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Young, Single and Not Insured? Get Hunting for Best Packages

May 19, 2007

By Kimberly Lankford Kiplinger's Personal Finance

If you're on your own, you need insurance. The trick is figuring out what you need and then finding it at the right price.

Until you reach age 25, auto insurance premiums can be a major budget-buster. But prices for the same coverage can vary by hundreds of dollars from one company to another.

When Keisha Fuller was in her early 20s, she decided not to buy a car until she found an auto-insurance policy that cost less than $1,000 per year. The Atlanta woman started her quest at the Georgia insurance department's Web site, where she learned about smaller companies offering good deals.

She contacted independent agents to get price quotes (find an agent in your area at, gathered quotes from large insurers at and, and used sites such as and, which work with a number of companies. The result: Fuller found a policy that cost less than $900 per year.

And she didn't stop there. She reshops her coverage every six months or so, and last December her premium dropped to $426 a year. "I turned 25, an old accident was removed from my record, and I took an online defensive-driving course from AARP for $19.95," says Fuller.

In addition to car insurance, young singles should have renters coverage to insure their belongings, which can be expensive to replace, and give them liability protection. You should be able to find a policy for just $100 to $200 per year, and purchasing it from your auto insurance company could earn you a discount on both policies.

If you don't have health insurance through your employer, it's a good idea to buy it on your own. You can generally stay on your parents' policy while you're a full-time student, up to age 25 (rules vary by company and state). After that, you may be able to continue coverage for up to 36 months through the federal COBRA law. Premiums will jump if your parent's employer had been subsidizing the cost. But you can't be rejected for health reasons, so COBRA may be your best bet if you have a medical condition.

You're healthy? You'll probably be able to beat COBRA's cost. Get quotes from several companies at, or find a local agent at

Raising your deductible on individual coverage to at least $1,100 can lower your premium significantly and qualify you for a health savings account. An HSA lets you set aside tax-deductible money that you can use tax-free to pay for medical expenses that aren't covered by insurance.

Young singles don't have to worry about life insurance. You need that type of coverage only when someone is financially dependent on you.

(c) 2007 Deseret News (Salt Lake City). Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All rights Reserved.

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