Do You Need Identity Theft Insurance?

Identity theft is a surprisingly common problem that Americans face, with a new theft occurring every 22 seconds. Identity thefts are expected to increase over time, with many expected to experience financial loss. You should consult an insurance agent for protection if you’re somebody with a high risk of identity theft. Identity theft insurance is one method of many in protecting yourself in this situation. At Shell Insurance Agency, we’re offering identity theft insurance to the people of Deer Park.

How Do I Know if I Need Identity Theft Insurance

Because the internet is now such a pervasive platform, many use it for banking purposes. Americans have a 1 in 6 chance of losing money to a scam. If you have some of your money stored in a digital storage space – like an online banking account or a payment processor – then identity theft insurance comes highly recommended. 

What to Expect From Identity Theft Insurance

There are various types of protection against identity theft, and insurance offers its own set of benefits. In an identity theft insurance plan, you can expect payment if your identity is stolen. It can also cover additional theft-related fees, like legal aid, application charges, or lost wages on the job. When shopping for this insurance, find policies matching your needs.

Finding Identity Theft Insurance from Deer Park, TX

Ready to purchase an insurance plan that covers situations like identity theft? If so, please contact our Deer Park agency at 713-527-2209. Our team would be happy to discuss insurance options with you. 

Three Wise Ways to Flood-Proof Your Yard

Torrential rainfall, hurricanes, and floods can all cause significant damage to your Deer Park, TX landscape. From Shell Insurance Agency, here are three wise ways to flood-proof your yard and keep your property safe.

Identify Low Areas in Yard to Elevate or Fill In

1. Look for standing water: Areas, where water collects and stands after a rainstorm or sprinkler use, can indicate low spots in the yard.

2. Measure elevation changes: Use a laser level or another tool to measure elevation differences across your yard. Low spots will have a lower elevation than the surrounding area.

3. Look for drainage patterns: If you have a large yard, look for signs of water draining away from specific areas. This could indicate that those areas are lower than the rest of the yard.

Install Sloping Landscapes to Guide Water Away From House

Installing sloping landscapes around your home can help prevent flooding by guiding water away from the house and its foundation. Sloping landscapes are designed to direct surface runoff away from the house, preventing it from pooling around the foundation and causing water damage. They also help prevent water from entering the home in heavy rainfall or floods. By directing water away from the house, sloping landscapes help reduce the risk of flooding, property damage, and costly repairs.

Choose Plants That Can Withstand Flooding

Flood-tolerant plants can be an excellent asset for properties prone to flooding. They have deep roots that help stabilize the soil, preventing erosion and reducing the risk of landslides or mudslides. Additionally, these plants can provide a buffer against rising waters and help absorb excess moisture, thus lessening the impact of flooding on your property.

At Shell Insurance Agency in Deer Park, TX, we provide flood insurance to protect you and your property. With us, you can trust that you’ll be getting quality coverage and the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re covered in case of a flood. Contact us today to discover more!

Three reasons why everyone should have ID theft protection

Shell Insurance Agency is here to serve the insurance needs of the Deer Park, TX community. If you have questions about ID theft insurance and how it can help to protect you, we are here to answer them. Call our office or stop by today to find out more.

Top reasons why you should have ID theft protection

  1. ID theft insurance is an effective way to avoid serious financial problems. When your ID is stolen, it can lead to a lot more headaches than just having your accounts changed. Hackers typically use the data they steal to open credit accounts and mortgages. Protecting yourself from this financial risk is smart in today’s environment. 
  2. You can maintain tighter control over your data and information. It can feel like a challenge to successfully protect your privacy and personal data in today’s online world. With an ID theft protection policy, you can access the resources necessary to keep your personal data and online information safe. 
  3. It is an effective way to protect your credit profile and score. We all know how important a healthy credit score is to obtain a loan or open a credit card account. Ensure you have the protection you need to keep a strong credit score. An ID theft policy can alert you to unusual activity before it becomes a problem. 

Contact us today!

If you live in the greater Deer Park, TX area, Shell Insurance Agency is here to help with all your insurance needs. Most people spend a lot of time online and protecting your data, and privacy only makes sense! Give our office a call today and learn more about this important type of insurance. 

Can FEMA Re-map Your Town?

