While no one wants to think about anything bad happening to their home or belongings, the reality is that it happens to people every day. Home owner’s insurance can grant you peace of mind that if anything should happen to your home, you will have the needed financial assistance to get it taken care of. This article will help you get started by teaching you a bit about home owner’s insurance.
What is covered by your policy when you have roommates? There are policies that cover everything on site, and there are other policies that only protect your belongings. If you don’t want to pay for your roommate’s belongings out of your own pocket, you need to check this out ahead of time.
If you have an older home, consider upgrading or modernizing heating and plumbing systems to decrease your home owner’s insurance premiums. These improvements can reduce risk of electrical fire or water damage, making it possible to lower your insurance costs. At the same time, these improvements can make your home safer and increase the value of your property.
Make sure you are insured for materials and rising costs there. You should ask your agent to make sure you have an inflation guard feature on your policy. Your home’s value will be adjusted to reflect the rising cost of repairs.
Create a comprehensive list of the valuables that are in your home, and provide a copy to your insurance agent. Take pictures of your items, and have them stored somewhere away from your home. Confirm with your agent that all of these items will be covered, and make sure to update your agent on new valuable purchases that should be covered.
Your home insurance likely won’t cover earthquake damage. A basic home insurance policy will cover damage due to hurricanes, vandalism, and fire or lightning strikes. Even theft is covered by a standard insurance policy. However, damage caused by earthquakes is not covered. You must purchase an earthquake rider to protect your home and possessions.
If you install a structure on your property, it will typically be covered for 10% of your home’s insurance coverage. If you put in a structure that is worth more than that, like a guest house, then you should seek out an insurance policy that covers that structure in case of damage.
Document your belongings by photographing or videotaping. If you need to make a claim, your insurance carrier will request this documentation. This kind of inventory will make the process quicker and simpler for you and your insurance company. The completed inventory should be stored safely; a home safe or lock box is suitable.
When you move homes, be sure that your belongings are insured for the move. This may mean buying insurance from the moving company. Your homeowner’s insurance policy may also cover items that are damaged, lost, or stolen in transit. Check with your insurance agent about a “special perils endorsement”, which will protect valuables during a move.
Be sure that you know about any policy changes if there were to be a life altering event. Make sure your agent knows as soon as it happens. This will include adult children moving in or out, divorce, marriage, etc. The coverage levels that you need to be insured for can go up or down over the years. Keep your policy up to date.
Keep in mind how much your collectibles are worth regularly to be sure the coverage is current. Over time, many items’ values increase, and you have to increase the coverage on your policy in order to be certain your things have the right insurance.
The best homeowner’s insurance in the world may contain provisions that require you to keep your home in working order. You should scrutinize it to see how much regular maintenance you are required to do on your home in order to be sure that all contingencies are covered. Otherwise, you may end up having a coverage-related situation you weren’t aware of, because the policy specified you needed to keep that particular part of your house in good working order in order to file a claim.
When you have a claim, it is best to get quotes from contractors before going with what the insurance adjuster wants to give you. Be sure to keep all documents and receipts in case of an emergency top prevent extra costs. Also, keep track of money you spend on hotels while your home is being repaired, as these costs may be reimbursable.
Home owner’s insurance is something that we all hope to never need, but in the case of a natural disaster or theft, it can be an invaluable thing to have. Taking into account what you have learned from this article, you now have the knowledge you need to begin protecting your home and family with this important insurance.
Any work that needs done to your home should be done by licensed contractors only. Whether you are fixing damage or adding on to your home, a professional, licensed contractor can change how your insurance carrier views the building. Licensed contractors also have coverage, so this factors into how insurance companies rate work on your home.
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