Sometimes friends and family members offer bad advice, including tenuous, illogical and even illegal strategies, hoping to save you a few bucks. "When people shop for insurance, a lot of times they're looking for the best deal," says Ron Reitz, an independent insurance adjuster and president of Quality Claims Management in San Diego.
We asked some insurance veterans about the bad advice they've heard over the years. Do not keep your life insurance policy in a safe deposit box.
Many renters mistakenly assume that their belongings are covered under the landlord's policy. If some calamity were to occur, such as a fire, your landlord's insurance won't cover the contents in your apartment, nor will it pay for you to live in a temporary space while your place is uninhabitable, says Amy Bach, executive director of United Policyholders.
If someone is injured while visiting you and sues you, your landlord's insurance won't cover that either.
It might be tempting to fudge the truth on a life insurance application, especially if you have a serious health condition.
When you have an insurance claim, the last thing you want to discover is that you didn't buy the right coverage.
While it's easy to point the finger at agents, coverage gaps could be a two-way street.
With today's technology, there's no excuse not to scan everything and create electronic copies of important papers that can be put on disks or in other storage devices.If an earthquake destroys your home, you won't recover a penny unless you have an earthquake insurance policy. Decisions about flood insurance should be based on your proximity to a body of water that could overflow, not whether the area flooded before.On the plus side, if you're in a low-risk area, your policy will cost less while still providing the maximum protection."Floods occur in all 50 states, and in many cases flood damage happens in areas that aren't high-risk flood zones," explains Peter Moraga, spokesperson for the Insurance Information Network of California.
If you want the assurance of having important documents locked up, buy a fire-safe box."Just make sure documents aren't stored in a place where they can be lost in a flood or fire," says Reitz.