It’s no secret that the new year is a great time to set goals! And, though you may be focused on tackling your new business and personal challenges, the new year can also be a great time to evaluate your insurance needs to make sure you’re on track for the upcoming year.
A lot can change in a year, and you may not realize that some of those changes could greatly affect your insurance needs.
Follow this checklist for insurance to make sure you’re properly covered this year.
When’s the last time you took a good look at your auto insurance policy? It’s easy to renew your coverage without giving it much consideration, but now is the time to give your car insurance policy a solid once-over — ask yourself these questions to make sure you’re getting the most out of your car insurance:
Are my auto insurance coverage limits enough?
Am I covered if a driver hits me and they don’t have car insurance?
Do I understand my car insurance coverage?
Also consider the following changes as you review your car insurance coverage in the new year.
New Drivers in the Family: Do you have a teenager who just started driving? Even if they don’t have their own vehicle, they will need to be added to your car insurance policy. Adding a teenage driver to your auto insurance policy can be expensive in the short term, but failing to do so could cost you money down the line if there is a dispute over coverage.
Vehicle Status: As vehicles age, their values can drop significantly. You can save money by increasing your deductible, lowering your coverage or dropping some parts of your coverage altogether. Before you do anything, it’s important to discuss the pros and cons of all of your options with your insurance agent.
Maybe your resolution last year was to renovate your kitchen, or perhaps you finally finished your basement. Either of these updates would affect how much your home is worth, so check in with your agent to see if you should increase your coverages. Hot tubs, swimming pools, trampolines — all fun additions to make, but additional liability also comes with the territory. Again, your agent can help you determine what warrants more coverage. They’ll make sure you have the right coverage in place to help you protect what matters most.
You’ll also want to make sure you evaluate and update your home inventory.
Part of your renters or homeowners insurance is designed to cover your personal possessions if you face a covered loss — but only up to your policy limits. That’s why it’s important to maintain a current record of all your belongings. Did you receive some expensive gifts this year, such as jewelry or art? Or maybe you finally invested in that big-screen TV. You wouldn’t want something to happen to your home that leaves you paying out of pocket to replace these expensive items, right? Now is the perfect time to reassess all your belongings and update your home inventory so your coverage limits meet your needs.
Whether you already have it or you’ve been sitting on the fence, life insurance from First Community Insurance and Annuity Center is a way of showing you care about your loved ones’ futures. If you already have a policy in place, think about how much has changed since you first bought life insurance. Maybe you got married, received a promotion at work, had your first child (congrats!) or you’re now an empty nester — all these are good times to review if your current coverage is the right amount to protect your loved ones.
Don’t have life insurance yet? It can be a crucial element of sound financial planning, and, from income replacement to final expenses, life insurance helps protect your loved ones financially in more ways than you may think. Also, the cost of life insurance largely depends on your age, so the younger you are when you get it, the less expensive it may be. Here are Critical Times in Life That You Need Life Insurance The Most.
You may also want to check or update your Life Insurance Beneficiaries. Did you know that the beneficiary listed on your life insurance policy usually takes precedence over anyone listed on a will? For instance, if your parents are listed as beneficiary on your life insurance policy, but you updated your will with your spouse as your life insurance beneficiary, it’ll be your parents, who are listed on your life insurance policy, that will receive the death benefit. So, if you want to add or remove anyone as a beneficiary on your life insurance policy, there’s no time like the present to call up your agent and make sure you’ve got everything properly in place.
Need extra protection? Think of umbrella insurance as a super reinforced safety net for the things that matter most to you. It’s an extra layer of protection for your home, auto and other primary liability coverages. Imagine facing a substantial lawsuit that goes above and beyond your policy limit. An umbrella policy offers coverage for those unexpected instances where your primary coverage exceeds its limit.
You might consider a personal liability umbrella policy if you:
Drive a car or participate in carpools
Own or use a boat, ATV, snowmobile or other recreational vehicle
Have a swimming pool or trampoline
Own a home or rental property
Coach youth sport teams
Additional New Year Review Reminders
Don’t stop at reviewing your insurance in the new year. This is the perfect time of year to check a few other to-do’s off your list.
Here’s a quick checklist:
Change all of your passwords (and don’t use the same password for everything)
Review your 401K information – are your beneficiaries up to date?
Set up a 529C plan for your kids to save money for college
Install carbon monoxide detectors in your home
Change the batteries in all smoke detectors
Schedule a Personal Insurance Review
Don’t be caught off guard when the unexpected happens, plan ahead.
It doesn’t have to be a time-consuming hassle to cross off all the items on your insurance resolution list. Scheduling a personal insurance review for some one-on-one time will help you take care of all the updates at once. And, because we care about providing you with the best support and knowledge, we will help you knock off a few other insurance-related things that you may not know to ask.