11 Ways to Save on Your Homeowners Insurance
There are many ways to save with your homeowners insurance. You can print this list to use while shopping online or with a local agent.
1. Car/Home Discount: Insuring your car and home with the same company often will give you a package discount. This is a good tool to use when shopping around. Usually the agent can tell you what percent the discount is for insuring your car and home together.
2. Deductible: Raising your deductible can lead to substantial savings.
Furthermore, it is best to have a large deductible to prevent you from using your insurance for small claims since many insurance companies are now adding a surcharge to as little as one claim, and surcharges can range anywhere from 10-85% depending on how many claims you file during a given time period.
3. Home Security Systems: Special burglar alarms can prevent losses and therefore make your house less of an insurance risk. Most any type of security system will help give you a discount, but the type that directly responds to local police and fire departments are most likely going to give you the most discount.
4. Dead Bolt Locks: Most agents will ask you this, but check again to make sure you are not loosing a discount if you already have them. If you don't, it is well worth it. Dead bolt locks are very inexpensive compared to the possible insurance savings, but make sure all of your doors have them because usually the discount only applies if there are dead bolt locks on every door.
5. Smoke Alarms: Preventing a fire loss is important to you and especially to you insurance company. Claims due to fire are very expensive and insurance companies often will give an additional discount for even one fire alarm permanently fixed in the home. Please, even if your company does not offer a discount, take the time to install one anyway.
6. Sprinkler System: Well, this may come into some additional cost, but if you have considered adding a sprinkler system (the indoor type) this is just another reason to do so.
This would also be a something to consider if you are buying a new home or have plans to build or remodel.
7. Non-Smoking Household: Insurers are trying to cut costs too therefore are looking for people to insure that pose the least risk. Since a lot of accidental fires are caused by smokers, insurance companies are often giving a discount for non-smoking households. To qualify you would probably need to have a home in which you don't let anyone else smoke in the home in addition to the homeowners being non-smokers.
8. Organization Affiliation: Many companies offer a discount for being affiliated with certain organizations. These can range from credit unions, college sororities, or just having a certain credit card. Call your service center and ask them for a list of the organization affiliation.
9. EFT Payments: Many companies are now charging up to $5.00 or more for mail payments, but sometimes nothing if you choose to have payments automatically deducted.
And sometimes the deductions can come from your credit card, so you don't have to worry if the money will be in your bank account when payment time comes.
10. Credit Rating: Yes, a lot of companies are checking your credit and basing your policy on what is found. Make sure you check to see if your credit is in good shape, and if it is not, you may want to seek out companies who do not do credit checks.
11. High Risk Property Insurance: Check with your state insurance commissioner if you feel you may be getting turned down for homeowners insurance or are paying ridiculously high premiums because your property may be a high risk such as in a high crime area. Your state may have an insurance plan especially for your high risk property that other insurers may be charging you an extremely high premium because of the higher than average risk.
12. Additional Discounts: There are many additional discounts that may be available such as a reduced senior rate or being in a gated condo. Make sure to sit down with your agent on a regular basis, preferably right before your policy renews, to see if there are any additional discounts available to you.