YOU ASK:

How can I buy low-cost homeowners insurance coverage?

WE ANSWER:

Homeowners insurance is relatively cheap: you can purchase protection for your home and belongings for an average annual premium of around $700. What should be your leading principle when shopping for homeowners insurance, however, is that you get adequate coverage.

Buying Low-cost Homeowners Insurance with Good Coverage

Many people with homeowners policies think their homes are very well protected against unexpected perils or harm, until an unfortunate event happens and they get a slap in the face. It is when they suffer considerable losses that they realize they have not bought enough or the right type of coverage.

Here are some tips which can help you avoid the common mistake of getting the wrong policy:

How to buy affordable homeowners insurance with adequate coverage:

  • Compare quotes offered by different insurance providers. When doing that, compare each policy's coverage, deductibles, exclusions and endorsements. Make sure you obtain as high policy limits and as comprehensive coverage, as possible.
  • Before purchasing the homeowners policy, be sure to check the insurance company's rating and complaint record. There is no better adviser than consumers with first-hand experience.
  • If you feel your home is exposed to a particular risk that is not covered in the policy, check if there is any way it can be added. People in hurricane and flood-prone areas, for instance, should consider getting extra insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program, since flooding is not covered by homeowners insurance policies.
  • Take advantage of all discounts available: you can save a significant amount of money (sometimes even hundreds of dollars in premiums)! Possible discounts include claims-free discount, age-based discount, persistence discount, security system discount, multi-line discount, fire department discount, sprinkler system discount, fire suppressant discount, etc.

How to keep the low cost of your homeowners insurance

  • Avoid filing small claims: this may result in you losing a discount, or your policy getting dropped by your insurer.
  • Review your homeowners policy every few years, especially if you have done major reconstruction or improvement of your home.
  • You might want to purchase some extra liability coverage in the form of an umbrella policy if you find your policy liability limits too scarce - an umbrella is a very inexpensive insurance option providing significant coverage.
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