Life is not constant. Change is inevitable; and, whether we like it or not, we have to adjust. We get married and divorced. Babies are born, teenagers learn to drive and college kids leave the nest. Young families purchase large homes and, as they age they sell those homes and move into condos. The years go fast and the days go slow.
Before we get too emotional, the point of this article is that your insurance needs change along with all of these circumstances. You should review your coverage on an annual basis and contact your agent with any questions. In any of the following situations, a licensed YourPolicy agent can review your options and help you determine what is best for your budget and your lifestyle changes.
In the meantime, these questions will give you a guide to assessing your insurance needs.
Have You Recently Married?
Auto Insurance: Couples may bring two different cars and two different insurance companies into the relationship. If policies are combined, you can take advantage of a multivehicle as well as a marriage discount. This could bring savings of up to 25 percent.
Homeowner’s or Renter’s Insurance: When you get married and merge your possessions, you’ll need to increase homeowner’s or renter’s coverage. You may want to consider increasing your insurance to cover expensive gifts and wedding rings.
Life Insurance: If the unthinkable happens, you don’t want to leave the surviving spouse with no resources. If you didn’t have life insurance before you were married, get it now. If you did have insurance when you were single, make sure to reevaluate your needs and add your spouse as a beneficiary.
Health Insurance: You and your spouse can save money by combining health insurance. This can be done during the open enrollment period or at the time of a qualifying life event, like marriage.
Have You Recently Divorced?
All Insurance Policies: If you’ve recently divorced, it goes without saying that you’re no longer sharing a home, a car, or health insurance. Additionally, your life insurance beneficiaries will change and you’ll want to adjust coverage.
Contact your agent to review all of your policies and make appropriate changes.
Have You Had a New Baby or Adopted a Child?
Life Insurance: If your family is growing, it’s important to review your life insurance. You may want to use a life insurance policy to save for the child’s education or add to your present insurance, ensuring that expenses are covered in case of your passing. Don’t forget to update beneficiary designations to include the new child.
Health Insurance: As soon as your pregnancy is assured, contact your health insurer with the news. After the little one is here, you typically have 30 days to enroll your child in your health insurance plan.
Have Your Purchased a New Home?
Homeowner’s Insurance: If you buy a home, homeowner’s insurance is essential. To protect against unexpected events and mitigate the risk of loss on your most expensive asset, insure your home before you move in.
Auto Insurance: Check with your agent to determine whether bundling your home and auto insurance could save you money.
Has Your Teen Started Driving?
Auto Insurance: That new baby is going to have a driver’s license before you know it. It’s generally less expensive to add your teens to your auto insurance than for them to purchase it on their own.
If they are driving their own car , insure it with your company for a multi-car discount. Most companies give discounts for good grades and completion of a recognized driver training course. When your teens leave for college–and don’t take their car–you can get a discount if they are living at least 100 miles from home.
Has Your Income Changed?
Life Insurance: If your income has increased, you may have assumed additional financial commitments. Make sure that your life insurance is sufficient to maintain those commitments.
If your income has decreased, you may want to reduce your life insurance premiums. Term life insurance rates are very reasonable and could be a good option. If you have two or more policies, you may be able to replace both with a single policy at a lower rate. Whatever you decide, don’t drop existing life insurance until your new policy is in place.
Have You Done Extensive Home Renovations?
Homeowner’s Insurance: Any renovations that have increased the value of your home may require an increase in your homeowner’s insurance coverage. Additions like a swimming pool, bathroom or kitchen renovations, or an enclosed porch should be communicated to your insurance company.
Don’t forget new structures that you’ve built outside your home. A gazebo or new shed or hot tub may require you to take another look at your policy. If you’ve purchased furniture or electronics as part of your renovation, you could need additional coverage on your personal possessions. Contact your agent for advice.
Have You Purchased a New Vehicle?
Auto Insurance: If you have purchased a vehicle, your insurance company will need to know the make, model and vehicle identification number (VIN). This information will help them find the best coverage for your vehicle
Have Your Acquired Highly Valuable Items?
Homeowner’s Insurance: Your standard homeowner’s policy provides limited coverage for highly valuable items. If you’ve made purchases or received gifts that exceed those limits, talk to your agent about additional coverage.
You could consider supplementing your current policy with a floater or endorsement. This is a separate policy that provides additional insurance for your valuable possessions. This coverage includes accidental loss. Keep in mind that items insured this way must be appraised.
Have You Retired?
Auto Insurance: As you age, your mileage will likely decrease, but your car insurance could begin to slowly increase. Before you retire check with your agent to learn about companies that specialize in insurance for retirees. Your insurance agent can help you find a company that can best serve your needs.
Life Insurance: As you approach retirement, you may not need to maintain your life insurance. If your children are self-sufficient and your spouse can live comfortably on your retirement savings, you may not need to renew your policy.
If you’re like most people, you buy insurance and don’t think about it again until you need it. That’s a mistake. Life’s transitions make it necessary to review your insurance needs annually. No matter what stage your life is in, a YourPolicy agent is always available to help you determine the right coverage for your needs and your lifestyle.