind and flood, are you aware that in 2012 Congress voted to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through Sept. 30, 2017? With that extension comes some changes. For instance, annual premium rates can now be increased up to 20%. And minimum deductibles will be higher. Properties built before Dec. 31, 1974 (pre-firm) have been receiving subsidized premiums, meaning they were lower than they should have been. Effective Jan. 1, 2013, actuarial rates based on estimates of what future losses might be by looking at historical loss experience, are being phased in for certain properties that were built before Dec. 31, 1974, including residential properties that are not the primary residence of an individual and homes with severe repetitive losses. Beginning Oct. 1, 2013, pre-FIRM business properties and pre-FIRM properties that have experienced severe or repeated flooding also will see 25% annual rate hikes until their rates reflect true risk.

Flood insurance rate maps are being revised, which will result in some properties going into higher risk zones and others to lower risk zones. View the proposed changes at http://maps.riskmap6.com/TX/Galveston or contact GIA for more details.

GIA has two convenient locations to serve you, on Galveston Island at 6025 Heards Lane and in Friendswood at 1102B South Friendswood Drive — next to Stevenson Park and the Friendswood Chamber of Commerce. GIA also can be contacted by phone at 409-740-1251 or 281-442-1892. Or, visit www.gia-tx.com.