Homeowners insurance isn't a luxury, it's a necessity. Read Home and Social's top tips helps you to find the right policy and cover.

How to compare and find the best homeowners insurance companies

How to compare and find the best homeowners insurance companies

Getting the best homeowners insurance coverage requires a bit or research and comparison. You should take your time and shop around while using professionals to get advice before settling on one insurance provider. This is because there are many players and a lot of information in the market that can overwhelm you. Below are some tips you can use to find the best homeowners insurance companies that will provide you a policy covering your needs and at your budget.

Analyze your needs

Before embarking on your comparison journey, you should assess your needs to know what you need to insure. Do you want to insure only the home structures or even the personal possessions? Does your property have special needs that cannot be provided by the standard policies? This should help you to narrow your search because you will be looking for the best homeowners insurance companies that can meet your needs. For instance, if your home is prone to flooding or earthquakes, you may require additional coverage. A vacation home may have valuables that should be insured when the home is not occupied.

Do your online research

The Internet has a lot of information regarding insurance companies. By taking your time and doing some research, you will manage to find the best insurance provider. You can go to the States website on insurance and it should have information on how much the coverage costs in the state, the ratings of the companies and if there are any complaints from previous customers. This can help you to get an overview of different insurers so that you can decide if they are suitable for you or not. While at it, you should also check if the insurers are licensed. Another way you can compare the insurers so that you find the best homeowners insurance provider is by using quotes. The Internet has many websites providing the service of generating quotes for insurance products and you can use them to compare different company’s rates. You may also go to a specific company website and get quotes in addition to policy information. Your goal should be to find an insurer with the best coverage and at an affordable price. There are also rating websites from which you can check the ratings provided by other customers. The sites provide customer feedback and complaints. Choose insurers with good ratings and few complains if any. The insuring company should be in a position to pay out policies by having good financial stability.

Consider your insurance provider on other products

A good company may be just under your nose. If you have life or auto insurance and the company provides you with good services, you can also consider it for your home insurance. Take its quotes and policy and compare it with other home insurers in the industry. You may even get discounts for bundling your insurance needs with one company.

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What Determines the Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance

What Determines the Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance

Every homeowner should know what determines the average cost of homeowners insurance and in turn the premiums. This way, one can reduce the amount paid. According to statistics, the average homeowners insurance cost lies between 300 and 1000 US dollars. To estimate this figure, you should divide your home’s value by 1000 and then multiply the result by 3.5 dollars. You should note that this is just an estimate because there are other factors that determine the cost. Some of them are:

The perils covered in the policy

The perils covered determine the cost of insurance. Some policies only cover the standard perils such as damage from fire, wind and vandalism. Other policies may include additional perils and that means higher premiums.

Location of the home and the neighborhood

The geographical location also determines the average cost of homeowners insurance, due to the coverage of disasters present in the area. For instance, if your home is in an area with earthquakes and flooding, you may have to take a separate policy to cover them and therefore increase the cost of your premium. Having a home in Gulf Coast in states such as Florida and Texas means dealing with hurricanes a fact that increase premiums by almost double. Residing in Oklahoma and Kansas means higher premiums due to tornadoes. If you live in high crime neighborhood, your premiums will be also high. The same case applies if homeowners in your neighborhood submit more claims even if you have not submitted any claim. In addition, the distance between a hydrant or a fire station to your home may affect the premiums that you pay because the longer the distance to your home the higher the rate. Any instance of high risk makes the insurers to charge more resulting to higher premiums.

Home condition

The condition of the home also determines the average homeowners insurance cost. To insure an older home costs more due to the problems that older constructions develop. The replacement cost of the home may also be more for an older home. The replacement cost, which is the projected cost of rebuilding or repairing a home to a new condition, also affects the premiums. The higher is the replacement cost, the higher the premiums. If you have not updated the plumbing in your home for 25 years, the premium is likely to be high. This is because an updated plumbing can lead to problems that are water related such as mold. The insurance company may also refuse to insure your home if it has defects such as an electrical wiring that is outdated and does not meet the building codes. You may be required to update it before being insured. Do not forget that you can reduce the premiums you pay by getting discounts. You can qualify for discounts if you install home security features such as an alarm system or constructing roofs with materials that will endure hailstorms and high winds.

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What dwelling insurance entails

What dwelling insurance entails

When buying home insurance, you may be confused by the different types provided such as dwelling insurance, structures insurance and home building insurance and you may fail to tell the difference. It is important to know what these types of insurance entail.

Below are explanations to help you understand what dwelling insurance is.

This type of insurance policy only covers the structure of the home against the insured named perils. You can purchase it to cover the home that you are living in or a home that you own and rent such as a vacation or rental property. In case you use it to cover the home you are living in, you should note that in case any of the perils covered take place, you would not be compensated for possessions in the home.

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How to select the best home insurance companies

How to select the best home insurance companies

It is important to insure your home with the best home insurance companies. This way, you are guaranteed of the best service and coverage that is affordable. The company will have the best home insurance policy that is honored in case there is a claim. Below are some tips you can use to select the best.

Make sure the company can honor your claims

The reason you are taking home insurance is so that you can be compensated in case you incur any losses related to the insured perils. The company you choose should not only take premiums but it should be in a position to pay claims. You can know this by checking how financially stable the companies are. Before taking a policy with the company, make sure that you check its financial statements to see if it is solvent enough to honor claims. You can ask the insurance agent about the solvency before signing a policy. An insurance provider that is not doing well financially will have difficulties honoring claims.

Coverage provided

When taking home insurance, your desire is to be covered for as many perils as possible and at the best premium. Due to the high competition, some insurance companies provide the best service in order to attract customers while others give discounts. You may also find a company that is providing both. Some providers however opt to reduce coverage so that they can reduce premiums. They may even go to the extent of removing or limiting important coverage. You should therefore be keen when selecting a company to ensure that it has the coverage you need. There is no point of paying cheaper premiums while you will not be fully protected. Choose an insurer who will provide you with the best home insurance policy. The limits should not be too low or deductibles too high and an important coverage should not be missing.

View of the company on the future

In as much as the contract with an insurer is renewed annually, your desire may be to have a relationship that is long-term with the insurer. Make sure you select a company that will provide you with that. You may ask the agent or the company about their plans. If you find one that may decide not to take your business in future, then it may not be the right company.

Customer support

The best home insurance companies have the best customer support. You can judge this by how well you get response from the emails and phone calls you make when inquiring. Was your telephone call or email returned promptly? Did the customer representative use easy to understand terms? Were you given proper directions to follow in case you have a claim? How you are treated when making esquires is a reflection of the kind of treatment you are likely to get when making a claim. You may also know about a company by the kind of reviews it gets from its previous customers.

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How Contents Insurance Works

How Contents Insurance Works

The contents insurance cover does not just cover the physical structure but also extras such as damages by theft, by fire and so on. This one covers the furnishings in the house. If you have fridges, TVs, other electronics, heirlooms and so on, you will need to get this cover, irrespective of whether you are a tenant or a landlord. In addition, contents insurance covers fire, earthquakes and lightning as well as flood damages, water leakage and storm. 

Guide to Finding the Right Contents Insurance Policy

It makes a lot of sense to insure the contents of your home. Contents insurance - unlike buildings insurance - isn't compulsory, but most of us would struggle to replace our precious possessions if they were stolen or damaged by fire or a flood.

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