Although it’s easy to brush insurance aside and say, “everything will be okay,” the sad reality is, things do occasionally go wrong. To protect yourself and your family from a medical or financial disaster, insurance is prudent. Insurance exists for nearly any situation in life – some are more integral than others.
One necessary policy is for your automobile. It is illegal to operate an uninsured vehicle. Depending on what laws exist in your state, the type of policy you carry is strictly up to you. For example, Michigan growing up, I was able to buy a minimal plan, however residing in Los Angeles, I had to upgrade to a higher plan because of all the expensive vehicles on the road.
Health insurance is another must. I’ve countless uninsured friends, but one visit to the emergency room, or one bad case of the stomach flu can has left them with thousands of dollars in medical bills. Shop online or speak with an insurance agent. If you don’t have a lot of money, consider purchasing a low cost high deductible plan that will at least cover you in extreme emergencies. These cost as little as $30 per month, and could save you tens of thousands of dollars.
Dental and vision insurance are sometimes included on your health policies, but not always, so be sure to clarify what you are and are not covered for. Although it’s a good idea to carry these policies, there are also benefit plans that exist. For a low monthly fee, many dentists and optometrists offer significantly reduced services. Before joining one of these plans, make sure that your doctors subscribe and clarify what procedures are covered.
Homeowners insurance is necessary in most states. This past year my parents had a severe fire, damaging the structure of the house, and losing almost all of their belongings. Without insurance, they would have been left with nothing, however with a policy in place, their insurance covered repairs, replacements, and living costs during reconstruction.
Renters insurance, although not legally necessary is always a good idea. Check with your auto insurance to see if they offer rates on multiple policies. By purchasing renters insurance, I was given a 10% discount on my car insurance, saving me money overall.
Life insurance is actually a relatively cheap policy to maintain. In conjunction with my health insurance, I pay only $2 extra dollars a month and I can rest assured that my family will be able to pay any existing medical or funeral costs that remain should I unexpectedly pass.
Other policies that are advisable are flood insurance, and if you live in areas that are prone to earthquakes, earthquake insurance. Most renters and home policies don’t cover damage from earthquakes, so for the additional cost, it’s advisable to add to your policy.
Flood insurance, is important to consider, even if you don’t live in flood areas. If a pipe was to break or a sub pump was to quit, you would be left with excessive water damage.
If you are a business, insurance is mandatory. Without workmen’s comp, you would face a mountain of debt should someone fall, break a bone, or injure themselves in any other way. Insuring your business also protects you from clients that could be injured on your premises, or from the risk of malpractice.
As with any policy, it is crucial that you read your contracts thoroughly. Pay special attention to any fine print, the way things are worded, or any alternate meanings. Make sure your broker is able to explain any questions that you have. To save money, try to bundle policies together. Not only will this be beneficial financially, but working with one company is also much more convenient.
Insurance can be a hassle, but if you do your research, and buy specific for your needs, insurance can be a lifesaver.