Insurance is one of those funny things that you wish you had in a moment of crisis but regret buying when everything has run smoothly. We already know about the standard insurance policies such as ones covering your home, your car and your purchases, but have you heard of these unusual insurance policies?
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With such an important day in your life like your wedding that costs $24,000 on average in 2010 according to The Wedding Report, Inc. survey. If you had about 20% of the budget on non-refundable deposits, no one wants anything to go wrong, so why not buy insurance to be doubly sure? Wedding insurance covers anything from having to postpone your wedding due to extenuating circumstances such as a sudden death in the family to the happy couple having a change of heart. The cost for most policies are generally under the $500 range but you'll have to read the fine print because something like a rainstorm on your wedding day, doesn't constitute as a big enough natural disaster that has to be covered by your wedding insurance. You might also want to give your home insurance policy a quick read through because it might even cover limited damage (fire, smoke or explosion) at the venue or medical expenses. (Learn more about wedding finances in Have A Princess Wedding On A Pauper Budget and Revealing The Hidden Costs Of Weddings.)
In some homes, pets are as important as any member of the family, so wouldn't you want to take care of them in case of an emergency? Costs for common medical procedures or treatments on pets can range from $700 to $875 per year according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). Other less common procedures could cost between $1000 to $5000, but with pet insurance, your deductible would be around the $100 to $500. Pet insurance covers anything from vaccinations and lab tests, to accidents and hospitalization. If you have more than one pet, you might even score a 5 to 10% discount, and reduced stress knowing that all of your pets are under the same coverage.
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If we pay in cash, there is a low chance of identity theft, but sometimes cash isn't as convenient, like if you are booking your next vacation and need to use a credit card, or you want to maximize those credit card rewards. So a common fear of many who use our credit cards a lot, is how easily our identity could be stolen by tech-savvy thieves who use card skimmers or hack into business systems online to steal customer information. Depending on the policy, identity theft insurance could cost anywhere from $20 to $100 a year, it seems like a very little price to pay for such peace of mind. The trick in buying identity theft insurance is knowing what you are getting and what your deductible is. Deductibles range anywhere from $100 to $250, but if your deductible is in the $1000 to $1500 range, you'll have to seriously consider the benefits. Think about if it covers lost wages, a personal counselor and what limitations are on the policy (for example theft by family members). Take a look at your existing homeowners policy to see what is already covered. The final word on identity theft insurance is that they don't actually guarantee protection from identity theft. If you think about it, if your identity has been stolen, the damage would have already been done, so it's just a matter of the costs involved in sorting it out.
Apparently you don't need to be a celebrity to buy kidnapping insurance. It could happen to anyone! The cost of kidnapping insurance starts at a minimum of $600, with an average of $1000 depending on what your needs are, and if you are planning on traveling to very high risk countries, it could be something to consider. Often a company will pay for the insurance on employees going into high risk areas and the policies will cover the ransom but also costs associated with hijacking, death, legal liabilities such as negotiator expenses or crisis management teams. One word of caution they advise is that you should keep the fact that you have kidnapping insurance to yourself. (Don't go to work without this policy in place - especially if your work is in your home, check out Insurance Coverage: A Business Necessity.)
The Bottom Line
Unusual or not, buying insurance for whatever situation to protect yourself or your family is always a good purchase if you have a lot invested in something or if you are willing to pay that little bit extra for peace of mind. With insurance policies, it is always a caveat emptor (buyer beware) situation because some policies may not actually cover what you expect them to in your time of need, and it might have been better to have never purchased that insurance at all. So read the fine print and assess what you are getting for the price you are paying.