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Insurance is all about preparation and protection – it’s preparing for the unexpected so you can protect your assets, family and finances as much as possible should the worst-case scenario happen.
The type and amount of insurance you may need depends on a variety of factors. The best way to make sure you have the right coverage is to meet with an insurance professional. However, there are some basic coverages you should consider, depending on your life stage.
When you’re just starting out, you’ll likely need:
If you’re renting an apartment or house and there is a fire, you’re out everything if you don’t have renters insurance. Make sure to add high personal liability limits on your renters’ policy, which isn’t that expensive and can save your earning capacity if, for example, someone is hurt and you are considered at fault or negligent.
Personal liability from injury or loss suffered by others – as well as the cost of repairing or replacing a damaged vehicle – can be high. Auto insurance helps pay for those costs.
If you’re driving an older car, it may be beneficial to consider higher liability limits and dropping comprehensive and collision coverage. Often with older cars, you’re paying more for insurance than the vehicle is worth, because if you total your car, you won’t get much money for it.
It’s not very expensive to increase your liability limits on your auto insurance, and if you get into an auto accident and kill someone, you could have your wages garnished for years. Or if an uninsured or underinsured driver hits you, and you have low uninsured or underinsured limits on your own policy, you could be out a lot of money, but those limits aren’t expensive to increase, either.
Even if you’re single, it’s important to consider life insurance. Not only will it cover funeral costs, but it will also cover education expenses or any other debts you may have accumulated. Remember, the younger and healthier you are, the less life insurance will cost.
Once you become engaged, are newly married, and/or start having children, in addition to the policies listed above, you should consider:
You may have spent months saving up to buy the perfect rings, and you can lose it all in an instant if the rings are lost or stolen. An insurance rider that covers jewelry is an inexpensive way to make sure your wedding rings are covered if they’re ever lost or stolen.
If you’re ready to move from renting to owning your home, you’ll need homeowners insurance to protect what is likely the biggest investment you’ll make. We insure homes at what it costs to replace them at today’s values – not what the market value is.
Homeowners insurance also covers the belongings inside of your home, but there are limits to your personal property coverage. If you have high-value assets like artwork, electronics or guns, think about adding an insurance rider. And if you live in a flood-prone area, you may also need flood insurance.
Note: Some things like pools, trampolines and certain dog breeds are considered liabilities, and you may need additional coverage for them.
If someone would suffer financially when you die, consider increasing your life insurance coverage to make sure you can supplement their income for ongoing living expenses. Don’t compound emotional struggles with financial difficulties.
Once you reach middle age (or even a bit sooner), in addition to the policies listed above, you should consider:
If you have children, you will need to add them to your insurance policy once they obtain a driver’s license. Driver's training and maintaining a B grade average in school will help reduce your premium. We also offer free classes to teach them how their driving record and grades can impact their insurance costs.
Before you reach age 55, start thinking about long-term care coverage, which covers anything from nursing home care to help with personal care, such as bathing, dressing and eating, in your home or an assisted living facility.
Long-term care in the United States ranges from $21 an hour for a home health aide to nearly $7,700 a month on average for a private room in a nursing home, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. And seven out of 10 Americans age 65 or older will need some type of long-term care, the department says.
By comparison, long-term care insurance costs on average $2,007 a year or $1,720 a year with a preferred health discount, according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance.
Every time you enter a new life stage, it’s a good idea to meet with an insurance professional to make sure you have the coverage you need. At Bell Insurance, we like to meet with our customers yearly to make sure you have the policies that are right for you and that you’re only paying for the coverage you need.
For help finding an insurance professional, visit us online or call us at 800-369-2501.
Products and services offered through Bell Insurance are: Not FDIC Insured | No Bank Guarantee | May Lose Value | Not A Deposit | Not Insured by Any Federal Government Agency
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