How to Get the Cheapest Homeowners InsuranceNovember 29, 2018
Most people need insurance. Most of those same people don’t “want” insurance. So, the conversation around insurance often becomes one of price and for how “cheap” the product can be purchased. It’s worth mentioning that going “cheap” on your insurance coverage isn’t always the most advisable thing to do. A lot of times those cheap quotes might be offered through companies with less stable financials and to stay solvent, a large company-wide rate increase might be looming on the horizon. Other times, premium savings are achieved by offering less coverage and protection for the same exposures.
Assuming that the company providing the quote is stable, and you’ve requested to retain the same property and liability limits, are there any ways to further reduce your Homeowners Insurance premium? The answer is, yes. Well, maybe. It depends. That’s not hedging; it just truly does depend on the individual circumstances of your situation and your home. The following are a few ways that you might be able to reduce your premium and capitalize on discounts that are available to you without sacrificing coverage limits. Here’s how to get the cheapest homeowners insurance without just getting less coverage:
1. Quote-Ahead Discount
Many companies offer discounts for customers who request a quote well in advance of the effective date on the policy. Typically, the quote-ahead discount is applied when a quote is entered approximately seven days, or more, prior to the policy inception. These discounts can vary in size from company to company, but sometimes they are quite significant. Keep in mind that most companies offer this discount in the first year of writing a policy and it is either removed or the percentage is reduced in subsequent years.
2. Disclose Dates of Home Updates
An agent quoting your insurance might casually ask you about when certain things in your home were updated. A lot of times, insurance buyers don’t know the exact date and will give a good faith estimate. Or, when purchasing a home, they might not be given the dates of installation or renovation. It is in your best interest to pin the dates down for renovations or replacement of your home’s roof, heating system, electrical system, and plumbing.
Some companies may surcharge your policy a few percentage points if they are unable to determine the age of your roof. They may also add a policy credit if the roof is less than 10 years old. The same goes with electrical updates and other renovations. If you can figure out when the home was remodeled, you might be able to receive policy credits, upon which you would have been otherwise unable to capitalize.
3. Pay in Full Discount
If your insurance premium is escrowed, meaning that your mortgage lender has included the cost of insurance premiums for your home in your monthly mortgage payment, they are paying in full on your behalf via your escrow balance.
But, if you are responsible for your Homeowner’s premium, saving throughout the year and paying in full can sometimes provide you with a pay-in-full discount. This is one of the common discounts for personal lines policies. In addition to any discount provided, paying in full will also save you on installment fees that can equate to $60 per year or more.
4. Install an Alarm System
Sure, installing and maintaining a monthly security system subscription is an additional cost, not savings. But, many insurance companies recognize how these systems reduce the risk of insuring that home. Reduced risk exposure in insurance correlates with discounts and lower rates and many companies will offer a couple percentage points in discounts for having these systems installed.
A good way to look at this situation is that the savings on your insurance policy can help to offset the cost of the alarm system. Plus, the alarm system isn’t solely a benefit to your insurance company; it’s a benefit to you and your family as well. A couple of percentage points off your dwelling premium might sound insignificant, but if your house is insured for a significant limit of insurance, the savings for adding an alarm system can add up.
5. Capitalize on Multi-policy Discounts
If you have a home, it’s likely that you have a car. If you are getting a Homeowners Insurance quote, it’s a good idea to ask for an auto insurance quote to go with it. You may find that there is a better option for your car insurance, or that the combination of Homeowners and Car Insurance with the same company provides discounts that make it more economical to consolidate your policies into one account.
Almost every company that offers both Homeowners and Car Insurance has multi-policy discounts and some apply these discounts to both policies. Discounts range from company to company, but it is not uncommon to receive 10-15% off both policies just by consolidating your coverage with one company. Regardless of whether you ultimately choose to move your car insurance, it is worthwhile to verify whether savings can be realized.
Before you seek to reduce your property or liability limits on your Homeowners Insurance policy to save a few bucks, be sure that you have first checked into the discounts above to determine if you are eligible for any of them. You may be able to get cheaper Homeowners Insurance without sacrificing any valuable coverage to get there. If you are interested in exploring your coverage options, contact Ruhl Insurance at 717-665-2283 or 1-800-537-6880 today!
Disclaimer: Information and claims presented in this content are meant for informative, illustrative purposes and should not be considered legally binding.