What the experts say
Shopping for auto insurance
“There’s some truth in that infamous ad slogan: ‘Fif teen minutes could save you 15 percent or more on car insurance,’” said Kelli Grant in CNBC.com. Nearly 4 in 10 Amer i cans with auto insurance haven’t gone shopping to compare coverage in at least three years, costing themselves an average of $416.52 per year, according to an analysis from Nerd Wallet.com. In some states, the savings could be three or four times that. Drivers in Delaware, the state with the biggest potential savings, stand to save an estimated $1,840 per year simply by shopping for a new plan. “Ideally, you should re-shop your insurance every year, when the policy comes up for renewal” or after a major life change, like switching jobs or getting married, which may bring a discount.
Retiring before your spouse
Retiring as a couple usually makes sense, “except when it doesn’t,” said Glenn Ruffenach in The Wall Street Journal. Most couples “navigate big changes in their lives together,” like relocating or starting a family. But others “can’t, or don’t want to, retire at the same time.” There are many benefits to having one spouse still working, including a steady paycheck, health insurance, and increased Social Security payments in the future. But “if one spouse suddenly is staying home, it can throw a marriage out of whack.” For example, a retired spouse might bristle if the working partner expects him or her to become a full-time homemaker. Couples need to talk through the transition before it takes place. “What does each spouse expect from the new arrangement? How will roles and responsibilities shift?”
Homework for Airbnb hosts
Renting out your home on sites like Airbnb this summer may be a good way to earn extra income, but it isn’t risk-free money, said Darla Mercado in CNBC.com. Homeowners who aren’t careful can end up “on the wrong side” of local zoning regulations or their homeowners association. In other scenarios, homeowners insurance may not pay for damage caused by guests or if someone gets hurt on your property. Check with your insurance company before listing your house. You may need an endorsement or rider for short-term rentals. Commercial insurance may also be required if you’re planning to host guests on a regular basis. Airbnb offers liability coverage of up to $1 million per occurrence, but it’s smart to strengthen your own insurance “in the event of a legal dispute with a guest.” ■