Homeowner’s insurance provides vital protection against the risks that face you as a homeowner. The rate that you pay for protection by your homeowner’s insurance policy in governed by a range of factors.
The type of construction of the house and any external buildings such as a garage, patio, shed or out-house are a major factor.
A frame house costs more to insure than a brick house. A thatch roof could push the premium through the ceiling, but a non-combustible roof will save you money.
Where you live is key. A quiet, safe neighbourhood carries a lower risk than one with high crime levels. An area prone to extreme weather increases the insurer’s risk. The distance to a fully-functional fire-response service and the nearest fire hydrant also affect the rate.
The age and condition of a house are important. A new house costs lets to insure as does a house in prime condition.
The property should be covered for the full replacement value of the buildings. The cost of cover relates to this value and of course, the more the building will cost to replace, the higher the rate.
Your credit rating and claims history influence the rate charged. Check your credit rating and where appropriate take the necessary steps to improve your credit score.
Your claims history is of great importance in determining the insurance rate that you are charged. Avoid filing small claims. Even a small claim can result in a rate increase.
Opt for the maximum deductible that you can afford. The difference in the premium could represent a significant saving. Put that saving away to cover small claims.
For your household contents, it is worth paying the extra to cover full replacement rather than cash-value.
Install burglar alarms as well as fire and smoke detectors. Speak to your insurance company to ensure that you get an approved product that qualifies for a discount.
Fire protection in the form of fire-doors, sprinklers and fire extinguishers all help to reduce the risk. Apart from the potential insurance savings, you will be providing greater protection for your family and property against the risk of fire.
If possible add an impact resistant roof, and ensure that the roof is non combustible.
Proper maintenance of your property could help ensure that risks are minimised.
Cover your property for the full replacement value of the buildings. There is no need to cover the cost of the land that the house is built on, but always ensure that your cover is related to current building and material costs.
An under-insured home could prove to be very expensive in the event of a claim. Over-insuring the property is simply a waste of money.
Insurers often provide discounts for having all of your policies through the same company. Consult with your insurer and consider placing your auto-insurance with it as well if the discount makes it worthwhile.
Finally, review the value of your insurance cover once a year.