You bought a home that doesn’t sit in a flood zone, but when FEMA updated its flood maps, you received notice that you do own a home in a flood zone. Here’s how to handle that problem.

Shell Insurance Agency knows that your Deer Park, TX home means a lot to you. That’s why you insure it. When you purchased your home, it may not have appeared in a flood zone on any map. However, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) conducts regular research in the area of floods and updates the US flood maps accordingly. Your community can also decide to re-visit the flood maps and update the flood zones.

FEMA and Community Agencies Can Re-map

When the agency updates the flood maps for Deer Park, it can result in your home and others moving into a flood zone that requires federal flood insurance. Typically, this occurs due to a flood or series of flash floods striking the area.

Re-mapping causes homeowners who previously did not need to purchase flood insurance to need to do so. The Agency requires this to ensure that each homeowner can repair or rebuild after a flood, since homeowners’ insurance does not cover flood or rising water damage.

Updating Your Insurance Coverage

While it’s rare that this occurs, it can happen. Shell Insurance Agency can help you obtain flood insurance locally. Our insurance policies meet the requirements of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which works in conjunction with FEMA.

Let us help you properly insure your Deer Park, TX home against flood. Contact us if you find that either FEMA or your community updated the flood map for Deer Park and your home or business now falls within a flood zone that requires coverage.

Essential Steps to Protect Your Identity from Thieves

When you purchase ID theft insurance from Shell Insurance Agency, you probably hope you’ll never use it. Things happen in Deer Park, TX, just as they do in the rest of the US, so taking careful preventative measures helps you avoid needing to file a claim.

Using the advice from the US government and identity theft expert Frank Abagnale, we’ve put together this quick list of precautions to help you keep your identity safe.

  1. Keep your Social Security card in a safe place, such as a safe or safety deposit box, stored with your other critical identifying documents. Don’t carry your number with you; memorize it. Only provide your Social Security number when necessary.
  2. Avoid sharing personal information, such as your birthdate or bank account number, unless you must for an application or payment.
  3. Use a credit monitoring service like Lifelock or Experian Dark Web Scan + Credit Monitoring monitors the three major credit bureaus – Transunion, Equifax, and Experian. The service needs to notify you in real-time of an identity compromise.
  4. Use a micro-cut shredder to credit offers, shred receipts, account statements you still get on paper, and expired credit cards so no dumpster diver can access your personal information.
  5. Collect your mail daily and put delivery on hold when you go out of town.
  6. Know your billing cycle date and contact your bank or creditor if your statement doesn’t arrive on time.
  7. Compare your receipts with your bank statement and credit card statements to balance your accounts and catch unauthorized transactions.
  8. Review all three of your credit reports annually to check for incorrect information, especially accounts you don’t recognize. You can get a free credit report from
  9. Always use a credit card, so you use the bank’s money, not your own. Credit cards protect you from unauthorized charges. You typically only have liability for $50.
  10. Avoid using debit cards since they provide a bank account gateway. Examine any ATM or gas station pump card reader carefully before using it. Skimmer attacks place an artificial card reader over the legitimate reader to steal your card number, then your cash.
  11. Activate all of the security features on your smartphone and other mobile devices.
  12. Create passwords you can remember that an identity thief would find difficult to guess or hack. At a minimum, you should use a different password for each website. Each should consist of at least one uppercase letter, one lowercase letter, one digit, one special character when allowed, and not more than three repeating characters. Typically, each password must consist of at least eight characters.
  13. If a company with which you do business experiences a security breach, change your password for their site.
  14. Install virus-detection software, malware detection software, and a firewall on your home computer, tablet, and smartphone.
  15. Use a virtual private network (VPN) when using public Wi-Fi. Also, update your firewall settings before signing onto public Wi-Fi.
  16. Freeze your credit files with the credit bureaus, Innovis, and the National Consumer Telecommunications and Utilities Exchange if you know you don’t need to apply for a loan or a credit card. The freeze prevents costs nothing and stops anyone from being able to apply for credit or utilities in your name.

If you don’t already have ID theft insurance, contact Shell Insurance Agency serving Deer Park, TX. Let us help you protect your identity.

Understanding flood insurance

If you live in the greater Deer Park, TX area, you may wonder if flood insurance is something you need. Fortunately, the team here at Shell Insurance Agency is here to answer all of your questions!

