Life Changes That Affect Your Insurance

Change is inevitable, like death and taxes. Each major change in your life comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages, as well with its own set of new risks that you need to consider.  Many of these occasions warrant a call to your insurance Agent, including:

  • Changes in address – When moving to a new address, cancel your current homeowners and flood policies to get a prorated refund. Also, the rates on your auto, motorcycle, boat and RV insurances might change with the new ZIP code.
  • Changes in occupancy – If you rent your property to others, you need to cancel your homeowners policy and put a dwelling fire policy on the property.
  • Changes in property usage – If you want to conduct business out of your house or by using your personal auto, be aware that your personal lines coverage may not be sufficient to cover the risk; in fact, you could be denied a claim solely due to business usage.
  • Changes in drivers – Any licensed drivers in your household (including roommates) may either be rated or excluded on your auto policy, but they must be listed on the policy in one of those two ways. Also, any person who regularly uses your vehicle should be rated on the policy, even if he or she lives in another household. As with business usage, failure to report a driver could lead to denied claims.
  • New purchases – If you purchase a car in Florida, your current coverage will automatically cover the vehicle for 14 days after the purchase. Make sure that you have your Agent officially add the vehicle to your policy during that time in order to guarantee continued coverage after the 14-day grace period. If you own a residential property for any period of time without coverage, you could be limiting your options for finding coverage in the future, so make sure you coordinate an insurance purchase with your closing.

Of course, this list isn’t all-inclusive. Any time the usage changes on any piece of insured property that you own (home, auto, motorcycle, RV, boat, etc.), call your Agent to review any changes that you might need to make to your insurances. Come claim time, you’ll be glad you did.

Scott Love
February 26, 2010

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