Homeownership Guidance, Advice and Blogs

As the Director of Affiliate Relations at HomeFree-USA, I’ve always been fascinated with how people handle their money. Like everyone else, I’ve had my financial ups and downs. In fact, it took me 32 months to pay off $32,000 in credit card bills and build up a six-month emergency fund. While that was a very difficult period, I am grateful – and wiser -- for the experience.

Through my personal experiences and working at HomeFree-USA, I’ve gained a ton of insight that I feel compelled to share. You’ll find those lessons here. Feel free to take the thoughts and ideas that resonate with you most and put aside the rest for later. I look forward to sharing my journey.

5 Crippling insurance mistakes people make

Insurance ranks right up there with taxes in terms of things Americans can't avoid.

Whether it be life, health, auto, homeowners or another type of insurance, you need to have some to protect yourself and your family.

But where many go wrong is not paying attention to the type of coverage, if any, you have, and trying to create shortcuts in the wrong places. Rick Henderson, owner of the Henderson Insurance Group in Decatur, GA shared five mistakes too many people make with their coverage:

1)   Over insuring. This is a waste of money at best. Check the fine print on your various policies and determine if any offer additional benefits. For example, some life insurance policies also offer disability coverage, so there's no need establish a separate policy

2)   Confusing a Home Warranty with Homeowners Insurance. Insurance covers catastrophic home damage such as a fire or vandalism. A warranty covers smaller scale items that keep your house functioning, such as the furnace, hot water heater and possibly appliances.

3)   Whenever you file a claim, it counts. This is kind of like pulling your credit in that when you attempt to file a claim, whether it's paid or not, it's noted in your profile, and your premiums may increase as a result. With credit, your score goes down the more your credit report is pulled by anyone other than yourself. So before you call your insurance company, contact your agent or review your policy to determine if the damage is covered.

4)   Not insuring young drivers. Some parents choose not to insure their teen driver since it's so expensive and many policies extend their accident coverage to include non-insured drivers. However, if it's determined that the driver is a dependent who lives with the insured, the insurance company may consider this insurance fraud and not pay the claim. This could mean thousands of dollars that you have to pay to repair/replace your car or worse, to cover hospital and other medical bills.

5)   Not getting renters insurance. If there's a fire in the home or apartment you're renting, the homeowners insurance will only cover the dwelling, not the contents included. Renters insurance covers all material items lost by theft or catastrophe and is typically pretty inexpensive. An absolute must have type of insurance.

For more information on the Henderson Group check them out HERE.

And so it is.