Evaluating Insurance Coverage

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There are a lot of different kinds of insurance. Smoke detectors and seatbelts, fire extinguishers and storm cellars, generators and evacuation routes are all measures we take to mitigate the effects of a disaster. Then there are the policies: health, home, vehicle, and life insurance.

A smoke detector may never make a peep, a fire extinguisher may never be used, but we still change the batteries, recharge the cylinder. If there is disaster, we want every measure of protection.

By the same token, we should examine our insurance policies every year to make sure they will be there if we need them.

Here are some considerations as you evaluate your insurance coverage:

  • If you make improvements to your home, acquire valuables (such as electronics, jewelry, or artwork), or see an increase in your home’s appraised value, your homeowners policy should reflect those changes.
  • If you live in a hazard zone—seismic, flood, etc.—damage to your home may not be covered under your standard policy.
  • If you retrofit your home with safety equipment, such as fire sprinklers, a safe room, or anchor bolts for homes in earthquake-prone regions, you may be eligible for discounts on your home insurance.
  • Your vehicle insurance coverage should change to reflect the addition (or removal) of a driver, change of vehicle, and even a change of address.
  • A change to your life insurance could be triggered by job loss, marriage, divorce, or the addition of new dependents.
  • If your health care is covered, in whole or in part, by your employer, make sure it reflects your current health status.
  • In addition to your healthcare and life coverage, you may want to consider a long-term-care policy.
  • As you review each insurance policy, look carefully at your deductibles. If your salary or savings have increased, you may be able to increase your deductibles to reduce your premiums.

Once you have reviewed your policies and followed up with any appropriate changes, keep your insurance documents safe in a safe deposit box or fire safe. Then mark your calendar for next year’s insurance review.

At Sente Mortgage, we value your peace of mind. Give us a call any time if you have questions or are considering a move.

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