After wedding bells ring, there are often a number of things to work through as couples start the process of merging two separate lives together. There are the fun things, like starting to form your own family traditions and beginning life as an official team of two. There are other big and small considerations to make, like where to live, combining bank accounts, discussing who will do the grocery shopping, and which furniture stays and what couch is headed to the curb.
Insurance is another thing that a newly married couple should evaluate—not only car insurance, but also homeowners insurance, renters insurance and life insurance. Why? Because big life changes such as marriage can have an effect on your insurance, whether it’s lessening the cost of a policy (and helping you save money!) or simply making sure your contact and address information is up to date, so your policy is accurate.
We know this can all be daunting, especially when you just want to hang out in the honeymoon phase. But we promise this stuff is important and less overwhelming than it might seem at first glance.
So how does marriage affect insurance? Let’s discuss, cover different types of insurance policies, and how marriage could impact specific types of insurance. Welcome to insurance for married couples 101!
How marriage affects Car insurance
You and your spouse each own a vehicle, and once you’re married you realize it would be simpler to combine your insurance to have everything in one place.
Things to consider:
If you’re looking for ways to save some dough each month, merging car insurance policies with your spouse could be a great way to save on the monthly cost of car insurance. It also keeps things easy to manage, with one log-in and policy to evaluate instead of two.
Many insurers including Elephant offer a multi-car discount, where customers are rewarded for having multiple cars on the same policy. If it sounds simple, well, that’s because it is! You get a discount simply for putting all your family vehicles under one policy.
How marriage affects Homeowners insurance
If you’re purchasing a home together as a newly married couple or combining households after living separately, you’ll definitely want to think about homeowners insurance. (This guide gives a full rundown on why homeowners insurance is so important.)
Things to consider:
Reassess your coverage needs.
If you have been paying for separate policies, one of you may need to cancel coverage as you combine two households into one. For the existing policy that you plan to keep, your spouse is covered, but you’ll want to reach out to your insurer to let them know to include your spouse’s name on the policy.
Think about the type of coverage you need.
You’ll want to think about the price of the policy, but also what kind of customer support you’re looking for and your specific coverage needs. If you have certain electronics, heirloom family items or jewelry that you want covered, you may want to talk with your provider about additional coverage to make sure all your belongings are taken care of. You may need to increase coverage if you’re combining households.
Consider getting your homeowners insurance from the same company that you work with for car insurance or life insurance. The more you can bundle, the better—and the more savings you’ll see.
How marriage affects Renters insurance
This scenario isn’t too different from the scenario above for homeowners insurance. The big change is (obviously) that you and your spouse are renting instead of buying a house. But if you’re going from renting two separate places down to one, there are still a few things to think about.
Things to consider:
Settle on one policy.
There’s no need for two renters insurance policies—just pick one! Like homeowners insurance, look at price, customer service, and your coverage needs as you choose which renters insurance policy is right for you.
Review your coverage.
Two people joining together often means more stuff, and that can include valuables and treasured family items. Maybe you have a piano or a set of china that used to be your grandmother’s, or some valuable jewelry from your aunt. If you had a wedding registry, you likely have some new gifts you may want to consider for coverage as you think about the value of these new possessions. Take the time to see if you need to increase your coverage or add additional coverage for special items that might not be included within your regular policy. We recommend writing down values and capturing photos of special items. It might take a little more time now, but it will be a huge help should something happen.
How marriage affects Life insurance
Once you get married, someone else might be relying for you on your income in a different way than if you were single. An example is if you and your spouse own a home together, but your spouse would not be able to take care of the mortgage with their income alone if you passed away. Life insurance helps you know that your beneficiary is taken care of should something happen to you.
Things to consider:
Signing up for a policy or adjusting your current policy to add coverage.
If you didn’t have life insurance before getting married, life events are a great time to get a new policy or adjust an existing policy with your spouse factored in.
Depending on what provider you work with, there might be benefits or discounts available to you and your partner for combining two policies.
One other thing to look at…
Many employers offer some form of life insurance during open enrollment, which can sometimes come at no expense to the employee. Review your current coverage so you can accurately assess what you need.
Ready to review your coverage?
We hope that this run down gave you a better sense of insurance for married couples. If you’ve recently gotten married or experienced another big life event, log in to your account today to adjust your insurance coverages or get a quote to switch insurances and start saving as a married couple.
Remember, insurance bundling (combining all of your insurance needs under one carrier) can be a great way to cut costs.