Creating and storing your home inventory

Almost six percent of homeowners will file a claim in any given year. Thinking about filing a claim is not something homeowners like to dwell on but the reality is, things happen and you need to be prepared. A home inventory is one way to prepare for a home claim. Another is making sure you have a good home insurance policy and a trusted insurance agent. In Edina, MN, Central Lakes Insurance Brokers is locally owned and operated and committed to providing quality insurance products to our customers. As independent agents, we can offer more choices in carriers and policies. 

Creating a home inventory is time-consuming but the benefit makes it worthwhile. It can be done digitally or with a pad and pen. The idea of the inventory is to list all of your possessions, room by room. Don’t move on to the next room until you have identified everything in the room. Open closets and cupboards, don’t just list what you see out in the room. Be very specific in your description giving brand names and models and serial numbers if applicable. Provide any back-up you may have in the form of receipts or sales slips. Attach it to the inventory. 

Take pictures of each room from several different angles. The idea is to show as much as possible. Take your time and do every room, Don’t forget to go into your attic and basement. You may even need to go to the garage and shed. You will be glad for the detail if you ever need to file a claim. 

When you are finished store your inventory and photos in a safe place. Away from the home is best. A safety deposit box is ideal but at the very least have a free and waterproof container. You may also store your inventory digitally in the cloud. 

Contact Central Lakes Insurance Brokers in Edina, MN for all your insurance needs. 

How Does Recreational Insurance Work with Your Other Policies?

Central Lakes Insurance Brokers wants you to understand how your recreational insurance works with other insurance policies you own.

When you have more than one policy, your Edina, MN home insurance liability pays out first, if an accident occurs with your RV. Your recreational policy pays out after you exhaust the liability from your home policy. If you have umbrella insurance, this kicks in after the recreational policy.

When would this occur? Let’s say you take a vacation with your family and next-door neighbors. The six of you travel in your RV. While on the trip, one of your neighbors falls down the steps leaving the RV, and breaks his leg.

First, the liability portion of your home owner’s insurance pays for the medical costs. Perhaps the break was really bad and required surgery. This caused the medical bill to exceed the liability coverage of your home policy.

Your recreational policy covers the rest of the medical bills. Let’s say the medical bills maxed out the liability coverage on this policy, too. That is when your umbrella insurance kicks in. It covers the remainder of the costs.

Your RV policy also covers the physical damage to your RV. Perhaps when your neighbor fell, they grabbed for a handrail or the RV door and that made matters worse. They tore part of the door down and entangled themselves in the steps, wrenching it partway off of the RV. Your RV policy pays for the RV repairs, too.

Central Lakes Insurance Brokers of Edina, MN wants you to understand your insurance policy and how it works with other policies. Knowing the inter-workings of your insurance policies helps you make informed decisions about coverage amounts and policy riders. Call us today for more information.

Terms you need to understand when choosing health insurance

Choosing health insurance is one of the hardest things you do every year. Whether you are a first-time buyer or you had a bad experience with your coverage last year and need to change, there are so many things that need to be considered. Having a trusted independent insurance agent who can provide the guidance and information you need. At Central Lakes Insurance Brokers in Edina, MN, we will look over all the information that is available with you to help clarify anything that’s unclear. 


If you have developed a personal relationship with your primary care physician or a specialist, making sure you will still be able to use them is important. The network is the physicians that are included in an insurance carrier’s plan. Carriers have a contract with medical professionals to perform services at predetermined rates. This includes hospitals and labs. You may be required to stay within your network or you can pay more to go out of network. 


The deductible is the amount you are required to pay before your coverage will start to cover you. Each plan is different and some services may not be included in the deductible. High deductible policies are popular and less costly. When combined with an HSA or FSA they are a reasonable option but if you don’t have access to an HSA  or FSA you may want to look for a lower deductible. 


The copay is your portion of any service performed. It may be a set amount such as $10 to visit your primary care doctor or a percentage of the service change. 


The formulary is the drugs that are covered by the plan and the amount you must pay for each drug. 

Contact Central Lakes Insurance Brokers in Edina, MN to make an appointment to discuss your health insurance needs. 

Should I get home insurance in Edina?

The Edina, MN area can be a great place to call home. When you are a property owner in this area, you will enjoy having a stable place to live while also benefiting from price appreciation and tax deductions. When you do purchase a home here, you also need to carefully consider all of your insurance needs. There are several reasons that you should get a home insurance policy when you are here. 

Insurance Gives Important Coverage

The main reason that you should get home insurance when you are in Edina is that it can give you very valuable coverage and protection. When you get home insurance, it will include coverage to protect your dwelling as well as all of your personal assets. It can also include coverage that will give you protection if you are found liable for an injury to a guest or if you or your property cause damage to another person’s assets.

