Shopping for home insurance… what could be more fun? Okay, so maybe it’s not the most exciting thing on your to-do-list, but it is probably one of the most important things on it. Finding the right home insurance can save you money and give you peace of mind. Here are a few tips on how to choose a home insurance policy that is right for you.
- Shop Around – You should consider choosing an independent insurance agency to help you with selecting the right home insurance. Using an independent agent means you’re not locked into one carrier and they can shop a number of companies for you. Be sure to find an agent that will work for you, always putting your needs and concerns first.
- Consider a Higher Deductible – Your deductible is the amount of money you have to pay towards a loss before your insurance company starts to pay on your claim. The higher the deductible is, the more you can save on your premiums. For example, if you can afford to raise your deductible to $1,000 instead of $500, you could possibly save as much as 25 percent on your home insurance. In addition, some companies that sell home insurance and auto insurance will take 5 to 15 percent off your premium if you buy two or more policies from them. Just make sure that this combined price is lower than buying the different policies from different carriers.
- Home Insurance Discounts – There are many different types of discounts that you might qualify for and our agents can help you figure it all out for you. You can get discounts of at least 5 percent for a smoke detector, burglar alarm or dead-bolt locks. Some companies offer to cut your premium by as much as 15 or 20 percent if you install a sophisticated sprinkler system and a fire and burglar alarm that dials directly into the police, fire or other monitoring stations. These systems aren’t cheap and not every system qualifies for a discount. Before you buy such a system, find out what kind your insurer recommends, how much the device would cost and how much you’d save on premiums.
In addition to finding the right homeowners insurance, you might want to take the time to protect your investment by adding storm shutters, reinforcing your roof or buying stronger roofing materials that will make your home more storm resistant. You might also consider modernizing your heating, plumbing and electrical systems to reduce the risk of fire and water damage.
Finally, you should keep your homeowners insurance current. Be sure to notify your agent of any major purchases or additions to your home. Conversely, if you sell or get rid of personal property that you had insured separately, be sure to let your agent know so that coverage can be removed or reduced, saving you a few extra dollars.