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Shoppers urged to think twice before buying warranties

Posted On Fri, November 19, 2010

With Christmas right around the corner, many consumers will be taking advantage of big sales and purchasing expensive electronics. Many stores offer additional insurance and warranties consumers can purchase.

The Pennsylvania Department of Insurance acknowledges that while it's a good idea to protect one's investment, there may not be a need to purchase additional protection for an item. Acting Insurance Commissioner Robert Pratter says some renters and home insurance plans may offer sufficient coverage. Policies typically provide payment for items stolen or ruined from a natural disaster.

"The first thing to check is your homeowners or renter's policy. Find out what household items are covered under your existing insurance and if there are exemptions," says Pratter. "Your insurance usually protects against theft or damage, though there may be limitations on what is covered."

Renter's insurance, in particular, can be inexpensive depending on the type of plan purchased. In fact, purchasing insurance can end up saving a person in the long run. Yearly payments on home insurance are likely to be significantly less than what it would cost to replace everything ruined in a disaster.

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