Insurance products that protect your financial future

With inflation rising to 4.5% and the cost of everyday items such as clothes rising at their fastest rate ever, important financial products can often be overlooked.

Life insurance

New research has found that the cost of paying for somebodyís death is increasing to over £7,000, which is the equivalent of a three month average, pre tax wage in the UK.

Yet a quarter of people have not made any plans for the end of their life, with 44% of people expecting family and friends to pick up the bill.

Sun Life Direct conducted a survey and found that 53% of people found that funeral costs were more than they expected and the actual cost of a funeral has risen by 20% since 2007.

The study found that 87% of people have made no arrangements for where they are to live and how they will be cared for if they are unable to care for themselves in the future. 

Life insurance often gets side-lined because of other pressing financial burdens, yet it is important to consider buying the products, especially if you have dependents.

Recently, MoneyExpert reported on how 13 million parents in the UK are supporting their adult children financially. 

Some of these adult children are well into their 40s with mortgages and their own children. 

Research by Sainsburyís Finance found that parents have lent their ëchildrení over £8.4 billion towards mortgage or rental deposits or payments, as well as £3.5 billion for home improvements and £2.2 billion towards debt repayment.

Yet 53% of parents who do support their ìadult dependentî children do not have life insurance.

Whilst adult-dependents in their 40s may have to cover the cost of mortgages and debts, those who are entering higher education face debts which many could not afford without the financial support of their parents.

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Home insurance

People spend years saving in order to own a property and purchase all the home furnishings and goods to their tastes. Yet despite this, many fail to protect their home sufficiently.

Home insurance protects your assets from the uncertainty of the future. From riots to weather damage, finding the right home insurance policy could be overwhelming, especially when you do not know what the best policy for your property is.

It is worth shopping around for the best cover available. It may not necessarily be with your bank or even be the cheapest. For example, if you live in a part of the UK which is susceptible to flooding, you may want a policy that has more emphasis on this feature such as building insurance.

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Vehicle Warranty

When purchasing a car, the manufacturer will usually offer a warranty, which typically lasts for three years. It is also around this period that important parts begin to falter.

Research by Warranty Direct found that spring and shock absorbers are the first parts that are most likely to cause a failed MOT, particularly if they are 3 or 4 years old. This will cost an average of £237.28 to fix. It is also interesting to note that garages may be taking motorists for a ride as the cost of labour has risen by 7.5% in the last year. The average hourly rate is now £95.83 compared with £90.59 in 2010.

Duncan McClure Fisher, Managing Director of Warranty Direct, said: ìThree years of age is generally a landmark age for a car. In most cases, it stops being covered by the manufacturerís warranty and things start going wrong and wearing out.î

If youíre buying a used car or renewing your warranty, it could be worth switching and shopping around for the best policy. Prices can vary dramatically from one company to another. However, they also offer varying levels of cover.

Before shopping around consider what you want from the warranty and what you must do to keep the cover valid.

Examine the warranty fully before committing to a purchase as many do not cover things such as damage to bodywork, paint, glass and lights. These are generally put down to ëwear and tearí which is commonly excluded.

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Personal Protection Insurance

Personal Protection Insurance (PPI) is a form of insurance which will protect you financially against loan or credit repayments for a certain period of time. This type of insurance is designed to ensure that you can continue to make repayments on debt should you lose your job, fall sick or have an accident which results in you not being able to support yourself financially.

PPI has received a great deal of bad press recently for having been commonly mis-sold to many customers. It has many clauses and is often sold as mandatory when it is optional. It is only valid to those who are in full time employment or working over 16 hours a week, and excludes those who are self employed.

If you are considering taking out PPI it is worth comparing policies as some will have more restrictions than others. Mortgage Payment Protection Insurance (MPPI) is another financial product which can be useful.  It is specifically designed to safeguard your finances should you become unable to make your mortgage payments.

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