Becoming a licensed driver can seem overwhelming. Buying a car and getting it insured is a lot of responsibility. If you’re over 18, a licensed driver and have the funds available to purchase a vehicle (and insurance coverage), you’re definitely free and clear to do so. But if you’re a younger teen, just having a license and the cash isn’t enough. In most states, minors aren’t allowed to own property on their own, and you must recruit a parent (or other trusted adult) to co-sign your purchase. When in doubt, consult your state’s DMV.
State Farm is the largest insurance company in the U.S. since they insure more cars and homes than any other carrier. In some states, State Farm offers a Steer Clear and Drive Safe & Save programs that offer discounts based on driving habits while helping young drivers learn to drive safely. Check with an agent in your area to see if these options are available.
If you find yourself unable to remember the last time you were in a doctor’s office and think you don’t need health insurance, think again. You should definitely have health insurance, and there are plans that are cost effective for healthy people. For example, you can opt for a high deductible health insurance plan – you pay more for things like doctor visits, but you pay less overall for your health insurance plan. This is ideal if you only go to the doctor once or twice a year. These plans also work well in partnership with flexible spending accounts (FSA) or health savings accounts (HSA). You can put pre-tax dollars into these accounts and use the money later on medical expenses.
One never really knows how good his or her insurance provider is until disaster strikes. I was broadsided by an SUV that ran a red light. The other driver did not have insurance, and both my wife and I went to the hospital. Allstate's response was compassionate and swift. A few days later all bills were paid. My rates did go up, but the rate hike was well worth the peace of mind I felt. I am sticking with Allstate.
Even if the open-enrollment period has passed for signing up for insurance via one of the exchanges, you might still be able to purchase subsidized insurance if you've had a qualifying life event. Qualifying events include moving to a new state, change in income, change in family, loss of coverage and others. You may even be able to apply simply because you did not understand that open-enrollment ended or you did not understand the health care law. If your income qualifies you for subsidized health care, you'll want to purchase through your state exchange.
Hi Eric – What you’ve seen is not an unusual situation. A company that’s good in one state isn’t in another. Liberty Mutual worked for you in California, but not in Florida. This is why it’s not possible to say one company is the best. That will vary by state and by your own personal profile. That’s why we produce these “10 Best” lists, to give you companies to investigate.