Insurance is a Requirement

For a lot of people in this area of Minnesota, having insurance is also a requirement. Due to the value that the insurance coverage provides, many mortgage lenders require that their borrowers carry the proper insurance. Also, if you live in a home association, you may also have insurance requirements that need to be met. 

As you are looking for home insurance in the Edina, MN area, you should get guidance and support from someone that you can trust. If you do call the team at Central Lakes Insurance Brokers for your insurance needs, you will be in good hands. The insurance professionals at Central Lakes Insurance Brokers can help you to better understand all of your options and give you the support needed to choose a policy that is ideal for your situation. 

Is Commercial Insurance Required in MN?

For many, owning a business is the culmination of years of hard work, sweat, and tears. Given the large investment in time, money, and sacrifice made in owning a business, it is important to protect that sweat equity with commercial insurance. Specific to Minnesota, businesses with at least one full-time or part-time employee are required to have workers’ compensation insurance to help pay for the medical bills associated with workplace injuries and illnesses. The only exclusions to this rule are sole proprietors, partners, and corporate officers who do not require workers’ compensation insurance. Additionally, any vehicle that is owned by the business in Minnesota must have minimum commercial auto insurance coverage. For businesses that require their employees to use personal vehicles for work purposes, it is recommended but not required that those vehicles be covered by hired and non-owned auto insurance because personal auto policies are highly unlikely to cover business use. 

In addition to the two types of coverages just described, additional coverage is recommended depending on factors like the scope and size of your business. As an example, if your business uses a cloud environment to store personal and sensitive customer data then you are at a greater risk of a cyber-attack or data breach. Consequently, cyber liability insurance makes sense because it helps pay for the damage caused by a data breach – both internally and externally to your customers. 

At Central Lakes Insurance Brokers in Edina, MN we strive to provide excellent service to each of our customers by offering personally customized insurance policies that meet all of their needs. Whether you are debating between liability amounts or unsure what type of commercial insurance you need, give us a call and we will schedule a time to answer all your questions. 

How do you insure multiple homes?

When you buy a second home, whether it serves as your vacation home or a rental property, you need to insure it. In some cases, you can have one policy that covers everything, but in many cases, you need multiple policies for multiple properties because different building types need a different type of coverage.

Phone or email your insurance agent at Central Lakes Insurance Brokers to talk about your purchase. Each insurance agency handles these matters differently. Some companies require separate policies while others let you combine policies in a master policy. Here are the major types of home insurance you will need to consider:

  • Contents only/renter’s: If you purchase a flat or apartment, you can typically skip the building insurance, but you do need to buy coverage for the contents.
  • Rental property: When you lease the property you own to another person, you need insurance that protects the structure, but not typically the contents. You do need liability insurance.
  • Historical building/Listed building: A home of historical significance that appears on the state or national historical registry requires its own insurance type. This applies whether it is a Grade I, II, or III property. 
  • Non-standard home: Any type of home beyond the typical single-family dwelling requires a special type of insurance. This includes the housing types growing in popularity in Edina MN including tiny homes, hay bale homes, thatched-roof homes, timber frame houses, log cabins, etc.
  • Holiday/Vacation home: Insurance on this home type may cost a bit more because it exhibits a higher risk since it remains empty for long spurts. 
  • Host insurance: Consider a host policy if you only lease the home during one season, but live there or vacation there the other seasons. Host insurance provides coverage for 90 days during which your property gets rented to paying guests.

You have many choices when purchasing home insurance for multiple properties. We serve the Edina, MN area and its surrounding communities. Call Central Lakes Insurance Brokers for more information on covering more than one home with homeowner’s insurance.

Recreational Insurance for Beginners

When you think of recreational insurance, you may think solely of RVs. However, recreational insurance covers a much larger variety of vehicles than just RVs. Other vehicles like ATVs and vehicles designed for off-roading are covered under recreational insurance. If you own any vehicle that fits that description, then learn how you can stay covered with Central Lakes Insurance Brokers. 

What Does Recreational Insurance Cover?

Recreational insurance provides you coverage for your recreational vehicles the same way auto insurance covers your standard vehicles. Here are some areas in which recreational insurance provides coverage: 

  • Injury 
  • Property damage
  • Liability
  • Medical payments 
  • Personal injury

These are just some of the areas for which recreational insurance provides coverage. To find out what coverage type would be best for you, feel free to seek a consultation from Central Lakes Insurance Brokers.  

Why Get Recreational Insurance?

Your recreational vehicles are designed to go places standard cars can’t. While it can be fun to traverse the backroads, vehicles can be more prone to sustain damage going off the road. That’s why you need to have the proper coverage as repairs or replacements can be expensive. 

Just like you would want to protect your car from damage done in an accident, you want to protect your recreational vehicle from damage done off-roading. You may think nothing bad could happen on the backroads due to the lower amount of traffic and possible animals. However, rough and unfamiliar terrain can be dangerous at times and accidents can be extreme. 