What you need to know about flood insurance

Many people are unsure if flood insurance is something that they need. The answer is an easy yes in some situations, as their home or business is located in a flood plain or their lender requires them to carry such coverage. But in situations where it is a little less cut and dried, you may wonder if flood insurance is something that you should have.

The first thing to understand is that water damage coverage is typically classified by the cause of the damage. For example, your homeowner’s policy may cover the damage caused by a broken pipe but does not provide protection against damage caused by excessive rain or another natural cause.

First, it makes sense to take a close look at your homeowner’s policy to understand what protection it offers for different types of damage. Next, sit down with a local agent who understands your area and the need for flood insurance at your home or place of business. 

Learning about the options you have available to protect your property can help you make the right choice for flood insurance.

Find out more today!

Shell Insurance Agency is your source for insurance in the greater Deer Park, TX area. We are proud to serve the insurance needs of our community and look forward to working with you too. If you would like to learn more about the flood insurance options available in our area, call or stop by today.

Is ID Theft Insurance Worth It?

It seems that data rates are increasing at an alarming rate. Therefore, you have to be smart about keeping your identity safe. For this reason, more and more people in Deer Park, TX are making a smart investment in ID theft insurance.

What Is Identity Theft Insurance?

Identity theft insurance, which is available for purchase from Shell Insurance Agency as an add-on to your property insurance policy, provides coverage for expenses that you incur while restoring your identity. The exact coverage options will vary, but typically ID theft insurance will cover the following:

  • Certified mailing fees
  • Loss of wages
  • Monitoring black market websites and chat rooms for information
  • Notary fees
  • Public records searches

It is important to note that these policies do not pay for direct monetary loss, such as money that is stolen from a bank account. In addition, some policies may cap your coverage if your ID is stolen or require payment of a deductible before coverage kicks in to pay for any expenses.

Peace of Mind

Identity theft insurance can provide you with peace of mind. Be sure to take the time to research the benefits to get a good understanding of everything that is covered by this type of insurance policy. Always read the fine print to ensure that you are making an informed decision and getting the coverage that you need.

If you are located in the Deer Park, TX area and you are interested in learning more about identity theft insurance, you are invited to contact Shell Insurance Agency. Our skilled and knowledgeable team of experts is here to provide you with answers to any questions and address any concerns that you may have about purchasing this particular type of insurance. Give us a call today!

What Does Flood Insurance Cover?

If you own a home in Deer Park, TX, flood insurance is a must-have. Your home is the most valuable asset you probably own. The best thing you can do is to guard it by purchasing flood insurance safely. And since home insurance does not cover floods, it would help if you had a separate flood insurance policy.

Just because your home has not flooded before doesn’t mean it won’t do so in the future. Unfortunately, Mother Nature can knock any time, and you don’t want to wait to receive her wrath unprepared. That’s why you need to buy flood insurance from Shell Insurance Agency. This way, you will get coverage in the following areas:

Building property coverage

Flood insurance covers damages to your home in the event of an unfortunate event. Building property coverage covers the following:

  • Plumbing systems and electrical
  • Window blinds
  • Water heaters and Furnaces 
  • Refrigerators, build-in appliances, and cooking stoves
  • Detached garages
  • Solar energy, fuel tanks, and pumps
  • Detached garages
  • Staircases, anchorage systems, and foundation walls

Personal contents coverage

Your flood insurance also protects the contents of your home. You have to disclose your contents correctly to your insurer. Here is a list of the contents inside your home that the policy covers.

  • Furniture
  • Electronics
  • Clothing
  • Dishwashers
  • Portable air conditioners and microwaves
  • Dryers and washers
  • Freezers and the food inside the freezers
  • Certain valuables like arts but up to a specific limit

You can purchase flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) or private insurers. Either way, you will have a policy that shields when floods strike.

Flood insurance in Deer Park, TX

Flood insurance protects the things you value. It’s essential to talk to your insurer also to learn what flood insurance does not cover. Ready to purchase a flood insurance policy? Contact us at Shell Insurance Agency for an affordable quote.

How do you have someone prosecuted for identity theft?

Shell Insurance Agency serving Deer Park, TX wants you to understand that identity theft is a crime. When another individual uses your name, likeness, credit card number, driver’s license number, or Social Security Number, that’s identity theft. The term identity theft or ID theft means that a person other than yourself used your identity to represent themselves.

