A major life event isn't the only reason you may need to adjust your plan. Take the time to evaluate your policy, verify deductibles and coverage limits, and make sure you're completely protected. And even if you think you may have adequate insurance, you may not.
Here are several questions to consider when evaluating your policies:
Can you afford your deductibles if something happens?
A high-deductible home or auto insurance policy may save you money in premium payments. But what happens if you can't afford the deductible when trouble comes to call? Carefully evaluate your budget to make sure you can afford to pay all deductibles on an annual basis if needed.
Are you covered enough/too much?
Coverage isn’t one-size-fits-all and, over time, your circumstances may change significantly. Depending on factors like the year and value of your car, determine what levels of liability and comprehensive coverages are necessary to protect you in case of an accident. Talk to your independent agent – here’s where to find one if you need one – to make sure you have the proper coverage in place based on your circumstances.
An umbrella insurance policy – which provides extra liability protection beyond your auto or homeowners insurance – can supplement your current coverage for vehicles and home or condominium.
Have you checked for all discounts that may apply to you?
Why pay a higher price if you don't have to? Many insurance companies offer discounts for things like bundles, safe driving, loyalty, and even teen students’ grades. If you didn't qualify for a discount when you bought your policy, you may now, so it never hurts to check.
Did you obtain valuable possessions?
In time, if you buy expensive furniture or art, remodel or renovate your property, or expand your home's footprint, you need to update your coverages. Let your insurance agent know about these types of changes when they occur.
Do you know how much your personal possessions are worth? Will everything be covered?
Do you know the total value of the personal property in your home, such as jewelry, furniture, appliances and clothing? If you're like most homeowners, the answer is probably no. Many homeowners make a “best guess,” but an inappropriate estimate can be problematic, especially if large-scale damage occurs. A better approach would be to create a home inventory and speak to your agent to ensure you have proper coverage for personal property.
Do you have flood insurance?
If the answer is no, it's time to reconsider. Even low-risk areas can fall victim to flooding – more than 20% of flood insurance claims come from low-risk and moderate-risk level areas. When you don't have adequate protection, just a little water can damage your home, destroy your personal belongings or impact your business operation. Flooding can happen in virtually all regions - no matter the time of year - and most homeowners' policies don't cover flooding.
Did your driving habits change?
If any of the drivers on your vehicles have changed, it’s important to see how this affects your coverage. Make sure that the drivers listed on your policy are current. A change in driving status can affect your coverage. For example, if your teen got his/her driver’s license, or has gone away to college, this should be reported to your agent. If you began using your personal vehicle for business purposes – such as a ridesharing company – this could also significantly affect your coverage or even leave you without coverage.
What has changed for your business?
Don’t just let your business insurance policy renew without taking a look at your current coverage. Talk to your agent about any changes you may have made to the premises or plans at your business. Discuss risk management and ensure you are taking all of the steps to protect your business. If you live in an area that may be at risk for flooding, talk to your agent about flood insurance to make sure your business is protected.
Your insurance deserves sprucing up, just like your home. With the right due diligence about your insurance policies, it's possible to improve coverage, save money and keep yourself protected. Speak to your agent to start spring cleaning your coverages today. Don't have an agent? Click below to find one in your area.