Stay Covered with Central Lakes Insurance Brokers

When you need coverage you can rely on, visit Central Lakes Insurance Brokers. Their office is located in Edina, MN. You can contact them online to get a consultation on what type of recreational coverage would be best for your vehicle and driving habits. Get the coverage you need with Central Lakes Insurance Brokers. 

Why Small Businesses Should Consider Umbrella Insurance

Central Lakes Insurance Brokers assists the Edina, MN community, as well as the surrounding areas by helping people find insurance coverage. As an independent insurance agency, we have established partnerships with multiple carriers, allowing us to meet the needs of our clients regardless of their situation.

Understanding Umbrella Insurance

Umbrella insurance gives you additional liability coverage so that you have an extra layer of protection.

Is Umbrella Insurance Beneficial For Small Business Owners

Small business owners should consider adding an umbrella insurance policy in order to protect their assets and cover their potential future earnings. As a small business owner, umbrella insurance can assist you during a liability issue. In the unfortunate event that someone gets seriously injured at the site of your business, having that extra protection in the form of umbrella insurance can be a real asset.

Umbrella insurance can also add extra protection to your business’s vehicles. The policy can protect you if your vehicle starts having engine issues or if the vehicle is stolen or totaled in an accident. Adding umbrella insurance to your workers compensation coverage will allow your business to stay protected if some of your employees get injured. In some cases, having umbrella insurance protects you when you have to travel out of town to conduct business.

As you research different policies, analyze the size of your business. If your employees are taking fairly high risks that may lead to injury one day, you may need umbrella insurance. However, it is important to remember that umbrella insurance acts best as an additional coverage alongside another policy. Do not neglect other forms of liability insurance.

Stop By Central Lakes Insurance Brokers

For more information on different umbrella insurance policies, stop by our office in Edina, MN. We can help you find the right policy to protect the future of your business.

Does Health Insurance Cover Emergency Room Visits?

The terms of health insurance can be confusing for patients in Edina, MN, which is a shame because the hospitals they visit may not understand the terms either. With so many different types of insurance companies out there and so many policies under each carrier, the possibilities are practically infinite. Central Lakes Insurance Brokers wants you to know more about emergency room care, so you have a better idea of what will happen if you need to see a doctor or qualified healthcare professional immediately. 

Emergency Room Care

Accidents, injuries, and illnesses can spring up at any time. While you would almost certainly prefer to see your regular doctor, sometimes it’s just not an option. Even things like physical exams or specialist consultations might book up months in advance. Emergency room care is seen as a special type of visit, meaning it will get its own category under your plan.

But how your visit is covered will depend on your plan. In some cases, you may only need to pay a co-pay for a visit. For other plans, it may be covered outright. Still, other plans might not cover your emergency room care unless it exceeds the limits of your deductible. Once you’ve reached the maximum out of pocket costs, you’ll be able to submit additional expenses to your health insurance carrier. 

Living in Edina, MN means planning for all contingencies, and Central Lakes Insurance Brokers wants to help you do just that. When you contact us, we can help you understand more about how your health insurance policy works and what services you have access to. And if you need additional coverage, so you’re not responsible for an unavoidable emergency, we’re here to help you get everything you need. 

What Is Life Insurance and How Can it Help Me?

Fundamentally, many people don’t fully understand what life insurance is and how it can benefit an individual or a family. Central Lakes Insurance Brokers of Edina, MN are committed to helping MN residents understand what life insurance is and why it’s beneficial. 

What Is Life Insurance?

When you invest in life insurance, you are investing in a policy that will pay a family member or some other beneficiary a monetary amount in the event of your death. As the policyholder, you pay a monthly premium. When you invest in life insurance, you choose a monetary benefit amount that the beneficiary will receive once you die. 

How Does Life Insurance Work?

Life insurance is similar to any insurance in that you pay a monthly premium to an insurance company. If you die while the insurance policy is still active, the insurance company will pay a tax-free sum of money or death benefit.

Term Life vs. Whole Life Insurance

Term life insurance is a life insurance policy that’s purchased for a set number of years. A pre-selected beneficiary receives a death benefit if you die before the term is up. The beneficiary can receive the death benefit as a monthly payment, an annuity, or a lump sum. These types of insurance policies are less expensive than others, and the terms can last as long as thirty years. Conversely, whole life insurance never expires and is active as long as you pay your premiums. In addition to a death benefit, the policyholder also has a cash value. This cash value is represented as a tax-deferred savings account. This savings account is part of your policy. A whole term life insurance policy builds interest at a fixed rate that was determined when you got the policy. As you pay your premiums, some of that money goes towards the cash value of your policy. The cash value of your whole life insurance policy offers a guaranteed rate of return. 

Central Lakes Insurance Brokers in Edina, MN understands how confusing life insurance can be. We are committed to educating our clients and helping them invest in the best life insurance policy to suit their unique needs and situation. Give us a call or visit our office.