As an apartment renter and not a home owner, I always appreciate contributions in the form of guest posts that share information on the frugal aspects of home ownership. I hope this post helps all you home owners and would be home owners save money on your insurance.
Owning a home is a big responsibility and, in today’s economy, taking on a homeowner’s insurance policy can really put stress on your finances.
Fortunately, there’s ways to take some of the pressure off of your pocketbook with a little due diligence, savvy financing, education, and patience. You can visit the HBF Home Insurance Website to find out more about policies for you & your family.
1. Window Shop Your Insurance
Check out the websites for your state insurance department or the National Association of Insurance Commissioners; both have a wealth of information about insurance companies in your state that will aide in your vetting process. Ask around to your friends and family, as well; someone might have a good lead! Bottom line—take your time and find good rates.
2. Understand Rebuilding Costs
Generally, when you determine the worth of your home, you’d include the land it’s on—you don’t need to do this for determining its worth for an insurance policy. All you need to calculate into your policy is what you would need to rebuild, or what could be stolen.
3. Bulk-Purchase Insurance Policies
Insurance companies that deal in home, auto, and liability insurance policies will typically make it worth your while to purchase more than one policy from them by offering anywhere from a 5% to 15% discount. Cross-check the combined prices against separate prices.
4. Research a Home Before You Buy
If the house close to a fire hydrant? Is the nearby fire department professional, or volunteer? How old are the central heating, plumbing, and electrical systems? Is the house made specifically for disasters prone to the area? All of the above will affect your premiums!
5. Improve Your Home
Sit down with your insurance agent and let them detail what improvements you can make to your home to lower your premiums—it’ll save you money in the long run. You can save anywhere from 15% to 20% just by adding a premium security system, or by installing various disaster-prevention methods.
6. Don’t Pay for Coverage You Don’t Need
It’s recommended that you review your policy at least once a year to ensure you’re only paying for what you need. If you sold a possession that you’d factored into your policy, you can now remove it and pay less—vice versa if you purchased something you want covered.
7. If You Can Afford It, Raise Your Deductible
Your deductible is what you will pay down on a claim payout by your insurance company, when you send that claim in. Usually, it’s at least $500, but if you can afford to double it, then you could save around 25% on your premiums.
See my disclaimer.