The Short Short Versions

These quick and dirty versions do not cover all the details and nuances. At Finance Gourmet we are all about the details. Read this to get a handle, and then make sure you complete your education with the in depth articles.

Life Insurance, The Short-Short Version

  • Insurance is NOT an investment.
  • Your primary concern is insurability.
  • You need $300,000, $500,000, $750,000 or $1,000,000 worth of total death benefit depending on your situation.
  • Figure out what combination of term and permanent insurance you can afford, and buy it.
  • Only buy your insurance from someone who can sell you insurance from many different companies.

Types of Life Insurance

Car Insurance, The Short-Short Version

  • Get new quotes at least every two years.
  • If you own a home, get at least $100,000/$300,000/$100,000 liability coverage.
  • Make sure you have uninsured motorist coverage.
  • Check your policy and state law to see if you need to have medical coverage on your car insurance. If not, drop it.
  • See how much you can save with a higher deductible ($500 or $1,000)
  • Get your car insurance and homeowners insurance from the same company to get a discount.
  • Review your policy to make sure you are getting all deductions you are entitled to (alarm, driver's education, etc.)
  • Check more than one web site to get quotes, then call. Don't say you've been to the web site until you hear the live person's quote. If it is lower go with it. If it is higher mention the web site, and they should honor it.

Want to know about how those auto insurance quote comparison websites work? Check out our two part series:

How Online Auto Insurance Quote Websites Work


Are Online Car Insurance Shopping Sites Worth It

Home Owner Insurance, The Short-Short Version

  • Raise your deductible to $1,500 or $2,000 or maybe even $5,000 if allowed and the savings are high enough.
  • Do not file small claims against your homeowners insurance. Many companies may drop you for filing even two claims.
  • Consider an Umbrella Liability Policy if you have substantial assets. Such policies are usually very cheap and provide coverage for unforeseen issues.
  • Get your homeowners insurance from the same company as your car insurance to get a discount.
  • Review your coverage amounts at least every two years. Your insurance company may increase your coverage limits automatically. If your home value is rising (or you've done remodeling or upgrades), the increase may not be enough. If your home value is not rising (or falling) the increase may be an unnecessary increase in your premium.
  • Keep in mind your insurance only covers the cost of rebuilding your home. The value of the land is NOT included. If you live where home prices are high due to location, your insurance company may over estimate your coverage. If you live where home prices are low due to location, it may be under estimated.

Want details and not just the Short-Short Version? Keep an eye on this page for our detailed articles.

Health Insurance, The Short-Short Version

  • Always take group coverage if you can get it.
  • If you can choose from multiple plans, estimate your usage and see which plan covers your needs best.
  • Always buy generic drugs if possible. Be on the look out for drugs that could be generic but are only available as brand name if you get the time release format. Get the cheaper version and set an alarm.

Want details and not just the Short-Short Version? Keep an eye on this page for our detailed articles below.

Coming Soon

Insurability - It is Everything
Work Insurance vs. Individual Insurance
Insurance for Children
Cash Value or Whole Life Insurance - Not Evil (Maybe the Diet Coke of Evil)
The Kinds of Insurance - What You Need to Know (and Nothing More)
"Buy Term and Invest the Difference" - Reality vs. Ideas
Insurance Agents, Financial Advisors, Brokers - Is Anyone On Your Side?
Homeowners Insurance - MUST READ
Car Insurance - The Primer
Group Health Insurance vs. Individual Health Insurance (Hint: Group is Better)
Choosing Your Health Insurance Plan
Health Insurance and the Business Owner