Best Ways to Lower Homeowners Insurance Rates

Best Ways to Lower Homeowners Insurance Rates

For first-time homebuyers it may come as a surprise that they should purchase homeowners insurance immediately. The mortgage companies want to protect their investment, and your home is the biggest and most long-term investment. Additionally, homeowners should want to protect their home and belongings against disaster, theft or other calamities.

There are several ways to find the best deal on rates or lower your existing insurance rates by following a few important tips.

 

  • Shop Around

 

 

  • Double Check

 

 

  • Compare

 

 

Shop Around

Firstly, buyers should shop around for homeowners insurance before buying any insurance policy. For homebuyers, a real estate agent can be a good person to recommend a specific company and can give you tips on what kind of coverage you need. Consumer guides are also a good place to look when searching for lowest rates, but remember, the lowest price may not be as important as seeking the appropriate level of coverage. When inquiring with an insurance agent about rates, ask what discounts you would qualify for in order to cut costs.

Double Check

Check with your state department to see if it publishes a comparison guide for homeowners insurance. Most state departments also post complaint information on their web sites for homeowners. Ask your friends, neighbors and relatives who they would recommend, and check reviews for insurance coverage online. Good customer service is important when dealing with claims so companies with too many complaints shouldnt be considered in your search for a policy.

Compare

Use comparative shopping to narrow down policies offered by different companies, but before that, consider what coverage and policy limits you need to accurately compare quotes. Some companies may charge more for the same or similar coverage, so its a good idea to compare rates before committing to an insurer.

 

Lower Your Rates!

Once youve found an insurance company that suits your needs you consider what you can do to lower your rates. Some factors that may influence your rate are:

  • Raising the deductible could save you up to 25% on your premium.
  • Buy your home and auto insurance policies together
  • Updates for your home includes electrical and plumbing systems, installing storm shutters, etc
  • High credit score affects the cost of premiums
  • Senior discounts those 55 and older could see discounts up to 10%
  • Check your policy annually review policy and update your list of valuables and home value
  • Improve home security and safety installing smoke detectors, deadbolt locks, fences and alarm systems can save on premiums
  • Know rate killers Pools, hot tubs and trampolines cause accidents and will raise rates considerably, and certain breeds of dogs, such as Rottweilers and Pit Bulls, can increase rates.

When considering different insurance companies make sure you understand the policy terms and choose coverage that best suits your needs, because protecting your most valuable asset could be the smartest decision you ever make.

Pay Attention to Homeowners Insurance

I am not an expert on homeowners insurance and certainly do not play one on T.V. However, as a mortgage professional I am oftentimes faced with the situation of having to either recommend a good agent who can help the borrower or provide feedback on a “deal” the borrower has received. I decline to express a view on something I am not very familiar. However I will instead pass the borrower on to one of my trusted agents.

What I do find though is that borrowers are ill prepared when it comes to selecting the right homeowner’s insurance policy. This is most often the case with first time home buyers. To be fair, understanding the details of a policy can be quite confusing.  It is for this reason that we had our own insurance agent write a post here on AMG a few years ago to help readers better understand the nuances of a robust policy.

Today while doing some searches I found a very good guide on how to save money on these policies at the Pueblo, CO Federal Citizen Information Center website. They list twelve ways you can save money on your homeowners insurance. I have listed the twelve ways here, but to get the full picture I suggest you head on over to their site:

  1. Shop Around
  2. Raise Your Deductible
  3. Don’t confuse what you paid for your house with rebuilding costs
  4. Buy your home and auto policies from the same insurer
  5. Make your home more disaster resistant
  6. Improve your home security
  7. Seek out other discounts
  8. Maintain a good credit record
  9. Stay with the same insurer
  10. Review the limits in your policy and the value of your possessions at least once a year
  11. Look for private insurance if you are in a government plan
  12. When you’re buying a home, consider the cost of homeowners insurance

While this can be a good guide, nothing beats talking with a homeowners insurance professional. If you need some pointers don’t hesitate to contact me. I have a few I can highly recommend.

This site is for informational purposes only. It is not sponsored or in any way affiliated with the government. If you are in need of a mortgage loan, consult with a licensed mortgage professional. All fair housing and equal housing opportunity laws apply when applying for a mortgage or buying a home. Copyright 2012.