The New Year is a great time to prioritize home safety and review your insurance coverage to make sure you are appropriately covered. We’ve assembled some tips to make it easier and maybe even save you some money.
Home security system
If you don't have a home security system, consider getting one to protect your hard-earned assets and home investment. A home security system that is monitored by a central station, or one that is tied directly to a local police station, will not only protect your home, you may also receive a discount on your homeowner's insurance premium.
Install additional smoke alarms
As with a home security system, you may also reduce your insurance premium by installing smoke alarms, not to mention saving your life in case of a fire. Installing them in older homes can save you 10 percent or more from your premiums.
Raise your deductible
You can reduce your insurance premium by raising your deductible if you are confident you can absorb the cost of paying the out-of-pocket expense if you incur a claim.
Multiple policy discounts
Many insurance companies will extend a discount of 10 percent or more to policyholders that have multiple policies with the insurer (such as home and auto).
Plan wisely for expansion
If you plan to build an addition to your house or a structure adjacent to the house, like a gazebo, know that you'll pay more for your insurance, depending on how it's built. Wood-framed structures cost more to insure because they are flammable. If you choose cement or steel-framing, you'll pay less since they are less susceptible to damage from fire and bad weather.
Pools and trampolines can have a significant impact on your insurance costs and can add 10 percent or more to your premium.
Consider coverage type
If you purchase "guaranteed replacement value" homeowner's insurance, your insurance will cover the entire cost of rebuilding your home after a covered calamity. Coverage limits on such a policy increase as the cost of construction and materials rises.
Make or update a home inventory
A comprehensive home inventory catalog will make it easier to recover, rebuild, or replace your belongings after a loss. While this won't help you save on your premium, it will prepare you in the event you have to file a claim. With a home inventory, you'll know exactly what you have lost in a fire, for example.