Identity theft is illegal. 

Those criminals should listen to the old adage, “Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.”

This blog explains how to handle documenting ID theft and pressing charges to have the perp arrested and tried. You can have an individual prosecuted in criminal and civil court for identity theft.

By filing criminal charges, you can have the person arrested for the crime. The matter goes to court unless they cut a deal. If prosecuted, tried, and convicted, they will go to prison. The prison terms for this crime vary by state.

You can also sue the individual in civil court to recover the money they defrauded other companies of and to recover damages for any reputation harm they did.

Filling Criminal Charges

You first need to report what happened to the police. Ask to file a report for identity theft. Also, once filed, obtain a copy of the police report. At the time that you file your police report, ask the police department to submit your name and information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s NCIC Identity Theft File. This helps law enforcement flag stolen identities, so they can more easily spot imposters.

What to Bring

You need to take proof with you. If you reported charges to your credit card companies or to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), you need to print a copy of that report. Take your government-issued photo ID with you, typically your driver’s license. Also, bring with you proof of your physical address, such as your utility bill, rental agreement, or mortgage papers. You should take with you any proof of the identity theft, such as screenshots of fake accounts they created using your name and photos, bills for purchases they made, photos of them using your credit card information taken from retail store security cameras, Internal Revenue Service (IRS) notices, etc.

The police typically do not have time to investigate these matters themselves, so if the identity theft occurred online and did not involve accessing your finances, you need other proof of who did it. You will need to hire a private investigator or a computer firm that specializes in criminal documentation of digital access. They will need to trace the creation of and access to the account(s) to document their Internet Protocol (IP) address which reveals their physical address. Police use the physical address to arrest the individuals. You cannot hire a computer repair shop or Best Buy to do this type of work. The companies specializing in this type of digital investigation locate themselves in major cities, including Dallas, New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, etc. You may not find a local company that specializes in it, but since most of these companies conduct their investigations online, this won’t matter.

Filing in Civil Court

You will need to hire a personal injury attorney to file civil charges. Rather than the type of personal injury attorney that deals with car accidents or construction accidents, you need one that specializes in criminal and civil fraud. Many lawyers now specialize in identity theft. Take with you the same paperwork as when you filed the criminal charges, plus the police report. The civil process takes time, and you may not recover much money out of it, but you will be able to document the reputation damage, which can help you recover your good name.

You can help yourself by carrying identity theft insurance from Shell Insurance Agency serving Deer Park, TX. This pays for the fraudulent charges made by those who stole your identity.

3 Benefits of Flood Insurance

We love our homes because it’s the safe haven for our family and pets. While most homeowners understand the importance of protecting their homes, buying flood insurance never crosses their minds until their mortgage lender asks them.

Over the past years, the US has experienced record-breaking floods, resulting in property damage and loss of lives. Without flood insurance, you may be staring at losses when floods damage your home. While you may expect federal assistance, this is not always the case. 

So, why do I need flood insurance in Deer Park, TX? Shell Insurance Agency shares benefits you enjoy when you invest in flood insurance.

To protect your home

Water damage can cause devastating damage. Did you know that just a one-inch rise of water may cost about $25,000 in repairs? Because floods can cause costly damages to your home, you require flood insurance to save you the hassle of financing the repairs from your pocket.

But I don’t live in a flood-risk area? Floods are unpredictable and can strike anywhere. Data from FEMA shows that about 20% of all flood insurance claims arise from residents living in moderate to mild flood-risk areas. 

For peace of mind

Instead of shuddering every time the weatherman mentions an imminent storm, purchase flood insurance to live a stress-free life. This way, you don’t have to worry about the safety of your loved ones when you hear of imminent bad weather. 

To keep your loved ones safe

The worst part about floods is that your home insurance doesn’t cover your home when damaged. As such, your loved ones might be rendered homeless when floods strike. Thankfully, a flood insurance plan protects the safe haven of your dear ones when the unexpected strike.

Buy flood insurance today!

Featuring several rivers and their proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, floods are a reality in Deer Park, TX. But how can I be safe? The surest line of defense is purchasing flood insurance from Shell Insurance Agency. Contact us today for an affordable quote.