Life events that should trigger a call to your insurance agent

All too often, people only think about insurance when they have a loss or when it’s time for an annual insurance policy such as auto or homeowners to renew. That’s just human nature. Yet insurance is an important part of financial planning and deserves more consideration than a quick search for the cheapest quote come renewal. As with any other purchase, cheapest is not always the best purchasing criteria – you get what you pay for. While there is certainly no sense in spending more than you need to, you should be sure that the insurance package you buy will provide sufficient coverage for your particular situation. The question lies in what’s sufficient coverage – and that may very well vary over the course of your life. Insurance is essentially a form of financial risk management that is designed to protect an individual or a business from loss resulting from adverse life events. A single person in their 20s will have very different coverage needs than a middle-aged parent who owns a home and has several dependents.

When certain major life events occur, they should trigger a review of insurance coverage. You may need to add a new type of coverage, you may want to raise or lower deductibles on an existing policy, or there may be opportunities for savings or discounts. Your independent insurance agent will be able to inform you about various coverage options – but can only advise you based upon what he or she knows. It’s good to keep insurance coverage in the back of your mind, and get in the habit of making a call or dropping a note to your local agent when you experience a major life event, such as any of the following:

  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Death of an immediate family member
  • Military deployment
  • Purchasing a new home, condo, or a second home
  • Home renovation
  • Adding buildings to your property
  • Renting out your home
  • Moving to a new geographic area
  • Renting an apartment
  • A teen child getting an auto license
  • Changing jobs and job benefits
  • Starting a small business
  • Acquiring expensive electronics, antiques, jewelry, furs, or specialty collections
  • Acquiring a recreational vehicle – boat, motorcycle, snowmobile
  • Joining a carpool
  • Retiring