As you start your married life together, make sure you've got the proper coverage by reviewing this handy checklist.
By Jenn Sanders
Congratulations, you’re married! Whether getting married brings along new changes, like moving in together, buying a new house or starting a family, or not really, you’ll want to take a look at your insurance policies and update them to reflect your new relationship status. Updated policies provide the best coverage and combining your insurance policies with your new spouse can be beneficial and cost-effective.
Our Newlywed Insurance Checklist addresses several areas where you may want to make changes to existing insurance coverage and a few policies to consider now that you’re married. As you build your life together, don’t forget that insurance can help provide important financial protection in the case of damage or disaster. The right insurance can help you keep your financial foundations strong.
It may not be as fun to plan as your honeymoon, but talking with your partner about your insurance is an important task now that you’re married.
INSURANCE TIPS FOR NEWLYWEDS
We asked InsuraMatch agent Trish about the biggest insurance mistake newlyweds make. She says, “Limits! As you combine your lives, you are also combining your assets. Low limits may no longer provide proper protection for the life you are creating together.”
Her top tip was to look into bundling as a way to save on your insurance premiums if you’ll be carrying multiple policies. She says, “By bundling your insurance, like an auto insurance policy with a renters insurance policy, you may receive better pricing.” This will require you to take out both policies from the same insurer or insurance agent, so be sure to make your insurance plans together with your partner to capitalize on this discount.
Auto Insurance for Newlyweds
If you haven’t already, you’ll likely want to combine your auto insurance policies. Agent Trish advises, “Once you become regular users of one another’s cars, it’s time to add each other to your auto insurance policy.”
“Once you get married, it often makes sense to list all cars and drivers on one policy,” she adds. “Instead of picking one of your existing insurers and adding everything to that, it’s smart to shop around for a quote to ensure you’re getting the best deal possible.”
Home (or Condo or Renters) Insurance for Newlyweds
Depending on your living arrangements before you got married, you may not need to address your home insurance. However, if you haven’t addressed it yet, want to save by bundling your policies or have changed your living situation you and your spouse should look for a policy that suits your living situation and your assets.
A home inventory is important to carry the right amount of personal property coverage on a home or renters insurance policy. Be sure to include both your and your spouse’s belongings!
Trish adds, “Many folks receive gifts prior to the big day…make sure the engagement ring and gifts are properly protected!” You’ll want to account for any new items received during this exciting and ensure you have proper coverage for items of higher value.
“Whether a renter or a home policy, unscheduled jewelry is limited in coverage,” advises Trish. This should always be discussed!”
If you’re recently married, chances are you’re both sporting some new jewelry, and the value of those pieces of jewelry could be above what your policy will cover. Most homeowners, condo and renters policies will only cover jewelry up to a certain limit in total and per piece. These limits often are not adequate for the average engagement ring.
Says Trish, “For the newly married couple – yes, specialist coverage is probably needed for their belongings. First, they’ll want to consider a floater to insure what is often a newlywed couple’s largest asset – the RING!”
Jewelry isn’t the only item newlywed couples may have that has limited coverage under homeowners or renters insurance. Antiques, collectibles, and art all have specialist limits as well. If you received any as wedding gifts or have any in your newlywed home, it’s best to give your insurance agent a call to add on an endorsement to your policy to ensure they’ll be covered from damages.
Umbrella Insurance for Newlyweds
Both auto insurance and home insurance include liability coverage, but oftentimes this coverage isn’t sufficient to cover all your assets. Trish advises couples to think not only of their current assets but their futures. “Because a lien can be placed against “future” assets there are many young professionals that should consider the umbrella now!” she tells us. Talk with your spouse about whether an umbrella insurance policy makes sense for you.
Health Insurance for Newlyweds
Marriage counts as a “qualifying event” and therefore it is a good time to evaluate your health insurance coverage and possibly switch to a policy that makes sense for both of you. Consider your costs, coverage, and provider when deciding whether to join the same plan.
Life Insurance for Newlyweds
It may be a topic you’re not exactly excited to discuss as you are just starting your lives together, but life insurance is important coverage for newlyweds. Says Trish, “The cost of a funeral is $10,000 or more today, which is a financial burden for many people. Speak with your spouse about life insurance for both of you, regardless of income, to address the costs that would be left to one of you if the unexpected happened.”
If either of you have coverage from work, you’ll want to secure an independent, additional policy that isn’t dependent on your job status. If you don’t have any life insurance coverage, Trish advises her clients to think about it early. “Buying life or disability insurance young eliminates the concern for a future illness that may prevent your ability to purchase coverage in the future, like diabetes or heart disease. The younger, and presumably healthier, you are, the easier it will be to secure lower premiums for your life insurance coverage.”
Being newly married is an exciting time, but don’t let the honeymoon distract you from making important financial decisions for your new family. With our Newlywed Insurance Checklist, you can easily start conversations about insurance with your spouse. Using the checklist as your guide, you can decide which coverages make sense for the two of you. Once you've determined your needs, speak with an insurance agent to make sure you haven't missed anything and to find the best coverage for you and your new spouse!
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