If you’ve been reading this blog lately, you know I’ve been looking for ways to earn or save some extra money.

In November I had a hand-made jewelry sale.

In December I cashed in my change jar.

In January I made my biannual trip to Las Vegas, and cut my gambling budget in half. I only spent half of that. For all you math challenged folks, that means I spent only one fourth of my usual amount.

In February I called my insurance agent to get summary of my coverage. I have been with the same agency for decades and they’ve covered my auto and home insurance. Lately I’ve found I’m paying more than my friends and family so I wanted to shop around. With the summary provided by my agent, I could compare apples to apples.

Before I starting shopping though, my agent asked if he could go through my coverage with me to see if we could find any savings without switching agencies. So here’s what we came up with.

Drop identity theft protection. It doesn’t cover the actual financial liability. It just covers limited lawyer’s fees. Savings: $15

Raise auto insurance deductible from $240 to $500. Savings: $70

Take Senior Safe Driving Course (still have to do). Savings: $130

Rerun credit report. My last credit report was run eleven years ago.The insurance company needed my permission to run a new credit check, and it could’ve resulted in my rates going up or going down, depending on what they found. When it was last run I had just bought my current townhouse, which increased my debt load exponentially. In addition, I was unemployed for eight months a couple of years prior to purchasing my home. I’m obviously in better shape today, because the savings on my yearly insurance bill will be $330!

Sub-total: Savings of $545 per year

Cha-ching!(1)

I also found out my townhouse was under-insured due to a hefty increase in the Home Owner Association’s deductible. The HOA sent me a letter telling me the deductible had gone from $5000 to $25,000! I added $35,000 to my previous coverage to cover the INCREDIBLY HIGH deductible, and to cover the increased cost of replacing my furniture and personal belongings (inflation, ya know). Additional cost: $235 per year.

Total savings per year: $310.

Not bad for one phone call!

Stay tuned…

p.s. I shared this at Cozy Little House.