owners are not clear on exactly what their insurance covers or what
the level of coverage is. They assume that if there is a catastrophic
loss, they will be covered almost without exception. It is a smart idea
to take a close look at your current Homeowners' Insurance policy and
review the following major components.
is covered: Have you made any additions or improvements
to your house that will need to be added to the policy? If you have,
inform your agent in writing and send photographs to validate the improvements.
is the coverage level:
Has the value of your house risen in the last year? If you do not have
a rider that automatically raises your coverage on an annual basis,
you will need to adjust your level of coverage to match the increase
in property value.
Does your policy stipulate that you will be paid a guaranteed replacement
cost or is there a limit to your coverage. Review this with your agent.
What are the limits of your coverage in a situation where someone may
be injured in your home?
Have you added any expensive items (computers are a prime example) that
need to be added to your policy?
to maximize your coverage and minimize your premium cost
are a number of methods that you can use to potentially lower your annual
premium for your Homeowners' Insurance. Consult your agent to see which
apply and how much you can save. In addition, most will add to the safety
and security of your house.
Install dead bolts on all exterior doors.
Install a security alarm
Have smoke detectors on all living levels.
Have operational fire extinguishers available in the house.
a higher deductible:
If you are comfortable with the possibility of having to pay a bit more
out of pocket in case of a loss, raising the deductible (the amount
you will pay when there is a claim) will lower your annual premium.
Have your homeowners' policy and auto policy with same insurer: Many
insurers will give you a discount if you maintain both policies with
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