5 Tips To Choose The Right Home Insurance


How To Choose The Right Home Insurance Provider For You

Buying a home can be an exciting, yet stressful, experience. On one hand, you delight in the sense of pride you feel with a new home. On the other, worrying about all those new costs can be overwhelming. Luckily, home insurance is available to protect you and your property and lessen your financial worries when certain disasters strike. Of course, picking a home insurance provider can be daunting. Every insurance company boasts the lowest discounts, best deals, and greatest coverage options, making it hard to decide which company is right for you. Choosing a home insurance provider can end in dissatisfaction or contentment. So how do you find the best insurance provider? Here are some tips for getting the best deal. SEE ALSO: The Insurance Claims Process: An Essential Guide

1. Know Your Home

One thing you might not know is that your home’s insurance value is based on its replacement value, not its market value. Say your house is hit by a hurricane and must be rebuilt. The cost to rebuild the house is its replacement value. If you don’t know the rebuilding cost of your home, contact your agent or even a local builder, to help with an estimate. Ideally, you want protection at least equal to your home’s rebuilding cost. In order to get the best rate possible, an insurance agent will need to know specific facts about your home and its history. Some of the details needed to determine your home’s insurability are:
  • The year it was built
  • Where it is located
  • The square footage
  • The type of roof it has
  • The age of the plumbing and electrical systems
  • The amount of claims that have been filed on your home recently

2. Decide What You Want Covered

Take inventory of everything in your home before you shop for home insurance. The value of your possessions will help determine your home’s replacement costs, since insurance policies also cover the contents of your home. Not everything in your home will be covered, however. Big ticket items like jewelry, art, and antiques, will need additional coverage, which can be added to your policy.

3. Determine How Much Coverage You Need

Homeowners insurance is available in different degrees of coverage. The most common levels are Homeowners 1 (HO-1) to Homeowners 5 (HO-5), with the higher number corresponding to a higher level of coverage. HO-1, for example, covers damages from basic perils like fire, vandalism or theft, while HO-3 protects against all types of damage (with some exclusions like earthquake and flood). Figuring out how much protection you want will help you decide on a home insurance provider. Just remember, while you want to avoid paying for more than you need, the better coverage you have will mean less out-of-pocket expenses if a disaster strikes.

4. Shop Around

When looking for insurance, it’s always good to shop around. Comparing quotes will give you a better understanding of your options. Don’t be afraid to ask about other discounts. Insurance companies tend to only advertise their newest deals, but there are often discounts available that are not promoted. Some lesser known discounts available are:
  • Home Security Discounts: Homes in gated communities or with a security system installed can save you as much as 15 percent on your policy.
  • New/Renovated Home Discounts: Newly built homes or homes that have recently undergone a large renovation are entitled to a discount.
  • Home Maintenance Discounts: Hail resistant roofs, updated wiring, new pipes, and safely installed stairs may save you money on your policy.
  • Policyholder Discounts: If you have not filed a home insurance claim in the last few years, you can sometimes get as much as a 20 percent reduction.
SEE ALSO: What Home Insurance Add-Ons Do You Need?

5. Do Some Research

It’s great to score a good deal, but the bargain can fall flat if it’s a struggle to even file a claim. To avoid the hassle, research insurance companies and agents. Those commercials may be fun and entertaining, but how reliable are they? Look up online reviews or ask around for recommendations. Don’t just look at the company’s customer satisfaction either. Find out about their claims service record and financial stability. It’s good to find a company that cares for you and not just your business. While picking a home insurance provider is a varied and personalized process, we at InMyArea.com strive to assist you in your home insurance decision. Our resources are available to inform you about everything you would want to know about home insurance. We are confident that our ever-expanding database can aid you in your home insurance decision.
Date of original publication:
Updated on: November 10, 2015

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