If you haven't reviewed your auto or home insurance in a while - think about adding it your list of things to do.
You may discover that you're over-insured, under-insured or paying more than you have to for the same coverage. At the very least, you'll confirm that you're on the right track.
In some cases you can save money by having your agent shop around and finding lower premiums with another company. With car insurance, you might also be able to save money by reducing the amount of coverage you have on and older vehicle that's paid off and has lost significant value. Either way, be careful when you make a decision.
Kenneth Fenton's BMW got trashed when Issaquah Creek, flooded the lot where he'd parked.
"You can see there's water throughout the whole vehicle," Fenton said. "Everything is mud."
He put on a good face, despite the fact that he'd arranged for a potential buyer to take look at the car. And if that's not bad enough he'd removed the comprehensive coverage on the car.
"I have liability," Fenton said. "The car was paid off, so I only have liability insurance. So no full coverage and no replacement of car."
Had Fenton kept his comprehensive coverage, he'd at least be able to recoup the cash value of his car, minus his deductible. Comprehensive covers everything except damage from collisions.
Before you reduce auto coverage, find out what your car is worth. If you can afford to cover repairs out-of-pocket in the event that something bad happens, cutting comprehensive and/or collision coverage might be worth the risk. If you're planning to sell your vehicle soon, you might want to wait until after the sale- to change your policy.
When it comes to house insurance your basic homeowners policy covers repairs and rebuilding if your home is damaged by falling trees and other weather disasters- as well as fire. Homeowners insurance also pays to remove the tree trunks and branches that are causing damage to your home. But you're typically on the hook to remove debris in your yard.
In the case of damage to your home from flooding- mudslides and landslides however, you're out of luck, unless you have special coverage- for floods or "Difference In Conditions". So again, review your insurance coverage so you understand exactly what's covered and what's not.
Even you have insurance, consumer advocate Kevin Brasler said have your agent shop around for you.
As Executive Editor of Checkbook.org, Brasler said many people miss out, because they stick with the same company year after year don't shop around. And you can switch at any time, you don't have to wait for the end of policy term.
"Just make sure that you don't cancel your coverage until you're signed up with a new company," Brasler said.
Brasler said you might also save money by shopping around for car insurance.
Whether for auto or home insurance, if you decide to shop around, read your existing policy carefully and know exactly what coverage you have so you can compare apples to apples and get all the coverage you need.
Contact your insurance agent, today. We're happy to assist you and review your coverage with you. We can also shop your coverages. We represent over 30 excellent rated carriers. It's what we do!