8 Things to Consider When Buying Home Insurance
Before buying home insurance, there are several things to consider, such as the type of home insurance that will best fit your needs, the cost of the insurance and, of course, a home insurance company. Here are eight you should look over before making a purchase.
- Do your homework: Be sure to take your time and check out several insurance companies. Some of this can be done online, while other information on insurance companies can be found from insurance agents, companies, and consumer guides. It is important to ask about other information aside from price, such as the kind of services they offer and the details of the process of filing a claim. In addition, be sure to check an insurance company’s financial stability. This can be accomplished with a website such as ambest.com.
- Raise your deductible: Think about raising the amount of your deductible. A deductible is what you pay toward a loss before your insurance company begins to pay out for a claim. That is why the higher the deductible, the more money you can save on premiums. Some companies suggest a deductible of $500. Keep in mind — the higher your deductible, the less you pay.
- Combine policies with one insurer: When you buy your home and auto policies from the same insurer, you can save anywhere from five to 15 percent on your premium. However, before doing this, compare the combined price to the cost of these individual coverages from different companies.
- Make your home safe from disasters: Talk with your agent on how you can make your home as safe and resistant as possible from natural disasters and windstorms. By reinforcing your roof, installing a new roof or putting on storm shutters, you may be able to save money on your premiums.
- Install burglar alarms, smoke detectors, and deadbolts: By installing burglar alarms, smoke detectors, and deadbolts, you may also be able to get a five percent discount on your premium. Talk with your insurer about this. He or she can give you good advice on what systems will work best for you.
- Check out the discounts: Keep in mind that there are other discounts most home insurance agents offer, such as discounts for seniors involving burglaries and fires. This is because they are in their homes more often than younger people and can detect these events sooner.
- Keep a good credit record: Do what you can to keep a good credit record because having a good credit history can help lower your insurance costs. Having a solid credit history helps in many areas, especially when it comes to home insurance. To ensure that your credit stays high, pay your bills in a timely manner, keep your credit balances low, and don’t take on more credit unless there is an absolute need to do so.
- Stay with one insurer : When possible, stay with only one insurer. By staying with only one company over a period of time — say three to four years — you may get a special discount. Home insurers appreciate loyalty and are eager to give discounts to keep their customers.