Are you thinking about buying a home. If you already own a home, you know that your homeowners insurance premiums must be considered as part of the cost of home ownership. If you are buying your first home, you, you may not have considered this cost yet. If you have a mortgage, your lender will certainly require a policy. Even if you are lucky enough to own your home without owing any money to the mortgage company, you will certainly want to protect this large asset!
Your own rates will depend upon several things. Insurers look at your zip code, size and age of the home, claims history, and possibly even the home owners credit report! That said, you cannot assume that all insurers are the same. They all have their own charts for rates and discounts. To get the best price and policy for your unique situation, you should always shop around for homeowners insurance.
Take Advantage of Homeowners Insurance Discounts
You may also be able to save money by taking advantage of some discounts. Many insurers will give you a price break for safety features or anti-theft devices. One common way to save money is to combine your home and car insurance with the same insurance company. If your insurer covers both homes and vehicles, they are usually willing to give you a deal for using them for multiple policies too!
Do You Need More Affordable Coverage?
If the premiums you find do not seem to fit in your budget, you may be better off by raising your deductible. There is a considerable premium difference between a $250 deductible and a $750 deductible. Just make sure you understand you will have to pay that extra money if you do need to make a claim. It is always a good idea to try and put some of your savings in an emergency fund so you can be prepared.
Find the Right Home Policy
I never would want people to be, as they say, penny wise and pound foolish. You will not save money, in the long run, if you find a cheaper policy that does not cover you well. You need to look at the way your policy covers you, and you should also examine the insurance company.
Does the company have a good record for satisfying their customers. You can ask your neighbors how happy they are with their coverage. You could also look for company records or customer satisfaction surveys. You want to make sure that your insurer will have your back if you need to make a claim!
Also understand the difference between replacement value and actual value. If you purchased an older home in a suburban neighborhood, for example, it may cost a lot more to rebuild than you paid for it. If you purchased a home in an area where property values are quite high, you may actually spend less to rebuild than you paid for the home. You can find these things out by talking to a local insurance agent, real estate agent, or by looking online.
You policy should also cover personal property in your home. You also probably want to cover these things at their replacement value, and not their actual value. The laptop you have owned for 2 years may only be worth $150 at a garage sale, but it may cost $1,500 at the store.
It is really simple to shop for coverage with online forms. Many compare multiple company rates, and they make it fast and simple to find out the true cost of homeowners insurance for you!