Homeowners Insurance: What You Need To Know
Owning a home is a dream come true for many people. While owning or buying a new home is one thing, keeping it protected from lawsuits and catastrophes is another. You not only need to take proper care of the house, but also need to ensure it adequately to have peace of mind in the future. While shopping for a homeowners insurance may be daunting and tiring, some understanding of what is required, and how much cover is needed, can help you find a good offer in the market. Some window-shopping and research is also needed to find a trustworthy and reliable insurance company for the same.
How Much Coverage Is Adequate?
One thing you should know about homeowners insurance is that it should include more than just the house. The insurance should also cover:
a. Contents in the house. These include furniture, electronics, appliances, personal effects, clothing, and items in your vehicle.
b. Detached garages, storage sheds, fences, and other structures in the compound.
c. Housing costs (should you have to relocate due to damage to the house)
d. Medical payments and personal liability should anyone be injured while on your property.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Home Insurance
1. Type of Home Insurance Coverage
How much cover you need is the first factor to consider before going on a shopping expedition. You can choose between home basic insurance cover (includes only the house), additional living expense or even complete cover. This however depends on how much you wish to spend on the same among other factors. Most people insure their homes against the most prevalent risk factors within their neighborhoods and region. You should therefore evaluate the most obvious risk factors to insure your home on especially if on a tight budget.
2. Insurance Costs
Premium costs should also be factored in when shopping for a homeowner’s insurance cover. Some window-shopping may be required to identify various players in the industry, as well as how much they charge for different policies. Thanks to the power of the internet, most of this can be done online and even request quotes from these players from the comfort of your desk. One thing you will however notice with the quotes is that most insurance companies will offer a similar package but at varying costs. You therefore should look for the most affordable option from a trusted service provider.
3. Customer Service and Trustworthiness
A good insurance company should have an excellent customer support system to answer or take care of all customer/client queries. Some of the best insurance companies have an ever-available customer service, meaning you can contact them at any time of the day. In addition to this, the insurance provider needs to be a trusted entity in the industry. One way to determine if an insurance company can be trusted is by checking with previous or current clients. Reading through customer reviews and ratings can help you pick the best company out of a bunch.
Insurance companies that have stood the tests of time are considerably the safest and most credible ones to buy insurance from. It would be advisable to go for a business that has been in the industry for at least 10 years, and offering affordable insurance premiums for its clients.
Factors That Affect Homeowners Insurance Premium Rates
With the high insurance premium rates, most people end up purchasing the cheapest policy possible. This means their homes will not have adequate insurance to cover most risk factors. In addition to window-shopping for an affordable option, some understanding of the factors that influence premium costs can help you get an exclusive offer. Some of the things that affect home insurance premium rates include:
1. The Neighborhood: Your neighborhood can be a huge determinant in how the premium rates will be calculated. Homes in neighborhoods prone to break-ins or flooding attract a much higher rate as compared to peaceful neighborhoods.
2. Roof warranty and Age: The quality and age of your roof can also make or break a premium deal. New roofs still under warranty can help bring down insurance costs significantly.
3. Deductible, coverage, and claims: How much you are willing to pay in deductibles also influences insurance rates. The higher the deductible, the lower the insurance rates will be. In addition to this, a clear claim history can help keep the prices down as well.
Armed with this information, you should be able to find a good insurance company and even get adequate homeowners insurance cover at an affordable rate. Be sure to read the fine print before signing the contract, or have your lawyer look into the terms before signing them. This can save you a headache in the future.