Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter
In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.
¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.
²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.
³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.
4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.
Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.
The green movement is everywhere. From recycling to reducing our reliance on oil-based energy sources, Americans are doing more and more to help protect the environment, and that’s good news for our planet. It’s also good news for consumers because going green can result in a number of insurance discounts.
Green building insurance products are rapidly gaining traction in the marketplace. In 2006, Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company offered the first insurance policy for green commercial buildings. By 2010, more than 20 companies offered insurance products related to green building.
Whether you are a homeowner considering environmentally friendly updates to your property or a business owner committed to going green, it’s important to understand how these modifications will be covered under your insurance policy. Below is a breakdown of some of the innovative, eco-friendly products, services, and discounts offered by many insurers for vehicle and home policies.
If you’re an eco-friendly driver, you may be able to take advantage of a number of insurance discounts, including:
Hybrid discounts. Some auto insurance companies offer premium discounts of up to 10 percent to those who drive hybrid vehicles. A similar discount may also apply to hybrid-electric boats and yachts. Some auto policies have the option of adding an endorsement to upgrade to a similar model hybrid vehicle after a total loss.
Alternative fuel discounts. If your car uses an alternative energy source, such as biodiesel, electricity, natural gas, hydrogen, or ethanol, you could be eligible for a discount on your premium.
Pay as you drive (PAYD) programs. Several insurers offer PAYD programs, in which a device or sensor in the car tracks both speed and miles driven. That information is then used to reward policyholders who drive fewer miles than the average driver by providing them with discounts. According to some estimates, PAYD subscribers may decrease their miles driven by 10 percent or more, saving consumers money while reducing accidents, congestion, and air pollution.
Premium discounts for those whose homes meet stringent efficiency and sustainability standards, e.g., LEED certified homes. LEED is short for the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building Rating System, which was developed by the U.S. Green Building Council. It is a recognized environmental standard in the building world.
Policies that take into account the cost of environmentally friendly materials and that will cover their replacement or repair with equally sustainable materials. Homeowners coverage that replaces/rebuilds after a loss with more eco-friendly materials is often offered as an endorsement to a standard homeowners policy.
Incentives for saving energy. Some companies will pay homeowners extra if they replace old kilowatt-hungry appliances with Energy Star devices—which are considered energy efficient by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy—and recycle debris instead of sending destroyed materials straight to a landfill.
Coverage for geothermal, solar, and wind power. For homeowners who generate their own geothermal, solar, or wind power and sell any surplus energy back to the local power grid, there are now policies that cover both the income lost when there is a power outage caused by a covered peril and the extra expense to the homeowner of temporarily buying electricity from another source. Policies generally cover the cost of getting back online, such as utility charges for inspection and reconnection.
Many insurers also offer paperless transactions. Sure, it saves insurers money, but what consumers may not realize is that it also saves them money. In addition to using fewer stamps, envelopes, and paper checks, insurers are able to save on mailings—and the savings get passed on to the consumer. Using fewer resources is the best way to help sustain our world. And that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?
Loretta Worters is vice president with the Insurance Information Institute, a non-profit organization whose mission is to improve public understanding of insurance—what it is and how it works. Follow her on Twitter @LWorters.
Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.