To insure is to guarantee or protect the monetary value of something with, as you might imagine, insurance.

We insure, or protect, our homes and cars and other valuables against loss or damage from accidents by taking out insurance policies. To insure is to pay an insurance company regularly so that if something goes wrong, they’ll help cover the costs. Although it’s certainly reassuring to have insurance, the word insure always has a financial aspect.

Definitions of insure
  1. verb
    protect by insurance
    synonyms: cover, underwrite
    to take an action to protect against future problems
    compensate, cover, overcompensate
    make up for shortcomings or a feeling of inferiority by exaggerating good qualities
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    insure again by assuming all or a part of the liability of an insurance company already covering a risk
    secure against future loss, damage, or liability; give security for
    type of:
    guarantee, warrant
    stand behind and guarantee the quality, accuracy, or condition of
  2. verb
    take out insurance for
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    insure again by transferring to another insurance company all or a part of a liability assumed
    provide additional insurance for
    take out coinsurance
    type of:
    protect, secure
    shield from danger, injury, destruction, or damage
  3. verb
    make certain of
    synonyms: assure, ensure, guarantee, secure
    guarantee, vouch
    give surety or assume responsibility
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    make certain of the failure or destruction of
    assure the success of
  4. verb
    be careful or certain to do something; make certain of something
    synonyms: ascertain, assure, check, control, ensure, see, see to it
    check, check off, mark, mark off, tick, tick off
    put a check mark on or near or next to
    verify by consulting a source or authority
    ascertain, check, determine, find out, learn, see, watch
    find out, learn, or determine with certainty, usually by making an inquiry or other effort
    control, verify
    check or regulate (a scientific experiment) by conducting a parallel experiment or comparing with another standard
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    proof, proofread
    read for errors
    verify by using a duplicate register for comparison
    check once more to be absolutely sure
    check out conflicting sources; crosscheck facts, for example
    make sure of
    ask someone for identification to determine whether he or she is old enough to consume liquor
    pick out random samples for examination in order to ensure high quality
    maintain a check on; especially by patrolling
    type of:
    confirm the truth of
Commonly confused words

assure / ensure / insure

Although these three often show up at the same party, giving hugs, they’re not the same, thank you very much. To assure is to tell someone everything’s ok, to ensure is to make certain, and to insure is to protect financially. Have it straight now? Are you sure?

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