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2017-10-30 11:50:07
Home Insurance: 5 Things You Should Know

As buying a home is likely the most significant financial commitment of your life, it is important to protect it. How do you go about doing this? Home insurance. But, before you purchase home insurance, I’d like to explain the basics, like what it does and doesn't cover, plus five other things you should know:

What does home insurance cover?
Most policies cover damage to your home and possessions in the event of a natural disaster (storm, fire, tornado), theft and vandalism. If you are displaced from your house, your home insurance may also cover the cost of your hotel stay. In addition, depending on your policy, home insurance also provides liability insurance if someone gets hurt on your property and decides to file a lawsuit.

What doesn't home insurance cover?
If you opt for the standard policy, you should be aware of the exclusions. These include the following: earthquakes, power failure, war, nuclear hazard, government action, faulty zoning, lousy repair and poor maintenance. What about flooding and water damage? The truth is, it depends. Talk to your home insurance agent about the details of your policy before signing – it is essential to know what is and isn't included. This is especially important if you are in an area prone to flooding, earthquakes or other natural disasters.

Always shop around
Always shop around…why? You could get a better deal. However, the cheapest deal may not be the best deal. Read the fine print to see what coverage your policy provides for you.

Read reviews and ask for recommendations
Take it one step further and read reviews about companies and ask for recommendations from your friends and family. After all, if a disaster does happen, you will have to deal with the insurance company. Choosing a company with an exceptional customer service track record can alleviate any headaches down the road.  

How to lower your rates
Did you know there are ways to lower your rates? You do now. Preventative actions, like a working smoke detector and burglar alarms, can reduce your premiums. Consider taking steps to reduce your potential liability risk (the risk foreseen) – as that is how an insurance agent determines your rates. 

Of course, you can also bundle your insurance policies (home, car, life, etc.) to save some money.

File claims right away
Don’t wait to file an insurance claim. Why? Simple: most insurance companies have a time limit for reporting claims. If you wait, you may not be eligible for the benefits. 

Maintain records
Keep records of everything – receipts, phone calls and more! These files are helpful when you are going through an insurance claim.

Considering these tips now will come in helpful if you run into a home issue down the road.

Did you just purchase your first home in the Austin area? I would be happy to help you locate a home insurance provider! Give me a call today.

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