Congratulations! You are about to become a new homeowner. Owning a home is rewarding and satisfying in a way few other aspects of adulthood can be. However, owning a home, especially for first time homeowners- can feel overwhelming and intimidating. Expenses can add up quickly, and from unexpected places. Often overlooked, home insurance is an essential safeguard in the case of an emergency, including robbery or natural disasters.
However, homeowners’ insurance can be expensive. If you are looking for a home insurance policy, but are put off by the cost, here are some helpful tips to get you the best price for your homeowners insurance.
1. Boost your credit
Maintaining a healthy credit score can keep your monthly payments low. The higher your credit score, the less risky you are to insure. Credit is super easy to monitor is you know where to look. Keep an eye on your credit by using sites like Creditsoup.com to see where you stand.
If your credit is less than stellar, focus on improving it to lower your insurance costs. Making sure you pay all of your bills on time and paying down debt can help you boost your credit. For more information on your credit report and how to improve your score, check out our Credit 101 site.
2. Compare policies from multiple companies
Comparing home insurance providers can ensure you get the best price for the best possible coverages. Depending where you shop, prices may differ widely.
In some cases, you might be able to get significant discounts. For example, USAA offers home insurance policies to its members, which is made up of military veterans and their families. If you’re eligible for USAA, you could get a homeowners’ insurance policy for less than you would pay with another company.
3. Check with your agent after major changes
As your family changes, so should your insurance policy. Make sure you verify your policy every six months to a year to make sure you are getting the best possible rate. It is also important to make sure you check your rates after any major life changes- such as buying a home, getting married, or having a child. All of these factors may cause your rates to change.
4. Stop smoking
Smoking drastically increases your risks of cancer and other illnesses, but it also drives your home insurance rates up. Smoking makes your home more susceptible to house fires and other insurance nightmares. Stop smoking and you will see a fall in your rates over time.
5. Set up a security system
Homes that have security systems and theft prevention are less likely to be the victims of petty theft and other small crimes that affect your insurance policies. By upgrading your homes security you are investing in you families’ safety and the protection of beloved family keepsakes.
An added bonus is your insurance rates will likely benefit from the adding security as well, falling an average of 5-20%. Beefing up your security can be as simple as upgrading locks, and as intricate as installing a high tech digital security system.
6. Consider insuring valuables separately
Insuring your most highly valued items (fine jewelry or an extensive art collection) separately, under specialized insurance policies, can save you money in the long run. While juggling several policies at once can feel overwhelming, the extra work could keep extra dollars in your bank account. If your insurance provider offers these types of policies, you may ask about bundling services to save money in the long run.
7. Bundle insurance policies
Most major insurers offer insurance on everything from automobile to boats and houses. Check with your auto insurance provider to see if they offer a discount for you if you bundle your home insurance with your pre-existing policies. The more policies you hold with one insurer, the less of a risk you pose to that insurance provider. Bundling your insurance can help you see discounts on home and auto insurance. Keep the savings going!
8. Limit claims
Home insurance is great in an emergency, but the more your use it, the higher the price tag goes. By limiting the number of claims you make, you will keep your premiums low. Weigh the cost of the premium increase against the value of the claim to make sure your claim is going to be cost effective. If the claim isn’t worth the increase, consider skipping that claim.
Finding an insurance policy
Home insurance can be a necessity for your family. Although it can be expensive, shopping around and comparing offers can help you get the protection you need at an affordable cost.
Editorial Disclaimer: Information in these articles is brought to you by CreditSoup. Banks, issuers, and credit card companies mentioned in the articles do not endorse or guarantee, and are not responsible for, the contents of the articles. The information is accurate to the best of our knowledge when posted; however, all credit card information is presented without warranty. Please check the issuer’s website for the most current information.