Newlyweds have a lot of their minds – from combining households and merging financial goals, to unpacking gifts and sending out thank you cards. They also need to give some thought to their insurance policies. Although it might not seem very romantic, starting a new life together involves a lot of changes, and these changes impact the insurance policies you need. Here’s a look at some of the issues newlyweds need to consider.
If you’re buying a new house or renting a new apartment, you’ll need to get the right homeowners or renters insurance policy. Even if you’re keeping your old place, you’ll want to review your policy. Make sure both of your names are on it, and consider whether you need to adjust the coverage limits.
Keep in mind that all those wedding presents add up. Make sure your home insurance policy covers these new items and key jewelry pieces like that sparkling new diamond. You may need to raise your coverage limit or ask your agent to schedule high-value items.
Whether or not you’re sharing a car, you’ll probably want to share a car insurance policy. Combining your policies can usually help you save money.
However, if one spouse has a poor driving record, combining policies could hurt the other spouse’s rates. In this case, you may need to get separate policies and have your spouse excluded from your policy.
Even if you’re happy with separate insurance policies, keep in mind that your insurer may require you to list all licensed drivers in your household. Talk to your insurance agent to determine the best auto insurance strategy for your household.
Health, Life and Disability Insurance
Now that you’re married, you might need to change your health coverage. Many employer-sponsored health plans provide coverage for spouses, and being eligible for this could make you ineligible for other health plans or subsidies. Combining your health coverage could also save you money.
Don’t wait until the next open enrollment period, either – marriage usually counts as a qualifying life event that lets you change plan elections outside of the normal enrollment period. Go over your options carefully before making a decision. Be sure to compare premiums as well as other factors including deductibles, copays, annual limits and networks.
Look at other insurance policies you have, such as life insurance and disability insurance, as well. If your spouse relies on your income to afford your mortgage or other assets, you may want to increase your coverage levels. if you don’t have life insurance, this is a good time to consider purchasing it. Now that you're building a new life together, it’s important to create a plan for how one spouse will manage after the other is gone. This is especially true if one spouse depends on the other spouse’s income, or if you plan to start a family. You should also consider adding your spouse as your beneficiary.
Need help with your newlywed insurance update? Contact Higginbotham.