As an insurance agent, I've had customers tell me, “I never use my home insurance, so why am I paying so much?” I often say, trust me- you don’t want to use it- you never want to go through the trauma of a major fire or broken pipe claim just to see your policy pay out. But just in case one of those tragedies does come your way, your homeowners insurance will be there to help you pick up the pieces.
Of course, claims or no claims, you want to be sure you’re getting the best priced value in your homeowners insurance. Here are a few tips to help control cost without dropping coverage:
- Deductible - Gone are the days of the $100 or $250 deductibles. Deductibles now are typically $500-$1,000. Usually the best bang for your buck is a $1,000 deductible, but if you can handle a higher one, don’t be afraid to ask what the discount would be.
- Credit score - Nearly every company uses some form of credit scoring in their pricing. And it’s become a significant piece of your premium, for many carriers ranging in discounts up to 50% or more. Building solid credit will pay off big time in the long-term on your insurance premiums.
- Maintenance - Poor maintenance can make you ineligible with the best priced insurance companies. Roof maintenance is huge, and other things like peeling paint, debris around the yard, or crumbling masonry can spell quick cancellation for any home.
- Claim free discounts - Most companies have discounts for being claim free for several years. Before turning in a small claim for a few hundred dollars, be sure to understand the long term toll it might take on your future premiums.
- Bundling - Most companies offer home and auto discounts, which often are 10-20%, or can be more with other policies bundled in like umbrella liability.
Homeowners policies and pricing can vary greatly. One house that’s identical to the next door house could be paying double for the same coverages, so it pays to talk with your agent. But don’t sacrifice coverage just to save a few dollars, so be sure to keep an eye on your policy endorsements.
If you need help navigating the home insurance marketplace in Michigan, give us a call or find us at www.hardtinsurance.com.