Home insurance is crucial in making you and your home feel safe. But, is it crucial that you pay that hefty premium for your policy each year? Mostly likely, the answer is no.
Home insurers pay claims, but part of their job is helping prevent claims as well. There are plenty of little-known factors you control that may help your insurer with loss mitigation, and in turn, get you credits that can lower your homeowners insurance by up to 25%.
If you live in a gated community, not only do you feel safer, but your home insurer feels safer too. Gated communities are much less attractive to thieves, and therefore put you at less risk for burglary and other such crimes. Since this constitutes as loss mitigation, it can save you anywhere from 5% to 20% on your homeowners insurance.
New Wires, No Fires
In a typical year, home electrical problems account for 67,800 home fires, 485 deaths, and $868 million in property losses. That is a terrifying statistic for something that can be so easily avoided. Depending on the age of your home or if you have new wiring in your home, you may qualify for new wiring credit. This could save you up to 10%.
Your roof is a major concern to your home insurer and any compromise to it can send your home insurance through the roof (pun intended). As more and more impact-resistant roofing materials enter the market there become fewer reasons not to have it. There are four different grades of impact-resistant roofing material (Class 1-4), with Class 4 being the sturdiest. An upgrade to such roofing could grant you 5%-10% credit.
Clean claims record? Give yourself a pat on the back. Your claimless history not only saves your insurance company money, but it can save you money as well. Similar to the “good-driver” discounts for auto insurance, a claims-free credit rewards you with savings on your home insurance premium. The savings – up to 20%! Even if you’ve had a claim, don’t give up hope. You may still qualify!
If your neighborhood has the involvement of the HOA you may qualify for credit as well. You don’t necessarily have to be a member of the HOA to benefit from the discount. Your home is already considered less risky due to your neighbors’ dedication to making your community safe from thieves and vandals, as well as the usual maintenance requirements by the HOA. This HOA credit can save 5%-10%.
New Home or Renovation
Unlike auto insurance, home insurance typically goes down with a new home or renovation. It makes sense – newer home, recent inspections, less risk. If you are considering renovating, check with your insurance for some possible tips on how to optimize your insurance savings. This credit can reach up to 25%.
Smoking still remains the number one cause of home fire fatalities in the U.S. If no one in your household smokes then you could qualify for nonsmoker credit. It may not apply to every state and policy, but it is worth a try. It could save you 5%-15%.
Growing old never looked so good. If you or your spouse is 55 or older and retired, living in a permanent residence, you may qualify for mature insured credit. This is because those who are retired are more likely to spend more time at home. This leaves less time for a problem to go unnoticed, and could save you 10% to 25%.
Smoke alarms and security systems are great, but natural gas and water detectors are becoming all the rage. There are two types of water detectors: passive and active. Passive detectors are cheaper, stand-alone devices that alert when moisture is detected. Active leak detectors not only signal a leak, but actually shut off the water source causing it. Gas detectors are typically passive. These quick investments could give you 5%-10% credit!
New Rating Models
Simple: Call your agent and see if anything has changed. New year, new policies, or just a changing market can affect your savings for the better.
Run through this checklist and see if you can save! If you are unsure, contact your DSI Agent!