Shopping for the most affordable homeowners insurance can be a bit of a challenge. There are so many companies to choose from and so many policy forms, many homeowners find it hard to sort through them all. But if you want to save money (and who doesn’t these days?) these tips from our experts can show you how.
How to Find The Most Affordable Homeowners Insurance: Tips from the Experts
1. Shop Around
It may seem obvious, but comparison shopping is a good way to find the most affordable homeowner’s insurance rates. Go online or call a few companies to get a general cost comparison, and then look into the companies that offer the best rates. Remember that your actual rate may differ from the online quote, so call and speak to an agent directly before making a choice.
2. Shop for Quality, Not Just Price
When you’re shopping for the most affordable homeowner’s insurance, It’s tempting to go with the insurer who offers you the best price. But service and reliability are important, too. Get recommendations from friends and family, and search consumer resources online. Once you have narrowed your list to a few companies, contact the office of the insurance commissioner in your state to find information about each company’s standing and research their record of consumer complaints.
3. Bundle our Coverage
Once you find an insurance company you trust, bundle your coverage to get the best rates. Many companies offer a discount of up to 15 percent if you buy your auto, liability and homeowner’s insurance coverage from them.
Staying with the same company also pays off. According to the Insurance Information Institute, many insurance companies offer discounts of up to 10 percent if you stay with them for three to five years, and an additional 10 percent longevity discount if you maintain your coverage for six years or more.
4. Install a Security System
A security system provides an extra layer of safety for your home and family. What’s more, installing one in your home may help you qualify for more affordable homeowner’s insurance rates. Many companies offer discounts of up to 25 percent if you have fire and intrusion alarms that alert first responders directly in the event of an emergency.
Although installing a security system can be expensive, many companies offer a discount if you sign a contract for a year or more. Additionally, in many parts of the country, broadband providers such as Comcast and AT&T offer discounted home security packages and free installation when you bundle them with your Internet and TV.
5. Make Safety Improvements to Your Home
Home improvements can sometimes spell big savings on your homeowner’s insurance. For example, replacing an out-of-date roof can earn you a discount on your premiums of up to 20 percent — more if you live in an area where hurricanes are commonplace. Earthquake retrofitting and upgrading old electrical wiring and plumbing can also make your home safer and lower your insurance rates.
Bear in mind, though, that any improvement that adds value to your home means you may need more coverage overall. An upgraded kitchen, for example, can add thousands to your home’s resale value, but you’ll need to increase your coverage to make sure you can replace it if a disaster occurs.
6. Increase Your Deductible
One of the simplest ways to make your homeowner’s insurance more affordable is to increase your deductible. Most policies today have a minimum deductible of $500. By increasing that to $1000 you can sometimes save up to 25 percent on your premiums.
7. Maintain Good Credit
In most parts of the United States, insurance companies now consider your credit score when determining your insurance rates. This means that clients with the highest credit scores tend to get the lowest premiums.
To get the most affordable homeowner’s insurance, protect your good credit by checking your credit report at least once a year (it’s free at Annual Credit Report.com) and disputing any inaccuracies right away. And, of course, pay your bills on time; keep revolving credit balances low; and only use the amount of credit you need.
At Carmoon Group, we offer you affordable homeowner’s insurance, excess liability insurance and auto insurance tailored to your needs, so give us a call at 516-292-3780 to schedule your annual insurance review. We are available every weekday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. No time to call? Contact us online to request a free consultation and we’ll get back to you within one business day.