When deciding what kind of insurance you need, there are several questions to ask yourself about your lifestyle, possessions, and your family’s particular situation. Here are a few questions to ask yourself that can start shaping a picture of what coverage you need.
What Property Do You Own?
What is the value of your home, property, and possessions, and where are they located? Homeowner’s insurance covers the cost to rebuild if your home was damaged or destroyed, replace possessions that are stolen, and cover liability for accidents and injuries on your home’s premises. If you live in an area prone to flooding or earthquakes, additional coverage may be needed.
The value of what you own is often underestimated. Not just limited to more expensive items like computers and televisions, possessions also include the pots and pans, linens, and books. Even if you are a renter, the importance of renter’s insurance should not be underestimated in terms of liability coverage. When thinking of coverage, try to come up with an estimate of how much money it would take to completely start over.
If you own a car, automotive coverage is a necessity in terms of protecting your investment as well as providing essential liability coverage and you want to make sure that there are no gaps in your coverage. There also are many options for coverage to protect specialized vehicles such as motorcycles and boats. Consult with an insurance agency in Oakland to see what coverage choices make the best sense for you.
How Risky Is Your Lifestyle?
Do you have a job or activities you enjoy that could leave you at a higher risk than the average person to cause harm to yourself and others? If your job or hobby involves higher risk activities such as shooting, skydiving, or scuba diving, adjustments to your homeowner’s or life insurance coverage may be needed.
Do Others Depend On You?
If you have dependents, what will provide them stability in terms of shelter and support if you die unexpectedly? If you have very young children, it may take a while for the surviving spouse to be able to get back to work. What amount of life insurance coverage would be needed to maintain the same lifestyle as they have now? What are your plans for your children’s education or your spouse’s long term welfare? A life insurance calculator can help you think about those questions and tabulate what level of coverage you need.
On the same note, do you have enough savings to provide income if you are unable to work due to an injury or a permanent disability? Some employers offer this coverage, but most of the time it is inadequate to fully meet a family’s needs. Most people are uncomfortable with the risk of having to cover living costs with their savings for an unspecified amount of time and opt for short or long term disability insurance coverage.
Often the things that are valued the most are almost unthinkable to lose. Questions about what is important to you can open up a dialogue with you, your family, and your insurance professional about your specific needs for insurance coverage.