Archive for the ‘Home Insurance’ Category
If you’ve got a home, you most definitely need home insurance, but there are lots of different choices out there — and lots of insurance companies vying for your business, too.
Homeowners insurance is meant to provide a safety net, so that if you lose your home and/or possessions through some type of disaster, you can have them replaced without having to literally go into the poorhouse to do so.
However, there are some in different types of coverage, and so many different companies to choose from, that it can be confusing to choose your homeowner’s insurance. Here are some tips that should help make the job easier.
Do an online search first
The Internet has made it very easy to go online and do a search to take a look at what companies offer homeowners insurance in your area. Most often, the insurance provider you use will be located within your state.
What kind of coverage do you want?
You’ll need coverage specifically to replace your home and possessions if disaster should strike — and you’ll need to decide whether or not you want “replacement value” coverage, or coverage for the value of possessions and house at the time you assess them for the original policy. Most often, you will want a replacement value policy, since houses and possessions like furniture, televisions, etc. usually go up in price over the years. If you want to have the best chance of coming back to “square one” as much as possible after a disaster, make sure you choose a policy that gives you replacement value coverage.
Decide on your policy
Decide what type of policy you want. In addition, investigate and make sure you’re getting everything you need. You may need to pay more for a policy or buy separate insurance if you live in an area that is at high risk for floods, for example.
Choose a deductible
The higher your deductible, the lower you are premium costs will be. There’s also the fact that if you can pay for any “small” damage yourself, you won’t have to bring your policy into play and therefore won’t be seen as high risk by the insurance company after you have filed a claim. So for example, if you set your deductible at $500 or $1000, have that money saved and put aside; you’ll pay those costs out-of-pocket yourself, after which time the insurance company should take over.
Ask for quotes
Based upon this initial information, you can get some initial quotes from several different providers, for a particular level of policy coverage.
Make sure you can talk to an agent in person
Once you’ve got an initial quotes, choose one or two companies that you think you’ll likely choose once you decide what you would like. Then, make sure you’ll be able to talk to an agent in person; you’ll need this person’s contact information in the event of disaster, and it’s a good idea to establish some sort of personal relationship before anything happens, so that you are not simply operating blindly once you do need help.
Document and update
Finally, once you’ve got your policy, make sure you pull it out and review it on a regular basis, changing or adding coverage as necessary. This will help ensure that you’re fully covered in the event of a disaster, so that you can take care of things and get back to living as quickly as possible.
Information is power. This is also true for your home insurance. The more information you have about your insurance issues, the easier it would be for you to find both cheap and very adequate home insurance policies. There are some considerations that need to be made when looking for a policy. If you know these and follow them carefully, you would be sure you have successfully covered your home. These are:
- Do you know the right amount of coverage you need to be fully covered? This one point is so important as not being covered for the right amount can be a heath breaking thing when you make a claim only to discover that your settlement is not up to the value of what you lost. You need to always put improvements and renovations made on your home and property in general over time into consideration when valuing it. Those little additions here and there would amount to something significant which if not put into account would amount to a big loss. When looking at contents, you need to know the limit – if any set by your insurer. This would help you know if you need to get additional policy to cover for your valuables.
- To make sure that you coverage is always up to date, you should review your policy yearly. Doing this would help you take into account the improvements that have taken place so they can be added to the value of your home.
- Your home can also be over valued. Many people find this a bit difficult to understand. If the value in real estate in an area dropped for one reason or the other, this would affect the cost of your home. (Note that you should always be more concerned about the rebuild cost than purchase cost). The issue of over insuring can apply to your valuables too. If you do not constantly review your policy, you might end up paying premium for the coverage of valuables you might still have in your possession. Imagine that your daughter was getting married and you gave her a very valuable piece of jewelry but forgot to review the policy under which it was insured. You would then still be paying for an item no longer in your possession. Be wise and careful.
- Never assume that everything is covered in your policy. Look closely to see what is not covered. be it flood, damage from insects and pests etc. Not knowing exactly what your policy covers or would cover can at best be described as carelessness.
- Talk with your insurer to find out all the possible discounts and how you can qualify for them. Qualifying for discounts is a great way of making good savings.
- Increase your deductible as this would result in lower rates.
- Get as many free home insurance quotes as you can. The process to getting these free home insurance quotes has never been easier. Just visit an online qoutes comparison site. Fill the little online form and you would get quotes from several insurance companies. The more free home insurance quotes you can get, the higher your chances of getting cheaper homeowner insurance coverage.
At one time or another just about everyone has been told that their house is the largest purchase they will ever make. It is very important to protect that investment. The question that remains is, “How do I do that?” It’s not complicated at all, the answer is with home insurance. Home insurance policies to protect your home are available from numerous sources such as your bank, or an insurance broker. Many home insurance companies also sell policies directly to the home owner via their agents or website.
It is just a simple fact of life, bad things will happen and there’s not much that you can do about it. Home insurance will allow you to rebuild or replace your home if the unthinkable should happen. The exact coverage provided can vary from provider to provider and policy to policy. Most policies will cover fire, vandalism, etc. Various protections for the main structure are in the policy generally. As a bonus home insurance also provides coverage of the contents of your house, your possessions. The extent of coverage and the amount of payout will vary depending on what you ask for and who you deal with. Unfortunately the largest factor in how much coverage you will get is how much you will pay.
There are other reasons to take out a home insurance policy as well. A financial institution you deal with may require that there is a policy for a house in order to grant a mortgage. The policy would also be seen as a positive for any other loans or second mortgages.
In the United States there are three common types of home insurance policy that most homeowners are interested in. These are HO-3, HO-4, and HO-5. The first, HO-3, is the most common policy sold to a homeowner. It covers the house it self as well as contents. In addition this policy provides coverage for some liability, such as accidental injury to visitors. HO-4 is normally known as renters insurance, and it provides mostly for the coverage of apartment contents. HO-5 is very similar to HO-3 however it will provide more coverage for liability and injury.
The most important thing to remember with home insurance is to read your policy and know what you have agreed on. Many people can be surprised to find out what their policy does not cover. These surprises are never something you want when you may have just lost your family home and can compound the devastation that was visited on you. Insurance providers often set coverages you may have assumed would be basic as extras they charge for. Flood insurance is a common example of this. It is often an extra which must be requested and paid for. You need to be very aware of what the insurance will cover and what it will not to protect your investment.