Home Owners Try to Curb Rising Insurance Costs
Home owners' insurance premiums have been on the rise lately with many home owners seeing double-digit hikes and a rise in average annual premiums now over $1,000. Real estate professionals can help show their clients how they may be able to curb their home owners' insurance costs.
A recent article at Money Magazine offers some of the following tips:
Shop around. “If your rates rose 5 percent or more [in the last year], make sure to call the company for an explanation,” the Money Magazine article notes. “Knowing whether the increase resulted from changes in your risk profile or from broad-based increases in the marketplace will help you negotiate and comparison-shop -- which you should do at every renewal or at least every couple of years.”
Look for discounts. For example, bundling your home and auto insurance with the same insurance company could possibly save you up to 15 percent. Insurers often will also give you a discount if you install a security system to your home, storm shutters, or a new roof too.
Evaluate the deductible. Most experts will advise home owners to go for the highest deductible they can afford in order to lower their premiums. But be sure to note that “many insurers are retooling deductibles from set dollar amounts to percentages, which can often represent a substantial change,” Money Magazine notes.
Base your coverage on the right number. Base your coverage level on home owners' insurance on the recent per-square-foot replacement costs in your area, not on the home’s appraised value, notes Kevin McCarty, president of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. To obtain that information, check out your local home builders association.
Source: “Save Big on Homeowners Insurance,” Money Magazine (May 24, 2012)