Do you know the history behind the tradition of New Year’s resolutions? New Year’s Day was established to honor Janus, the god of Roman mythology who, with his two faces, looked back on past events as well as forward into the future. The Romans made resolutions that had mostly a moral flavor. Today, all resolutions have good intentions, but sometimes they don’t last far into the future.

A big obstacle to achieving your resolutions can be procrastination. I’ve heard all the reasons in the book for why people don’t address their insurance and financial-planning goals:

I don’t have the money. (When was the last time you ate out?)
I don’t have the time. (How many reality TV shows do you watch per week?)
If I buy life insurance, I might die. (My absolute favorite, yet absurd, excuse.)
I have inheritance money earmarked. (Eventually…but what about now?)
My BlackBerry deleted my appointment with the insurance guy. (Use a paper calendar.)
I heard it’s too expensive if you’re not in perfect health. (You don’t know unless you get a quote.)
My wife can marry for money next time. (My second-favorite absurdity.)

And, of course, the classic excuse:

My dog ate my financial plan.

My personal mantra (adopted from Nike) is “Just do it.”

Now that I’ve guilted you into discarding your excuses, consider what you need to do to get your insurance portfolio ready for the New Year.

  1. Have you recently reviewed your auto/home/umbrella insurance packages to see if your coverage is adequate and updated and you’re receiving all available discounts and savings? If not, schedule an appointment with your insurance agent to review your portfolio.
  2. Do you own your own business? Check to make sure your business insurance covers setting up a partnership. Do you need to fund your buy-sell agreement?
  3. Do you receive life and disability insurance coverage from work? Do you need to supplement these plans to get the right amount of coverage for your situation?
  4. Have you been putting off buying life and disability insurance altogether?
  5. Are you one of the 75 million baby boomers wondering how you are going to pay for long-term care?

Some questions you don’t have to wait until New Year’s to ask. Big life changes usually mean it’s time to review your insurance portfolio. Are you:

Getting married?
Having a baby?
Buying a home?
Starting a business?
Merging with another business?
Worried about or taking care of parents?
Dealing with the death of a loved one?

What are you waiting for? Make the call.

Linda Rey is a licensed insurance agent at Rey Insurance with a broad spectrum of expertise in life, accident, health, property and casualty insurance as well as retirement planning and college funding strategies.

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