Vital insurance you need in your 30s − and what to pass on

There are the insurance policies to consider getting when you hit your 30s.

Vital insurance you need in your 30s

If you're in your 30s you're probably starting to make some serious life decisions.

You may be thinking about renting or buying a home, travelling or starting a family.

Whatever your plan, it's essential you have the right cover in place. So here's a roundup of the insurance policies you might need.

Life insurance

A life insurance policy makes sense if you have children, a partner or family that rely on your income to pay for the mortgage or other living expenses.

The younger you are when you apply, the better the deal you're likely to get. This is because you're less likely to have a health condition and as you're expected to live longer than someone who's currently in their 60s, a payout is less likely, meaning a lower premium for you.

As for your loved ones, payouts can cover funeral costs, mortgage repayments and education fees for your children as well as other day-to-day expenses like food bills.

There are a few different types of life insurance policies offering varying levels of cover and you will need to decide whether you need a single or joint plan.

If you don't have dependants, you can hold off on the life insurance (for now).

Critical illness cover

As you may have more people depending on you and your income, getting critical illness cover is the next logical step after life insurance.

Critical illness cover is best if you or your partner don't have enough savings to cover everyday bills should you become too ill to carry on working.

Just be aware that it may not cover some conditions like cancer. Always read the small print first.

If you're concerned about treatment, you've always got the option of taking out private medical insurance.

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is vital for anyone going on holiday, whether you're travelling solo on a backpacking adventure or as part of a family of six on a European getaway.

The best insurance policies to have in your 30s

Individuals can get a single or a multi-trip policy depending on how often they travel. Just make sure it covers each destination you're going to in the next year.

If you are travelling as a family, a family insurance policy is likely to be the cheapest way to cover your trip as some providers will include younger kids for free.

You may receive higher cover levels on a family policy too. This could be in the form of additional baggage cover, higher cover level for alternative accommodation and increased cancellation cover.

Just watch out because you could be stung by multiple excesses, meaning that you'd have to pay out for each family member.

If the clan go away once or twice a year, a single trip policy would be ideal, but if you go away more often, go for that multi-trip cover. You can compare both types of travel insurance here.

Home insurance

You will need contents insurance whether you rent or own your home, but if you own your home as a freeholder you will need buildings insurance too.

Some mortgage providers insist that you'll need buildings insurance if you want to take out a mortgage with them. But be warned about taking out your mortgage provider's policy as you can probably get cover much cheaper elsewhere.

As for contents insurance, there are some shortcuts you can take to cut the cost of your cover before you apply. First, fit a burglar alarm, smoke alarm and carbon monoxide alarm. This will reduce the risk of accidents in your house for a minimal cost. You could also offer to increase the excess – just make sure that it's affordable in the event that you have to claim.

Some factors could invalidate your home insurance. If you live near a tall tree or in an area that's prone to flooding and you don't tell your insurer, expect trouble when it comes to making a claim.

Similarly, if you make any structural improvements like knocking down a wall or adding a conservatory without warning, your insurer won't be as sympathetic if something goes wrong.

If you undervalue the possessions in your home (which is an easy mistake to make), it could invalidate your next claim on your contents insurance. A good way to keep on top of the value of your possessions is to price everything up before you take out your policy and update your insurer after every Christmas and any other occasions with a hefty present haul.