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Financial Fitness Task 10: Take Stock of Your Insurance #30DaysofGOOD

Four types of insurance you should have.


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Things are easier said than done, or so the old adage goes, and we couldn't agree more. That's why we do The GOOD 30-Day Challenge (#30DaysofGOOD), a monthly attempt to live better. Our challenge for January?Financial Fitness.

Take stock of your insurance.

Preparing for the worst is never a fun prospect, but we've tried to simplify it for you. Here's a list of the major types of insurance you should have:

Health/Dental. If you're lucky enough to have a job that provides health and dental coverage, congratulations! Take this opportunity to assess it: Have you selected primary care providers? Do you know the terms of your plan(s)? Are those terms working for you, or could you stand to switch during your employer's next open enrollment period? If you don't know, schedule a meeting with your friendly HR folks and get the details.

If you're one of the 49.9 million Americans without health insurance, you should look into finding an affordable plan on your own. There are a number of sites that allow you to plug in your info and browse policies. We know this isn't the most fun way to spend an evening, but probably one of the smartest.

Car. For those of you that do have a car, you'd better have it insured! Every state requires some level of auto insurance. So let's assume you're within the bounds of the law and you're covered already. Is all your paperwork in order? Do you have proof of insurance in your car's glove box? And do you have the best plan you can get?

Home. If you're responsible enough to own your place, you've probably gotten it insured. But even if you've got a lease and not a mortgage, it's important to have a renter's insurance policy. We'll let our Wealth Club columnist Mike Fleck explain why—and how—to get one.

Life. God forbid something horrible should befall you. If the worst does happen, you want to make sure your loved ones aren't left holding the bill. We'll admit it: Life insurance has always seemed kind of opaque to us, so we'll outsource the instructions on this one: Now that you're all signed up for Mint.com (right?), let them make some life insurance recommendations for you!

And, a bonus:

Pet. That's right, you can take out a health insurance policy for your four-legged friend. It might not be worth it for all pet owners, but certainly worth looking into, especially those with older dogs and cats.

Come back tomorrow for the next task in our financial fitness challenge.

Propose an idea here for a project or workshop that promotes financial fitness in your community. The top-voted idea will win $500 to implement the project.


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