Life is full of unexpected twists and turns. If you need any proof of this, we just need to look at the COVID-19 pandemic and how it’s changed our lives in many ways. When times like this hit, it’s an ideal time to tackle your list of what you’ve been putting off. It could be a doctor’s checkup, taking your car in for servicing or even updating your will; 64% of Canadians don’t have an up-to-date will. Similar to updating your will, it’s also a good idea to call an insurance professional to review your insurance to make sure it’s up-to-date and you’re covered for your changing needs.

Antonietta Zambri, Allstate Agency Manager, has many reasons why consumers should review their home and auto policies at least once a year with their agent. “It’s important to remember that your insurance coverage is bound to require adjustments as life changes,” she says. “People experience significant life events such as getting married, buying a cottage, doing home renovations, having a car and inheriting valuables. So, you don’t want to find yourself underinsured or find out you’re missing out on new coverage or discounts.”

Zambri adds that “Your agent will also identify endorsements, or additional coverage, that you can add to your policy. For example, if you have valuable jewelry or other expensive items like artwork, you may want to look into purchasing a Personal Articles Floater.”

Life-changing events that could serve as a trigger for you to update your insurance policies include: 

  • Family changes like having a child, getting married, getting divorced or the passing of a family member.
  • Having a teen driver in the home.
  • Changes in driving patterns, like working from home or getting rid of a second car.
  • Moving, selling or renovating your home.
  • Having a home-based business.

Zambri also places an emphasis on getting to know her customers to help with their changing needs. She suggests that it’s a two-way relationship between the customer and their agent. “When we get to know our customers, they trust us to give them the best advice possible about their situation. We in turn try to be proactive and give advice to our customers about major events facing their home or auto insurance policies. These could include wind, hail or flooding events that are happening with more frequency, what to look out for when buying a new or used car, how to drive safely under certain weather conditions, and much more.” 

Zambri also stresses that a thorough insurance review might even “result in discounts” or reveal areas where you may not be fully protected. She listed five questions to ask your insurance professional.

  1. What discounts are available for being claim-free? If you don’t have to submit a claim for your property or auto insurance, some companies offer customers a reward for being claim-free.
  2. Am I covered for water damage? Damage from water is one of the most common reasons for a home policy claim. Coverage for water damage is an option and may be added to your policy. Sewer backups, ground water accumulation, and devastating rainfall are putting homes at risk. Check with your insurer to see if you’re covered.
  3. What coverage is available for my pet? A survey conducted in 2020 by Angus Reid for Allstate revealed 72% of respondents saying they would have difficulty paying their pets’ medical bills. Financial protection can help you take care of veterinary care if your pet becomes ill or is injured. 
  4. Am I covered for identity theft and related legal expenses? If someone steals your identity, some policies provide protection for you, your finances, and your reputation. A restoration specialist can also help make sure you’re reimbursed for additional expenses associated with the theft, like lawyer and legal fees.
  5. Is there a way to take more control of my auto insurance policy? A modern type of auto policy, called Usage Based Insurance, uses telematics technology to provide customers with insights into their driving habits and gives them the opportunity to demonstrate their safe driving behaviours for a potential discount on their auto insurance.

Consider putting a yearly reminder in your calendar for important life tasks such as checking up on your insurance and reviewing your will. You'll enjoy extra peace of mind knowing that you and your family are protected. 

Disclaimer:This information has been provided for your convenience only and should not be construed as providing legal or insurance advice.

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