The Secret To Finding The Cheapest Home Insurance
Home insurance is one of those things that most people know they must have but hate having to pay the premiums for each month. For many people, it feels as though you are putting money into something in the hopes that one day, when the need arises to submit a claim, they will get something back from it. What does lessen the begrudging part somewhat is the knowledge that you have found the cheapest possible home insurance policy for your needs. Here are a few ways in which you can go about achieving that.
Know Your Home Insurance Needs and Risks
If you have a starter home with basic furnishings, you can benefit from looking at the cheapest home insurance policies available. If, however, you have a larger home and very valuable furnishings, you will need to shop with some discernment. The premiums that you pay are directly linked to the value that your home and contents are insured for. If you have a more valuable home, your premiums will be higher but you know you will be adequately insured. Think of the area that you live in. Are there some risks that are higher than others? For example, are you in a hurricane or tornado area? Is the region prone to earthquakes? Is it an area close to forests where wildfires may be a risk? Is it along the coast or near a river where flooding could be a concern? All of these things are risks that will affect the cost of your insurance premiums.
Know the Reputations of Home Insurance Companies
There are many insurance companies and it is a competitive industry. Many less reputable companies will make promises and offer exceptionally low premiums but when you put in a claim, there are many excuses as to why it can’t be paid, or why there is a delay in settling it. The best way to get a good overview of the industry is to do some background research on the different companies. Ask friends, family and colleagues whom they insure through and what their experiences have been. This is generally a good gauge as these will be opinions of people that you trust. In addition, read reviews in newspapers, financial magazines and reports on the financial health of the various insurance companies. Many insurance firms are public companies and have to publish their financial reports. Lastly, go online and read reviews on the different companies. There are many websites that offer comparisons which are helpful when deciding on which company and policy to choose.
What Things Can Help You Get the Cheapest Home Insurance Premiums?
Insurance premiums are worked out based on a risk profile. It stands to reason therefore that if there are things you can do to reduce your risk profile, you can benefit from cheaper premiums. There are several factors that are important in this regard. Safety versus risk of theft is one such factor. If you live in a suburb where there is a low crime rate, that is already to your benefit. To increase your security, you could have an alarm system fitted to your home. You could have an electric gate with remote access and camera surveillance. You could have burglar bars on windows that open and secure latches on all exterior doors and windows. For risks such as fire, you could have smoke detectors and sprinkler systems fitted to your home. Have safety features installed and regularly checked on your home heating or cooling system. If you live in an old home, have the electric and plumbing systems checked and get a safety certificate that you can present to the insurance company. All of these things will show that you are proactive about reducing your risks and count in your favor when the risk assessment of your home is made.
Shop Around for Home Insurance Quotes
Once you know what type of insurance you want and need, you can begin to shop around for insurance premiums. Contact several brokers and ask for quotes. Provide them with as much detail as possible so they can give you a more accurate risk profile and quote. Go online and get insurance quotes directly from insurance companies as well. In this way, you can compare the value of having a broker or not.
Compare, Compare, Compare
This is probably the biggest secret of not only getting the cheapest insurance possible but also the most value for your insurance policy. Get several quotes and draw up a quick spreadsheet to compare the premiums, deductibles, value insured and any other benefits. Most often you will have a shortlist of two or three policies that will come out on top. One may be cheaper but another may have a better company reputation or client service. Another may have lower deductibles. Go back to the insurance companies that you would prefer to deal with and ask them if they can match the offer you have from the cheapest quote. You can then play one against another. Most times, in order to get your business, they will match or come close to matching that quote. What you will end up with is a good value policy for the cheapest possible premium.