1. If you get your auto and homeowners insurance from the same carrier, you are likely to get what is called a multi-line discount.
  1. When buying auto insurance, many people are sold a low deductible such as $250 or $500 on their collision and comprehensive coverage.  Collision coverage is to repair your car when you were at fault in wrecking it or the other person was at fault but either doesn’t have insurance or that person’s insurance is not responsive.  Comprehensive coverage is when your car is stolen, or burns up or is destroyed in a flood.  TIP: increase your deductible to $1,000.  This will save you a lot in premiums and the truth is most people wouldn’t turn in a smaller claim for fear their insurance rates will go up. So why pay the extra premium for the lower deductible?
  1. The savings you have on your auto insurance by increasing your deductible you can use to buy greater liability and uninsurance/underinsurance coverages.  Your uninsurance and underinsurance coverages usually are not sold less than your liability coverage.  For example if you have $100,000/$300,000 liability insurance you can buy $100,000/$300,000 uninsurance/underinsurance. Why do you want higher uninsurance and underinsurance?  These are the two coverages that actually protect you, your family and passengers if you are in a crash and hurt.   Most crashes are caused by either people who do not have insurance or people that buy cheap insurance.  Uninsurance is when someone hurts you and that person does not have insurance. This is increasingly more common as people struggling to make ends meet buy minimum insurance in order to get their license plates and then let it lapse.  Underinsurance is when someone hurts you who does not have enough liability insurance to pay for all of your damages and injury.   For example, if someone has only the minimum liability insurance ($25,000 in Indiana/$20,000 in Illinois) and that person causes a crash and you are injured, if you have $100,000 underinsurance and your injuries are worth $100,000, your insurance company will be responsible for $75,000 (the difference between your coverage and that of the person who hurt you).
  1. With your auto insurance you also have the option of buying medical payment coverage.  This means your auto insurance will pay for medical bills up to the limit purchased if you or a passenger are injured in a crash regardless of who is at fault. If you have health insurance through work or otherwise that insurance also covers you if you are injured in a crash.  Therefore you have two sources of paying your medical bills.  If you have health insurance you may not need to buy a large amount of auto medical payments coverage and therefore save yourself costs.  For example, you may have Anthem through your work.  You also have auto insurance.  With the auto insurance, they will sell you as much medical payment coverage as your pocketbook will allow but the more you buy the bigger the premium. Therefore why buy $100,000 in medical payment coverage when you have health insurance?  Consider buying $5,000, $10,000 or $25,000 in med pay coverage instead.  Importantly, if injured USE YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE FIRST for medical treatment.  The reason is that the limit of your health insurance is very high and it will only pay a percentage.  Use your auto med pay to pay what your health insurance does not.  The $10,000 in med pay will go a lot further paying the percentage that the health insurance does not.  Keep in mind hospitals and doctors get short-changed by the health insurance carrier and have a lot of forms and delay in getting paid. Therefore they are quick to try and utilize your auto insurance first because it pays 100% of the bill and it pays quick, unlike the health insurance.  The lesson is that you need to be proactive and as assertive as you reasonably can be in getting them to utilize your health insurance first. You don’t want to get into a wrestling match with your doctor, so if they insist on the auto med pay first, then you will just have to go with the flow. Finally on this point, the health insurance carrier may try to say if it is an auto accident that they don’t have to pay.  This is false and they are simply trying to pass the buck to the auto carrier.
  1. Your homeowner’s insurance operates similar to your auto insurance.  They try to sell you a low deductible which most people don’t utilize for fear of their premium going up. The insurance companies know this and are happy to receive the higher premium.  Raise your deductible to $5,000. You really buy your homeowners for something catastrophic like a fire, flood or roof replacement due to a storm.  These things simply are rare occurrences, but if it happens the money you have saved over the years with the higher deductible more than pays for it.   You will be sold medical coverage insurance too.  This is if you or someone else on your property has an injury.  Like with auto insurance med pay, you may not need much, if any, of this if you have health insurance. You will be sold liability coverage and you do need this.
  1. OK, YOU NOW HAVE SAVED MONEY WITH YOUR AUTO AND HOMEOWNER’S INURANCE but you don’t need it for other expenses so what do you do?  Take a trip? NO.  Buy an umbrella policy!!  These are relatively inexpensive.  Make sure the umbrella covers uninsured and underinsured motorist.  REMEMBER that these are the coverages that are your best protection if you are injured because of someone else in a car crash.