Let's face it — your New Years resolution to eat healthier, exercise more, or work a little less doesn't always last the full calendar year. There are, however, several steps you can take right now that will have long-range, positive implications on your financial health. Insurance serves as a financial safety net during the twists and turns that life has in store for us, but that doesn't mean we should ignore it when things are going as planned. Before settling into 2018, recall the ways you can better protect your financial well-being and avoid common insurance claims. Here are five ways to strengthen your safety net: 1. Look over your insurance policies. Most of us don't read through the entire policy or its endorsements, but understanding your policy fully is crucial to making a claim. Most importantly, study the declarations page and make sure you know its limits and deductibles. Make sure you are aware of all exclusions in your insurance policy. 2. Consider what has changed over the past year. Have you welcomed a new family member? Did you sell or buy a business, an expensive piece of jewelry, collectibles, electronics, or other items that may warrant increased coverage? 3. Make a home inventory. As if damaged property after a fire or natural disaster isn't devastating enough, filing an insurance claim can be very stressful. A current, up-to-date home inventory of the items in your home can help you justify the valuables you are claiming and ensure you don't forget anything. 4. Improve your credit. Your credit history can impact your car insurance rates more than your driving record! Also, ask your insurer or agent about other potential discounts that can save you money on your policy. 5. Get a life insurance quote. Last, but certainly not least, if someone depends on you financially, consider finding out the actual price of life insurance. A policy may be much more economical than you think. 64 percent of consumers do not purchase life insurance because they believe it is too costly. In most cases, it is not. Find out more and get a quote here. For more expert advice from Seely and Durland, click here.