“Can’t I stay on your auto policy forever?”
” Is that the cost for the month or the whole year?”
Rhetorical questions asked by many college graduates as they prepare to take on the world with their first job, their first apartment requiring renter’s insurance, and first car payment requiring an auto policy in their own name. Here’s my daughter’s story…
New job, new apartment, new car, new city and state, new boyfriend. Slowly and sadly, she acknowledged that her parents could not keep paying for her insurance forever, and legally she needed to have her own policies. With the realization that everyone has to grow up sometime, she set out on a path to find the right policies to meet her needs, as well as her budget.
What convinced our daughter more than the advice of her personal insurance guru, her Dad, was working with an independent agent. As a budding attorney, she knew that if she got into an accident, her New York auto policy might not cover her for failing to accurately report that her car was principally garaged in another state. She also has another driver who drives her car more than occasionally and was not listed on her parent’s policy. She knew that now was the time to make a change. She understood she could be left with no coverage and be held liable for medical expenses, property damage, etc. resulting from an accident.
But the confusion over what to do next – decisions on coverages, limits, and deductibles – was overwhelming and scary to her. She worried if she could afford the coverage she needed, and if she could make the right decisions on her own to be sure she got the coverage she needed. She started out by doing a little research and asking questions. She talked to friends, family, co-workers, and, of course, went online. She found all of this worth her time and made her more comfortable with making these important insurance decisions.
When she was ready , she called an independent agent. Her agent was friendly and knowledgeable, understanding this was her first time getting insurance on her own. She was presented with several quotes, bundled options, and payment options. She weighed the pros and cons of each of the policies and companies presented to her before deciding on which policies to move forward with. The whole process went very smoothly and, for the most part, stress fee.
Her words of advice to others setting out on their insurance journey include do your homework, use an independent agent who can find the right company and policy to meet your needs, and combine your policies together if possible so you can get a lower monthly rate.
The process of obtaining her own policies gave her a great sense of independence and reassured her she can make good decisions about her insurance needs. For her parents….she took another step towards adulthood.